Monday, 31 December 2007

Happy New Year

Start off by Saying happy new year to anyone who reads this. 2007 has been a pretty good year for me poker wise, 2 decent live cashes at the start of the year in aussie millions and EPT dortmund. Both seats wear won online so showed a nice profit from the two tournaments. Still dissapointing to be a coinflip away from getting in contention for some lif changing $$, o well ill kepp dreaming.

Online has mainly been all about cash games for me, I have done really well except december on all sites. December has been a complete write off with it ending about down $50k. Not the ideal way to end the year but since the rest of the year that preceeded it was v.good i think id be a fool to complain too much.

I am 50/50 about going to the aussie millions again in January 08, the main factor in going is that I would only have to pay 50% of the buy in due to a deal I had with geeforce during a $1k super sat. After that nothing really planned until vegas where I hope to go out for the whole series and rent a house with a few poker friends and genereally have a blast.

My main goals for 2008 are to keep improving on my cash game play, and to make a final of a tournament with at least 1k sterling buy in. This might be a bit optomisitic as im unlikely to play any in the first half of the year but its still soemthing id like to do. Hopefully it will be one with a TV appearance as well for a brucey bonus.

Thats about all for now, Gl to everyone in 2008, have a great night tonight and see you on the other side

Thursday, 20 December 2007

Bit of a lull

Not a lot been happening pokerwise really, after my last bad session during the nightmare macau trip I didnt play harldy any poker up until about 5 days ago. It was a mix of being ill, no solid internet conection and doing some touristy stuff in Hong Kong that prevented me from playing. Put in quite a few hours over the past 4-5 days and they have been very very frustrating. One session the other day, I ran into 8 sets in little over an hour playing on 3 tables. 1 time I had nothing, 3 times I had an overpair and 4 times 5 I had 2 pair, sigh.

Money wise i have just been treading water really, win 2 buy ins 1 session lose 2 the next. I feel like i am playing pretty well but my timing seems a bit off, hopefully that will come right soon and turn the break even sessions into winners. No idea if this will be my last post before xmas but if so Merry Christmas to all.

Tuesday, 27 November 2007

Macau trip report, sigh

So, after much deliberation I decided to go and play the APPT macau event. Macau is a place I wanted to visit and coupled with the face that a few people I knew from the UK were going I was looking forward to a good trip. My flight from singapore gets delayed which means I miss the turbo ferry out of Hong Kong and it takes me 4 hours to get from hong kong to macau. Check into my hotel at find that there is no internet facilities in the room, wtf. After a pretty goods sleep I get a taxi to the Grand waldo hotel and set about trying to buy into the tournament. I go to the cashier and ask fro $5000 from my visa debit card, no problem sir blah blah. 10 mins later, sorry sir it needs to be a proper credit card. Am looking for anyone that might know me who plays on stars who can lend me some cash but nothing materializes. Finally bump into rick and booder but none of them have any spare cash. Speak with a pokerstars rep about buying in from my stars account, no go. Eventually get a name of a guy staying in the hotel who might be able to help. 20 mins later and a guy opens the door of his hotel room and hands me $4k cash what I transferred to him on stars a moment ago and quickly closes the door without saying a word.

Eventually fill out all the paperwork and get bought into the comp with 15 mins to spare, phew. I was an alternate though and they had already squeezed some extra tables in beforehand so there was no chance of any more so i had to wait patiently. If i hadnt travelled so far and had all the BS so far i would have not bothered playing. 1hr 40 mins in and I finally get a seat. I hit peak of around 14k stack but never really get going. No real hands of note before we enter the 150/300-25 level with me on a precarious 8k. 3 limps in front of me and I limp with A2 clubs on the button, SB completes and BB checks. Flop comes K 8 2, and it is checked all the way round, turn is another 2 and the SB bets and the BB calls, action to me. The SB has played some of the strangest poker I have ever seen so far, he limped for 200, and after a short stack pushed for 2k who was called, then another guy is all in for 4.5k, he calls the 4.5k leaving 3k behind. The other guy in the pot who called the original short stack push also calls the 4.5k total. Flop comes 8 high and they both check, turn is a K and one guy pushes and the guy who originally limped for 200 passes, he said he had 99. So back to my hand, the SB could have anything and the BB is likely on a draw, I push all in and the SB calls and the BB passes, SB flips KK and im toast. Such a weird hand, but im never passing in that spot.

Because I busted before the dinner break I was not issued with a ticket for the buffet, how tight? Rick and booder also failed to make the dinner break. I went back to the hotel and ordered some room service, 4 hours later and misfortune number 400 for this trip strikes and im shitting through the eye of a needle for the next 2 days with barely 10 mins between each sitting. My ability to play any more poker, sightsee, or hang out with rick and booder gone, I was happy to check out and get to the airport. I will definately try and re-visit macau at some point to exercise all the demons from this trip. Also Ill make sure im bought into any tournaments well in advance as being an alternate sucks.

I should have sensed bad things were going to happen on this trip as the day before I left I played an online session and dropped $12k on ipoker, but to be fair I played really bad and could have easily lost more. Since then I have been playing on Full tilt and managed to drop $25k making nice $37k downswing for the week, weeeeeeeeeeeee. On my mac at the moment so dont have any hand historys to post, but my last session on full tilt was painful, 3 times all in on the turn with nut str8 vs set, lose all 3, one for $8k pot at 10/20. Another two buy ins were set over set and the final straw for the session was AA vs QJ all in on Q high flop. A pretty rough week overall, but the downswing on poker was probably to be expected as I had the crazy $100k upswing over 3 weeks not long back. Probably gonna stay off the poker until december kicks in, forget about november, lol

Thursday, 22 November 2007

Change of plans, viva macau

Firstly sorry for the lack of updates but i made some radical changes to my travelling plans at very short notice and to be honest just forgot about the blog, oops. I decided to vacate Australia as I didn't want to spend 6-7 months in Sydney as ive already spent a lot of time there in the past. Wasn't an easy decision leaving some of my good friends there who im sure will have a great xmas and new year.

My immediate plans has seen me make my way to macau for the pokerstars APPT which should be a lot of fun, as well as catching up with a few mates from home rick trigg and booder from blonde who both won seats in the step things on stars, :-) I hope there is still space to buy in when I arrive so fingers crossed. It will be my first live poker comp since wsop main this year so am really looking forward to it. After macau live poker goes on the backburner again until wsop 2008 where I hope to be out there for the whole series.

Gotta end this post now as im on a 30 min interent timer and no idea how long is left, will try n put some pics up from macau and write a trip report on here, drinking is bound to be involved.

3 way chop 1 time stars?

Tuesday, 30 October 2007

Drinking and gambling in Brisbane

I have been in Brisbane for what seems like an eternity now. It has yielded good times generally on the poker front though. First my mate (geeforce1) won his seat to the Aussie millions playing the $1k super satellite on full tilt. We both played the tournament and had a saver with 20 ppl left that if one of us won a seat they would cover half of the buy in for the other one, so i was pleased when he took it down, lol.

I have been running really hot in the ipoker cash games, mainly 10/20nl but also some 25/50nl. I am up about $75k over a period of 3 weeks. Full tilt hasn't been going so well, I went on a $30k downswing on 10/20 over about a week, with some sickening hands here are the best 2 I could find at short notice

Since then Ive made $20k back on full tilt so I'm happy again there. Here are a couple of nice hands Ive won on ipoker..

Apart from cash games Ive played a few of the step tournaments on stars to try and win a PCA package to the Bahamas in January. Ive spent about $4k so far buying in at level 5 and have won 3 step 6 tickets but failed to turn any of them into a package. Ill stop playing them once Ive spent 7-8k trying i think.

Last night was supposed to be my last night in Brisbane but we all went out and got hammered, then ended up in a casino playing 2/5pl hold em, lol and eventually finishing off on the blackjack table. My $500 i took to the poker table turned into about $350, i gave 2 of my mates $100 each so they could sit at the balckjack table. We were ready to go and I still had about $200 left, I put it all on the line twice and got to $800, I tried to put the 800 on but the table limit was 500, 2 hands later and I was walking out with nothing, ha ha. By this time it was 6am and the 10am bus to the next destination seemed unlikely so on returning to the hostel we booked another 3 nights, sigh...

Dave's girlfriend took stacks of amusing pictures that have all found their way onto facebook. We found a problem gambling poster and all took mug shots, lol. I am really missing live poker tournaments at the moment and cant wait to play in the stars APPT event in Sydney mid December. That's about all for now,


Thursday, 18 October 2007

Good few days

Since my last post Ive turned around my poor start to October which is good news. I have reached Brisbane on my travels and will be hanging round here for a while because one of my mates is flying to NZ and back to sort a working visa for Australia as STA travel messed it up.

