Friday, April 20, 2007

Damage Control

I've just went through a big losing streak. It started as going broke to a 4 outer at an Omaha final table. Followed by losing a couple of 50-50s and 60-40s at the omaha 50c/$1 tables. This quickly developed into major tilt. I demolished my bankroll and my play became completely irrational. I would automatically assume everyone at the tables was jerking me around and consistently ended up paying people off. I stopped visibly thinking about hands almost completely and would just decide what hand my opponent would have. Usually whatever would be convenient. When i had lost about $400 and my balance was below $1800 I stopped recording my play on checkyourbets (bad idea). Hoping to 'make it back'. This hasn't happened of course and im stuck about $600 now. I have filled in the games i have omitted as best i can remember. The graph looks a bit like this unfortunately:



Repairs are under way.


Every time so far i have tried to level up on the cash tables i have found it difficult until my bankroll is about 1.5 to 2 times the required minimum balance according to my bankroll management. This is usually because i play a little too tight when i first start at a level. However, at the $0.50/$1.00 i blew a lot of dough playing too loose aggressive in the wrong spots, too passive at the wrong times etc. Couldn't seem to ever get it right. Multitabling 4 tables at 25c/50c at one time (& losing on all !!) didn't help either. Before i would play maybe 2 tables and target players, which has worked well, but too many tables and it becomes all about the cards. I've dropped down to 25c/50c for now and ill level up again once i build my roll over $2200.

I lost a $150 pot on the omaha tables against a maniac. Has anyone any thoughts on this hand ??? This player was super loose aggressive, i think i had to call the turn bet. I'm not quite priced in, but is this a fold that a good PL Omaha player would make? I know he doesn't have the straight, and i'm thinking that he'd probably make this bet if the board paired aswell. Any thoughts?

I think ill take a step back from Omaha for the moment. I was beating it for a while but i'm getting annihilated at the moment. I initially tilted, but i tuned my game back up and it's just not happening for me. Maybe I'm geting outplayed alot or maybe it's just the big swings, I don't really know.

Switching to hold'em cash and tournies for a while now. With that said here is a hand i lost in an $8+R event. There are 100 players left and 90 get paid, and i'm up in the top 6 spots. This one came up just before the break. I had just moved tables and the villain in question had taken down about 3 of the last 4 pots. I get dealt JJ in EP and raise 3x, i get a caller and soon to be winning a massive pot reraised huge. He types in 'break time' and i fell for it hook line and sinker. I called after some time and pushed on a T high flop. He of course held KK and i was pretty much finished. This was particularly disappointing as i had crawled back from gettin short after losing AA vs QQ all in preflop. Uuggh.

A dismal post i know. Hopefully the next one will be on the up.

Current Balance: $1560

Friday, April 13, 2007

2nd Place Syndrome!

I've been looking forward to playing the $20 Pot-Limit Omaha High/Low tournament for ages. I wanted to wait till i got over $2000 but i just couldn't resist. Anyway i played it and finished second!! Whats going on though? I've never won a tournament yet!! I made a second place on pacific poker $10k guaranteed before after playing heads up for over an hour and a half. Its like a mental block. I just can't seal the deal. This second place is driving me mad. Its gotta be because its Friday the 13th, right!?!



The tournament was great though. I was only all in twice in the whole game (except the final hand). The first hand was interesting. The other big stack at the table was super aggressive and i was looking for push in with him. It was basically going to be me or him left at the table, because he was basically just running over everyone. I later called a raise with TTK9s and on a TJQ board, i check raised all in against the aggro big stack. I was hoping he might fold the second nut straight if that was what he was betting, but he called me with it!! Have a look. Luckily for me, i drew out on him and doubled through.

The other hand i was all in with, i held a double suited high hand and took a gamble against another big stack, and a short. Here it is.

After those two hands it was plain sailing to the final table. I was first/second chip leader the whole way through and just kept feeding off the shorts. I got short on the last two tables after losing a couple of races. Thankfully, when i pushed with trash, i wasn't called, and was able to get a stack back together. Once i had some chips again, i was able to play enough to survive.

