Playing Against Donkeys!!

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

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

High Stakes Poker Warwick Style!!

HSWP (High Stakes Warwick Poker)

The game was set!!! After 2 weeks we brought the game back, we had a few changes and a much stronger line up (no offence to who played last time). This was something I was really looking forward to as was at least half the players involved. The game was now 50/£1 blinds with a max buyin of £150 and a min buyin of £40. I advertised the game to the usual lot by text and then posted on the forum, the game was filled with 2 days and the game was on! We had ten players in the game and even someone on the waiting list. Just a quick note I will and cannot go into too much detail about certain hands and moves taken place in the cash game. Most of the players in play last night read my blog and it certainly an –EV play for me to reveal all my thoughts about the game. Sorry!

Last time we played the blinds were £1/£1 and I played terrible, I lose most of my chips with KKs and two pair but I was calling off my chips way to much. I actually lost most of my chips picking up ‘playable’ cards and calling raises, missing flops and folding to any heat sent my way. This is just awful, these are the kind of player you loved to play against and I certainly was not going to play like this again. My key thoughts were to think of position position position. Upon two requests to do seat draw I agreed. So we pick our seats from ten and I picked someone picked seat two for me, in case you do not know I never like to pick my seating card, I always get a dealer or another player to pick it for me, just a silly superstition thing I guess. I like seat two as you can clearly see the whole game from the side, I hate seat 1 and 10 as you on next to the dealer and cannot see the whole game while seat 5 is too much in the middle and sometimes gives you too much attention, which does not suit my game.

Players Seat 1 – Guv, Seat 2 – Dhruv (me!), Seat 3 – Scott, Seat 4 – Tom, Seat 5 – Mark, Seat 6 – Nick, Seat 7 – Kader, Seat 8 – Mitesh, Seat 9 – Jaime and Seat 10 – Rob
If you know the players we have a tough game ahead. I have certain reads and ways I would play these players but as most of them read my blog I cannot be too detailed as mentioned earlier. I would normal go into detail here and explain my views on each player, but here is generally and pre game game plan, Guv very aggressive and can make moves with anything, was simply going to play position against him and hope for him to fire out some bluff. Against Scott was going to play big pots when I had it, as the money does not mean as much to him so I feel he is more likely to call, Tom I tend to stay out of his way playing cash as he tends to be quite conservative, if he is calling me he probably got me, Mark is a rock of rock not wanting to get involved with him with an Ace in the hole, only would play very creative cards, Nick the wildcard!!! The non Warwick boy! He texted me out of nowhere asking about the game and I said why not! Kader another potential wild card in the game, have not played cash with him for ages so I felt I would wait and see how he plays before attaching any reads to him. Mitesh is trick and can go either way, sometimes folding the 3rd nuts but then calling all in with top pair, was going to play tightish against him but definitely not afraid to bet him off hands. Jaime was someone I am likely to check call a lot from. I know he loves big pots and I would be control the pot more than anything against him. Rob!! Hate playing rob!! Most people who think why as I win a lot of money against him in the past but Rob is the type of player who wins or loses £200+ pots, I like to win £30 pots and grind on my stack up and Rob definitely does not like letting me do that!

Ok, sorry poker fans out there but my girl mates are all annoyed that i do not mention them in my POKER blog! So i have decided to keep them happy!! Hello girls!!! I hope this keeps you happy and you might check the blog once in a while!!!

Back to the Poker!!

So the game starts off very slow. More than half the table brought in for £150, a few for £100 and one for £40, so we had the range in their, I normally like to sit with the max in any game but my limit was £250 again tonight, and felt if I sit with a £100 and go broke I can rebuy for £150 knowing the game will be deeper then. So it made more sense to have £150 when the game is deeper rather than rebuying for £100 or going £125 each way. The game was seeing some normally raises and most pots were taken down on the flop. Mark moved in early on twice I think but no caller. The game was definitely going to pick up. I then limp with AK in late position. Scott and Nick call. Flop is 7 7 T. No good for me and I check after Nick checks Scott follows. Turn is a Q and I pick up a gutshot and two overs. Nick bets out £5 and I call, ok not a great call with just a gutshot on a paired board but if he has a 7 I might get a few chips here. Scott then makes it £18ish to go, Nick thinks for a while and makes it £35 more, I quickly fold and Scott calls. The river is a 5 and Nick checks instantly, Scott gets a chips count of Nick and moves him in for another £45ish , so the pot is around £170 and Nick slowly decides to call, They both say 7, and Nick with the A kicker scoops a £200+ pot!

I tried to get involved in some pots but not much was happening for me and I refused to play rags, especially with a £100 stack and raises up to £7 pre flop (with limpers) I decided I would be more selective in the hands I was playing. The next interesting hand that happened was against Tom and Kader. Not really sure what happened in the had but Kader flopped a set on a three spade board and lead out, Tom called and the turn paired the board giving Kader the house, Tom had A3, three of a kind. On the river Kader gets it all in and Tom calls. Kader get just under a double up.

There were a few limpers in the pot and Guv makes it £5 to go, which was way to small a bet. He gets 4 callers while holding the two ladies QQ. Flop is 6 6 2, a nice flop for Qs, ok the paired board is not nice but a 6 is less dangerous then two Ts or 9s or 8s in my opinion. It check to Guv and he fires out £20. Mitesh smooth calls and Jamie makes it £55 total. Guv then calls!!! Hmmmmmm Ok I think QQs need to run away here, he has lost £25 in total and calling another £35 and sitting with only £100 behind makes me think you are commiting too much here with a turn and river to come, also what does Mitesh have, a 2?? More likely a 6 in my mind. At this point I knew Guv had a big pocket pair and could not let go! I figured Jabon to have something like 88s or 99s finding out where he is but I definitely read Mitesh for a big hand. Mitesh then moves in!!! Jamie says he cannot fold was only another £35ish more (at most) and Guv slowly folds! Mitesh flips A6 and Jamie has K6!!!! Ok you might be thinking why did they flip it well at High Stakes Warwick Poker we give the option to take insurance (ie split the pot there like 80/20). Run it twice or run it three times. Mitesh took his advantage and said to run it once. The turn is a heart giving Jamie a flush draw, he not could hit a heart or a K to win, or a 2 or a 4 to split. Jamie then asking if Mitesh wanted two rivers but Mitesh kept to his word and said just once, the river was a K!! Jamie wins a £275ish pot! Seems like 3 of a kind is a dangerous hand to have in this game!!!

