Saturday, March 24, 2007

Biggest Pot Yet !!

When i got to this table yenyen in Seat 1 had been running over the table and had built himself a stack of $70/$80. I sat down and was immediately felted by NoahFinn (on the button in this hand). After sitting out and watching the play a little bit i noticed he had the 'hold em player having a go at omaha' syndrome and overvaluing/overplaying hands. I rebought and in no time was felted once again. This time to it was to yenyen, when i (incorrectly) raised all-in with a straight and nut flush draw, against his concealed set of kings. I was surprised to learn i was a 40/60 dog in that hand.

Getting felted twice is quite disheartening, but i thought another reload would be worth it, as Noahfinn had got himself a stack of $40 and was playing over aggressively. This is something i am getting better of taking advantage of. To be fair, Noah was really just learning the game and several times was confused as he thought his trips was a full boat etc. At the time this hand came up i had won back my $20 and was up $10. I had been side-stepping yenyen a lot, and at the same time looking for an opportunity to double off him. When this hand came up i thought it was as good a time as any to get my money in(nuts and a redraw!!). You'll notice i check the straight into noah on the turn, i was pretty confident he would bet it (so i could come over the top) as he had been stealing more than his fair share.

PokerStars Game: Omaha Pot Limit ($0.05/$0.10) - 2007/03/24 - 09:32:54 (ET)
Table 'Ennomos' 6-max Seat #5 is the button

Seat 1: yenyen28 ($73.50 in chips)
Seat 2: JTdollar$ ($2.65 in chips)
Seat 3: LepRecon777 ($40.80 in chips)
Seat 4: Maric_md ($11.45 in chips)
Seat 5: NoahFinn ($9.85 in chips)
Seat 6: GhostlyDude ($10.50 in chips)
GhostlyDude: posts small blind $0.05
yenyen28: posts big blind $0.10


Dealt to LepRecon777

FOLD JTdollar$
RAISE LepRecon777 , $0.10 to $0.20
CALL Maric_md, $0.20
CALL NoahFinn, $0.20
CALL GhostlyDude, $0.15
CALL yenyen28, $0.10

Flop: (Pot: $1)

CHECK GhostlyDude
BET yenyen28, $0.30
RAISE LepRecon777 , $0.30 to $0.60
FOLD Maric_md
RAISE NoahFinn, $0.30 to $0.90
FOLD GhostlyDude
CALL yenyen28, $0.60
CALL LepRecon777 , $0.30

Turn: (Pot: $3.7)

CHECK yenyen28
CHECK LepRecon777
BET NoahFinn, $2
CALL yenyen28, $2
RAISE LepRecon777 , $9.50 to $11.50
FOLD NoahFinn
RAISE yenyen28, $9.50 to $21
RAISE LepRecon777 , $18.70 to $39.70 and is all-in
CALL yenyen28, $18.70

River: (Pot: $85.1)

yenyen28: shows:

(a straight Six to Ten)

LepRecon777 : shows:

(a full house Sixes full of Tens)

LepRecon777 collected $82.10 from pot

Omaha Hi: 40 enumerated boards containing Ts 8c 5d 6h

Current Balance: $555.58

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Happy St. Paddy's Day

Paddy's weekend in Cork is always a good one. I've been living in Cork since i was 15 (8 years), and somehow i've managed to miss the parade every year. Almost every year we have the skate competition which is what my weekend revolves around. Intertwined with that is some heavy drinking sessions, fights and arrests (shout out to the Sligo boys haha!!) This years session had the typically amazing skaters doing typically amazing tricks but was lacking some new blood i think. Unfortunately the government has been slow on the uptake of building skate parks and the like, so as a result, the scene is suffering. It showed a bit this year. There is a lack of young people taking an interest in the sport, which is due to there being nowhere for them to develop an interest in it. There has been a recent push for parks to be built around the country and hopefully the fruits of these will show in years to come. I was looking to post the competition from last year on the blog but it is not online yet. So until i can get it uploaded here is the intro section from our video Play.

Meanwhile at the 5c/10c tables i have discovered the perils of Omaha. I have been coolered at the tables quite a few times. For example, i raise with a full house,holding 75xx on a 755 flop and get reraised. I'm thinking the only hand that can beat me is 77, which is what he shows. In one session i ran two full houses into straight flushes!! The first full boat i managed to check call his river bet because i thought i held the 3rd nuts(in fact the fourth nuts!!). The other however i got felted. Even so, i am still managing a profit from Omaha, which i have been using for some tourneys.

