Friday, August 26, 2005

Busy week

I have been putting alot of hours in on the Omaha tables since i last posted. Luckily my form has continued to be good and after posting that i couldn't string three decent sessions on the trot, i have now won eight of the last nine times that i have played. Long may that sort of form continue.

In a way its been a very strange week. Twice i have been over £4000 down in sessions and feeling slightly tilty. Only to recover and book decent wins both times. Looking at my Omaha play in general, i think i have learned more in the last six months than in the previous fifteen years i have played the game. When i was primarily a live player i could categorise players into a few categories.....

- Very good/good player
- Rock
- Maniac
- Easy money

On the net though i encounter styles that i have never seen live. Players who raise a huge number of hands preflop even when the game isn't shorthanded and more often than not there extreme gambling seems to reap dividends for them. I still find the ultra aggressive opponents short handed the most tricky. Its scenarious like this that i struggle to make the correct decision.

Say i hold AQ45 double suited. My opponent like he will with every hand raises preflop to £60 to play on the button. I call. It flops AT5. I think the check raise is the correct play here as he is more likely to have nothing and he will always bet the flop if he raises preflop. I check. He bets £120. I reraise to £360 and he moves over the top of me for another £1000. I pass. Should i? I am losing too many of these kind of hands for my liking.

I've probably played 25 hours + this week. Some of the significant hands that i remember.

Hands played badly:

Five handed. Middle position makes it £100 to play. I call on the button with AQK9. Four of see a flop of 7TJ with two clubs. Original raiser bets £400. I call. Turn a Q clubs. he checks. I check. River a blank. He checks. I bet £500. He reraises and i pass. I hate my bet here there was just no need for it.

This one really annoyed me. I had just won a couple of pots over a £1000 and thought i would call a raise with 9422 double suited from the small blind. Flop 952. I ended up losing £1200 against 99xx in this hand. I hate losing money on hands that i should never have been involved with in the first place.

Hands i got lucky:

Very lucky in this one. I call raise in late position with KQ89 double suited and there is £500 in the middle when the flop comes Q82 to give me two pair and a King flush draw. Late postion player bets £300. I reraise it to £1000 and he goes all in for £1700. I call. He shows 88A5 for trips and the aces flush draw. Yikes. River a Queen to save me.

I did win one huge multiway pot on the $10/$20 table. I held 789T double suited and somehow ended up putting $800 in preflop along with 5 others. Three were all in preflop. Flop 89J rainbow. Everyone who is left has less than $2000 so i bet $2000 on the flop. One caller all in for $1500 with a Gutshot draw to beat me. The cards turn over and i am in great shape. No higher straight, no trips. Turn an Ace to give someone a set of Aces and now there is a diamond flush draw. River a low diamond. I quickly scan my opponents cards and realise my T high diamond flush is good. Nice $6300 pot there.

Hands i got gifts:

I call £80 to play with A567. Flop A49 with two hearts giving me the nut flush draw. I bet £150 and pick up one caller who is severely on tilt. Turn a J. I check. He bets £400. I may pass here alot of the time but i think if i hit i get paid. River a 2 hearts. I check. he bets £1200. I put him all in for another £1100 fully expecting him to pass. He calls with a straight.

I hold AKxx. Flop TJQ. £3000 pot by the turn. He shows K9xx and no out to even split it.

Hands i liked my play in:

I love the deception of raising in the small blind at the moment. Players put me on Aces which is exactly what i want them to think. I raise to £100 with 3456... four callers. Flop A29 rainbow. I bet £250. One caller. Turn 5. I check. Opponent bets £800. I call. River a K. I bet £1600. My opponent goes all in for £600 more. I call. He shows AAxx.

I call a raise preflop with 9TJ4. Flop 8T2 with two hearts. I check. Opponent bets £250. I call. Turn a 4. I check. He bets £750. I am pretty sure that this player is on a draw and my two pair is good. I call. The river is a 3. I check. He bets £1750. Errrgh time to close my eyes and press the call button. He shows AAKQ and my two pair is good.

I noticed that the schedule for EPT Season Two has been released. I am looking forward to a busy couple of months in September and October playing in events in Barcelona, Baden, London and Ireland.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Something different

I decided to try a few new games on Betfair just to vary it a bit from the PL Omaha. I played $30/60 Limit 7 Card Stud, $30/$60 Limit Holdem heads up, £5/£10 NL Holdem Headsup and £10/£20 NL Holdem.

The $30/$60 Limit 7 Card stud - I like playing stud though i think i am probably better at the Hi/Lo version

Couple of hands...