Mitesh leaves the game and Richard Myles joins in. He is a interesting player but not played with him a lot, I thought I’d see how he plays before making any reads. At this time I played a few small pots and lost a few and won a few. I was sitting on about £130, so about £30 up without anyone taking much notice.

Rob Jagger then gets involved in a few all in moves after calling Jambons re raise with 63 and flopping two pair against his AAs, I think they run it 3 times with Rob taking 2/3 of the pot. Jagger then out drew AA with a pair and a gutshot! In the middle he tried to bluff Guv off KKs which did not pay off as he instant mucked after Guv called his river bet, classic Rob! Last time Tom called Rob with J7 high to see Rob instant muck!!!

After playing for a while I was impressed by the way Kader was playing he was picking up a lot of pots with his continuation bets and kept the pressure on, But I picked up on his style of play later on which caused me to have a few battles with him. I like to play pots against people who I have a comfortable read on, as its no long about cards vs cards its player vs player the true art of poker comes into play. I limp with 4s5c and Kader makes a raise which gave me the impression of a steal raise, so I call, the flop is 3d 3h 5h and I check, he checks behind, then turn is another heart and I feel I could represent the flush here but decide to check to see where he was, he lead out £18 and I quickly called, I feel he may have a big heart so I want to see a blank on the river and then come out firing, the river however was a Jh, YUK!!! I think for a while, thinking whether to put a stop bet out there or not but then I thought Kader might not be able to fire another shell and might check behind. I check and he fires out £40, I had around £90 in my stack and felt pushing was not an opposition. I really wanted to make the call but the way he was playing before I felt he was not going to fire out without a Kh here. I felt he had the big heart on the turn and kept to my read and eventually fold, he claims he had Ad9d, if so well played sir!

Richard Myles had been playing for just under an hour and must of got bored or something, I do not know what happened pre flop but on the flop of J 3 6 two hearts, Nick bets out, Rob raises and Richard Re raises! Nick then moves in and Jagger folds. Richard then calls with AQ high!!!! HUH!!!!! Nick is slightly confused as was the rest of the table! Nick had Ah3h and had Richard crushed, Richard had 3 outs, They decide to run it once as Nick is a huge favourite and the pot was over £300+ The turn is a T and the river is a off suit K giving Richard the NUTS!!!! So so so so siccccccckkkkkkkkk! Nick took it really well and re loaded! The deck was just sick!!!

I was still grinding my stack! Just thinking position position position! Was up to around £130 now, and I limp with QJ, Mark raises it up and I call. The flop is J high and I check, Mark checks as well, I’m thinking he could have TTs JJs or AK here. The turn is a T and I bet out Mark calls, I then check in the dark. The pot is about £30 ish and the river is a Q, now I cannot beat AK!! Mark bets £7! What a value bet! I pay him off just to see if he called with the gutshot or not, he did and AK is good! Bet more Mark then I can fold!!!!

PIZZA BREAK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (the game was meant to start at 730 and finish at midnight but rumour had it we would play to 3am!! Life as student hey!)

I then pick up AK and make one of my 1st raises of the night. I get about 6 callers! Nice!!! I almost see the pot as an unraised pot in my mind, and I hate going broke in an unraised pot so I was not going to get too busy. The flop is 5 A 4 two hearts. It checks to me and I bet out £18 and Jambom calls, Rob then moves!! Woaaaahhh!!! Classic Rob using his chips here, I thought I might be a slightly favourite here but I have only commited about £25 and thought I could get my stack in a better spot, if he has a pair + a flush draw, also worried about Jambon calling with a set in the middle. Jambon folded anyway and Rob scoops the pot. This is probably one of my weakness as a poker player, I always fold with the small edge I feel I have which stops me from taking down big big pots with just one pair. I do not know if I should be working on things like that or not, I feel in a tournament the strategy is different depending on stack sizes and the blind structure but in a cash game you can always reload! This is definitely an interesting topic because do you need to win pots like that! I was comfortably grinding out £20-£30 pots without too many showdowns and making money. Something I certainly need to think about put a comment on my blog!! Would like to here some people views on this.

The very next hand I pick up 66s and limp, Scott raises behind me and I call, no other calls. Flop is 3 6 7 ! Bingo Bango Bongo! I check and Scott bets out £8 and I call. The turn is an 8, bit of a danger card and I check, her bets out £18 and I move in for another £55ish. Scott immediately tells me ‘Did you flop your set’, I said nothing and he eventually calls, with what I think was QQs, I showed and he did not so we just ran in once. I thought he might have got away from the hand there but I could have easily had 89 and playing it fast after maybe being taken off my AK the hand before. As my £55 bet was an over bet that might have helped me get the call. That got my stack up to about £180

I pick up JJs later on in my BB, Jagger limped on Scotts straddle of £2 and Guv called as well, I made it £10 to go and Scott and Guv folded while Rob called leaving to just me and him!!! Not happy hate playing him when we are both fairly deep and I have a had like JJs which is difficult to improve on. The flop is a good one 2 T 3 rainbow, I check trying to give Rob the impression I had AK/AQ, (early I bluffed rob in a £60 pot on the river with AQ high) He fired out £20 in a £24 pot, I check raise to £55 and Rob calls, Boooooooooooo!!! What has he got! I know he likes playing 10-2 ! But really??? Does he have the set , I could not but him on 45 as I think he moves in or folds on the flop rather than flat calls my raise. So I’m not happy I still have £120is back and looking to shutdown! The turn is a J!!!!!! Bingo!!! I think for a while hoping Rob does have a set and I check, he moves in and I call! He has 222, ouch! Sorry Rob! My JJJ holds and I double up to £370ish!