Yesterday I played the super Tuesday $1k tournament on stars and finished in 20th place, I was never a big stack going into the latter stages and the aggressiveness of my tables made it difficult to find a good spot without a premium hand. In the end I was on around 9 BB's and shoved 78 from the button into 2 stacks that couldn't call me with nothing as it was a fair % of their respective stacks. Unfortunately the SB woke up with TT and the flop was dry for me, the turn gave me a gutshot draw but needed a T to complete it, no miracles and it was over. I played for about 5 hours and got $2200 for m troubles whereas my mate was sat next to me playing 10/20nl the whole time and was up $10k, sigh.

Ive just finished my session on 10/20nl today and won close to $8k, the day before yesterday I was up around $14k for the day so things are getting back on track. The main issue at the moment is the fact that when I play poker the best action is on the ipoker network but my mate (geeforce1) who I'm travelling with also plays 10/20nl and we don't wanna play on the same tables so that's a bit of a ball ache. Tomorrow ill be taking my first shot at winning an Aussie millions seat from the $1k super satellite on full tilt.

Just like to wish Adam goulding (snoopy) hero updater for blonde and regular blogger, the best of luck for day 2 of the London GUKPT event after amassing a nice stack during day 1. Would wish moorman luck but the kipper is out already, lol

Sunday, 14 October 2007

Lack of updates.........

Not sure if anyone checks my blog regularly but for anyone that does I apologise for the lack of updates recently. I have been v.busy in Australia doing scuba diving, sailing trips and a Fraser island trips. On top of that i am obliged to get drunk most nights on these trips, leaving little time for playing poker.

September finished v.well for me overall with a few nice tournament cashes and a pretty good month playing cash. Unfortunately the few short sessions I've had so far in October have gone very badly. I don't have exact figures as i have been playing on computers in net cafes rather than my laptop as I've not come across many wireless hot spots. All my good work on party in September has been undone resulting in about a $20k downswing on there. Usually when I'm playing its in a crowded net cafe with too many distratctions and isn't ideal for playing high stakes cash games so ill be trying to stop that until i get somewhere more settled.

I'm planning to play a few of the $1k super satellites on full tilt to win a seat in the Aussie millions for January, but I will be playing that event regardless. That's about all i have to write now, ill try an keep updating regularly but I wont be into a proper poker routine again until mid November time.

Tuesday, 25 September 2007


Last Wednesday I played a few tournaments before starting to travel round Australia again. I bust all my tournaments and was just about to log off and go for a beer when moorman sent me a msg on instant messenger. Chris was having trouble with the Internet in his new house and couldn't access certain poker sites for some reason, but had been playing in the $1k entry tournament on Absolute poker. I agreed to take over but was still a while away from the money places. I play on short-stacked, then get a lucky double up, then start to abuse the upcoming bubble situation and find myself with decent chips 2 spot from the money. Chris still cant get on so we strike a deal for me to play it out, with me getting 50% of prize money if i placed 6th or above. Anyway I ended up taking the whole thing down for a cool $30k and netted myself $15k from a freeroll. Coupled with the $15k I took down from the DTD tournament last Sunday, a pretty good week, :-)

The last few days I have been travelling around, scuba diving and drinking, not having anytime for poker which is fine by me. We arrived in a town yesterday called mission beach and tried to book a white water rafting trip for today but it was full, so i had a free day. I sit here now wishing i didn't have a free day, lol. I lost about 3k playing cash on full tilt, and played in one of the sickest hands for me personally.

The ultimate cooler:

I was playing in the full tilt 1k Monday tournament at the same time and had built a nice stack of 9k with the blinds at 100/200. Then my full tilt tournament curse kicked in and I was out in 2 hands. The first i flat called a raise on the button with KK and called 2 bets from original raiser on J J 4 2 board, then it went check check when a Q rivered completing a flush draw and his J9 off was good. Then the very next hand I get this little gem

Any1 who uses pokerdb or any of the other similar sites can amuse themselves by checking my full tilt tournament stats, they are pretty abysmal and its a mystery to me. My poker stars tournament stats are very good I'm told and have no idea why they don't translate across the board.

Poker taking a back seat again after today, since we are heading to magnetic island for a full moon party. Then have a cool diving trip lined up to a a ship wreck called the SS yongala. After that its sailing around the Whitsunday islands with a bit of scuba diving thrown in for good measure. Still made a lot of money this month and am enjoying the time off. Should be some cool crocodile pics going on my facebook pretty soon, as soon as i find a wireless hot spot to upload them from my laptop. That's all for now,

Edit, PLayed 10/20 later in the day for about 3 hours and was up around $9k, making a $4k profit for the day


Tuesday, 18 September 2007

Running good

Since my last post, I have played a fair bit, mainly cash games, and have been running and playing well. I have been taking it easy on the PLO front though, still almost $4k up i that for the month. Since leaving thailand, I can now play on party poker again, and this proved useful with me booking a $10k win during my first session of 10/20. I witnessed some shocking play, the cream of the crop being some guy raising QQ to 70, the button re-raising to 300, I make it 920 with AA from SB, and the OR flat calls, lol. I push my remaining $1700 in on a low, all heart flop, he has me covered and snap calls with his QQ no heart, wp sir. I even recorded a win on stars 10/20 the next day winning 3 buy ins. Overall for the month I'm about $30k up on cash, so am very happy after last month turned out to be very ordinary.

On Sunday I played almost every tournament going, including a few super satellites to live events. My biggest cash would come in one of the first tournaments i started playing that day, the $1k buy in main event of the DTD online festival. I ended up taking 5th for $15k after losing AJ vs 22 all in pre-flop, I turned the A, but he rivered a 2, ugh. The structure of this event was excellent throughout and allowed for a lot of play, this was however until the final table. When we were 5 handed, only 2 of the players an M above 10 which is pretty ridiculous seeing as now is when the big jumps in money take place, 1st taking home $70k. This is disappointing to see in such a prestigious tournament, and tarnished a otherwise superb event. I think the main reason that it become like this was the numerous missing blind levels including, 500/1k, 1k/2k, 5k/10k, 10k/20k, as well as oversized antes IMO.

I have just finished playing a few tournaments today, cashing in the 100r on stars, and the nightly 100k. The main reason I was playing tournaments though was because of the 1k buy in on full tilt, which was going very well until the following hands took place.

The first hand was a strange one, I almost never make this call as it is usually spewing chips. On this occasion, I had been on this table with the player for a long time, and we had not tangled in any way, had not had any battles in the blinds. Then he makes this move which was just so random and out of the blue, that I couldn't see how he was strong, I trusted my instincts but it didnt work out for me

This was the very next hand, and it was time to go, lol

I plan on playing quite a lot over the next few days while i wait for 2 friends of mine to finish a diving trip then we start heading down the coast to sydney so my free time for playing will be pretty limited I imagine. Hoping to make 50k profit in cash for the month, which would be my best ever month since deciding to play predominately cash games instead of tournaments. A quick congratulations to Julian Thew who won the Plymouth GUKPT recently, a great result for a really nice guy, he also thinks i play really tight, lol,

Wednesday, 5 September 2007

August review, Promising september & PLO

August turned out pretty badly to be honest, I showed a whopping profit of $2k from playing cash games, but did enter a tournament on full tilt for $2.5k so no way I was in overall profit for the month but hey ho. I lost most money on stars 10/20nl about $12k, 6 buy ins, nothing catastrophic, but not what im hoping for. There were definately periods of the month when I was playing tilted, and lost more than I should have in particular sessions but thats the way it goes. I didnt put in a whole lot of hours until the last week, where I made a recovery to m stars account playing some 3/6nl and a little 5/10. The stars cash challenge I detailed in an earlier post is having to take a backburner atm due to the time zone im in. There are just no good games running when im available to play, so ill have to put that on hold until im in a time zone that allows me to play at busier times on stars.

September, all of 5 days old, has started well with me showing 5 figure profit, $9.9k from NLH, and about $3.5k from PLO. The PLO figure is only a guess as im currently downloading omaha PT to check the numbers. Learning PLO seems to be the fashionable thing to do now for a lot of the higher stakes players I talk to or read about. I dont aspire to play high stakes PLO, or make it my full time game as the swings can be brutal. However I would like to become more competent at the game, purely to add another string to my bow and give me wider game selection. This will help if either there are no good hold em games going, or if I simply fancy a change. Im watching some PLO videos from cardrunners and have been playing some 3/6 and 5/10 shorthanded. Some people may think that im starting at pretty high stakes for a PLO novice, but If the money doesnt really mean anything then I wont learn, just how I am.

The new series of High stakes poker has just started, and its a program I really enjoy watching. Anyone who hasnt seen it and fancy's watching cash game poker instead of the edited all in fests of the WPT broadcasts, I suggest you check it out on poker tube, or downlaod via a torrent site. Some of the banter is priceless, and some of the play form the rich amatuers is laughable, making for a thoroughly enjoyable show.