- I have AdTd hidden and a 9d showing. I raise and get two callers. 4th card is a 8d. I bet again. One caller. He pairs his Ace on the 5th card. I get a 7h. I check... he bets... i call. 6th card is 2h. I check with AdTd9d8d7h2h ... he bets. I call. Last card a 5h. I check. He bets. I reraise. He passes. Not sure how i got him to pass for one more bet. He must have put me on a banker straight.

- By the end of one hand i had QQ22 showing and get called by a player with two smaller pairs. Bizarre.

I enjoyed it and won about $300. I was gambling in places that i shouldn't have. May give it another go soon.

$30/$60 Limit Holdem heads up - Not sure why i tried this one out. My Limit play isn't great though i have read up on it a fair bit of late.

- I'm dealt QK. I raise preflop. He three bets. I call. Flop K26. He bets... i raise. He calls. Turn 7. He checks. I bet. He calls. River 9. He checks. I bet. He raises. I call. He shows K9. Now i remember why i hate Limit.

- I'm dealt 44. I raise preflop. He calls. Flop J23. Two hearts. He bets. I raise. He calls. Turn a 4. He bets. I reraise. He calls. River a heart. He checks. I raise. He reraises. I call. He shows 2h6h. Errgh .

I lost $2000 overall. Not a great experience. Though three crucial pots over $500 i was ahead till the river. Not again me thinks.

£5/£10 NL Holdem Headsup - Playing a guy from Denmark. We both started with £1000. I got up to £1450 without anything particularly interesting happening then he gave up.

£10/£20 NL Holdem - Started with £1100. Called a raise with AQs. Flop AT9. The original raiser bets £150. I make it £400. He goes all in. Its too likely here that he has trips, two pair or AK. The only hand i can beat that he is reraising with on that flop is AJ. I quickly ruled that out and passed. Overall down £600.

I don't particularly enjoy playing any game ten handed. Especially Holdem. I decided to scurry off to the Omaha tables again after that.

That little experiment cost me £1200.

So i started on the £10/£20 PL Omaha tables again.

Started with £1600.... my foe really got me good on this hand. Have never played against him before so had no idea how he plays.

- Three handed. I raise on the button with 6s7s8hTh. Small blind calls. Big blind makes it £200 to play. I call. Small blind passes. Flop 9JQ rainbow. He checks. I bet £400. He thinks then calls. Turn a 2. He checks... i check. I am pretty sure now he has trips or maybe AAKQ or something like that. River a 3. He checks. I think about checking. But as i checked on the turn i think i may get a call from trips not believing i have the straight. So i bet £700 into a pot of £1260. He thinks then reraises all in. I only had £300 left so couldn't pass. He shows TJJK. Hmmmm.... the check on every street with the nuts.... thats my trick dammit!

I then bought in for another £1700 and was quickly down to £1000 when my opponents left. I sat and eventually was joined by one player. Ok player who likes to gamble alot with marginal draws. I went on a wonderful run of hitting cards and was soon up to £3000.

Another ultra aggressive/maniac player joined who raises all the time preflop shorthanded.

- I call a £60 bet with 5578 and three of us see a flop of 542 rainbow. I am in the small blind and check. Opponent bets £150. I don't put him on the straight so reraise to £600. He moves all in for £1700. I call. He shows 36xx for the nuts. Turn 8. River a 6 and i make a higher straight. Up to £5000.

- I went on the best run of cards i have had ever i think. I flopped top set every time i played with a high pocket pair. The most fruitful was when i called a raise in the SB with KK7T and it flopped K95. I checked... both my opponets checked. Turn a 5. Managed to milk £1200 out of opponent with 59xx.

- I was up to £7000. Playing five handed now. Under the gun with AA9J double suited. I call with the intention of reraising after the small blind has made his guaranteed preflop raise. He makes it £100 to play. Big blind calls. I make it £400. He calls. Big blind passes. Flop K83 with two of my suit. He bets £900. I put him all in for his £1600. He shows K942 with no flush draw. Turn pairs the 8 to leave him nearly dead and a blank river and i am up to £9000.

I finished shortly after. Too many times in the last month i have been up alot on the 10/20 tables only to play to watch it dwindle before i stop.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Onwards and Upwards

I have tried dropping a few levels and multitabling to take a break from the stresses of playing the 10/20 games. Mostly i have enjoyed it (probably because i am winning). The decisions are easier i find when i don't have to lump £3000 into a pot when i am only a marginal favourite. So i have dropped to 2/5 and so far so good. The bizarre thing i have found that as a general rule the players are actually better than on the 10/20 game. Some hands that developed into big pots....