Ollie the dealer then needed a break! So I dealt for a bit while our dealer went downstairs to relax. I decided not to play and deal, which was nice to give me a small break. Once Ollie came back I played a few more pots looking to take more pots down and called with connecting rags pre with my deep stack. We saw a few more all in with Rob getting unlucky picking up KKs when Tom limped with AAs and Mark kept finding AK against others people AA and KKs.

This interesting hand developed as well. It fold round to Guv on the button and he makes it £5 to go. I see AK and smooth call. Scott then makes it £30 more, Guv moves in!!!!! Woooaaahhhhhhhhhhhh! What just happened here! Guvs all in was about £130sih. I had nearly £380 in front of me, I then asked Scott for a chip counts, he had around £120. I looked back and saw I have invested £5! I was not worried about Guv at all to be honest. I felt he was getting bored and had not played much recently and wanted to play. At best I put him on TTs or AQs AT BEST!! Now Scott worried me, the side pot was clearly not enough against Guv to get involved just to play Guv, as it was quite clear Scott was commited to the pot. Then I went into the memory tank, I played against Scott about 6 months ago when there were two limpers UTG and UTG +1 and a raise in UTG + 2 and he re raised with KKs, I then moved in with AsKs in the SB. Later he said, you must put me on KK AA or maybe QQs there if he calls me. So that was running through my head as well, thinking Scott is not re stealing was also running through my head and on that knowledge I felt AK was at best a split and if Guv had TTs or a Ace in the whole or Scott has QQs and Guv has an Ace my outs are less. But also it was button (Guv) vs SB (me) vs BB (Scott) which can make people do some crazy things! BUT I decide to fold! Guv has QJ and Scott had AK!!!!!!! Right fold? Maybe in the long run, especially after only investing £5! Guv sucks out!!! The Jack hits! And Scott loses another big pot. He then got it in with QQs vs AK later on and Jambon hits the A then continues to hit the flush as well!

I played a few interesting pots with Kader. I picked up 35 against him and called his raise, he fired out the flop and I called with air and then he checked the turn for me to beat it away from him, I then had Qh8h against him on the cut off 7 handed (Rob and Scott left and Tom cashed out) I just limped and Kader checked his BB. The flop was 9h 7h 2c. He checks and I bet out £5, he calls, turn is a 5d, He checks and I bet out £8, he makes it £24 to go, I quickly call, to represent strengthen and knowing I had a lot of outs and position on him on the river. The river is an 8 and I miss everything! Except hitting one pair. He checks and I lead out £35. He quickly folds 7 5 face up!!! I was like pheww!!!!!! I was surprised he folded but he later explained the range of hands I could be on and I win every time minus the busted flush draw! I got my stack up to about £420ish

The very next hand I limp with Ah6h, approaching 3am. Kader makes it £11 to go and Guv calls and I calls as Kader was on about £380ish and felt I could take a big pot here, although Kader had played me well one I was drawing. He got me off the nut flush early on when he over bet the pot in position, I just didn’t call as I felt if I hit I was not getting paid off. The flop is T 4 2 all hearts!!! BINGO!!! BANGO BONGO!!!!! Guv fires out £25 and I go into the tank. Guv only had another £90 back so I know he is committing here, putting him on a small flush. So I need Kader in, I think for a while check my cards and eventually call. Kader then asks Guv how much does he have left (Bingo!) Kader then bets £125 Guv only having £112ish left. Guv instantly calls the his allin, and I instantly move allin!!! Kader asks for a count as I count out another £400! At this point I put Kader on top set and I get nervous. I feel this is the only hand he is thinking with and raising £11 pre flop with. The joker! Was just sweating me out! He had Pocket JJs with Jh and he was never calling!! Guv is the one with top set though! At one point there was almost £700 in the middle!! Eat your heart out GSN with your High Stakes Poker! I decide to run it three times with Guv, thinking I would take two pots down, which did happen. I won a £12 side pot off Kader, and 2/3 of the main pot!!!!!!

What a game!!!!!!! Definitely looking to hold another game like this and Ollie’s services of £5 an hour was awesome! I ended up with £545!! and I think Jambon just over doubled up his buyin and Kader just under doubled up with his. Definitely felt I played well was a bit annoying I did not make the call against Kader with the 45 but over was happy with the way I played, although it is nice when cards go your way!!!

Girls this one is for you!!!! (wow 3,800+ words damm!!!)

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Midland Masters at Walsall Casino

So i return to Walsall to play in the Midland Master Event # 2 the £200 freeze out. For those who do not know, i used to regular go to Walsall casino once ot twice a week last year at University but after a £20 rebuy night i stopped going after i felt i had been cheated in a game. The outline of what happened was i had made final table and there were 6 left, me and outsider and 4 locals, the money only really got interesting for top 3 as there were only 35-40 runners. I was doing well and started to notice that the tournament was taking a while after one of the dealers mentioned it. I then started wondering why were there no big pots. I then notice that chips were moving left to right between the locals. They were in seat 1-4 and 5 was the outsider and 6 was me. I felt maybe i was reading too much into but then i saw JJ s in the BB being checked all the way down and some flopped top pair, turned a str8 draw and did not bet on any street. It was getting late and looked more and more suspious as the hands went by. I then picked up a few hands and got aggressive while i was disgusted at the play from the other players. I had recently heard a story about Barry Greenstein who said that if you feel cheat take your money and go, as this was a tournament i couldnt exactly leave but i could not wait to get out of there. Barry G also mentions there is also no point in complaining to the management, especially as these locals actually run the card room in the casino. So i never went back and told myself i would not unless it was a festival where the locals were out numbered.