When it was 3-way i pussied out of calling both players all in from the big blind with an excellent high hand. See what you think. I could have finished it right there. Cuda-Wuda-Shuda and then there was the final hand.
I hadn't played with JareemWeaver until the final table. It was soon pretty obvious that he was strongest player at the table and with him on my direct left, that made things a bit harder for me. All in all, maybe he deserved first and i deserved second, so i guess i shouldn't be too disappointed. However, I don't think you can ever feel satisfied after playing a tournament that you don't win.

Also, make note, I play to win, not to cash (just can't seem to do it!!):

This hand is from the final table. Note the super short stack.

Small Blind 8000: Nezera (143266 in chips)
Big Blind 16000: chowmein (104972 in chips)
UTG: jitterbug777 (89712 in chips)
EP: LepRecon777 (73101 in chips)
MP: JareemWeaver (156510 in chips)
LP: gunner shere (196930 in chips)
Super Shorty: XXTickerXX (6509 in chips)

Dealt to LepRecon777:


RAISE jitterbug777, 16000 to 32000
RAISE LepRecon777 , 41101 to 73101 and is all-in

Fold everyone... back to jitterbug777,

FOLD jitterbug777
LepRecon777 collected 88000 from pot

I built a huge stack after that hand!

Current Balance: $2,239

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

$50 withdrawal

I have withdrawn $50 from my bankroll so essentially now i am 'freerolling'. It doesn't seem like that however due to the time and effort i have put in so far. My main motivation for withdrawing the money is so my account on checkyourbets (username: 20kmission) displays my correct balance online, hours played and hourly rate etc. My graph of my wins/losses now runs from $0 rather than $50 as before.

I have had a brief go at the low stakes $0.25/$0.50 Omaha tables and was able to sandbag my way from $10 to $199, ala Rolf Slotbloom. This basically meant trapping and limp reraising overly aggressive players. One very aggressive player felted me with this hand on the 10c/25c tables. I flopped the nut flush and he flopped a straight flush. He was exceptionally active and i was hoping that by betting weak at the flop i could get him to bluff at the pot, which i thought i was successful at. Then when he bet the turn strong (which was a blank) i was thinking his play was so strange that he had to have the straight flush / King high flush. I don't think i am or ever will be able to lay down the nut flush to a straight flush. He is welcome to my money in this spot.

Now that i am over $1000 i will be rounding down my balance for the end of each post. As per my Bankroll Management i will be playing the 25c/50c tables now. I might continue playing the micro stakes for a while however, until i get to about $1300, so i will be more comfortable moving up to low stakes.

Also congratulations to Martin smith for winning the Irish Poker Open and also to Roland De Wolf for another incredible finish. He really is dominating the tournament circuit at the moment.

Current Balance: $1115

Friday, April 6, 2007

Genius or Insanity??

I swear i'm never bluffing again in $4+0.40 180 player sit and go's. I don't know whether this guy is a genius or insane but it's definitely a fine line!! Make your own mind up though. This guy was limping a lot so i decided i'd try a steal.
Maybe i need to be more selective about the quality of player i try plays on.

$4.00+$0.40 Hold'em No Limit - Level V (75/150)
Table '47159433 6' 9-max Seat #7 is the button

Seat 1: mitchelltril (3116 in chips)
Seat 3: alfie225 (7590 in chips)
Seat 4: BADPLAY_100 (2986 in chips) is sitting out
Seat 5: deigojd (2865 in chips)
Seat 6: LepRecon777 (5958 in chips)
Seat 7: Le_Klem (6341 in chips)
Seat 8: Fullhousekim (3215 in chips)
Seat 9: juss10 (6730 in chips)
Fullhousekim: posts small blind 75
juss10: posts big blind 150

Holecards:
Dealt to LepRecon777:

He limps once again,

CALL alfie225, 150

I'm hoping to take the pot down here with a raise,

RAISE LepRecon777, 450 to 600
CALL alfie225, 450

no such luck...

Flop:

CHECK alfie225:

Time to represent the Queen. Its a dangerous board for AQ so a large bet should show i'm serious.

BET LepRecon777 , 1200
He thinks for a while...
CALL alfie225, 1200

Attempted steal failed. Although its a strange call, where is the check-raise?? I'm thinking maybe AJ or TT.

Turn:

CHECK alfie225:
A king hits the turn, but i can't represent everything, so i check behind him.
CHECK LepRecon777:

River:

Perfect, the river brings another bluffing card, my 'hand' has improved so i can fire again.