Should be gettin a new 17" macbook pro tomorrow so will have about a week to get that all set up with windows, poker tracker and Itunes before leaving for Australia on 13th September. Thats about all for now, should be putting in quite a few hours this week as my time spent playing will be scarce once I get to OZ, gl at the tables everyone,


Monday, 27 August 2007

Stars cash update

OK since i set my challenge to win at stars cash, I've played 5600 hands of 3/6nl on stars and am up $7595. I have only just got to $20k in my account because i played several tournaments last weekend and the 100r yesterday. Ive seen some really bad play in the 3/6nl games and is comforting to know that I can still make money very easily at this level if I were to fall on hard times in the future. I just about stuck to what i said about not playing cash anywhere else, but if my session is less than 1hr, I have been playing at my normal stakes, trying to find HU or 3 handed games to play. I have played about 1000 hands of 5/10 on UB and won around $4k so that was cool. Found some money in my blue square account and had a nice HU game at 10/20, taking almost 2 buy ins off my opponent.

I am $6k up from cash for the month, not bad considering the part time hours I'm playing, and the fact i was in a pretty big hole earlier in the month. Overall after playing some tournaments including the $2.5k event on full tilt my profit is probably closer to $3k. Will start playing 5/10 on stars now, and hope to keep moving forward, hit 30k and start some 10/20. If i drop down to 15k, ill go back to 3/6 and build back to 20k. If I'm only on for short sessions though, ill probably find a short handed higher stakes game somewhere.

Am considering buying a macbook pro atm and using some software called parallels in order to run Windows for my poker software. I have heard good reviews about macs, a few of my non poker playing friends have them and are well impressed. I have a sony viao atm with a 15" screen and the piece of shit is always freezing and just generally being crap. I would like a dell, but as I'm in Thailand that's a no go, needs to be store bought. Should be putting in quite a few hours on the cash tables but nothing excessive, but will die off mid September as I'm meeting up with friends in Australia to travel the coast.


Saturday, 18 August 2007

Tournaments tonight

Stars mission going ok so far, about 3.5k up on 3/6nl over the past few days, gonna be playing a few tournaments tonight though, so likely to take a hit. The main reason im on playing tournaments tonight though is the $2.5k buy in on full tilt with an insane structure. This is a 2 day event, which is pretty crazy for online, and ive managed to swap 10% with moorman so hopeful of a decent score even if its just chris pulling a nice result out of the bag, :-)

update, bombed out of everythin, hope to wake up and see moorman won me $40k from my % in the tilt comp

Thursday, 16 August 2007

Exercise Pokerstars demons (or bust trying)

So, ever since I can remember, I have been a loser in stars cash games. Im talking about every level as well, from $0.5/1 right the way through to 10/20 I never seem to win on pokerstars. Since i started playing the higher stakes, i come across a lot of the same players on stars and full tilt, win big on full tilt and lose big on stars, I just dont get it.

Stars is probably the bigest site, has great curtomer service, good games and the list goes on. So I have $15k in my stars account at the moment, I will start playing 3/6nl, if i get to $20k, ill move up to 5/10, $30k up to 10/20nl try and reach $50k. Until I have gone bust on stars or reached my target I wont be playing casg anywhere else. Just in case anyone wants to take a pop at my BR management, this is not my entire bankroll, just to be clear, lol.

I have no idea how long this will take, especially since I not playing a whole lot at the moment. Does anyone else have a mental block with pokerstars cash games?

I decided to do this after another losing session at 5/10 and 10/20 on stars, putting me down again for the month, great timing after the slight euphoria of my last post. If i go bust on stars ill never play their cash games again, and write it off as a mystery and hopefully keep winning elsewhere, :-)

Tuesday, 14 August 2007

August gets going (eventually)

Up until this morning, I was still 3.5k down for the month, not a lot when primarily playing 10/20, but couldn't seem to move more than like $300 in either direction at the end of each session, which was very odd. I was having regular swings during the sessions, $4-6k, but always seemed to return to this point by the end, lol.

My timing/luck was pretty bad during some of these sessions as well, sometimes inducing tilt, but I'm only human. I was playing a few tables of 10/20nl on F.tilt and witnessed this player play the following hands in a short space of time.

Shortly after I picked up the following 2 hands against the same player and In my opinion had to go broke both times, considering what I had already witnessed. Its marginal/horrible in the vast majority of circumstances but these were extra-ordinary. See what you think;

This was one of the many sessions I was up 3-4 buy ins before finishing roughly even, just bad timing IMO.

This morning I set my alarm for the ungodly hour of 6am to play a few online tournaments, the showcase being the 1k 6 max event on full tilt. Getting up wasn't as hard as usual since i cant drink at the moment, on anti-biotics at the moment, after falling over drunk and cutting up my face pretty bad, see facebook for a picture. Played 6 tournaments in all, Stars - 100r, 100 f/o, 162 f/o, Tilt, 69 f/o, 150 f/o and 1k 6 max.

The 1k 6 max was going well in the early levels, i was chipping up nicely with no showdowns, winning small and medium pots, then once the blinds started getting up I found no reasonable hands or situations and ended up in push fold mode as soon as the antes kicked in, not ideal. I button push with with 89 suited, called by AT was the end of me, pretty standard stuff. Got a stack going in the stars 100r, but eventually busted with TT vs A9 in preflop out of the money. Early exits in the 100f/o and the 150 on tilt, left just the smallest buy in comp as my only chance for a cash, sods law. Made the money, last 54, with average stacked, and stayed that way until about 2 tables out. Picked up some nice hands, applied pressure at the right times, and found myself 1 of 12 with $9k for the win. 2.5k/5k blinds, i open for 15k with JJ when we are 5 handed, other big stack with about 200k, makes it 45k. I have about 245k at start of hand and elect to flat call OOP, and check fold on a K high flop, weak play by me. JJ is too strong 5 handed and coupled with the fact we are on the final table bubble, I think I have to jam this hand preflop. following up this mistake, I re shove on a medium stack with A8 to see him flip AK and I enter the final in about 6th place, ugh.

Survived for a while, then got a priceless double up with AK vs A7 and was back in contention. I finally exited in around 5th place i think with the following hand. I oped for 32k with KT spades, (6k/12k) and the button flat calls. The flop is 8 high with 2 spades, pot is around 85k, and i have about 150k behind. Thought about check raising but wasn't sure enough that my opponent would bet, and ensure the money went in on the flop. I bet 70k and he shoved on me fairly quickly, and easy call and I'm up against 99, i lose the race for 430k pot and chip lead 4 handed and that's all she wrote, picked up about $2.3k for my efforts. A small profit for the donkaments.

Returned back to cash this evening, and things finally clicked into place. Played 4 tables of 10/20 for just under 1 hour and won about $8k total, most of it on full tilt, and took augusts figures to almost +$5k for cash. This post seems a little long now so will wrap it up, may make another couple of early morning appearances in the full tilt tournaments I like, but majority of my play will be cash games, hope to build on this last session.

Sunday, 5 August 2007

Not a lot going on

I suppose blogs are more intersting when talking about tournaments, or nose bleed stakes cash games, but as im playing neither of those I dont have a great deal to write about. I dont want to get out of the habit of blogging though as I am sure that some time in the future ill be playing tournaments again, probably when im in a more accomodating time zone.

Been playing a fair amount online, 5/10 and 10/20nl cash, but cant seem to put a consistent run together. Win a few buy ins one day, lose them the next time i play etc... played a little 25/50 the other day, as i spotted a weak table on DTD (crypto) Managed to win just over $4k without playing any real big pots so that was cool. But as far as august goes, only 5 days in i know, but im $3.5k down.

A good poker friend of mine, chris moorman, plays on all sites as moorman1, has just started what should materialise into a very into a very intersting blog. He is taking part in a prop bet, organised on pocketfives, for mtt's in august. Its a pretty big prop bet, and has a lot of teams with some of the top tournament players around competing. The bet is explained in more depth at the start of his blog. Its crazy the amount of volume some of these guys play, and can only take my hat off to what they do.

Check out chris' blog at :

This week sees the start of the full tilt online festival so i may set my alarm clock for some ungodly hours and play a few tournaments.

Tuesday, 24 July 2007

Moving on

So, after a few days in LA, finally left america and vegas behind to seek a more relaxing atmosphere. Arrived in bangkok today, but its just a brief stop while i orgainse a trip to vietnam. When i went travelling in 2005 i wanted to go to vietnam but didnt have time as I had to go to the Stars WPT event in bahamas, hard life i know, :-). Have pencilled in the aisan poker tour in manilla for my next live outing but that is subject to change and seems a relatively small event with a cap on the entrants. After that im heading to phuket for about 2 weeks scuba diving around the similan islands which are just breathtaking. Mid September sees me heading to australia to meet up with a few of my very good friends from home, one of which i havent seen since new year so that will be cool.