The Start of the Tournament

I was not thinking too much about the tournament before, it was a healthy buyin but i felt i was comfortable playing this tournament especially as i had $150 bought in for me by (link on the right side). Also winning £100 on roulettle before the tournament started helped! (stop gambling DHRUV!!) The screen came up with the table and i was put on table 17! With 170 runners that means it was the last table, i walked over and it was the 'bum' table, it had lower chairs and not a great look to it compared to the other tables. I knew it would be the 1st table to break so it was not too important to create a reputation or spend too much time reading people at a price (in terms of chips) Dave Lu was also drawn to my table as well as this 'pro' which Flash mentioned to me.

So normally when i sit down i look for reads in terms of how people sit, move their chips, talk on the table or see how they look at their cards. i picked up nothing for once! Apart from one chump on the table everyone seemed like they have played for a while. This was not great as it meant it would be a tough table which in turned out to be, but with the 5k starting stack i'm sure we would lose 10 runners soon for our table to break.

I pick up AAs early on and make the raise to 150 and the BB calls in c/bet the flop and he lays it down, nice start. The play on our table was not to my liking. They were strong players, the 'pro' was making it 125 to go pre flop when on the other side some guy bet into a 700 into a 250-300 pot 8 hands in. There was another player who caught my eye. He was talking to the 'pro' alot and i felt they travelled together. He seemed like a strong player. He has just lost the biggest pot on the table with AT vs AJ on a A high board in a limped pot. He then raises on the c/off and i call with Ah4h on the button. The flop is 4 Q J two spades. He bets out and i quickly call, trying to freeze him on the turn. The turn was a 9 and he checks, i feel i can take this away and bet out, maybe even with the best hand. He then moves in!!! hmmmmmmm Opps! I felt he was tilting from the hand before and felt he might be on a big draw with like AsTs or something like that, i let the hand go as i was not about to call of my chips here with bottom pair.

The 'pro' then does something very strange. There is a limp in MP and i limp on the button with rags and the SB pro raises to 550, very big raise considered earlier he made it 125 to go and with one limper before he made it 150 to go. I figured he had AA, AK or rags and was on the steal. I was very surprised by this raise. The more i think about it, it seems like he really wanted the pot here as he was out of position the rest of the hand and maybe he had a hand he could not get away from like KK and AA in a non-deep stacked tournament. So he gets one caller and i fold. The flop bring two diamonds and a Q and a T, he bets out 1500 and the limper moves in while standing up saying he has to go 'classic!' The pro calls with AAs but does not like it. The limper has AdJd, gutshot and a flush draw. The diamond hits instantly and the guy doubles up. Now lets look at the hand if the pot was player smaller. If he makes it 250 to go pre and gets called his flop bet would be around 500 not 1500 and if the guy calls the next card is very scary, he can now get away from AAs. Phil Hellmuth likes to play AAs slow so he can play the flop especially in early stages where it is difficult to get people to fold pre flop. This allows you to get away from the hand at a cheap price and if you need to pay someone off it will not cost too much. I remember hearing Phil on the Circuit on cardplayer saying the one time he played AAs fast he went broke on the flop when the guy floped a set, but if he saw the last few cards it came like K,Q and there was a T on the flop (the guys had a set of Ts) He claims he would not lose his stack with danger cards comming off later. But then again AAs are infront!!!! Why not make it a big pot! When the money went in AJ was a slightly dog and AAs did have an edge. The more i play i see that pocket pairs are very difficult to play, the reason being because its hard for them to improve! AK and 78 is nothing! But when it hits a flops it great. I prefer hands like that in deep comps and at early stages of any comp, give me AAs towards the end pleeeeasssseee!!! If you have read my GSOP post, i only got dealt pocket pairs and found them difficult to make money on.

Talking of pocket pairs i pick up AAs again, my stack is about 3.5k and i make it 150 to go, i get two callers including Dave Lu, i'm UTG and i am out of position for the rest of the hand. The flop came 8 J 8. I decided to play this small. They cannot hit two pair against me. If they have an 8 they have me and if they have a draw i think i get away cheap. I check and the old guy bets and Dave folds, i call. turn is a blank card and i check and he bets 500 and i call. The river is a K so no str8 out, no flush just an 8 to beat me really or a lower set for a house, i was hoping he had KJ and he would bet big which i could call but not raise incase he lead out with the 8 the whole time. I check and he fires out 1k and i quickly call he slowly turns his hand over i see an A and a non picture card! I felt like crap, plz no 8! It was a 6! Pheww i scoop a nice pot.

Table Breaks!!!! I get put on table 16!!!! which means that will break soon! So again i dont need any good reads. I then see my table, Guv(house mate) was there, Scott O Reily (ex Warwick 54th in WSOP 2006 Main Event) was there and to my right was David Colclough (one of the UKs most well known players). This table was sooo much better they were limping into pots and checking. It was a much softer table! Also another note about table behaviour was that they all knew how to play, i remember saying 'wow this people even fold like pros' I picked a few small pots here just betting in position with draws or middles pairs. There was no re raise bets towards me which is always nice. Colclough then gets involved UTG and a few others limp. Flop is very low and Colclough bets outs, he get raised by someone and action back to DaveC he then starts to talk to himself. Saying why i have you left your self with 225 chips, what he could not see was the guy had another 1k chip back on his card protector. DaveC then says ok and throws in enough to put the guy all in but thinking he only had 225 left not 1.225k. I then say he still has chips and DaveC was like oh shit, i've lost now! Then turn comes out and DaveC puts the guy in who shows bottom set for the scoop against his JJs, I then ask did the chip protector get in your way he said maybe but 'i have really bad eye sight' Guess even the pros make fundamental mistakes!!!

