Playing Against Donkeys!!

The life of a poker player ME!!! Dhruv Doshi

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

£300 Gutshot Series of Poker Main Event

10k Starting Stack, Two Hour Levels, £17,000 top prize OHHHH YEHHHH!!!!
I said to myself if I make £300 this month I will play in this event that I got to the final day in last year. I made £1400, so I could play in this event. A while ago I was looking forward to the comp but as the day came nearer I was not too excited. I felt I should be too determined or too focused or have such a high expectation on just one tournament. I’m not saying that it is bad to be focused but if I think too much about it I will play hands badly. I would try to stay in and I might miss an opportunity to get more chips. Phil Ivey says to be a good poker player you should be able to take a $50 note and burn it!! Ok I don’t want to be that good but the principle should be there that this is just another tournament even though it cost a lot more. For the £10 re buy or £100 freeze I do not think about the comps before so why should I do the same here.

I look around at my table. The most important thing in poker (deep stack tourney) is the table draw. Poker is a people game and the people who you will sit next to for the next 7 hours (7 hours to be played on day one) is crucial. So I look around, some familiar faces but nothing to be scared of. There were some strong players in this tournament but I felt my table was not if a high standard but some good players. Here is a quick round up of what I thought of my table in the 1st ten minutes I picked this up.

Seat 1 - a young kid who thinks he knows the game well, can tell by the way he moves his chips he has not played a lot live but liked to dwell up on decision to give the impression he always has a hand. He also had a lot of facial expression, which makes him very easy to read
Seat 2 – Did not want to go out today. He won a pot early on and kept 10k in chips to the side and the rest of his chips on the other side. He did not want to lose his 10k, which was nice to pick on
Seat 4 – Played a bit of cash with him but gave nothing away about his tournament game
Seat 5 – ME!!!!!!!!!
Seat 3, 6 and 7 gave nothing away
Seat 8 – Seen him play online at gutshot, very solid player, heard him talk about poker and he does not understand how big pairs lose to small cards
Seat 9 – Laid out his chips like he had all the room in the world, sign of a player who has not played a lot or never had a lot of chips
Seat 10 – Talked a lot about how he went to play the main event in the WSOP this year, played with him before, very solid
So that’s the line up, seat 3, 6 and 7 were a worry, just because they did not give anything away, which meant it might cost me a little bit to find out but the rest I knew where I stood.

1st hand I’m on the cut off as the button was placed on to seat 6. I find KQ I just limp and the SB calls and the BB a solid player raises to 300!!! Woo that’s a big bet. Blinds are 25-50, I would make it like 150 to go maybe 200, I decide to just lay the hand down as he made it too much to go. I want to play small ball early on.

3rd hand in I get 66 and seat one has already limped, so I limp for 25, the button the solid player in seat 8 makes it 200 to go, the limper thinks for a while and calls, I call as well. Pot 675, Flop , 3 6 5 Bingo Bango Bongo! I got top set, not the nuts but a very nice hand. Seat one check, I check to the raise and he bets out 400, seat one raise to 900, hmmmmm ok do I raise here or smooth call, I don’t have the nuts but folding is out of the question. I decide to smooth call. The button decides to call as well, which make me believe he must have an over pair to raise, bet and still call a raise on a raggy flop. Seat one could have a drawing hand like a pair and a gutshot or the nuts, lets hope not! Turn is a 7 , not the best card if seat one was drawing. But he checks and I lead out, the button thinks for a while and calls and seat one folds, so seat one must have been making a move as he folded quickly. So now I know I have this guy trapped! River A , hmmmmmmmmmmmm. My read is a big over pair, has he really got pocket AAs and not hit a higher set, going with keeping the pot small I decide to check the river and call a bet. I think I would check the river also if a K comes at the end. He looks really puzzled and checks, I show my pocket pair thinking its good and he flips over his three ACES!!!! Ouch!!! Down to 7.5k early on, not a good start