Our general outline for australia is to spend about 3 months travelling from cairns to sydney, arriving mid December just in to play the 5k Aisa poker tour event in sydney. Christmas and new year in sydney then down to melbourne to play the superbly run and structured aussie millions tournament that i was lucky enough to cash in this year.

As far as online goes ive been doing a lot better since my last post and am almost out of my $15k downswing immediatley following vegas. Mainly on Party $5/10 and Full tilt $10/20. I am having issues with poker tracker though on my new laptop. For some reason it doesnt find the full tilt hand histories after ive finished a session on there, and therefore my pokertracker doesnt give a true reflection of my play near enough rendering it useless. I have checked and double checked all the settings in full tilt and in poker tracker and cannot for the life of me discover whats wrong, not sure if its something to do with windows vista or not.

Thats about if for now, I will have my laptop with me everywhere i go so will be playing online still when i have noting better to do. A quick shout out to my mate Rick trigg (The Claimer) for his impressive finish in the Newcastle GUKPT event taking home 24k sterling, happy days.

Tuesday, 17 July 2007

Quick Summary

OK, been very busy and alwasy seemed to be putting off updating the blog, but here goes with a quick recap of whats being going on. My main event had a very good start with me reaching about 34k at the dinner break, without hardly showing a hand and was in confident mood. I was gettin maximum value for my hands, making good reads and had a good feel about what my opponents held most of the time. Then after the dinner break I had another meltdown sort of, similar to the venetian tournament a few weeks ago, but in my opinion i didnt play like a donkey as i did that day.

After a few orbits without playing a hand, then having a few raises snapped off by re-raises where i had to lay down my exit hand occurred. Playing about a 28k stack at 200/400, i open for 1200 in EP with 89 clubs and am called in the cut-off, no one else enters the pot. The flop is T J 2, with 1 club and i continuation bet about 1800 i think, and he calls. The turn is a 3 of clubs, and i check and he instantly bets 5k, around the size of the pot. Earlier this same guy had tried to float me out of position with AJ on a K 4 4 flop, but i had AK, so i knew he was definately capable of such a play. His bet looked to me as though he wanted to take the down right there, maybe with an AT type hand. My play looks as though i bet the flop because i raised preflop and was now giving up because he called me on the flop, so he could be trying to take it away from me. If i just call, I am out of position when the river comes, and think I will struggle to get paid off even if i hit my hand as i dont figure him to be that strong. Considering all the above factors I jam for 25k total with my up n down str8 draw and flush draw, he had me covered by around 6k. My line was that he would need TJ minimum to make this call, however he beat me in the pot with TT and i bricked out, gg.

No regrets, maybe overagressive, who knows but its how i play tournaments, always next year......... My vegas trip was in profit mainly because of online though withe the 2 nice scores i had mentioned in earlier posts.

August and September are 2 massive months in online tournament poker with the full tilt series of poker, and the pokerstars WCOOP festival. Some bankrolls will take a serious hammering during these two months im sure, just log on to the respective sites to look at the big buy in extravaganza. Im going to be in australia so will hardly be playing any of the events, but may set the alarm clock for 4am to play a couple of the ones I really fancy. One of the full tilt events is a $2.5k buy in and a 2 day event, with an awesome structure.

Since leaving vegas my cash games have gone pretty bad online, about $15k down. Some pretty sick hands on crypto in particular.

Someone requested that i animated the handhistory for my 100 rebuy win on stars a few weeks back but it kept slipping my mind, but here it is

Monday, 9 July 2007

Main Event

After some persuasion, I have decided to stay in Vegas and play the main event, time will tell as to if this is a wise decision. I play on day 1 d, and if i bust i will be arranging transport out of Vegas asap. The other day i lost my phone which is very annoying, coupled with the fact that i wasn't even drunk, just fell out of my jeans in a taxi. Moorman had his revenge vs me at bowling, beating me 3-2, although i was 3-0 down at one point, but managed to save face a little. Vegas is crazy hot, and this is what apparently provoked a man to open fire in new york new york the other day. He was taken down by 4 members of the public eventually, and to my knowledge no one was killed thankfully. Was weird as I had gone for steak with a few friends just 2 days before in new york new york.

Had another touch online today, finishing 6th in the warm up on stars for over $14k, putting my Vegas trip well in profit, even after shelling out for the main event, happy days. My main event last year was a pretty bleak affair, so will looking to improve on that showing.

Wednesday, 4 July 2007

vegas update

So, after my premature exit from the 5k short handed event I haven't got round to playing any more live tournaments. This is mainly due to excessive alcohol consumption leaving me feeling very rough the next day and not being fit to do anything until around 6pm. Have played a little cash online while i have been here and I'm $8k up.

The other night after a pretty heavy drinking session, me, moorman and noflopshomer visited the Orleans bowling alley at 7am, for some comical bowling. Moorman beat me 2-1 but i felt the copious amounts of white Russians were to blame and duly challenged him to a rematch when sober. The sober game resulted in a 4-0 whitewash in my favour from 5 games, and a cheeky 169 game to finish it off, OWNED!

Today is 4th of July so planning on going for a nice steak somewhere, then to sample the rides on top of the stratosphere followed by Independence day drinking somewhere along the strip. Poker stars have recently added new levels to the blind structure of its tournaments, making the re buys fantastic structures with lots of play, even on the final table. I was lucky enough to take advantage of the new structure yesterday and take down the 100 re buy. :-)

Saturday, 30 June 2007

Live poker, blah

Last Sunday I played the Venetian 1k event which had 10k chips to start and a 1 hour clock. The automatic shufflers also meant we saw a lot more hands per hour compared to manual shuffling. The Venetian card room itself is very nice and has really comfy chairs something that is a rarity in card rooms. So onto the tournament itself and I drew a really weak table, but couldn’t hit a flop or hit a draw for the first hour and dwindled down to 5k. A guy then opens UTG+1 for 400 (4xBB), and I flat call in the cut off with JJ, the BB also calls. The flop comes K J x, two hearts, BB checks and original raiser fires 1200, I move in and he calls with AK. A king hit the turn, at which point my opponent celebrated, and went to shake my hand when a blank hit the river. He was clearly under the impression that his 3 kings now beat my 3 jacks, lol. That pot put me back over 10k, and it was pretty one way traffic to the dinner break. The next big pot, a tight guy makes it 1200 UTG (bb = 200) and I look at QQ in the BB, all fold to me and make the call, with no real idea what he has. The flop is Q J x, I check and he checks behind, turn is another low card and I check again, this time he bets 1600, I make it 4k total and he immediately ships in his 12k stack. I call with the nuts and he tables AJ, wp gg. I managed to get my stack to around 50k at dinner with blinds starting at 600/1200 after dinner.

I reckon my food was spiked in the dinner break as I played so bad afterwards it was scary. I don’t remember any specifics, but just playing generally horrible, bluffing in terrible spots and just wasting chips needlessly. This led me to being short stacked in the 800/1600 level, and I re-raised a guy all in with AQ, unfortunately someone behind found AK and even though I flopped 4 to the flush it wasn’t to be. Very disappointing, but only myself to blame, it is an excellent set up at the Venetian and I will be playing the 1k event again this Sunday.

Just relaxed the next couple of days, playing some online tournaments with no success. Thursday saw the start of the $5k short handed WSOP event which I final table last year, so was confident going into this one. My starting table included Toby Maguire (spiderman) so that was pretty cool and he seemed like a nice guy, very quiet. Unfortunately I made my quickest exit to date in a 10k chip event lasting a paltry 35 mins, ugh. I raised with TT and a tight player on my left who I had played with for some time in one of the 1500 events re-raised, I called and we saw a 789 flop. I lead at the flop for 600 wanting him to fold AK etc, or define his big pair now. He instantly raised me to 2k, now is where the fun starts. I was almost certain he had and over pair, AA, KK QQ etc and was also aware he was a good player. I didn’t think he would call off his whole stack, 10k total with just an over pair on such a scary board, and even on the slight chance that he did, I still had outs. So with this in mind, I shipped in my 10k, and he goes into the tank for about 2 mins. He eventually makes the call with 88 for middle set, didn’t expect that hand, and I fail to hit a T, J or 6 and exit stage left. Some my view my play as reckless and unnecessary, but I have no regrets about the play and think it gets through a very high % of the time.

Later that night I went to Pete Haslam (bullitpetes) house to relax , have a few beers and play some mindless gambling card games. We first played Chinese poker, I’ve never played before buts it pretty simple and managed to luck a small profit. Then we played Shoot, and I ran so bad, constantly losing my bank to people shooting and winning, and also shooting and losing for $1k. Pete ‘walks on water’ Haslam, was the big winner never missing when shooting, including a $2k shot, lol. All good fun even though I was stuck $2k, so rigged. Just gonna chill out for a few days before the Venetian on Sunday where I can hopefully amass a good stack again, but no muff it.