Move table!!! I get put on table 15!!! What a joke!!! It will not be long until 15 breaks as well!! This was really ruining my game, i had no time to get to know the players at all and when i did the table broke, i was on table 15 for about 6 hands and guess what the table breaks!!!!

Table THREE Whooooo hoooo, so i guess i can finally get comfortable on a table. The break started in a few minutes so i left my 6.5k in chips at the table and went to the bathroom. Better to go now than 150+ players heading their during the break! I bump into Tom and he is out, going out with top two pair against bottom set, yuk! Tom points out to me that Action Jack (Paul Jackson, got heads up in Monte Carlo this year and one of the best Uk players about) is on my table. This table was even tougher than the 1st one. But i had some chips and a good feeling about the competetion so far.

I pick up 9s7s on the button and call as did Action Jack in MP, SB and BB are in too. Flop is 9d Jd 7c! Nice flop for me! Not liking the Jack connecting the cards though. Action Jack bets out and i smooth call. Other fold the turn is a 5 and he checks instantly as if he knows his hand is no good. That gave me the impression he was on a pair + a draw. I think he still bets out with a pair and a flush/str8 draw so i figured he has a pair J or 9 with a gutshot, therefore JT, J8, 98, 9T hands he is likely to want to see a cheap flop with. i check on the turn (maybe should have bet) but by checking wanted him to think i had a flush draw, so he might call a bigger bet on the river if the diamond does not fall. The River is an 8!! Ok so the board is 5789J. I have two pair which is awful, i can beat KJ but no gutshot + pair draws, but he quickly checks again, i think he is scared of the str8 so i know he does not have a T in his hand, he couldnt have a 6 just because of the flop and the check on the turn. So if has 98 or J8 or 78 but hopefully KJ and looking to check call. SO i decide i can beat 2/4 hands so i need to bluff! I bet out around 50% of the pot making it look like a value bet, like i have hit my str8. He goes into the tank saying you cannot have missed diamonds, and started talking to himself. He had the chips in his hand hovering over the line and was taking a while. He eventually makes an absolute crying call, one of those calls where people say 'i know i'm behind but i have to call' (not that he said it but thats the look he had in his face). He calls! I turn over my hand and he says. ' oooh i can beat that '. he shows J8 and rivered two pair. He then said to me surprised you bet two pair on the river, i said ' i did not think two pair was good '. He gave a look of confusion, maybe thinking this kid knows something about poker, i think or he thought what an idiot! Who knows!

The dealer then started dealing some wild hands and with the blinds increasing people were dropping like flies. We were down to 80ish pretty soon. I started raising in LP with rags and got re raised three times!!!! Hate when that happens! Oh well! I then get it in with KcQc with about 4BB and get called by AQ, but i hit a K! I got lucky!!!

Then i wished i was a bad bad poker player! Big stack opens up and Action Jack re raises i look down and see TTs!!!! At absoulte best i am 50/50 and about 60/40 (or better) if they both have AQ and AK as the AQ would fold and some outs gone but due to the size of the re raise (smallish) i knew he had a big pair. I fold! Then a short stack pushes with AQ and the big stack calls. Hands : Big Stack 99s, Action Jack QQs and AQ with Short stack, so i make the right fold! Board comes with an Ace and the river the T!!!!!! The pot was about 18K i would have tripled up (ish) and be the chip leader or 2nd in chips! on the table and with a good good shot at makes some moves! But NO!!! I fold! Oh well i guess it all about long term poker!!

I was then back on the steal just moving in with any Ace in late posistion and connecting cards as well. A donkey came over to the table who i remember from the last time i went Walsall. Blinds were 200-400, he has 1600 and limps. Someone else then calls and i shove with K7 for about 3.7k, blinds fold and the donkey with 1200 left folds (i knew he would), the other limper gives me a 60 second swet before he mucks AJ and i go on tto claim i had 99s.

I then found JJs and the guy to my right opens the pot with 3.5xBB i have about 8BB and shove! He calls and flips over AAs! No help and i go out! With about 7 tables left! Overall a great tournament well structure and the standard was good enough to keep the game going at a great speed, no one was dwelling up or slow rolling or asking the dealer how much it is to go or when it was there turn. The standard was much higher than the £100 freeze at Gutshot on saturday nights.

Online on UB

I do not like to complain about bad beats but i played a $50 MTT yday on ulitmate bet and i was moving along nicely in the 1st three levels increasing my stack by 70% with out any big showdowns. I then get TTs in my BB and i call a raise, flop is Td 3c Kc, i check, he best min i call, turn is a blank i checkm he bets i raise and he shoves i call, he has KKK!!!!!!

Then i have no chips but still 6xBB, i have 10c7c and check my BB. About 4 others in the pot. Flop is 3c 7d Qc, great flop! i do not have alot of chips but its going in!. i want to check raise, so i check and it checks round opps! I check on the turn as the Kc falls (giving me the flush) Guy bets out and is called a raise basically all in, get 2 callers, and the river a blank and they both push!!! Guess what! The so called pair and flush draw flop being so great i was a 2.1% favourite to win the flop!!! One guy had a set of 3s and the other the A high flush draw! I was drawing to running 7s or 7, T or TT. So sick!!!! Two great flops and basically drawing dead on both of them!!!!!! Something tells me someone did not want me to play that comp!!!! Maybe it was because i had a 9am the next day (which i missed!!!)

Monday, November 20, 2006

Online Poker Boring!!!!!!!

So its time to play another 2 day tournament!! The buy in is £200 however I have been lucky enough to be sponsored $150 by Rivercard! So I am in the tournament for about £120 which doesn’t make a huge difference but every little helps. Thanks again to rivercard!!!

