Playing Against Donkeys!!

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

Friday, June 29, 2007

DSOP Main Event Deep Stack

Tommo quoted in the early morning of the 21st of June how the sun was rising yet the sun was setting on DSOP; this was going to be the last DSOP of all time at Warwick University. This was definitely going to be a sad day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Most people, including me, look forward to the DSOP events where the structure, the banter and the players are of a fairly high standard. The Main Event was a £50 Freeze out with 11 runners, 25k in chips meant this was going to be an awesome tournament with plenty of moves and plays!
Ok as University is over now I am going to go into as much detail as possible of my reads and how they play. I was in seat two so I will relative to what I was thinking after the seat draw, as position is so vital certain players in different position totally changes my read of them and how to play against them.

Seat One – JD – Ok I have position of JD and he is not afraid to three barrel against me, which means I can flat call with big hands and hopefully get paid off later down the line.
Seat Two – ME!!!! Great Poker Player!!!! And Great Blog writer!!!!!! (I heard!!)
Seat Three - Sam Granger – Now here is a tricky player!! He is certainly a nice guy but can be very unpredictiable and do some crazy stuff! I heard he likes to min raise A LOT!!! The problem in this tournament which I did not like was that he was on my left, because he calls a lot pre flop, so I find it difficult to know where I am, as his range is sooooooooo wide.
Seat Four – Saef – Again calls a lot and unpredictable player, tends to be quite tight and waits for cards, so definitely can exploit that later down the line when I am on the button when the blinds are higher, he also likes to see more cards and keep the pot small but he does like to defend his big blind!!!
Seat Five – Gary Fernades – I think this was his 1st DSOP and knows the game very well but for some reason I seem to have a strong read on him, he tends to give this funny look when he is up to something funny, so I would look to play pots in position with him, but he can be very aggressively and pots can get quite big against him.
Seat Six – Guv – Well I know how he plays and I tend to play quite tight against him and bet big when I have it, as he likes to make ‘classic calls’
Seat Seven – Jagger – Who I find very difficult to play and we never normally clash against each other, he is more than capable of getting his chips in at any moment with the nuts or the nut low!! (no matter how much is in the pot), which makes him a very dangerous player in my mind!!
Seat Eight – Flash – DSOP player of the year last year and in the lead this year, I needed to win the £50 freeze and for him to come at highest in sixith place, so I had to agenda in this tournament, to win it but also try and pick some chips of flash, this has to be a –ev move in terms of this tournament as I find out later.
Seat Nine – Tommo – Again a very tough opponent who can get his chips in, someone I like to stay clear off in pots, especially early on when we are sitting
very deep stacked.
Seat Ten – Dave – Who likes to play a lot early and play basically any two cards in the 1st 3 levels, he likes small pot poker and I am happy to tangle with Dave
Seat Eleven - Mitesh who likes calling a lot but can be dangerous with a lot of chips.

The tournaments started and I did not really get too involved, I played rounders earlier in the day and I was really tired. As it was 11 handed I thought this may help, I basically put my head down on the table I switched off for the 1st 30 minute level. Early on with 11 players I folded a lot, trying not to call with 55s and 66s. I then woke up in the 2nd level and decided to play a pot, also picking up KK helped! Flash limped and I raised with my KKs and Sam called and so did Tom as the blinds folded. The flop is Jh Ts 9s, not a great flop for KKs especially given the range of hands I am getting called by in the early levels. Tom checks and I decide to check thinking a check raise would help me find out where I am rather than a bet followed by a call. Sam bets out and Flash raises but a small raise about 2.5x Sam’s bet. I then decide to re raise to find out where I am. I do so and Sam folds and Flash thinks and calls, at this point I put him on bottom set or maybe a big draw. The turn is a check and we check check, the river is another blank and he checks, I normally value bet here but I decided to check to keep the pot small and not be out played by the hand and I cannot think of too many hands that call me in this spot on the river which had also called the re raise on the flop, I win the pot and Flash mucks his Ks5s.

I then decided about 20 minutes later to play a pot. Tommo limps, I limp with Ktoff and another calls, Gary in the small blind raises it up, Tommo thinks for a while before folding and Gary did not seem to happy that Tommo was thinking to re raise or call, so I decided to call with position and there was some vibe I got from Gary that he was up to something. Everyone folds and its two to the flop. Flop is Ah 9h 8c. Gary fires out and I quickly call, thinking to take
this away later, the turn is a 7, which gives me an up and down, but I was really drawing to my bluffing outs, which is the hearts. Gary then fires out another big bet, which seems strange, why is he betting so much? Could he possibly have something like KQ? or a small pocket pair? I do not think he fires so much out with AK or a set because he loses his customer and may make the pot to big with AK. I decide to call thinking in my head I have a ‘flush’ draw and a straight draw with position. The river is a heart and Gary checks, I have about 16k back and the pot was about 12k, I fire out two 5k chips, Gary thinks for a while and eventually mucks, he claims he had KQ but we will never know!!
Dave Lu also lost a big pot where he ‘misread’ his hand for a set against Gary AK on a AK2xx board where Dave thought he had 22, but turns out he had 23! Opppps!

