Catman's Column - Richard Ashby Interview
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Yes poker is an addiction, so is food, sex and thinking you are an intellectual. Preaching and bleating, about how good you are, how bad they are and how mightier than thou you think you are, etc, etc. Learning politicians are corrupt, the Vatican is rich, and that Twatter is something you must be popular at to be great. The story goes on, poker is a game of Ego's; some for real, some schizoid, and some lovable ( Luke Schwartz). Some like Tom Dwan Durrrr, visibly but gentlemanly loving the stardom and limelight light, whilst from one what I have seen of Isildur1, a man too cool by far too bathe in any form of celebrity. Traits we all have in parts, traits you might need a little of to win. But what is for sure, love em or hate em, you need balls the size of a Giant Holstein-Friesian Bull too win, the determination of Liv Boeree and a touch of alien intellectuality.
Now taking the balls factor goes further, Gus Hansen's balls are those of a man who has not a fear in the world, no fear whatsoever. Gus is like the Bull in the ring about to get face the tercio de muerte ("death third") of the matadorthe Torridor's Spear, but the Gus Hansen Bull is immortal.
Now Phil Iveys Balls are simply not human balls. But both Phil and Gus, wiithout doubt two of our greatest poker stars, both do have immense and deserved wealth and backing them. Other likes Chris'Jesus' Ferguson have very spiritual balls, balls that cast a mystical charisma. To get in my top ten ball list, or to get to the level of winning millions, you will need the balls to be prepared to rest your balls on a guillotine whilst smiling.
So excluding Isildur1, answer me this, whose balls would simply provide homing for a small continent?
The answer is a man who has been lurking in the wardrobe for the last ten years, a deadly and very silent UK player. The Richard'Chufty' Ashby story is a little like Justin Bieber's in one of my sicker analogies, but I am a person who adores both.
I first met Richard 'Chufty' Ashby in 2000 when he was a micro legend at Luton Casino, he was a quiet whirlwind. One evening I popped in to play our infamous little dealers choice game, when Shirley Lewis let me know that Richard had just won £70,000 at Blackjack. Stand back and think about it, ten years ago, the Grosvenor Luton and £70k. Richard's story continues, thro to Full Tilt Sponsorship and his latest move to join Blackbeltpoker. We met Richard at 'The Moon' pub Watford, England, around the corner from 'Beaver's Strip Club,' I sincerely feck you not.
Richard is clearly a man who has shunned the lime light, a player of such intensity, quality, strength, demeanour and integrity. Joning BlackBeltPoker has let Richard come out a little and Catgirl and I were delighted to get a chance to expose this man to you. The Catgirl and I sat down for a Guiness and a chat with Richard and his mate 'Dave' who was actually present at the £70K Luton Blackjack win.
It was a somewhat surreal meeting, as we were actually surrounded by snogging Lesbians, and like an idiot I moved Richard around the corner for our video interview below. "I was so naive I never recognised they were lesbians, it was only when they kissed each other, one was wearing a see through skirt, you could see her whole body," said the Catgirl after her first foray into a Watford Pub, chosen by the great Ashby.
My videos are labelled moderately crap for a purpose, perfect would be feckin boring. In the case of Richard Chufty Ashby we have literally licked the icing of one of Europe's greatest and nicest high stakes pro's. BlackbeltPoker have got a valuable asset on board there are few that could offer this outlook into the world of poker and still smile, in Richard's own words*:
"A few nights in and after a few too many at the players’ opening party, I nipped back to my hotel room to change my trainers to shoes (we were trying to get into the high rollers Mahogany Room). After turning the laptop on just to ‘check the action’, I somehow found myself in a $1,500/3,000 heads-up game with Cole South. Fuelled by alcohol and festival bravado, I started like a house on fire and totally ran over the game. After what only seemed like minutes I remember checking my account and seeing my balance was up to $1.2 million. This was great! I could rejoin the guys, wipe that smug look off Cole’s avatar (he’s actually a nice guy in real life) and freeroll in the high stakes live games for the rest of the trip with the $400,000 profit. Could life get any better? At 2pm the following day, I was still wearing my trainers. Cole South had turned things around and was long gone, leaving David Oppenheim (in my opinion, perhaps the best H.O.R.S.E. player out there, particularly the Stud rounds) to deliver the final few blows. When the dust finally settled, I checked my balance and it was less than $100,000. I’d managed a $1.1 million downswing in about 10 hours. It had seemed that the more sober I got, the quicker I lost.'
*Extract from Black Belt Poker Pro Richard Ashby Blog
In 2010 Richard won a WSOP Bracelt, came 2nd in the WSOP HORSE $10k, won loads, spunked loads, and this is only the begining of The Ashby Story.
The point is, we all want to be playing on Phil Ivey's table, we all want to experience the ultimate thrill in poker and possibly life, . Poker players are all gamblers no different from city brokers, or any of life's risk takers, but we are gamblers. But how do you get to play nose bleed poker and still be there 4 years or so later. It is not how you get there in there first place, it is how do you keep coming back for more. Can you name more than 3 players from The UK that have played at the level's of Richard Ashby for 3 years or more. Playing nose bleed poker is something beyond 99.9% of us poker players, and being in that little elite is either superhuman or the highest state of mental illness. Genius or Insanity, think Vincent Van Gogh, Friedrich Nietzsche, Ludwig Van Beethoven, Britney Spears, John Nash, Einstein and Justin Bieber.
Richard Chufty Ashby, a hidden weapon, finally coming out of the closet.
Love Peace and Sweet Nosebleed Dreams
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