Sunday, 24 June 2007

A small cash

After the early exit on Monday, came back to my hotel and played a few comps online, made a final in the UB $120 bounty for about $1.9k, was very short for a long time, very frustrating. After that decided to head downstairs and relax in the $1/2nl game and have some fun and a few beers before bed. That somehow turned into 12 hr session, ended with me stumbling to bed at around 10am. Some guys who work in the Irish bar came and sat just as I was preparing to leave, and we got talking and started doing shots ugh, and I couldn’t get away. The game was pretty wild, and anyone who plays properly would easily make a fair amount of money. I on the other was playing more and more reckless the more drunk I got, but still managed a $200 profit, lol

The silly 1/2nl session meant Tuesday was a complete write off as I didn’t wake up until about 8pm, played a few comps online, and came 2nd in a full tilt 6 seater event for $4.5k. Dominated the final but my heads up game is average at best, and cost me in this encounter. It is the part of my game that needs real work, as even when you get to HU in a tournament, the difference between 1st and 2nd is still pretty juicy.

On Thursday, I got talked into playing the $1500 event at the wsop, the huge field and dodgy structure was off putting, but, when in Rome. I made a steady start, taking down several small-medium pots and doubled my 3k starting stack after the first 2 levels and that gave me a fair amount of breathing room until we made the money. My table was pretty week and was able to build chips until I was the only one remaining from my original starting table, all the other players had been replaced. A notable pot comes up at he 200/400 - 50, level. A new player at the table makes it 1200 in LP, with 5.5k behind, I make it 3.5k on the button with 99, obviously committing myself to his stack. This didn’t phase our hero though, and promptly put the rest in with KQ, ugh and flopped a Q. He made this move with no information on my play whatsoever and I crush his hand so often its scary, but there you go. I kept my cool and just gave one bit of verbal, I asked him if he would passed if it wasn’t sooooooted, lol.

I go card dead for a long time after and no good situations arise, so am around the 12BB mark when the bubble bursts. The hand for hand play seemed to take forever and the clock was running the whole time, marvellous. Just after the bubble bursts, I double up with AK vs. QJ and fold the rest of the day, and finish on 29k with 147 players coming back the next day. We had 35 mins of the 1k/2k -300 level remaining on day 2, so my initial plan was to look for some1 opening too many pots and come over the top with any2 to utilise my re-raise fold equity while I still had some. Unfortunately after going through the blinds twice, no such opportunity had arisen and was forced to look for a spot to open shove. On the button I look at QJ suited and am reading to gamble with a LP raiser or move in myself, but to my dismay the tight guy UTG raises and I pass. 2 hands later, I have 18.5k and it folds to me, I look at K9, the level was about to go up in 3 mins, so a no brainer really. I found a call from AQ, but didn’t manage to spike and exited 118th.

Not much I could have done differently on the 2nd day, apart from maybe shoving blind UTG before the blinds hit me again, use my position to project a strong hand and stay above water. So, I cashed for $4300, which makes me $300 up from live comps, lol. Went to play the Venetian $500 today, but was sold out, nightmare. Am going down again tomorrow to try and play the $1k event hopefully wont be as popular with the more expensive buy in. I think my next WSOP event will be the $5k short handed event that treated me so well last year, : -)

Monday, 18 June 2007

My WSOP has started

Hardly played poker in my last few days in the UK as I had so much stuff to sort out. Didn’t check my final poker tracker stats but was around $7k down playing cash and up roughly $40k on mtt’s, so achieved my target pre WSOP. My journey was long and uneventful, I was catching naps whenever I could and watched a few shit films on the plane, alpha dog was especially bad. Temperature was 105 degrees when we touched down in Vegas, so my jeans and sweater that I left Doncaster in where a little too much. No wait in the taxi line at Vegas airport (running good?) and a speedy check in to my hotel and all sorted.

After arriving mid-afternoon yesterday, I had a few hours sleep then went and wondered round the casino a bit in the evening and contemplated sitting in a live cash game, but was very tired and gave it a miss. Some food and a few beers and I was passed out by midnight, waking around 7.30 am today. Was undecided weather to play the $2.5k 6 handed event at the Rio, but felt refreshed after a good nights sleep, so didn’t see a reason not too. Had heard horror stories about the lines to register for tournaments so went down at 10.30am to register for a 12pm start. No line whatsoever and im all sorted by 10.40am, lol. Starbucks and a copy of card player made the time pass by and before I knew it, it was go time.

5k chips to start, but missing levels from last year apparently make the structure worse in this years tournaments. My table started with just 3 people, and the first hand I flopped a flush with 89 spades but no action. Next hand I have K6 in the BB, and just the guy in the small blind completes. Flop is K 6 5, he checks I check, turn A, bringing 3 spades on board, he bets I call, river 7, he bets 200 and I call to beat his 1 pair of A’s. Our table is soon complete with some random French donkey and a random American donkey, more commonly known as Phil Ivey.

I get nothing at all, Ivey is in most pots and winning most without showdown. He is 2 to my left so on the BB when its my button. My first button raise is at the 50/100 level and I make it 300 with QT hearts, Phil defends as expected. The flop is K high rainbow and he check raises my 400 continuation bet to 1200, oops. Next notable hand is pretty sick, folds to me in the SB and I make it 300 with KQ clubs, crazy old guy defends in the BB. Flop comes J T 2, two clubs, I bet 400 he calls, turn is off suit 5, I bet 650 he calls, the river is an off suit 7. I cant help myself and fire 1k, he dwells for a little while and moves all in, he has me covered and I have about 3.5k behind, I pass and he flips 74 clubs, put a club up there 1 time. A few missed flops and stabs later and I go to the break with 1.6k. First hand after the break and the blinds go 100/200 (no 75/150) so I am in big trouble. I am on the button and both blinds are not back from the break, utg folds, tight lady folds and cut-off makes it 500 to play. I look at A3 hearts and shove, I hate shoving with this type of hand but the situation was so, that he would open almost any two cards to take the blinds as I cant play back without something of a hand. He calls me with A6 in the end and it was all she wrote.

Not quite the start I was looking for, but didn’t really play that badly just never got going and in these events with pretty shallow starting stacks, a good start is vital. Was cool playing with Phil Ivey though, he was constantly harassed from the rail by people wanting autographs and also some random old woman who wanted his email, lol. Not sure what tournament ill be playing next, but I think my next wsop outing will be the $2k pot limit on Friday, but will probably play at Bellagio or Venetian before that. Will try and take some decent pics to make the blog a bit more colourful for next time.

Wednesday, 13 June 2007

Funny how things turn out

At the start of my blog, I was saying how I wanted to play some mtt’s to get in some practice for the WSOP. After a week of running bad I gave up and decided to set a monetary target of $20k from cash games in June. Well as I pointed out in my last post I had achieved that target all in good time, but then I sat down to play cash at the weekend. It couldn’t have gone any worse; I had a few coolers early doors then made some errors, and then started chasing the money, never going to end well. That was Saturday; on Sunday I just played the one mtt which was the main event of the crypto festival. A great structure, but I never got going, and finished about 85th I think. Another dismal cash session on Sunday evening left poker tracker looking rather bleak for the month of June.

On Monday I had already decided not to play any cash, and didn’t start playing until really late anyway, entering a few of the 1am mtt’s. 5 hours later and I make the final of the full tilt 150, but short stacked. Go out shoving JJ into 99 and the flop duly brings a 9, I cashed for just over $3k if my memory serves me correctly. Yesterday I decided to abstain from cash again and try my hand at tournaments, lucky for me I did. I entered 4 tournaments in the evening, party $150, F.tilt $150, stars 100r, and $300 Ladbrokes daddy. An early exit on party and then finished just outside the money on full tilt paved the way for me to concentrate on the remaining 2. I eventually came 2nd in the Ladbrokes tournament for $12.4k, and managed to win the stars $100 rebuy for $19k+ (no deals).

Won’t be playing much more poker now before Vegas as I have loads of stuff to sort out, as well as going for farewell drinks with various friends and family. I have animated the hand history of the 100 rebuy win using pokerxfactor and the link can be found here:

Seemed to have it all in this tournament, got chipped up straight after the rebuy period by the table donkey, then went really card/situation dead until the 300/600, 400/800 level. Then lost a huge race near the bubble with AQ vs TT, had be really patient and play a good short stack game for long periods up to the final. Then everything went right on the final, and I dominated.

Friday, 8 June 2007

WSOP preperation update

So my preparation for the WSOP is going according to plan at the moment. I played 3 mtt’s on Tuesday, making a final table in the $150 freezeout on F.tilt. I came to the final with a slight chip lead but ended up finishing 4th. My only real bluff of the whole tournament got snapped off, then I proceeded to go card/situation dead until my exit. Shame I couldn’t bring home the win as it would have completed my $20k profit target but it wasn’t to be. Wednesday was the England match obviously so drinking takes full precedent over poker, and we even managed to win my more than one goal, what a shocker!