I was treading water until this hand. I had sat down with $500 and was up to $620.

- I call a raise to $10 on the button with 4455 and six of us see a 236 rainbow flop. First player bets $60, call, call, call, call. Hmmm what to do now? I decide to just call as i suspect that they have two pair, trip hands and are all killing each other. I would have reraised if there was a flush draw. Turn a King of hearts to bring a flush draw. First player bets $150, call, pass, call, call. I move all in for about $400 more and all four players call. There hands 36xx (interesting), 33xx, KKxx and someone with the Ace flush draw. River a blank and i was up to over $3000.

- I called a raise to $25 on the button with JJT4. Flop J23 with the spade flush draw. Early position bets $100. I reraise to $400 and he moves all in for $1000. I call and he had the Ace flush draw and no other outs. He hits and i am back down to $2000. Do players on the net actually realise that the Ace flush draw with no other outs v a set is not a good spot to put all your chips in on the flop?

My winning streak has hit five and i am actually at a high point of online poker profit for the year. Considering the horrendous day i had last week i feel pretty good at the moment.

My next tournament is probably going to be in Barcelona for the start of EPT season two. I have given some thought to my performances of late and though i have had some really bad luck i have also made a few mistakes that i will put right in the next few tournaments i play in.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Luton Main Event

Frustration is the only word to describe my tournament form at the moment. I best pair that i saw during the first three levels was a pair of fours. I then picked up Queens and lost half my chips to someone with QK after i raised preflop. I was then moved and had just 4000 chips and went for a resteal with QK and walked into AK. Things will change i'm sure. Its not as if i am on a horrendous tournament run. Its only been seven tournaments since i cashed. I'm used to at least making the second day in the big events and that just isn't happening. At the moment if i go into an important hand behind i stay that way and if i am in front someone hits their miracle card.

Some good news on the poker front. Just finished my third consecutive win on the £10/£20 Omaha which more then paid for the disappointment of Luton. When i finally get broadband up and running in my new place i am going to vary my online play alot more to explore other ways of making money.

Saturday, August 13, 2005


I think Luton have the best festival held in the UK at the moment. The £500 Pot Limit, £750 No Limit and the main event all have at least 45 minute clocks and 10000 chips to play with. Compare this to The Vic £1000 event you get just 5000 starting chips and they also miss a few blind levels.

I played the the £750 yesterday. Was seated on a bad table including Surindar, Gryko and Bushy. I did hit a few hands. One where i flopped the nut flush against Bushy and overbet on the river. For some reason he thinks i am a bluffer and called. Flopped a set of sevens on a nice 742 board but other than that it was a battle against the cards. Didn't pick up a pair above nines or AK/AQ for the last two and a half hours and eventually lumped my last 10000 in with A4 on the button with blinds of 1000/2000 and the big blind found AT. Still hopefully my cards will be better for the main event today.

Despite black Wednesday last week which saw the bankroll tumble i have continued to play the 10/20 game on Betfair. I thought it was going to be another of those days on Thursday this week when i flopped top set three times with no straight or flush on the board, got all my $2000 in the middle and lost each time. Twice to the nut flush and once to up and down (27% chance..sigh). I wasn't to be deterred though and eventually got even before i decided to play £10/£20 heads up. The guy i was playing was tricky in that he made it £60 to play each and every hand and would also bet £180 on 95% of flops (I think he only checked when he was going to check raise). He whittled me down to £900 when i picked up 37AK. It flopped 37J with my Ace flush draw. It all went in the middle and my two pair was enough. I then flopped middle set when i held 677Q and it flopped Q72 rainbow. I called his £180 bet on the flop and when the turn was a 5 i check raised him all in. He had a straight draw and flush draw that missed and i was up to £5000. I then let him bully me back down to £4200 when i flopped top set on a KT4 board. It all went in on the flop again and he had K4xx and was drawing dead barring a miracle. I reached £7700 and he got up to £2800 after taking out a third player who had joined the game. I picked up KK78 and raised preflop and he reraised. It flopped K94 with two spades. Again it all went in on the flop and he held TJQ8 with two spades so it was practically a coin flip. The board paired on the river to put me up to £10000. I lost £2000 back when i flopped a king flush and he held bottom set and the board paired on the river. I then won lots of small pots and finished with £9700.

It was a good day. I even won £500 playing roulette in Luton of £30. The last time i played roulette was in Luton and i won alot that time too. Maybe i should stick to the roulette there......