Every so often i have been playing some 180 person sit n gos and playing some hold em cash tables. The stats for the hold em tables are generally very bad. I usually can't find players to flop of 50%+ for the 9 seater tables. Using bankroll management i find tilt is an easy foe to avoid, and decisions at the tables are only revolved around the hand in question. I have been experimenting with a couple of plays on the hold em tables whilst not really concerned with the money. Take for example:

I had been playing rather tight at a 5c/10c table (from multi-tabling/no cards) and i get dealt XX (won't tell you right now what i have) under the gun. I limp for 10c (have a $10 stack), a rather active player (also with a $10 stack) raises to 40c and it is folded back to me. I reraise to $1.20 and he calls. Flop comes KT4 rainbow. I check, he bets $1.50, i check-raise to $4 into the $4 pot. He flat calls. The turn comes a 5 and i ship for $5. ....
I think any reasonable player would have to credit me with either AA AK KK. Probably at all points during the hand. The limp reraise preflop and the check-raise on the flop are all the clues for a big hand that any descent hold em player would need. Shipping on the turn is an obvious play with a AA AK or KK on that board, for that pot.
This player types in 'bluff oder nein?' to his friend at the table, when i shipped on the turn. He held QTs and somehow managed to call my limp reraise pre-flop and my check raise on the flop. I am sitting with 72s for a 7 high thinking 'please fold'. He then called my turn bet and laughed saying 'thankyou', i replied 'no problem' and left. Usually when i see a player misplaying a hand so badly (in my opinion) i view then as a gold mine and stay till i clean them out. However, that day i just finished the session and headed out.
Personally if i get reraised from an utg limper when i hold QTs its an auto fold. I would much rather a 78s or even 64s ... basically a hand i'm reasonably sure isn't dominated. On that flop if i get check raised after that action its an auto fold, unless the player i'm against is a maniac or i have a good understanding of his game and he is worth a lot of action. I would probably dump KQ. I can't understand why he flat called on the my check raise on the flop. If he thought his pair of tens was good why not go all in. If an ace falls on the turn and i ship, is he going to fold then? However, when the chips were down he had the goods and i didn't, so you could say he made a great call. A way i would look at it would be, he made a loose call and this is a player that i should make heavy value bets into. Perhaps i could have saved a bet by not going all in on the turn as it was clearly unlikely he would fold. But i viewed his flat call as weakness, and decided it would be worth a try.

Another part of my game i'd like to comment on is my tournament play. I can get deep with a good chip position, something can disrupt my flow, and then in 2 hands i'm out. These hands that knock me out, i have a hard time trying to justify my play in them. More often than not i should have just folded pre-flop, call it impatience call it tilt, i dont know. I don't feel its either of them, it seems to me to be just a self destruct trigger before the bubble. Matusow calls it a blow up. The last example of this play, i was in the top 5 spots with 30/180 players remaining and then in 2 hands i'm out!! Something to work on anyway.

Current Balance: $404.38

Monday, March 12, 2007

Championship Omaha

I have just finished reading Championship Omaha by T.J. Cloutier and Tom McEvoy. This an excellent book, right up there with Harrington on Hold'em Vol.1&2. It has given my Omaha game the boost it needed. The book is divided into sections covering limit Omaha, pot-limit Omaha and limit Omaha high/low split. Some general principles for playing good Omaha and some practice scenarios. There is also a section with some amusing (not really that amusing) anecdotes from T.J. back in the day.
It seems a very basic but solid approach to the game, with a strong emphasis on hand selection and observing other players raising habits. I was a bit disappointed with the Omaha High/Low section, it had a descent coverage of the game but no reference to pot-limit play. In general though i really liked this one, i can see myself reading it over a couple of times for sure. I also intend to attack it with a highlighter soon!!

It has been a diet of Pot-Limit Omaha high on the 5c/10c tables over the past couple of days. My first session has been the biggest so far. I was playing with some guy (completely wasted drunk) who kept reloading at the beckoning call of another player, who he incorrectly thought was the same hot girl on his icon. I was the main beneficiary of his efforts to hook up with this girl(actually a guy!!). He'd be like, "Ah shit"(broke again), to which mr hot icon would reply,
"One more buy back",
"Nah, i should go to bed... ok, but you better ring me.", etc. and repeat.
I left that table with about $55.

