I played in the £1000 No Limit Holdem at Luton over the weekend. Everything went extremely smoothly on Day 1 and I was hitting cards, my bluffs were working and I was sat on a very good table which allowed me to build my chips up to a healthy 60000 which was 5th out of the 44 runners remaining for Day 2….
Some hands that I remember from Day 1.
- Blinds 100/200 crazy player to my right who I had targeted for a double up raises to 1200 to play. I have KK so I call knowing he will pay me off if I get a favourable flop. It flops JJ9. Not really ideal. He checks and I bet 3000. He goes all in for another 6000. Against a whole medley of players I would consider passing here but not against him. I call and he has AK and I am up to 20000
- Blinds 300/600 I call on the button after numerous limpers with 4s6s. Flop 35T rainbow. Everyone checks so I bet 3000. One caller. Turn a 7 to give me the nuts but ther is now a flush draw. He checks again and I bet 3000 again. He reraises 6000 more. I go all in as I don’t want to be outdrawn by slowplaying. He passes. Up to about 35000.
- Blinds 300/600. This hand was bizarre. I limp under the gun with AA. Five other limpers around to the big blind who just raises 1000 more. I call as there are some crazy players on my table and I think one of them may try a move in this pot. Sure enough Ali Mallu raises 7000 more. Big blind passes and I raise another 13000. Ali passes.
- Blinds 400/800. I raise UTG to 4000 with AK. Big blind who was a very bizarre player who had never played live before called. Flop 23K but all clubs. He bets 1000. Hmmm I call. Turn J. he bets 1500. I call. River a 3. He bets 1500 again and I call. He has the nut flush. I think I escaped that one lightly.
- Blinds 600/1200. Button raises to 3500 to play. I have AA in the big blind. I raise 8000 more and after a big think he calls. Flop AJ9 with two hearts. I bet 8000 and he passed. This put me up to around 50000.
I then got a rush of AK’s and no callers to my raises so ended the day on 60000 chips.
Twice I raised early on with AQ only to lay them down to all in moves and I was down to 46000. I then raised 5 out of 6 hands with no callers and showed the table a pocket pair each time. Bit of a rush…..
This was a key hand. Blinds 800/1600. I raise again to 4500 to play with AQ and pick up a caller in the big blind. Flop 78K with two clubs. He checks and I decide to represent the K and bet 9000. He calls. I am figuring him now for a flush draw or KQ or KJ. Next card a 2 and he checks again. If he is flushing here I don’t want him to get a free card with a 28000 pot out there I bet 20000. Hopefully he will now even let go of a weak King. After about 4 minutes he calls. Hmmm I am down to 20000 chips now. River a 2. Again he checks and I decide not to bluff my last 20000 so check. I show AQ and he says its good. He had A9 clubs. Amazingly after that bluff I am up to 90000 chips and probably amongst the chip leaders.
I managed to get my chips to 100000 before I was moved to another table.
I then got bluffed out of a hand straight away in a small blind/big blind battle. I think I played the hand badly. Blinds 1000/2000 small blind raises to 5000 and I look down at AQ. He has around 40000. I was going to put him all in but decided to just raise it to 15000. He then moved all in after a think. I had no read on this player and haven’t played with him before so he could have been a rock. I passed as 25000 more was just too much. He showed K9. Damn how I hate it when I get bluffed.
We were down to around 23 players when the hand that killed me happened. I had about 75000 chips and blinds were 1500/3000. Early position young guy raised to 8000 to play. I am in the cut off and decide to call with JJ. My first mistake is that I should have raised it there to find out where I was. Flop 259 rainbow. He bet something like 11000. I was convinced I was winning. I had him on AK or a smaller pocket pair. Again I should have raised there to find out what he had. I called. Turn a T. He checks. I fire out 17000 and he starts thinking…. When he eventually calls I am convinced I am beat as I can’t see what hand he could be calling where I am ahead. River a blank. He checks and I check. He has TT for top set. My own fault I let him catch it. It leaves me on 40000 when I should have been on over 100000 if I had played it better. Still he hit a two outer on me so he was lucky.
With the blinds now 1500/3000 I raise twice with AT and AJ only to pass both times to all in raises behind me. I was down to 24000 when I went all in with ThJh and was called by the button who had me dominated with AJ. I didn’t utilise my last 40000 chips very well to be fair.
Overall I played well and got close to the money again. I have a mentality nowadays to try and win tournaments rather than just make the money. In the past I would have just got anted away until I made the money but I think long term taking greater risks at the bubble stage of tournaments will provide greater rewards….