Luckyblind's Poker Blog

Random thoughts and reports from a relative Poker newbie.

Location: Drogheda, Ireland

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Monday, November 15, 2004

The weekend rush continues.....

After not playing any poker all weekend I managed to get some game time in yesterday afternoon. I played a $6 Multi to get back into the swing of things and give the challenge a boost. All was going well until I lost a big pot with kicker problems and I ended up 13/100 to increase the fund by $2.40! It seems to be treading water a bit now, I think a few sessions in the low limit ring games are required to give it a wee bump up.

I fancied a shot at the Pokerstars $350,000 Gtd later on so I entered a $10 turbo satellite and although 78 seats were up for grabs my crapshoot luck fell short with 150 left. I hate paying in to any tournament over $50 unless I win in or am up for the day so I opened up two NL50 tables on Eurobet with a view to getting at least half of the entry paid. On one table I had Aces three times in 20 mins and every time I saw the flop they held up. Unfortunately the other game was killing me as I was outkicked and outflopped constantly and I ended up losing nearly all I won on the other table!

Still I had a feeling about entering the big one. Catherine and her brother were there about to watch a film on DVD and I was umming and ahhing as to whether to enter or not. By the way do not watch Boat Trip, it is the worst film ever, why they picked it out of the 600 other films in my shop I do not know! In the end Brian's comment of 'he's gonna enter in anyway' rang true and I payed my $215 along with 2092 and sat down with $2500 chips.

Pokerstars early levels are among the best on the net and I was confident that my game was up to accumulating a healthy stack to enter the more crapshooty levels later on. I spent most of the game folding and folding, the odd hand I played missing completely until I was down to 1400 chips and finally I hit the flop with AK and managed to get back up st starting level. By the first break I still had only $2600 although about 700 of the field had gone by this point.

At the halfway point as far as runners were concerned I had seen my stack dwindle down to $800 then I was dealt 10 10 on the button. I called Catherine over and showed her my hand and announced this could be it as whatever happened I was going All in. As it was I was the first to go in and managed to get a call from the BB, a mad man who had bluffed and called off a stack of $17000 down to$6000 in the last few minutes. Unsuprisingly he turned over 8 6 offsuit and I was still in. A few hands later I picked up JJ and tripled up vs 2 AK's and then I eliminated the madman when my A10 suited which I raised him with, made a flush to beat his pocket jacks. I had gone from being in the last 20 in chips to the top 50 in the space of 10 minutes.

The rush soon dried up and I was also moved table. Every thing after this was a bit hazy as it was getting late and the blinds had increased to a level where almost every contested hand was an All in unless contested by large stacks only. Key hands though include my Aces holding up and eliminating a small stack when my 33 hit the flop to bust his aces, by the time it got round to me to call his bet the blinds, antes and stack size gave me 3:1 which when I explained this to him didn't calm him much!

I was leaking chips to the player to my left. His name was Rich_Fish. Everytime I was in position to steal the blinds I was rereaised back by him. The 3rd time he did I had the weakest hand that I attempted to steal with K9 suited - The sawmill as Mike Sexton loves to say. We had just scraped into the money by this point. It was about $7200 to call with abot $24000 already in the pot. I was convinced he was bullying me and figured at over 3:1 I was only a big dog against 10 10 to AA and also AK. Well it turned out he had AK but the poker gods were smiling and a lovely nine came to my rescue. This guy actually took it well, a fact i think that saved him from some abuse later on when he was up agianst AQ with A8 and the flop came A Q 10 and then runner runner 8's to fill him up!

I managed to double up once agian with Big slick suited vs AQ, A Q on the flop but a King on the river to save my skin. By now I had over 50,000 chips and was in the top 20 out of 180 left. There was only one guy on the table who had me outchipped and he had been playing well for the time he had been on our table. It would be wrong to say I feel sorry for the guy because what happened next has happened to me more than a few times. I picked up the rockets, Bigalspo ( i think that was his correct name ) was on the button, I made a raise of 4 times the blinds and he re-raised. Well I wasn't going to call and be outplayed on the flop so moved in. He called in a flash with his KK. No help for him and I was now 3rd in chips for the tournament. The odds of this guy seeing this are small but he was the best loser I have seen in a long time. He popped up 3 or 4 times later on to cheer me on from the rails. I would also like to thank DesD and others who were funking for me. I don't even think I have played against these guys before and I was up on my own now, Catherine long ago in bed. A bit of support can give you a little bit of extra confidence.

I stole a few blinds and took out another shortstack to put myself in the outright lead with 86 left. I was not naive enough to think that this gauranteed myself a final table so tried to keep my play as solid as possible. In the end I got fed up of folding my blinds with semi playable hands and called a minimum raise with J10 suited. The flop was J 8 8 and I checked only for him to bet $16000. I called and the river was a 7 I think. Anyway I check called another $16000. The river brought a King which made 3 spades on the board and again I checked. When he check I thought for an instant my J was good enough but alas he showed AJ and I was outkicked. I was however happy not to lose all my chips here as I have found myself check raising in this situation before.

I forget what hand I had that doubled me up a short while later, but after that the cards dried up and i was gradually slipping down the leaderboard as the blinds and antes ate away at my stack. By the time there were 24 left I was 17th. The prize money jumped up to $3300 for 18th an increase of $1500 dollars. When my blind came up the Hand for hand message was displayed and I looked at AK of spades. It was raised in early position and to call would have put me All in. I thought for while and even went into my time bank. I called reasoning he might not have anything special as most would be wary of commiting their chips so close to big prize increase. I have another blank as to what he had but it wasn't enough to beat me and I now went into the last 18 with just about average chips.

The prize money stayed the same until 9th. I presume this was the reason for the aggresive play that followed. The only pots I won was when they all folded to my blind and one steal. The blinds were now $15000,$30000 with a $1000 ante and very shortly I found myself at the biggest final table of my short career! However I was the shortest stack by some way and knew that any move I made would be called by someone. I started the final table on the button and was dealt JJ straight away. I folded them after a raise and a re-raise. I was hoping the shortest stacked guy would lose but he had a better kicker to his Ace and won when another A hit the board. I folded 10 10 later a few hands later for the same reason and the short stack won again. Both hands would have eliminated me if I had called.

By now I was down to less than $100,000 chips and was next for the $40,000 blind. I didn't want to be ante'd away and moved in with A5 suited. The big blind called with Q 10. Unfortunately although 2 of my suit came, a 10 appeared on the flop and I was out in 9th. Still it was a good feeling to beat over 2000 other players and the profit of $5200 is not bad either.

I am not sure if there are many repeat final tablist's in this one as it is a bit of a race from 200 out. If you are going to play a hand from then, and you need to play some, it is likely to be for all your chips. When I was chip leader with 86 left I had only 20 times the BB and average stacks had less than 10x. However I will have another go soon. Thanks again to all those cheering me on and by the way for any europhiles out there, the final nine included 3 Irish, 1 Welsh, 1 English and 2 French players. Not a bad result considering the overwhelming majority of players on stars are American.