By the way plz check out Tommo's blog (link on the right hand side) there is a video of Tony G and Ralph Perry that has to be seen! 'Get out Russian!!!'

I have not had a great month this month but yday I came 4th in the $100 freeze on UB certainly helped. I have started to play Heads up cash and tournaments just on Ultimate bet while I will only play full ring cash games on the rivercard. I actually qualified for the $100 freeze a while go in a $5 rebuy (in for a totally of $15, the absolute min with instant top up) but unregistered and took the Tournament Dollars instead.

The $100 freeze on UB was a good structured tournament like most UB tournaments are. I started off very well but then lost a few chips when check calling with top pair vs bottom set of the flop. I picked up some nice hands but had to play a lot of poker as well. I actually picked up AAs 4 times and KK 3 times. Although when I picked up QQs I lose about 70% of my stack. Although I think I played the hand quite poorly. I had been playing big hands quite strong due to the good structure. In a crap shoot if you pick up big hands like AA KK or QQs (not so much AK) I feel you need to get paid therefore I may be encouraged to play certain hands slow to extract the max. But with the good structure playing them strong was key and sometimes checking the turn was needed to control the pot size.

SO back to the QQs, I have about 5k ish and the average stack is about 3.5k+. I raise 3xBB in MP and both the blinds call. Flop is 5 6 9 2 clubs. Hmmmm no Ace or King but its a very textures board, a lot of draws possible and I feel I need to shut people out. I have both players covered. SB had 1700 and the BB has 3.5k. They both check to me and I decide to bet over the pot! This may come to a surprise to most people as I love small pot poker, but over the pot was half the SBs stack so I feel he will get away even if he has a draw. I also wanted to end the hand now. I also feel if a blank comes on the turn and they play back especially the BB 9as he has more chips, not to concerned with SB) I could get away from the hand but I hope they both fold! They both call!! Turn is a 10c! Not a great card and the SB moves in for about 800 with the pot being over 4k. I also have the Qc!!! I feel he had the flush draw and made it! The standard of players I never rate (as you can see in my last post I rate a few amount of players) so I convince myself he did call off 55% of his stack on a flush draw but likely a small one, I felt the Qc was good. But also the bet was sooooo small I had to call either way but before I come to my decision the BB pushes for about 2k!!!!! (1200 ish more) (the numbers maybe slightly off, hence one of the reason I do not like writing about online poker as I find it hard to remember things after seeing so many hands) Anyway!! Now what!!! Looking at the hand now my decision has changed! The key problem here is, knowing your players, I had recently got moved to this table and I didn’t really know the players. Is he moving in with an A of clubs or top pair or pair + flush draw or a flush, if so how big! I eventually calling convincing my self I have someone beat! And if not I had outs!!!!! I came to the conclusion the SB had a small flush and the BB had Top pair on flop with maybe a Jc something like JT, (very bad read when thinking about it afterwards! Why would he call on the flop!!!! But then again I do not know the players and some people never fold top pair!) I was wrong!!! SB had a made the nut str8 off the flop which was played awfully I bet over half his stack on the flop, he got greedy and didn’t move in! While BB has Kc 7c another big flop for him with an over card flush draw and a gutshot str8 draw! So I was drawing dead!

Looking back after betting big on the flop that was enough information to realise they called with more than just a draw and the 10c is the opposite of a blank!! But the pot was fairly big and I felt the Qc was in play, I would try not to call off my chips again like this! But hey we all make mistakes!!! So I get down to 1400 ish and get three huge hands in a row!

I pick up AA and someone raises in front and I pushed he calls with JJ and AAs hold. Up to 3.2k ish

Next hand AA again!!! Shocking!!! Someone raised, another guy calls, I re-raise and they both fold. Up to 5k ish

Next hand AK, Guy raises, I re raise, and the guy next to me moves in for 4k. I felt I had to call here as I had just raised 3 hands in a row after losing with QQs so I felt people may play back and plus a lot of dead money in the pot and I feel AK cant be in too bad shape, he has QQs and I win a race! Up to something like 8.9k in 3 hands!!! What a rush!!!!

I grind my way to final 2 tables and in the money, making a lot of plays along the way on flops and turns. Did not have to fire three shells which is nice and it is very difficult to do. A play I made quite a few times was when raising pre flop out of position to the caller on a missed flop, e.g. I raise with AK and someone calls, flop Q 3 8 I check he bets I call, turn a 2 and I would fire out! This play helped me a lot. I feel it is a strong play that can be made against good players, as that think back thinking why is he firing now?? I had AJ once and got someone to lay down AK on the turn, he had no pair but he was not happy to fold, in the chat box he said WTF, he couldn’t understand the play, I feel if I confuse them they will or should let go on the turn or river. I then chat in the chat box I flopped a set! Which is the way I would play a set(although on that occasion it helps he had nothing but A high)

I then lose basically all my stack with 12 players left, top 20 paid but only (11th to 20th) get $104, (tournament cost $109) was a very friendly comp in terms of payout, just trying to encourage people to play again I guess. Not a fan of that. Anyway in the BB with 9s8s and one limper and the SB checks I check too. Flop J 9 3 2 spades! Nice flop, I would probably check raise a pre flop raiser her but as know one did I felt I could lead out. The limper calls, the turn is a T, not a great card but if he had T8 or QT or spades the T gives him the best hand but it cannot beat a J which is what I am representing so I fire out. He calls hmmmmmmm I think he has QT, hopefully not 333! River I miss my draw or fail to improve my hand however its a Jack, which is a nice card, It means it is very unlikely he had a J on the flop and I feel another bet here will get him off a T and obviously he would fold if he had a flush draw. Now you might say why bet, well the pot is about 22k at this stage I have about 16k back, if he had AT of spades or QT and I check he wins! So I essentially bluffing, by showing strengthen the whole way I feel I have done my job to get him off a T if he has one. So I fire out 12k making it look like a value bet. if he has 333JJ he moves in and I leave my self with 4k (about 5/6BBs) . Ok I left myself with something, I did this to show I was trying to extract the max as I would if I had the J for JJJs. He calls instantly with KT!!!! YUk yuk yuk!!!! Gutshot on the flop!!! Was it a great call?? it was the right call but I do not know how he makes it, with hindsight I think the Jack helps him, it makes it unlikely he has a J which means in his head he is thinking that I cannot have a J I guess! I felt terrible!! I didn’t need to make that play but sick at his gutshot call on the 2 spade board, I know I double up if the Q of spades falls!! Oh well!!!!!