CHECK alfie225:
I considered going all in in this spot but i figured that a descent sized bet would do just the same...
BET LepRecon777 , 2150
I don't think he even considered folding.
CALL alfie225, 2150

Okay, i assume i'm going to see the Q he slow rolled me with,...

Showdown:
LepRecon777 shows:

(a pair of Queens)

alfie225 shows:

(two pair Queens and Fours)
alfie225 collected 8125 from pot

What a fucking Hero.

I was completely amazed. I don't think i could make that call if i played for 20 lifetimes.

Current Balance: $904.26

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Climbing

I think i am finally settling into a groove with regards to what type of games i am playing for the mission. Recently it has been a lot of Omaha cash tables (10c/25c right now) and no limit hold 'em multi table tournaments. I have kind of side stepped the hold em cash tables for the moment. Its not that i don't enjoy playing them but, i think its tricky trying to make money at that game. I am finding Omaha easier to beat at the moment, and the action at the tables is incredible!!(ref: last post) However it has not come without its swings. In one session over the weekend i lost the guts of $120 at the cash tables. Luckily i had the good sense to leave it and come back later. I then managed to get it back on Sunday which was the business. I have been reading Rolf Slotbloom's book: Secrets of Professional Pot-Limit Omaha, which i have to say is an absolute gold mine!! I really hope too many other players don't read it, its that good!! I might dissect it later in a future post.

In other news i played a $3 MTT with 1115 runners and managed a 6th place finish which was good for $120. The hand that cost me the tournament i was dealt 99 UTG. I had a stack of $240k which was average and there was two short stacks with $58k & $90k. With blinds of $6k/$12k and a $600 ante i raised $36k. It should be noted that i had just taken down the last pot with an uncalled raise. The big stack to my immediate left, Ja_sie55 ($380k), reraised to $60k. I immediately assumed i was beat... which did not necessarily have to be the case at all. I flat called his raise intending to check-fold any flop without a 9. However on a board of TJ2 rainbow i bet out $82k, over half my stack and he flat called. I then checked a 4 on the turn he bet $60k and i folded.
I lost a total of $140k in that hand. I don't necessarily think that he had to have me beat either with his reraise. When considering his stack, the short stacks at the table, and the fact that i had just taken down the blinds, his range of hands that he could re-raise me with there were quite wide. He did not necessarily have to have AA KK or QQ, I think he may have reraised with AJ or better (maybe ATs) 66, 77 or better, maybe even KQs with the intention of putting pressure on me. What confuses me about the hand is why he flat called behind me on the flop. The only hands i would flat call there with would be TT or JJ for a set, anything else is too vunerable. Maybe he could have flat called there with AK or 77, i don't know really. My fault in the hand came either from not pushing all in pre or else not check-folding without a set. Any help with this one would really be appreciated!! It was such a badly played hand on my part. Some kind of lapse in concentration i think. Maybe i should cut down on the sugar!!lol
I wasn't able to pick up any hands after that and was blinded down to $74k. After posting a $16k big blind i had $58k left. Ja_sie55 then min-raised utg(with TT). I looked down at KTs, i figured it was as good a time as any for a double so i pushed hoping for live cards and a chance to win a $160k pot. Even being dominated by the TT i was happy with the price i was getting. The flop brought a flush draw and the turn an open ended straight draw, but it was just a tease as the river blanked and i was out in 6th. Ja_sie55 then went on to win the tourney.

I played the first BritBloggerment tournament, which i thought was a really good game. Hopefully it will be a regular thing now. I managed a third place finish. When play was 3-way i had at one stage a $20,000 stack versus cadmunky's $7,000 and Al Eleven's $4,000. I was a bit too keen to get people all-in/double them up, and in the end Al Eleven's patience paid off. He managed to eventually catch some cards to take advantage of my big-stack-gambling play. Congrats to him as he went on to win the first tourney. The end of my game came when I reraised all in with $9k, two tens and a bag of salt and vinegar potato chips to lose the coin toss to cadmunky's AJ.

I thought this bit of footage of Dan Osman doing some speed climbing might be entertaining. This guy is amazing. Its kinda like climbing up the cash table blinds, but not at all really! Check it out:



Current Balance: $768.11