I then pick up 65s in MP and too be honest I feel sick at the moment, I have just lost a big pot and I think a lot of people would go broke there or at least lose half their stack, on the bright side I felt I lose the minimum in that hand, as I’m sure the guy is not folding AAs, the level of skill just is not that good. Now it folds round to the SB who calls and the BB makes it 150 more to go, I call and the SB folds. Ok I do not need to be playing this kind of hand heads up, as it works a lot better in a multi way pot but I have position and I’m steaming just a little bit. Flop 4 Q 3 , ok that’s is a nice flop for me, but also it’s a flop that I feel has missed him, I feel there are only 4 raising hands in that position that would like that flop AQ, AA, KK, QQ, everything else has missed or has an over card. He checks to me and I check behind, sense he may want to check raise me, which I cannot let him do as I would fold my draw and if he has something like QQQ or AQ I think I can win a big pot with my free card. Turn is a J , and he checks to me again. I have to bet here now, if someone checks to me twice I have to bet out, otherwise no point in calling with position, he called but did not seem too happy. I immediately put him on AK, he has a gutshot and 2 overs, which he feels he needs to hit to win. River is a sweet 7 giving me the nuts and checks again, before the river was dealt I was just thinking please no A K or T, any other card and I fire out, its irrelevant that the 7 came to make my straight once he checks to me I’m betting to take the pot away but now I’m betting to get a call, he dwells and I know he has AK but I need a call so I decide to give a bit of talk. I have seen this guy at gutshot who gets quite annoyed about people and hates being bluffed. So I just say ‘It cannot take that long to fold AK’, he got very annoyed (this is not my usual style, I was still annoyed about the set of 6s against As and now I have the nuts, I want a pay day). He tells me ‘yes I do have AK what do you have, do you have a pair, I truthfully said NOPE!’ He eventually folded and I mucked my hand and take a small pot down.

I then pick up AA a few rounds later and lose to 33, who flops a set, I lose around 2k there as well. I then picked up a lot of small pots, when ever some one checked to me I just fired out. I won a lot of pots in the SB, when a ‘family pot occurs’ ( a lot of limpers) and im in the SB I called, BB checked and a flop would come down, Everyone would check to the turn and I would fire out. No one would expect the SB to be stealing! I took about 7/10 pots like that but a few times I got a caller. When I did I just put them on a draw and if a safe cards comes on the river I bet out again. I then got to the 1st break which was the 1st change of blind level with 9.6k in chips, which I felt was enough considering the dealer wanted to knock me out! I wanted about 10.5k to 12k after the 1st level but I still had plenty of chips.

At the break just checked up on my mates Dave, Niraj Jamie and Tom all had entered and all were still in, Niraj going strong after hitting a straight flush!!

So off to the new blind level of 50/100. I didn’t play too many hands. I picked up KKs and won a nice pot. Got one caller from the BB who fires out on a J high board, I just smooth call, disguising the strength of my hand, although I give him a chance to out draw me. Turn comes a blank and he fires out and I call, river a blank he checks, I value bet and he fold 10s and is absolutely disgusted. I show my KKs to say look I had you. In my opinion, playing 10s out of position is difficult, but I would check raise the flop with the J only being the over card, if it was an ace I mite check fold but I would check raise here as a Jack flop would miss a lot of my ranging hands. Also by check raising you have taken control of the hand, by him just betting and getting called he had no idea where he was in the hand.

I then pick my QQ I raise it up and get an immediate call to my left, which a poker player never likes, he was a quite tight player so I do not like being out of position against him. Flop comes Ad 8d 3d , ok I got the 2nd nut flush draw but the Ace on board takes away a lot of my hand, but I bet out and the guy raises me, hmmmmmmm I wish I checked and called the flop instead. I felt I could not call as I feel he was a tight player, he didn’t re raise with KKs early and check call 3 fours on a 4 4 A 7 T board as he was worried about his kicker. SO!!! Is my QQs good, I don’t think so, is my flush draw good I think so, I got 11 outs but the pot has got a lot bigger, now if I call on the flop I’m out of position and if I miss it will be very expensive on the turn, I decide to lay it down and waiting for a better spot. (Sweet just won a $500 pot in my online cash game, flop KhJh4h, I got JJ and check raise, he then pushes I have to call for $85 more, he has KcQh, poor play by him, only 2nd nut flush draw with top pair, oh well, he doesnot catch up!!! YAAAAA)

I pick up QQ again and I make the raise to 300 and the same guy calls, yuk! I hated playing this guy. Ok flop comes A Q A Bingo Bango Bongo!!!!!!, I decide to check, and he checks behind, turn is a blank and I bet out, he then raises me, hmmmm ok I have the 3 nuts, AQ wins and so does A+turn card. I was feeling really paranoid so I just smooth called putting him on AK AJ maybe AQ but that would just be sick. So in my head I’m thinking no picture card (although a Q would be nice). River bring a baby card and I get off my paranoid issue and fire out, he thinks for a while and says this is a bad call but I will call, now I feel safe as he flips over AJ and I win a nice pot! I end the next level on 12.5k and things are looking good.