Now to DRU poker!!!! I move in with 5BB with A4 6 handed and the BB calls with 6d7d and I hold. Then the big stack limps with 7s8s and I move in on my BB with AA (yes again!) He calls for like 10BB a bad call (same guy with the KT, now I know the player) I hold up!!! Back with a shot to win it! Final tables starts a few hands later.

A point to make just before final table! I had my eye on both tables as the bubble for final started and would it extremely funny and disappointing, when Rusellxxx moves in for a totally of 1330 and the BB folds!!! Oh btw the blinds were 600/1200!!!! with a 125 ante!!!! he folded for 130 into a pot of 3750!!!! WOW!!!!!!

So I make final and try to steal as much as possible especially after people were folding big hands to all in moves, I didn’t have a lot so there was a lot of allin poker for me. I got 4 handed and moves in a number of times and not getting called. Then found AJ in my BB and told Guv who was railing me that this is the hand unless two people are all-in. UTG raises and I push, he thinks for a while and calls with AK!!! no help for me and i'm out in 4th for $884! A bit annoyed as 3rd upwards get the 1K + to their name! A few badly played hands but happy overall but I am improving online!!!!

Head Up

Due to been a uni I find it difficult to have a long ring game or a long structure tournament on weekdays so I have started playing some heads up poker on UB while playing Black Jack sit and gos!! (gotta stop gambling!) Been playing 50c/$1 and $1/$2 pot limit games! Being doing very well but its all about finding some breaking them and watch them reload after reload after reload with no where to go. The $1/$2 is quite high considering I started with only $93 into my account but with a few tournament results in $10 $20 and $30 comps I have built it up to over $1500 in the last 2 weeks. Although I need to know when to walk away I guess, I find it difficult to play aggressive players but I feel I can read people in the first ten minutes of a game, which is why I love heads up poker it really is the true form of pure poker!


'I was in early late middle posistion' Found on the Gutshot Forum

'Its a good thing the English made good trains, you will be home in two hours!' Tony G at the WPT in Paris

Wish me luck 2mr at the Midland Masters!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Donkeys Donkeys and More Donkeys!!!!

Ok I have not written in my blog for a while and the main reasons is not because I have gone broke or anything like that it is simply because live poker had dried up for me. I have been playing a fair bit online but as I have mentioned earlier I don’t really like writing about online poker. But I’m back but most of the focus on this entry will be on Poker Society the Monday night Tournaments!

Just a quick message to myself! I’m 21 tomorrow!!!!! Damm I feel so old but on the poker note look out America! Dhruv Doshi is now legal to play in the big comps!!! Obviously my roll does not allow me to buyin yet but I will definitely be thinking about some satellites soon enough, although I promised myself I will work harder at uni this year so sats might not be on the top of my list!

My next blog entry will probably be about the £200 freeze out at Walsall Casino for the Midland Masters! Some good news for me is that $150 of that will be paid for by River!!! The are just asking me to wear their T Shirt which is a very nice deal!! Also if you are looking for a new site and what some bonuses! Rivercard is the site to go on!!! If you click the link below and type in my promotional code DOSHI

while making your 1st deposit you will get a 30% bonus on that deposit and if you would like me to hook you up with a 5% rake back deal just drop me an email at Lets be honest 5% is not a lot but its something, I get just under £100 a month and its free money!!1 Also those of you on VC or Blue Sq on any other similar site just, it’s the same site so no need to sign up you just have to download the rivercard software and play with the same screen name as before. So if you are interesting in switching sites just for the bonus then just do that, if you don’t like it, clear your bonus and go back to your site!

Univeristy of Warwick Poker Society

Ok I normally pride myself on the fact that I went to Warwick poker soc, it where my game has developed dramatically but these days I have lost my ‘romance’ (to quote Saef) for the game on Monday nights. In my 1st year I was ready to learn watching great players play and talk the talk but nower days no one wants to learn or they think they know it all! I know I don’t know it all and I still have the nerve to write a blog about the sport. To quote someone (forgot who….i want to say Mike Sexton) It takes a minute to learn and a life time to master! I coming in on Monday nights and see my table, there is normally one regular who I have respect for but the rest are just awful, players who do not learn from their mistakes, players who don’t realise that getting lucky is a bad thing in the long run (by making that move), players make up pots odds!!! That really annoys me

I feel that this is what the World Series of Poker must be like. I think that Poker soc is a great way of getting passed the first day at the WSOP because the players are sooooooo bad!!!! The number one rule I adopt at poker soc is DO NOT BLUFF!!!!!! I have seen re re raises called with bottom pairs and yes you could say it’s a great call but if you look at peoples faces when they make the call they almost do it just to see the other guys hand.

