‘We focus on each player individually’ – INTERVIEW WITH HEDGEHOGSTAKING

CheckDecide is running the 1st Custom Felt Competition in these weeks!

Our partners use the replayer with customized skins, now it’s time to vote whose table looks the coolest!

We have 16 competitors – biggest names and rising stars, companies and individuals alike.

In the earlier matches OP-Poker defeated Pocarr, bitB Spins knocked out BetOnDrew, then SpadePokerTV won against PokerDetox and in Match#4 Team4Bet made a last minute take over against BluffTheSpot.

Match #5 is between HedgehogStakingGroup and StandardBacking.

Today we are interviewing Morczika and Belabacsi, the co-founders of HedgehogStakingGroup. 

HSG is one of the biggest stables in Hungary. Could you tell us a little bit about the start and the early days?

We started in 2012, first we specialized on 180 player MTTs and we were looking for small stakes winning players. We started with one coach and 5-10 players, most of them played at the 2,5$ level. They became successful and more players signed up with great potential. We now have 8 coaches, dozens of students, and we gradually moved up in stakes as well.  Nowadays some of our top players enter 530$ and 1050$ tournaments as well. “Don’t hope for it, work for it!” is our motto.

What makes HedgehogStaking unique, why should an aspiring player choose you instead of other stables?

We focus on our own values, own processes, so it’s hard to make a comparison with other stables. But what we do see as a problem in most of the training courses that they target individual spots instead of giving strong, generally applicable guidelines how to construct your strategy in general. The main problem with spot-to-spot coaching is the fact that if only one component is altered, everything can go south. We teach with GTO methods, we encourage our students to have a flexible, thinking mindset, so they can be successful on the long run.

We have group coaching sessions as well, but we mainly put the focus on the one-on-one sessions. We have private classes twice a month, it’s crucial for our coaches to work with our players very regularly, giving them all the attention individually. Some of our coaches have been professional poker players for more than a decade, so they have seen the game evolve, have a greater perspective and a ton of experience to share with the students.

Do you offer staking for other formats (spin/cash) or you strictly focus on multitable tournaments?

We specialize in MTTs and MTT SNGs only.

What was the most amazing moment of your stable?

It’s hard to pick one of the many, these are the first ones coming to my mind:

Slyder is one of our most diligent students. He raised attention first when he chopped the Sunday Storm. Then last year he had a 100K score in the SCOOP low Main Event. And this was just the beginning for him, he is still on an incredible streak with many small-medium scores.

The other success stories I would like to highlight are somewhat different: KronoPP and Pocok85 both had 600-700 buy-in downswings, but they didn’t give up, we held their hands strongly, gave them all support possible, and now they are back in the green zone again, steady winners with an incredible experience of overcoming difficulties. They know a true story about persistence, analysis and grind, patience and well-earned success.

What keeps you up at night? Do you have any plans to expand/transform your services?

We have started a YouTube channel (Hungarian) to give insight to our method of education, but in general we are happy with the current processes, we don’t have plans to make major expansions in the near future.

What are the most important factors when evaluating an applicant? Should they already be a steady winner?

Ideally yes, the applicant should be a winning player, but it also depends on what level they apply for. The main enemy of tournament players is their ego. Many times you have to step back a few levels in order to be able to move forward quickly later on. If you control your ego, you have a positive mindset and you are a true grinder, we will help you find the right level to start and we are going to give you all the help necessary to move up in stakes.

What kind of content can we expect to see from you at CheckDecide?

We will mainly upload content with restricted privacy, only accessible for our students, but we will share some of the big scores and some interesting hands publicly as well.

Do you like your chances in the Custom Felt Competition against StandardBacking? 🙂

Absolutely! You should never underestimate the community of hedgehogs! 🙂

Thanks a lot for the interview & best of luck at the tables!

You can find Hedgehog Staking Group at



Valdemar 'Luigi' Kwaysser

13 years as professional poker player 10 years experience as poker coach. Born Hungarian, living in Valencia, Spain. 36 yo, married, happy father of two. Founder of CheckDecide