Current Balance: $424.98

Friday, March 9, 2007

A Nice Break

I just played my first MTT of the mission and came second. It was a $4 180 player tourney worth $144. When it was down to 4 tables i was in a comfortable chip position and in the top 3. Somehow, completely randomly, i managed to donk off two thirds of my chips with A6o. Don't ask me how, it was just completely stupid, but i still managed a descent stack for the final table thanks to players calling all ins with A9s etc.

Heads up, the final hand i had QJ and called a big check raise on a board of J32 rainbow. The player i was against was very loose (calling for all his chips, 20 big blinds, with A6o after a raise and a reraise all in!) so i was hoping to trap, but i ended up trapping myself. Don't know why i didn't just ship. The turn came an 8 and he bet 45,000 into about 60/70,000 and then i pushed for 100k. He called with 83o to win with 2 pair.

Apart from that i've been playing some Pot Limit Omaha high. I'm losing at it at the moment but i'm still finding my feet with the game. Hopefully soon ill start taking down some big numbers!

Current Balance: $345.13

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

1% Complete

I have just climbed above $200 and i am now playing the 5c/10c tables. $200 is 1% of $20,000 so technically i am 1% complete. However, i have also completed 2 of 9 levels i described in the Bankroll Management post for the mission, so if i look at it that way i am 22% complete!!!

In my haste to break the $200 barrier i was completely humbled by the 2c/5c tables. I dropped an enormity of change on the pot limit omaha high and omaha high/low tables. My high point was $208 and my low was $155. I got spanked! I keep learning the same lesson over and over, patience-discipline-patience-discipline..... okay okay, i get it. I managed to climb my way back up by playing a couple of $5 four player heads-up tournaments. I played 4 and won 3, which isn't bad going. Its $20 for first which is a $15 profit!!

To help improve my omaha game i've gotten a hold of Championship Omaha by TJ Cloutier and Tom McEvoy. So far it has been an excellent read, more on that later.

Current Balance: $215.32

Friday, March 2, 2007

Calling Station?!?

Grinding it out on the 2c/5c tables has been a lot of fun up to this point. Intermittently, i find myself playing some absolutely terrible poker, ie. betting into made hands, not being able to fold when it obvious he can only raise if i'm beat, etc. A trend i'm noticing in my play is i sometimes assume people play like me and i've been making calls and plays based on this, which is costing me money.

Here's an example of a hand i would like to think i can get away from. I was playing the 2c/5c NL holdem tables. I held AQo on the button and a player in mid-position raised 4x (=20c), mid-position2 called and the cut-off called. I reraised to 70c. If the first raiser comes over the top, i'm obviously folding, but he called and so did the other two players. The flop came A93 rainbow. The pot was now $2.80. First player checked, second player shipped for $3 and the cut-off folded. I called, and the initial raiser folded.
So, what hands am i beating?? I could beat AJ or AT. Is someone really going to hold on to a suited rag ace that long(e.g. A4s), and then ship on that board, after all that action?? I must have thought so if i called. What hands could he have shipped with there that would have meant he wasn't a complete lunatic?? There were no draws he could have had. So it had got to be AK, A9 A3, 33, 99 .. didn't think he had AA. So i was calling with 2:1 odds to see AJ or AT. 2 hands out of 5 that i could beat. Not a great call i don't think, and possibly it should have been an easy lay down. Anyway he showed A9s which held up, and rightly so.

Another example: I was a bit disappointed to find myself unable to get away from QQ when it was obvious i was most likely beat. A situation occurred at the start of a $3 s'n'g. The play went: first player raised, he was reraised and a third player pushed all in for $700. I was looking at QQ with $1500 in the big blind. My thinking was... "guy for $700 is tilting from last pot he lost and probably has Ax, and the first reraiser has AK, or else it's just the insanity that happens during the first level." But instead the simple answer was the right one: 'big pairs are out there'. I was against AA and KK and went broke.... live and learn i guess.

So how do i keep winning if i'm playing badly?? I guess it must be i don't play as bad as everyone else. The tables are actually quite passive so there is a lot of free money out there, i get my share. So it's either short term luck eg. K8 vs Q8 on a T88 board, or i'm not playing as badly as my peers.

I'm not going to dwell any longer. Its easy get over after looking at some Bill Fillmaff. This guy is a fucking legend, lol. Check this out.

How to give a bad beat, Bill Fillmaff style:

Don't call it a suck out, i have puppy feet!
...i'm gonna bust you out, Fillmaff's gonna bust you out...


How to take a bad beat, Bill Fillmaff style,

Sound the bad beat alarm!!! Haahaaaahahaahahahaaa... fucking hilarious.

Current Balance: $191.45