Mar 03, 2017
Scottish Student Pays for School with £80k Poker Winnings
By RTR Dennis
The days of numerous university students making a killing through poker may be over. But as maths undergraduate Anmol Srivats shows, the dream is still alive.
A student at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, Srivats has already paid his tuition and then some, making £80,000 through poker, including a shining moment where he earned nearly £6,000 in a single hand.
Given that the average Scottish university student graduates with £10,000 in debt, Srivats is ahead of the curve with average winnings of £20,000 per year. Now in his senior year, the Bangalore, India native really won big his first year, netting £50,000 while attending St. Andrews.
Srivats Turned £8 into a Bankroll
Srivats started playing poker at age 15, after being given £8 by his father. He turned this small amount into a £240 win in an online poker tournament, which kick-started his career. Since then, he's continued to improve and earn money to pay off his tuition.
One thing that Srivats excels at is bankroll management.
"I cover my living expenses each year," Srivats told the Daily Mail, "but I know it's possible to love money very quickly, and I don't spend lots of money on flashy things."
However, considering how well he's done in poker, Srivats will spend a little extra in some areas.
"It's about making my life a little better," he said. "I sometimes eat at restaurants instead of eating halls food, or take taxis instead of walking."
Srivats Has Played Well Online and Live
As for his largest win, Srivats told the story about how he experienced a big windfall in a single hand, and also collected a large tournament score.
"I once won £5,700 in one hand, when I had a pair of aces and went all in with two other players," he explained. "I also won $20,000 (£16,000) in an online tournament as well."
Most of the Scot’s winnings have come through online tourneys. But he’s also managed to corral a few live cashes too, including a fourth-place effort in the Edinburgh Cup, which earned him £4,280. Overall, he has $8,597 in career live winnings to go along with everything he’s earned online.
Poker Will Help Srivats' Future Career
Aside from the money that he's winning, Srivats feels that the skills he's gained in poker will benefit him down the line in mathematics.
"My poker benefits my maths rather than the other way round," he explained. "I think the same skills that make me good at poker make me good at maths."
Srivats added that he wants to work as a trader once he graduates from school, especially since it correlates well to poker.
'I'm planning to work as a trader after finishing university," he said. "It's a natural transition, and I think there are a lot of similarities between it and poker. They want people who think mathematically under pressure."
Srivats is right about poker players transitioning well over to trading. Some of those who’ve made the jump include Jeopardy! champion Alex Jacob, and Dylan Collins, who was profiled in this Washington Post piece.
Considering that Srivats is more focused on trading than poker, he should become the next poker player to make the transition.