Since Barcelona i just can't string together more then two wins on the spin playing the 10/20 game. I've had two decent winning sessions this week. So get ready for the next post *crash and tumble part 2*

Monday, August 08, 2005

Crash and tumble

I gave the rest of the Vic festival a miss after a rather torturous session online last week. Poker really does suck big time sometimes. It was a pretty hefty loss. Not a monster but it was more the manner of how it happened that left me gasping for a few days away from poker.

This is a hand that i won't forget in a while. $10/$20 PL Omaha

I was in for $4000 but sitting on a $5800 stack so not too bad. I made it $90 to play in early/middle position with 9h9dThTd... next player makes it $150, one caller then the button makes it $600. Both the blinds call so i decide to take a flop along with five others. Flop 268 with two hearts. There is $3600 in the middle and i get ready to check pass to any serious bet. Everyone checks. Turn a 7 to give me the nuts. Checked to me again. I bet the pot as i am more then happy to take down the $3600 in the middle. It all goes smoothly till the last player to pass moves all in for $6000. I lump it in of course and he shows AAA7 with the Ace flush draw in hearts which duly pops up on the river to win him a $14000 pot. His play was bad in so many ways but what it did succeed in doing was to send me on tilt big style. The red mist hadn't descended like that for a long, long time.

I recovered somewhat only to lose another huge pot with the Ace flush against someone who was willing to call $3000 on the turn with bottom set. It was truly a day to forget.

Anyone who thinks that playing poker for a living is easy should think again. I have more stressful days doing this than i ever did when i was working. Its great when its going well but hellish when your luck is out. It does pose a question. Do i really need to play in games so big that they can have such an affect on a) My bankroll and b) My sanity?

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

The Vic - £250 Omaha Hi/Lo

It was a case of deja vu in the Omaha Hi/Lo tournament again. I managed to get my chips up to 30000 without to much of a sweat or a rebuy. Mainly due to the fact that most of the players on my table were totally clueless. With about 26 left i was average chipped. Then these happened.

Blinds 800/800/1600

- I raise to 6400 with A249 double suited and my opponent who was short stacked moved in for 9000. He flips over A248 rainbow. He has horrendous scooping chances with only a live 8 and of course it flops and all the other cards are high.

- I again raise to 6400 with A23K double suited and Lallee calls. Flop QQx and he moves in and i pass. He had AQ24 so again i was a decent favourite preflop.

Blinds 1000/1000/2000

- I'm on the big blind with A2TQ and there are two limpers and one of the small blinds calls. I move all in for 10000. Three callers. Nobody had A2. Of course a 2 flopped. With the river to come i could still win hald the pot with a TJQ or an A and missed.

Was feeling extremely tilty so left before the cash game tempted me. How i haven't made the money in these last two Omaha Hi/Lo tournaments is just a miracle.

Well i can look on the bright side in the bigger picture. I won £5000 earlier in the day playing in the PL Omaha $10/$20 on Betfair. I was in for $3000 which i turned into $6000.... then i got a maniac on tilt and took another $6000 of him.

Tonights Pot Limit Holdem is already sold out so its a day on the online cash tables for me.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

The Vic - £1000 NL Holdem

I never really go going in this one at all. I lost 1000 of my 5000 starting chips with TT and QQ when it flopped with an Ace and a King both times. Then a strange hand happened. Middle position raised to 300 when blinds were 50/100. Two limpers and i have QQ in the big blind. I decide to make it 1500 to play. The original raiser passes and he was the only one i was worried about until the button moved all in for 3100. I couldn't pass now with what i had already put in so called. I was still a bit surprised when he turned over KK. I was out shortly after. Hopefully i can do better in the PL Omaha Hi/Lo later.

I did manage to win £300 playing the PL Omaha cash game. I only played for ten minutes then a few players turned up that i wanted to chat to so gave up my seat. I'll probably play some more cash as the week progresses. No huge losses in the Dealers Choice like the last festival this time though......

Monday, August 01, 2005


Unfortunately i have blocked comments for the time being. Somebody out there who has suddenly got it in for me decided to send me a rather abusive anonymous email, on top of three comments on my blog that i have had to delete. Some people really do need to get a life and grow up.... FAST!

Looking forward to playing the Vic £1000 tonight. I may get there early as i reckon it will sell out and i may play in the cash game beforehand.

Finally, congrats to Roland on winning the WPT in Paris..... what a result. When its your only result on the Hendon Mob database it looks pretty cool. No messing about with any 15th places or anything like that.