Blinds up!!!! Oh a funny point, I raise with 109 in MP and the SB thinks in seat ten while seat one shows me his cards!!! Jake the dealer calls John I the Tournament Director over, and explains the situation. Seat one is told to show the hand to seat ten as well, but he folds and I take the pot, John I then tells the kid you now have a 10-minute penalty, lol. The Kid did not take it well and said you have to be kidding me and just sat there, I said politely mate just go before it gets worse, (you can tell I went to private school!! Lol). Ok for the people who think that was harsh, it is in the rules and John I is always firm but fair, he is recognised as one of the best Tournament Directors in Europe.

Back to the poker, well I try to bluff a few pots and got my hand caught in the cookie jar, showing K high in one hand, opps. I then pick up, yes you guess it QQ again! EP raises up, solid player made about 4 raises pre flop in last 5 hours, so I just smooth call in the BB, did not feel to tangle too much and would chuck on a Ace high board. BB calls as well. Flop 10 6 3 , good flop for me and I check, BB check and the raiser bets out 1.6k, I then decide to take the lead and raise to 3.5k and the BB CALLSS!!!!! OUCH!!!!! HUH!!! Im screwed!!!!! I started the hand with about 10.k and now only have 6k left after my raise but what the hell does he have!!! The oringinal raiser fold after taking awhile. I’m compelety done with the hand, There is no hand I’m beating that he can call a check raise with, The turn is a K and I check, he bets and I muck QQs face up instantly!!! That crippled me, ok where did I go wrong??? Should I have re raised pre, as I was out of position for the rest of the hand or did I get away with it for less chips. The BB claimed he would have called a re raise pre flop. In that case I would have lost my stack on that flop. Hmmmm this hand killed me, I was down to 6k, the blinds were still low but mentally felt really hurt. I make it to the next break with 5.3k and in big trouble, blinds were still 100/200 but now with a 25 ante. So each round is costing 550, and I have 10 rounds to go.

Now I get aggressive looking to double up. I pick up A8 and raise and everyone folds, I then pick up 63 and raise and everyone fold. I then pick up Jc7c and raise and the solid player on the button who has only raised twice in 6 hours (AA once) re raise but not a lot, the SB then calls, I then think! Hmmm do I call, im out of position on the raiser and could push if no Ace falls, but then I got to worry about the SB aswell. I am suited (poor excuse) but gives something extra, but I feel there are too many dangerous flops for me to call. Flop comes 3 clubs!!!! Sick!!! SB bets half his stack and the button moves in and the SB folds!?!?! Yuk!!! What did he have, I felt he had KK or AA with big club in his hand! SO annoying but that’s what I get with raising with that crap! This was the big missed opportunity for me, but then again he mite have hit the higher flush or may have flopped a set as the flop came Q high, but then I could have said, ‘ PASS THE SUGAR!!!’ (Club flush vs QQQ. Joe Hachem WSOP 2005). I become really short when I pick up pocket 10s against AA on a 8 high board! Just nothing was going right for me, I get down to 2,8k and Donna (other TD) mentions that there is 20 minutes left until day one is over, I looked at my stack and I did not want to come back with that many chips, so I started to move in, I moved in UTG with A10 and pushed with J9 on the cutoff, then the last hand of the night came I found 55s UTG and pushed, the SB called with A10 and I lose the race!

Not much went right for me, picked up some nice hands but no good flops for me, I was not aggressive enough on flops and pre flop in my opinion but that was not my game planned I wanted to play flops turns and river which is what the structure allows, surpirisingly I did not pick up AK or AQ once in the 7 hours of play, they are great drawing hands but I mainly picked up made hands which are hard to improve on. Oh well, got the £200 comp at Big Slick next Saturday and want to focus more on my cash games online, on about 300,000 action points on rivercard only 1.7million to go and I get my $2000 buyin into the WSOP!!!!!


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