At poker soc there are 4 types of players, the All in guy, the quiet rock, the good player and the elite players. The players I like to play against are the rocks and the good players. I will pull bluff only on them and occasionally on the elite players. The reasons behind this are simple, rocks will fold, good players feel they can always wait for a better opportunity. I only bluff occasionally the elite players as I really don’t need to dump any chips onto them. I need them to earn their chips. The allin guy! I’m shit scared of this guy! I can never work them out but my general rule is play for the nuts against them. Try not to play too any draws because it will cost a lot and you have no fold equity when pushing against these players. Here is an example of a hand I played yesterday I find 88s and raise and an allin guy calls. Flop comes 8 high with 3 dimonds, ok its not the best flop for me but I’m 90% sure my top set is good but I know if he has a Ad Kd or Qd he will chase. So the plan is to see all the cards. Some might say you are a favourite push and if he call you are a 67% favourite. But my rule against these players is see all 5 cards! Ok I give them a chance to catch up but I never commit all my chips against that kind of player without a big hand. Also 67% is not a lot to me!! I want to be at least a 80% favourite when I get all my chips in! So I check and he does behind the Ad falls on the turn and I check and he follows river a blank no pair on the board and I check and he shows Qd! Surprised he did not bet but he was always calling if I bet. I find these players difficult to play but when I pick up a big hand or a flop I do get paid which is nice.

SIDE POTS!!!!!!! I have had some debates with people about this! At poker soc the play is not great but betting into an empty side pot with bottom pair or a nice draw really annoys me! 2 weeks ago, 6 hand with 12 left UTG moves in and I call in the SB with KQ and the BB call flops is Q high, check check, turn x check check river I check and the BB bets! I have top pair with K kicker nice hand but the person who bet was in the elite group of players, I folded and he shows two pair. Ok I did not protect my hand but if I did on the flop UTG triples up as he had AQ! This is a very simple game! And side pots is not too much harder! I may say this but I see on WSOP bracelet events when John Pham bets into an empty side pot with the nut flush draw! The other player folds and when the hands were shown, a player at the table said why did you bet! John Pham replies I have nut flush draw I want to protect my hand! That makes no sense to me, you have A high and if the flush hit you will have the nuts. There is no hand to protect. Having an over pair is different! So if the top pros are doing it does that mean we should?? This is the part in poker as in life where we have different opinions, which is what makes the game great but if I’m playing do not bet into an empty side pot with nothing!

People at poker soc, As I said its like the WSOP main event, most of the pros out there feel that over 75% of the field are fishes! Same at poker soc, we get around 80-90 runners on average and only 20 ish people fit into the elite/good player bracket . We have people who argue with the dealers about everything and feel they are always right. We have people who do not pay attention at all and need to be told how much it is to go. We have people who stare people down when really they have no idea how to read people! All these things really slow the game down. I know they are beginners but I see the same people doing the same thing week after week, its so frustrating. I feel I am quite good at reading people just by the way they talk, sit, look at people, the way they move and stack they chips. I even told some one at poker soc stack like chips up probably they say no I like it like this! They make like flower patterns with they green blue and red chips!!! Its sooooo bad! It just gives away so much information! Some people have like 25 of each colour and stack them up in 5’s which is soooooo annoying they cover like half the length of the table! Here is a tip stack the chips in 1 to 4 piles and make sure they are easy to count!! Also stop hiding your chips!!!! People actually hide they chips!!!! It is a rule to keep your big chips visible to all players, I told someone that and they thought I was lying!!!

Facial expressions are soooo dreadful at poker soc, people try to act! Its obvious!!! Don’t sigh act all unhappy then move in!!! Who are you fooling seriously!! Most people at Warwick are well educated which gives you a big advantage, why play like a fool! Also the whole defending the Big Blind is great but take 3 minutes to fold!!! Why!!!! Any good players knows what you are doing in the first 3 secs when the action gets round to you, I’m not saying to act too quickly but pretending to dwell up to send the message ‘do not steal my BB I will go all in next time!’

ALL IN!!!!! The famous words in poker that has ruined the game!!! All you see on TV is the All in hands because it is exciting moments that average America poker players want to see! SO lets do what the TV does! Lets go all in every other hand!!! You have to remember that they miss out all the hours of real poker where people are betting ¼ to ¾ of the pot and people just fold. Sometimes…. Well most of the time in poker there will be a raise and a fold or a raise call bet and a fold. Its not always AK and KKs! But at poker soc there is enough people battling each other in that way that some one will have a stupid amount of chips very quickly while the other maniac is out! So we have a lot of players who will make one final table a year and never be seen again they either double up or go broke! This is a game plan I know how to play against however when the blinds are big as they normally are (finishing a 80 man tournament in 4 1/2 hours is always difficult) my game plan fails which is waiting for the big hands hence why I keep making final table with a few amount of chips. Its not that I’m not aggressive enough but people just keep moving with KJ and 66 and when I see hands like 73 and K7 there is not much I can do!!

When I 1st came to poker soc I was eager to learn and on each table there was a table captain who runs the game and talks about the game, the other players would show respect to them and listen but these days I’m one of the table captains or someone on the exec is there is always a new face on the table who knows it all and disagrees with the table captains and ruling have to be called, I’m not saying this about everyone but some people do not know how to listen and take advice. Some guy had an argument with me about odds of pocket pair vs pockets pair vs AA, someone argued about losing chips, someone argued about acting out of turn. I do not know what it is but everyone thinks their a pro!!!!!

Ok enough bitching!!!! I actually need these players to be soooooo bad at poker it makes it easy money I guess. I have played 6 comps at poker soc now making 3 final tables and twice final two and once final 4 all with AA vs KK in a huge pot!!!! Poker in my eyes is dying out!!! Why ???? Who knows! There are trips once and a while to other societies but they all seem to fade away. I think people want to play on the internet more these days or feel they are too good for the society but we have some awesome players at poker soc and if you attend and listen and try to learn you will definitely improve!!

I have recently put up a challenge which I hope a few people will sign up to, a £25 prop bet of who can make the most final tables this year at poker soc!!! I think around 5 people will join the pool which will give the winner a nice £125!!!

So wish me good luck at the £200 freeze at Walsall Casino and if you want some rake back on rivercard click the link above or at the side of the page or drop me an email!!!!!