August 3 PokerStars TeamPro Online Member Thomas “Majincast” Heyward won the budget Sunday Million on 50/50 series — $50 Half Price Sunday Million $1M Gtd… Until that moment, he was not widely known in the Russian-speaking community, despite the status of the official streamer of the “red peak”. To correct the injustice, we have compiled in this article detailed information about Tom and his impressions after winning the Sunday Million.
Tom Hayward is a streamer that Veldhus considers unique
The New Zealander got acquainted with poker in high school, starting to play with friends in all available forms of the game. In addition, he often watched the broadcasts of the WSOP, WCOOP, SCOOP, WPT and other poker series, but did not play poker regularly – there was no such deep interest. About that time, according to his confession, there is nothing to tell – at the beginning of the path there are no incredible facts, the most ordinary life in which he treated the game as a hobby for recreation.
However, since 2009, the game has become more and more fascinated by Tom and he began to regularly look at PokerStars. As of August 7, 2021, his nickname “MajinBoob” has 60,642 ABI $ 50 events with a profit of over $ 125K (including the victory in the Half Price Sunday Million, which we will discuss below). Over the course of 12 years, he has gone from $ 0.10 SNG and $ 0.25 to MTTs for $ 50 +, occasionally looking into games for $ 1.5K. At the same time, he never went into a serious minus at the end of the year. Tom’s profit is the result of grinding, not luck: before winning SM, his biggest one-time win was $ 3,547 in the $ 55 Daily Supersonic.
Tom started streaming poker in May 2018 – for the first six months he had an average of 6-10 viewers on each stream, although the number of followers quickly grew from a couple of dozen people to 200. He first broadcast on the Twitch channel “pleb_method”, renaming him in «majincast» in 2019.
Then Hayward went on the air irregularly, devoting more time to music and various work, but gradually began to appear on Twitch and YouTube more and more often, and by the beginning of 2019 his streams were watched by an average of 50-100 people at a time.
At first, the visual design of his channel left much to be desired, but otherwise he had a very unusual style that made him popular. Tom displayed memes on the screen at the right moments, used sound effects from old games and famous videos, and joked sparklingly. Below you can watch and rate the 27-second clip of the then aspiring streamer at YouTube channel majincast.
Hayward owes the choice of unusual audiovisual design to his studies at the university and difficult life circumstances:
I went to university to study music, because since childhood I played the violin and dreamed of creating my own works, then rushed between works – for example, I was busy installing glass panels for some time. Life was not easy – for a period I completely gave up music, deciding to focus on hard work and improve my psycho-emotional state. Then I returned to teaching, but instead of music I chose animation. Studying media, graphic design and film has given me a lot of skills to bring my ideas to life on stream.
A positive attitude, love of jokes, developed self-irony, as well as active communication with the audience attracted the attention of PokerStars. Personally, Lex Veldhuis singled out Tom’s streams as innovative and stylish, calling him one of Twitch’s most innovative streamers. In 2019, the room offered Hayward a contract and clearly made the right decision: during the collaboration, Tom has built up a fan base of 16.7K followers – not counting the stream with the Half Price Sunday Million finale, at the beginning of August 2021 Hayward is watched on average by 200-300 people at a time. …
Interesting fact: after joining the Stars team, Tom changed the design and sound design of the channel twice. At first he chose an old-school style a la the first Quake – with rusty dies and sounds similar to those in the game. PokerStars appreciated the streamer’s idea – on one of the broadcasts they gave him a stylized chest, having previously sent a humorous notification about it.
The text in the screenshot is as follows:
Attention! Message from PokerStars Support. How are you dude?
We want to show you and your community what chest drops can look like from next week. We found the oldest and rusted chest we could find to fit your canal. It even smells normal. It seems to be. You will receive it soon – we hope you enjoy it!
The chest itself looked like this.
After playing with this design for about a year, Tom changed the color scheme and added more different game sounds – even the soundtracks on his streams sound as if they were taken from old games. In 2021, his channel will remain in the following design:
Winning the Sunday Million is a dream come true
Tom played his first Sunday Million in 2010, finishing in 481st place with a payout of $ 1K, and since then the dream of winning the event has settled in his heart:
I literally dreamed about winning the Sunday Million! I woke up in the morning after 8 hours of poker session and realized that I was actually dreaming about grinding, and the real session had not started yet. A real madman!
According to Tom, his dream usually looked like this: he wins a tournament, checks his bankroll over and over, and each time the amount grows there. His family and friends fill the room with congratulations, chat on the stream is bursting with messages from thousands of users … At this moment adorable puppies are sitting around Tom, his favorite music group is playing – live, especially for him – and everything looks as perfect as possible. And the event that gives him all this is the Sunday Million, and only him.
Tom explains this attention to the event by the fact that he considers it the most prestigious tournament not only of PokerStars, but of online poker in general.
In a short time, this event has become the most recognizable and respected on the Internet – even if you are superficially familiar with poker, then 100% have heard about the Sunday Million at least once. Add to that the fact that anyone can qualify for $ 1 or less – I think that makes SM even more unique. There is serious money at the top that is life-changing, which means missing it is a mistake for anyone who wants to make money with poker. How can you pass up the chance to win money, the amount of which can seriously change your life?
And he has not denied himself this even once in 11 years, regularly participating in SM, but not getting to really big prizes. And on the night of August 3, 2021, Tom not only reached the final of the coveted tournament – which collected 26,651 entries – but also won it, receiving $ 53K on his account as a result of the deal ($ 40.9K in prize money and $ 12K bounty).
The dream came true, but Tom was shocked – on the stream he turned off the camera and let out a tear, repeating without stopping “f * ck”, and later in an interview with PokerStars Blog said that now he does not feel the reality of what is happening, although at the beginning of Day there was a premonition that he would drag something big this time:
For some reason, then I was convinced that it would all end in success for me. Every time I knocked out a person, I felt like I was strengthening my path to victory. It seemed to me that I was playing very well – and my audience supported me so much that I simply could not lose. It seems that on that day I broke my own record for the number of people on the stream – still, people simply could not pass by such an event. And so I won – and hundreds of people began to write to me, just like in my dream: “Congratulations!”, “It was gorgeous!” and stuff like that. Oh my god, it really was great. For several days I can’t come to my senses – I have been going to this for so long! Now I am very happy.
After streaming the SM finale, Hayward took a break from broadcasts to recover. He has big plans for streaming ahead. On what he plans to spend the money he won, Tom has not yet told, but he will definitely leave a part in the bankroll and will continue to play the Sunday Million – after all, one victory does not mean that you cannot win again.