Thursday saw me enter 5 mtt’s in total, again making a final table, this time in the $100 f/o on stars. This is my exit hand from that comp, does anyone think I shouldn’t push this hand, and what do people reckon to the call?

It is a well known fact that emptyseat88 is Scott fischman online, so I was very surprised at this hand we played in the stars $100 rebuy. It is possible that a friend is on his account or something but I wasn’t best pleased at the result.

I have spent just under $3000 buying into online mtt’s this week and have a total return of $4890. So made a small profit on them, but with luck on my side in either of the finals and I would have booked a 5 figure return, o well.

I have been playing cash games still and today I rediscovered Party Poker. I have never really given it a chance since they blocked the US, but had heard that the traffic and action was still pretty good. I was looking for some 5/10 today on my regular sites but not much on offer, opened party and they had at least 10 6 handed games going. A quick visit to neteller and I’m away 4 tabling. The action was pretty good and I witnessed one of the most remarkable calls ever right at the end of the session. It doest say the bet amounts on the turn for some reason, but you can work it out if you see how much he started the hand with.

Inspired I am sure you will agree. Poker Tracker shows +$18594 for June, so with the winnings from my mtt’s am over the $20k target, but I need to stay there now, lol

Contemplated going to walsall for the midland masters main event but It seems too much hassle for a comp that is likely to be short on runners due to the WSOP. Crypto have the £1k main event of their online festival Sunday so will probably end up having a pop at that instead.

Tuesday, 5 June 2007

Down then back up again

I made the decision to avoid all the Sunday Major tournaments this week to try and press on with meeting my target of making $20k from cash this month before flying to Vegas. Early on it seemed as though I had made a good choice as I was $4k up and listening to bad beat stories from a few other players on MSN who were on the tournament trail.
Then a run of bad play, bad situations and missing countless draws saw me end that particular session down over $6k.

I knew I was playing badly and decided an extended break was required. I went and had some food, played on pro evo 6 for a bit then watched a couple of Cardrunners videos, one by Sbrugby and one by Green Plastic. When I watch their videos, I don’t often take a lot form watching them play, but extract a great deal from their commentary. It is always very insightful and stimulates my thoughts on my own game, how I played in previous sessions etc…

After this I had a quick review of my losing session earlier and soon realised I had not managed my image at the tables well and was blatantly obvious the moves I was making were going to get snapped off. It was now the early hours of the morning and all the action had dried up on the European sites I play, so fired up Full tilt and they had 3 tables of 10/20 running, perfect. I played for about 1hr 30 mins and managed to book a $6k win almost erasing the session from earlier that night. I took a screenshot of my recovery which can be found at the bottom of the blog entry. I played much better in this session, and had a nice AAvsKK situation for a full buy in at the end.

Monday saw the start of the Crypto golden cup series of poker, which looks a pretty good online festival with superb structures to boot. The first event was a £100 f/o with 4500 chips and a 20 min clock. I never really got going and was stuck at average or below average stack for my entire stay ion the tournament. The blinds were 300/600 – 75, and I had just over 10k. Since moving to this table I had not played a hand in 3 orbits so I presumed my image was tight. A fairly active player opened for 1800 in mid position when I held KQ on the button, I felt my tight image and chip stack would mean only a really solid hand would make the call. I shipped it in and the original raiser beat me in the pot with AJ, ugh. I lose the 40/60 and exit stage left about 30 places short of the money. I also played 2 other mtt’s on crypto at the same time and failed to cash in either of those, leading to -$800 in tournament buy ins and no return

The cash session later that evening was only 50 mins but was a profitable one, $6.7k in profit, mainly from a £10/20 game that was 3 handed. I had 2 $10/20 tables at the same table but only made a $300 on one, and lost $100 on the other.

Pokertracker for june, now shows +$13763

On target so far, but my aim is to be +$20k after deducting the tournaments I play over this period as well. Also, less than 2 weeks till Vegas, :-)

Sunday, 3 June 2007

WSOP in 2 weeks

Ok so I leave for Vegas in 2 weeks, which i am pretty stoked about, I have been itching to go back since last year but my timing hasn’t been right with other things ive been doing. This year of course, there are no online satellites into the main event, well there are but they just put the $10k in your account then it’s your prerogative. Even if I won a satellite, I couldn’t justify using that money to enter 1 tournament, I guess i am just too cautious.

As I am bankrolling myself for this trip I am going to play a lot of side events instead of the main event. I will be playing the 2.5k and 5k short handed events at the WSOP, possibly a 2k event as well. The Bellagio have a 5k event as part of their festival which has 10k starting chips. Also the Venetian are running a festival with $300, $500 and $1k events with 6k chips in the $300 and 10k chips in the other 2 which seems excellent value. I have estimated spending about $20k on tournament buy ins during the trip.

I am not really one for challenges, but I have a target for my online play before I go. In June I want to be $20k in profit playing cash, so then Vegas is essentially a freeroll, I know its not but winning the money before I go would be pretty cool. Online tournaments are on the backburner for me at the moment, I only plan on playing some of the cryptologic festival and the 1k buy in tournaments on F.tilt and Stars. I will deduct these buy ins from my running cash game total and will hopefully still be $20k to the good come 2 weeks today :-)

My poker tracker says for June so far - +$7606

A promising start, but with 2k coming out for the full tilt and stars tournaments on Monday and Tuesday, still work to be done. One positive thing about this is that on Monday I won’t have my normal dejected review of the Sunday majors as I won’t be in them.

Wednesday, 30 May 2007

Slowly but surely

Firstly, is now operational again so the links in the previous post should now link to hand history’s and not spam, lol.

Played a few tournaments again last night after the metaphorical light bulb was turned on in my head Sunday. Poker Stars had their inaugural Super Tuesday tournament, a $1k buy in that had an impressive 360 runners and $89k 1st prize. I had a quick spin on the stars cash tables and won my entry for this but finished in 89th after pushing KQ when short, called by JJ, flopping a K then still losing, eek. I would recommend any tournament players to play this, I’m sure the satellites will be often, and the structure was fantastic.

However, I did accumulate a big stack in another tournament, the $120 bounty comp on UB. This is $100 into the prize pool, then you get $20 every time you knock a player out. I had a 13k stack at 100/200 blinds and my confidence was fully restored and played pretty good big stack poker. I made the final with average chips, got into some dominating situations preflop and found myself heads up with a 2-1 chip lead. Unfortunately it all went wrong here and I played terribly and got outplayed on many occasions during the heads up battle and eventually finished 2nd. My style of tournament poker, much like my cash game style is very aggressive, and often leads to early bust outs in mtt’s, but when I get the big stack I feel as though I play optimal poker and really press home my advantage. Until Sunday I was never putting myself in position to get a big stack, and often having my fate decided on 1 hand.

Monday, 28 May 2007

small loss financially, big gain mentally

Well Sunday came and went again and the huge score alluded me once again, however for the 2nd Sunday running I got deep in one of the tournaments and had a shot a very nice 1st prize. Last week, my over zealous play caused my demise in the UB 200k shortly after acquiring the chip lead, this week however I finished 21st in the Stars 2nd chance comp and was crippled with one of the most bizarre hands ive seen in a while. still not operating so I will post the whole HH here

PokerStars Game #10140574836: Tournament #50597871, $200+$15 Hold'em No Limit -Level XX (4000/8000) - 2007/05/27 - 23:54:12 (ET)Table '50597871 31' 9-max
Seat #7 is the button
Seat 1: bikocruz (348290 in chips)
Seat 2: mdshack14 (82696 in chips)
Seat 3: jerseyjosh (119428 in chips)
Seat 4: colson10 (254965 in chips)
Seat 5: akat11 (212988 in chips)
Seat 7: hankgold (136461 in chips)
Seat 8: Paolo69 (143963 in chips)
Seat 9: Dark2000 (123803 in chips)
bikocruz: posts the ante 400
mdshack14: posts the ante 400
jerseyjosh: posts the ante 400
colson10: posts the ante 400
akat11: posts the ante 400
hankgold: posts the ante 400
Paolo69: posts the ante 400
Dark2000: posts the ante 400
Paolo69: posts small blind 4000
Dark2000: posts big blind 8000
*** HOLE CARDS ***Dealt to Paolo69 [Ac Td]
bikocruz: folds
mdshack14: folds
jerseyjosh: folds
colson10: folds
akat11: folds
hankgold: folds
Paolo69: calls 4000
Dark2000: raises 40000 to 48000
Paolo69: raises 95563 to 143563 and is all-in
Dark2000: calls 75403 and is all-in
*** FLOP *** [6s Kh 4h]
*** TURN *** [6s Kh 4h] [7h]
*** RIVER *** [6s Kh 4h 7h] [8d]
*** SHOW DOWN ***Paolo69: shows [Ac Td] (high card Ace)
Dark2000: shows [3h Jh] (a flush, King high)
Paolo69 said, "wtf"
Dark2000 collected 250006 from pot
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 250006 Rake 0
Board [6s Kh 4h 7h 8d]
Seat 1: bikocruz folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 2: mdshack14 folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 3: jerseyjosh folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 4: colson10 folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 5: akat11 folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 7: hankgold (button) folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 8: Paolo69 (small blind) showed [Ac Td] and lost with high card Ace
Seat 9: Dark2000 (big blind) showed [3h Jh] and won (250006) with a flush, Kinghigh

He beat me in the pot when I pushed all in, was remarkable. He ended up finishing 4th for $14k, what a fine line tournaments are.

