Interview with Patrik aka Patman@Paf, the Winner of the first-ever Scout X-mas Challenge!
Hi Patrik, first of all, congratulations on your tournament victory and your new iPad! How do you feel about it now?
Thanks a lot, that was a very pleasant surprise (especially when I noticed the amount of participants) and christmas present – even though it was after christmas it got my hands on my first Apple product ever. Maybe even more important than the iPad was that I beat my colleagues (I think we were 7 people from Paf participating) and that I will for always be remembered as the first winner of Scout X-mas Challenge. 😉
When you first heard of the Scout X-mas Challenge for all employees of our partners, what was your initial thought?
I really like these kinds of “operators tournaments”. Since we work with slots also this concept was nothing new to me, there are lots of slot providers running the same kind of tournaments every now and then. In fact I won one of those earlier this autumn, so I also have a 250€ gift card on Amazon where I can buy some accessories to my new iPad.
What do you do besides winning Scout Challenge Events in real life?
Since 2006 I’ve been working at Paf.com. I started working just with betting (at that time we had our own in-house betting) but as time passed and after a few years we decided to buy the fully (almost) managed betting service from a third party provider. Nowadays I work in our Games Operations team, I still have some betting responsibilities left but now I also help out with other gaming categories like slots, Fantasy Sports and Pool Betting. Sports (mostly watching) is my biggest (close to only) interest so working with betting, even though it has been less and less throughout the years, has been perfect for me. Besides watching sports I’m also a floorball goalkeeper (but age is slowly ending that “career” I suppose) and in the past years I’ve been caught by two pretty new “trendsports”: padel and discgolf, which I really enjoy playing.
Your team outperformed the rest of the competition with crushing 122.5 points. What was the most important idea in your overall strategy and your winning team?
Since it was the last round of the group stage I focused on finding matches where one team really had to win, against a team with nothing to play for. Immediately PSG-Basaksehir caught my eye and I decided to go all-in on PSG and chose offensive players there without even looking at the cost of the players – so I welcomed Neymar, Mbappe and Di Maria (who didn’t start it turned out) to my team with open arms. Since PSG was my go-to-team I didn’t think twice about the captain (Neymar) and vice captain (Mbappe). Besides of the PSG players I tried to identify defensive players who had a good chance of a clean sheet and fit into my budget. Since the PSG players were very expensive I also had to add some cheaper players that I’m not that familiar with so I went with a couple of Porto guys (where none of them started..).
Time to talk about the safety net feature now! Scouts Safety-Net makes it easier to draft players for a full round slate. It may happen that a drafted player will not start as expected. With Safety-Net, this problem doesn’t exist anymore! If a drafted player does not start he will automatically be replaced by the next cheapest player on his team who will receive fantasy points. Are you happy with the Safety-Net algorithm substituting 4 players in your team scoring 35 points in total? Did you know about the feature before?
Generally I’m not a big fan of the Safety Net feature, to me it removes some of the skill of Fantasy Sports – having knowledge of teams/players and trying to predict what players that will be in the starting XI. BUT, biased by this tournament, I find it more and more appealing. Especially in a tournament like this one (last round of the group stage) with lots of teams involved that have nothing to play for, it’s basically impossible to try to figure out the starting lineups of those teams. The safety net worked very well for my team: Veratti came in having an assist, Süle came in with a clean sheet and a goal, Leite came in with a clean sheet and Otavio came in with a goal – so I was very lucky with my Safety Net guys. I have worked with your product and was very familiar with the Safety Net feature and I almost knew on beforehand that it would have a big impact on this particular tournament.When it comes to beginners with limited knowledge, and in tournaments with teams that don’t have anything to play for, I definitely can see why you implemented the functionality. Without the Safety Net functionality I think you need to have a bigger squad (15 players) like in the official FPL where players can come in from the bench to replace players not playing.
Did you play fantasy sports before?
Yes, I must consider myself almost a veteran when it comes to Fantasy Sports. Official game Fantasy Premier League is nothing but a fantastic game, a game that increases your interest from 0 to possibly (if you have any players in the match) 100% for Sheffield United-Burnley a random Monday night is brilliant! My first FPL season was 2006/07 and I enjoy the game as much now as when I first played it. I’m also quite a analytical and tactical person so season games suits me very well compared to shorter individual gameweek tournaments. But with this win maybe my interest for those ones also will increase?
Are you ready to defend your title in upcoming challenges?
Definitely, standing here at the top looking down on you is a very pleasant feeling. Come and get me!
Thank you for your time Patrik, are there people you would like to greet?
If I had to mention one name it has to be Niklas Süle, what a hero!