One good thing become of Sunday though. I realized that I was playing like a puff in mtt’s since deciding to play them again. I have detailed how bad I have been running all week, but not once did I accumulate a big stack. All the time I was hanging on, hanging on until 1 hand decided my fate. I was so concerned making sure I had the best hand before going all the things that made me a good tournament player in the first place. I used to be a loose aggressive tournament player, with no fear of busting, constantly putting pressure on my opponents and had many gears. Once the stars million started I decided I was going to forget about how bad I was running and start playing LAG poker again. 2 out of my 4 tournaments ended quickly, the stars million and the UB 200k. IN the stars comp I flat called a raise with 44, then when the original raiser bet 2k into 4k on a A 9 9 board I moved all in for 10k total, he had around 16k total. He eventually made a good? Call with QQ and knocked me out. UB I never got going and finally went out with KQ on a TJx flop vs AA.

What was most pleasing to me was the massive stacks I accumulated in the Full tilt 400k and stars 2nd chance, it was confirmation that I had been playing like a scared little girl all week (no offence any female readers). I just missed out on the cash on full tilt with a miss timed move, and then ran deep in stars for a $1.1k cash.

I have animated my hand history of the stars tournament using pokerxfactor and can be viewed clicking the link below. Should demonstrate my loose gambling style for tournaments which proved so successful in 2006.

Sunday, 27 May 2007

Less tournaments, More cash

I limited the amount of tournaments I played on Saturday so I would have enough time to put in a decent cash session as well. The tournaments went the same way they have all week, even though my brain isn’t fully back into tournament mode I have still been playing ok but getting some pretty rough luck. I started with the $300 on stars yesterday but never got going above my starting stack eventually re-raising a serial raiser all in with AT, he had TT then a T flopped and I was toast. As that was the only decent tournament at the time I fired up a $10/20 NL game on DTD at the same time, this went rather better. When I joined the table, we were 3 handed for a long time and nothing much happened really, I won $800 pretty quickly but then dwindled back down to my $2k buy in. Then I won a nice pot with AK, just flat calling a button raise from the blinds, check calling the A high flop the check raising when a K hit the turn, my opponent tanked it and then passed.

Shortly after 2 maniacs joined the table and things got very wild, with them playing huge pots with 2nd pair and bottom pair respectively. I had raised a few times with marginal hands and the player on my left had re-raised me each time and I had passed. Playing a $3.5k stack I raised with 89 spades and called the re-raise from the player on my left. The flop was 8 4 3 with 2 spades, an almost dream flop for my hand and was ready to play this for his remaining $2k. I lead at the pot and he instantly shoves all in, his range was so wide I don’t even considering folding and beat him in the pot. He tables AK off, and was drawing dead on the turn after a spade hits, $4.4k shipped.

I lay pretty low for a while and maniac 1 reloads and goes to war with maniac 2 again. I then play my biggest pot on a cash table, and had to sweat it out even after flopping the nuts:

Game #4220773303: Hold'em NL ($10/$20) - 2007/05/26 - 19:24:16 (UK)
Table "Sarangi" Seat 5 is the button.
Seat 1: tolvhed ($4434.50 in chips)
Seat 2: jtman ($5284 in chips)
Seat 3: teddywong ($1990 in chips)
Seat 4: BobVance ($5521.94 in chips)
Seat 6: Lazarus1 ($4037.39 in chips)
Lazarus1: posts small blind $10
tolvhed: posts big blind $20
----- HOLE CARDS -----
dealt to BobVance [Th 9h]
jtman: folds
teddywong: folds
BobVance: raises to $70
muuuuseee joins the table at seat #5
Lazarus1: calls $60
tolvhed: calls $50
----- FLOP ----- [7s 8d 6d]
Lazarus1: bets $175
tolvhed: calls $175
BobVance: raises to $675
Lazarus1: raises to $3967.39 and is all-in
tolvhed: folds
BobVance: calls $3292.39
----- TURN ----- [7s 8d 6d][8h]
----- RIVER ----- [7s 8d 6d 8h][9c]
----- SHOW DOWN -----
Lazarus1: shows [9d 7d] (Two Pairs, Nines and Eights, Seven high)
BobVance: shows [Th 9h] (A Straight, Ten high)
BobVance collected $8316.78 from Main pot
----- SUMMARY -----
Total pot $8319.78 Main pot $8316.78 Rake $3
Board [7s 8d 6d 8h 9c]
Seat 1: tolvhed (big blind) folded on the Flop
Seat 2: jtman folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 3: teddywong folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 4: BobVance showed [Th 9h] and won ($8316.78) with A Straight, Ten high
Seat 6: Lazarus1 (small blind) showed [9d 7d] and lost with Two Pairs, Nines and Eights, Seven high
****HAND ENDS****

I played some 8pm start mtt’s but nothing materialised, only one really savage bad beat and that was early in my favourite online mtt, the full tilt $300 6 seater. BB is 40, I have 4.4k and my opponent in the big blind has me covered, I open for 120 on the button with 88 and the SB calls then the BB makes it 400 preflop, I call and the SB passes, The flop is Q 8 2, and the BB leads for 320 into a 1k pot, I raise to 960 and leave about 3k behind leaving him plenty of room to make a play if he wished. That’s exactly what he did, instantly shoving OTT, im not passing 2nd set here, if he has QQQ, so be it. He had, of course, AK hearts with 1 heart on the flop. I’m sure you have already guessed from the ‘1 heart on the flop’ comment as to what is to follow, he hits running hearts and i am out, with a 9k pot at 20/40 going to him :-( .

Today is of course the dreaded Sunday, and i am lined up to play all the major tournaments across the board, despite the fact of how bad i am running in multi’s the lure of a big score is just too tempting. Prepare for the blog entry early next week detailing another frustrating finale to a poker week.

Saturday, 26 May 2007


It seems as though the website is not working and therefore the links inmy previous posts make me look like spammer. Sorry about this, I have no idea if it is a temporary problem or long term, Ive seen several other people using this website to illustrate HH's so thought it was all kosher. If the issue is not resolved by monday i will remove the links

Friday, 25 May 2007

Back on the tournament trail

3 out of the last 4 days ive been playing exclusively online mtt’s and in all honesty it’s been a stark reminder of why I stopped playing them in the first place. It’s honestly like some of the players just don’t put any thought into the hands they play, this is player is highly regarded on pocketfives, yet here he is making, IMO, and inexplicable move in the stars 100r (biggest daily mtt)

This was after the rebuy period and sort of set the tone for the next few days. Here is a hand I played really badly in the full tilt $1k buy in on Monday; I should have shut off when he flat called my raise on the turn and check call on the river, silly play by me.

This next hand was very odd; I had swapped a % with JP Kelly when 50 players were left as we both had reasonable stacks. JP bust shortly after then was railing me, I told him I had KK on the button, and we both knew that the BB was going to shove OTT as soon as I raised, well all went to plan until…

Hands like this are pretty demoralizing in tournaments since you have already invested a lot of time and good play (usually) to get into this position.

This hand demonstrated why I think there is still a lot of value in online mtt’s but also why I just don’t see the point at times. I would love to sit behind this guy and here him think out loud as he plays this hand.

Did go on to a small cash in this party mtt last night, although it wasn’t the best of starts

This next hand was very early in the $120 mtt on UB last night, for those unfamiliar with UB’s structure, it’s the best around. My hand was pretty clearly defined here and can’t see him bluffing this early so I think a good laydown, although ill never know for sure…

This was my final hand of mtt play until Sunday, fitting…

I did have a few small cashes over the last few days but nothing to write home about and shows pretty poor reading on the profit/loss sheet. I’m aware my mtt game is very rusty but some of the hands that ive gone out with have left a sour taste. Even though i'm only back into the tournament scene online as preparation for Vegas I am still very frustrated that I can’t seem to get anything going. Should be putting in some hours on the cash tables over the weekend, then once again taking my ticket for the lottery that is the Sunday major’s. The final hand is from a 4 handed $10/20nl game I was playing one night as my mtt’s were winding down. Again, my opponents thought process is something to marvel at.

Wednesday, 23 May 2007

Sunday 20th May

For the whole of last year I made the majority of my money from online mtt’s, including a win in a paradise masters event, and winning the 100 rebuy on paradise 3 times in 1 month. However, as the year progressed the tournaments were becoming tougher all over the place with so much information available in the mainstream about tournament poker. People were just not making that many mistakes, people were playing good short-stack poker and in my opinion was becoming a lot more luck orientated as the skill balance was evening out. I made a decision in December to concentrate my efforts on cash games for a few reasons. The first was what I just mentioned above, another was my lack of social life due to horrendous hours required to play online tournaments. I also planned to be travelling a lot in 2007 and wouldn’t have the time to regularly sit down and play mtt’s for hours on end. I was already a winning player in 3/6 and 5/10 NL to supplement my income when I was running badly in mtt’s. Since I have just booked my trip to Vegas for the WSOP I decided to have a few weeks of mtt’s to get back into the mindset, this started on the Sunday just gone………

For those who read blondepoker forum, a thread is starting every Sunday to document the ups and downs of the biggest day of the week for mtt players. When I play I contribute to this thread and like so many others my posts are filled with frustration at either my bad play or the moronic play of my opponents being rewarded. However the same faces show up every week, gluten for punishment, it’s like smack. This Sunday was going to be the same as every other for me, I played really badly in the warm up, bluffing in horribly spots and lasting about 40 mins. In the stars million I was going well, then about 5 players from the money had 97spades on 9 8 5 flop. The original raiser bet and I moved in, he went into the tank and made the call, remarkably he looked me up with AK and got there, next……………… Full tilt had the main event of its online festival a $500 buy in with a wonderful structure. I lasted about 2 hours before getting involved in a huge flop, with the bulk of the money going in on the turn. I had the nut str8 and a flush draw, my opponent had top set and housed up on the river, no real complaints on my part, just one of those things, and if the tables were turned I would have gone broke with top set in his shoes also. My best shot at big cash was the UB 200k, I managed to make the last 40 then managed to win a massive pot with 35 left to take the chip lead. If I was in normal tournament mode I would have switched gears, conserved my stack and almost guarantee myself a final table spot. Hindsight is 20/20 because at the time I kept firing on all cylinders eventually finishing about 30th for $1100. This demonstrated to me that I was correct in my thinking that I needed to play a lot of tournaments to prepare for Vegas, my focus at the business end just wasn’t sharp.

So after all that fun? I was around $200 up for the day, this was due to the cash game session I had before the tournaments started. If I had just played solely tournaments I estimate I would have been stuck about $2k for one day on tournaments, $3k if I didn’t cash in UB. I’m sure ill be ready for the same rollercoaster next Sunday

Monday, 21 May 2007


For the last 6 weeks or so, ive was on a trip to Australia, Singapore, Malaysia and finally 5 days in Thailand. Last week, Wednesday, I completed the 30hr journey back from Phuket, stopping over in Dubai and eventually landed at Heathrow. I was absolutely knackered, but now had to make my way to Brighton in order to play the GUKPT event on Thursday. 2 tube journeys, and an hours train from Victoria and I finally arrive a flushy’s flat, just as I walk through the door, my suitcase busted, marvellous.

The general idea was to go and play the £100 comp at the grovesnor, we were reliably informed that it was an 8pm start, but it was in fact 7pm. After a phone call from somebody in the know that was already there we arrived in time for the start, Grosvenor’s lack of punctuality with tournament start times a blessing in disguise. My comp was very uneventful, due the fact I was still comatosed, and eventually came to an end when I bet out, got raised, then shoved with KT clubs on a Q 9 6 two club board, my opponents Q9 held. Noflopshomer did the best out of us all lasting quite a while, but just didn’t get the rub of the green when the blinds got ridiculously high as they so often do in 1 day affairs. Once he was out, fried breakfasts around then back to flushy’s to watch him lose money at 5-10 PLO, lol.

On to day 1 of the GUKPT, after waking up at stupid o clock in the morning due to body clock, I was still pretty tired as we headed over to the casino. Me and Flushy did a cheeky 5% saver in the taxi and we were all set to go. I locate my table and don’t recognise anyone at my table, apart from Sid Harris who I have never played with and have no knowledge of how he plays. After about an hour it has become apparent that my table is painfully tight, so I take it upon myself, as I so often do, to create some action and start raising about 4 or 5 hands every orbit and be very aggressive post flop. This was working as the players were all looking not to get involved so early and were seemingly scared shitless by any marginal situations, happy days for me. I got up to about 13k without playing a pot worth more than about 600 chips, when this hand came up. I limped 44 UTG, didn’t want to get RR off my hand, and Sid Harris raises and the big blind calls as do I. The flop comes 9 4 2 rainbow, blind checks, I think about betting and then see Sid already has chips in his hand so let him do the betting. He bets the pot, about 600, the other guy passes and I pump it to 2k, I have a horrible image and want him to do the lot if he has overpair. He then announces re-raise and makes It 5k total to play. I think for a while and have just over 9k chips total and cant see how he can pass for 4k more, and don’t want to lose him on the turn if I flat call and a Q comes and he has JJ etc... So I lump it in and he insta passes, how bizarre.

From then it was uneventful, I was raising often, sometimes meeting resistance sometime not, but never really playing any big pots. When we reached the 200-400 (50) level the rocks were starting to feel the pinch a little and were looking for spots to move in. My raises got snapped off twice in quick succession so I slowed down and took a back seat for a while. We moved onto 300-600 (75) when it all went wrong. I open a pot with A8 from the cut-off only for the SB to jam and he has enough to make me pass, then sitting in the BB I look at JJ, and then wait to see how the action develops. All folds round to Paul Parker in the cut-off who opens for 3k and has just over 6k behind. I’m just getting ready to set him in when the SB looks at his cards and instantly pushes all in for 17k. I had already observed he didn’t look at his cards until the action was on him so knew it was a genuine reaction. I cap my cards and start thinking, I check my stack have 17.5k total so am effectively all in. I'm convinced if he had a pair that crushes me, QQ KK AA, then he would at least take a few seconds to determine how best to play it. The speed of his push signalled weakness and he was also reluctant to look back at the table as I was pondering the decision. I’m not really any good at live tells so this could all be complete nonsense but it made sense at the time. I figured I was racing, or had a smaller pair dominated, and the hands I was racing against I felt there was a good chance that Paul parker had one of his cards making me a clear favourite. With all these factors in mind and my desire to have a big stack enter to middle-late stages made me call, Paul got out of the way and we have a 42k pot at 300/600. He flips 99, I’m happy my read was right but don’t even get a chance to pat myself on the back as he immediately flops quads, lol. A jack on the turn, not sure what I did to deserve that rubdown from the dealer, and a meaningless river card and it was all over.

Was happy with how I played, but i'm not one to dwell and moved onto the bar, occasionally popping back to rail Flushy, he ended the day on about 55k and went on to finish 7th for £12k, a great result and very well played. My appetite for live poker had been wetted once again, but that will have to wait for Vegas I imagine…..

A little about me

Ok, it seems everyone has a blog these days, ive made half hearted attempts before, but never really followed through with it. I hope this time will be different, as I want to reflect on my experience in Vegas later this year for the WSOP.

As im sure its apparent now, I play poker for a living, mainly online and sometimes live. It was never my plan to do this, and wasn’t even a conscious decision really. I went travelling for the last 6 months of 2005 after finishing university, then when I returned I was at a loose end. Before I left for travelling I was doing ok at poker, still on a completely recreational basis, but played a few tournaments online over the Christmas period and managed to get lucky and have a few nice cashes. While I was away, one of my friends I used to work with had made the decision to leave his job and have a crack at playing full-time, and he was going well. I started playing more and more, spending a lot of time talking about poker with my friend on msn, and my results continued getting better and better.

I sustained my online results all throughout 2006, also qualifying for 3 WPT events, WSOP 2006 and numerous events in the UK via Blue Square. At last years WSOP, I made the final table in the 6 handed $5k buy in event for around $85k and that’s when it dawned on me that this is what I was going to be doing for the foreseeable future. So far this year I played the Aussie millions and went pretty deep, finishing 35th and then had a good run at EPT Dortmund for a 24th place finish. I’m Hopeful that a big score is on the horizon in live poker, but as a player that isn’t sponsored i'm very careful not to over-extend myself with buy ins.

Online I play 10/20 nl cash mainly and usually have a run at the big buy in tournaments on the weekend. Have booked my trip to Vegas this year for the WSOP and will be playing quite a few side events from June 18th onwards, not decided if I’m playing the main event yet. That’s about it, hope at least one person will enjoy reading my blog, take it easy,