Rob Jagger also picked up some chips of Tommo after he re raised all in on the river with T high on a A J J 5 3 board. Flash Jagger Gary and Mitesh were the early chip leaders picking up a lot of big pots, while I was somewhere behind them and the rest not doing so great.

Dave got knocked out when it was SB vs BB against flash, where flash flopped a set and Dave moved in on a bluff with Ace high.
Everyone seemed obsessed with re raising each other pre flop and a lot of squeezing going on with these deep stacks, I tend to like to play more flops with a lot of chips as I think I have a better edge with a flop game than pre flop. I think people got carried away with this, hence why I think Guv went out, he re raised Mitesh with AJ and Mitesh shoves and Guv makes the call, which I think is pretty bad, he claims he is ahead of Mitesh’s range, which is ridiculous!! Mitesh min hand is JJ+ imo and AQ+. Mitesh had AQ which at the bottom of his range. I just think the table got the best of Guv there.

JD Flash and Sam got in a big pot which saw Flash raising, JD re raising with AK, Sam moving in with JJs and Flash thiking for a while and then moving in with KKs and JD thought for while before calling. So AK vs KK vs JJ, with a K high flop Flash knocked two players out!!! Not good for me in terms of player of the year and especially considering the tournament it self you never really want to see Flash with too many chips!!

I found myself quite short after playing a lot of pots with Flash trying to take him down a notch but that had the opposite effect and chipped him up more, my 24 and 35 were just not working!!
There was 6 of us left and I was in trouble, I got lucky by raising with JT and Saef moved in with KJ and I had the odds to call, I hit a straight and Saef goes busto, this was definitely a double edge sword situation as by knocking Saef out I got some nice chips but with Flash still in it also meant I could not win the Tinoyta player of the year.
So it was between me Mitesh Gary Flash and Rob all with chips to play, I got involved more and raised a lot of pots and with the antes in play the pots were definitely worth taking. I won a nice pot with AJ when I raised and Gary re raised, I thought for a while and decided to shove and he folded.

Mitesh got short and pushed with 22 and Flashed knocked him out with AT, Gary was next to go when I called his allin with 66 and he showed AJ, I called as if I lost the pot I would still have an average sized stack. I won a flip and Gary goes out on the bubble
Then three way we got some action going, a lot of allin and double ups, Flash and and Jags got involved in a big pot, Flash raised with Q9 and Jags called in the Big blind, Flop 8 6 T, Jags lead out and Flash moved in, Jags thought for a while and makes a great call with QJ high, unfortunately greats calls do not always get paid off and with a J on the river Flash doubles up. Jagger then moved in with AK and Flash calls with KT and I call with AQ, no pairs for anyone
and Jags triples up!!

I am in the chip lead with taking a few uncontested pots, Jagger moves in with Q9 Flash then shoves with A9 and I look down and see AK, and make the call. The Q hits and Jags triples up again, I take the side pot and knock Flash out.

It was me and jags heads up, I did not expect this to last long, jagger is very aggressive and it was 4am. 1st hand in a pick up 99s and raise, jagger moves in and I call, I don’t like to flip but he does the same with lower pairs and A rag, but he has QJ and we are off to the races, I win another flip, take £275 and take down DSOP main event!!!
Its been a great three years at DSOP and its sad that it is coming to the end. I definitely feel that playing with great players and with a great structure has really improved my game, we are not always playing with a lot of money but it is always interesting playing with the same group of people where you can discuss the hands later and really improve, would like to thank everyone that has played DSOP in the last three years and I hope I can host some more
fantastic games in the future!!!!
Dave Lu ‘Having run PokerSoc during the baby years of DSOP, it’s been pretty awesome to see the growing popularity of DSOP. Each week there are at least a handful of people on the waiting list, complimenting the PokerSoc schedule by offering higher buy-ins and more challenging fields. I personally loved the slow and consistent structure of the tournaments. This provided great practice for structures more commonly seen in major buy-in tournaments. No doubt many former DSOP attendees will find this useful in the future. Long-live DSOP!!!!'

Thomas Grundy 'I'd just like to say thanks to Doshi for running DSOP for the last three years.I think that DSOP offered something a little different to poker soc, with thehigher buy-ins and smaller fields. I always looked forward to playing thesedeeper events, and think that the standard of play has not only helped improvemy game, but has also prepared me for some of the bigger live tournaments.Winning DSOP for the last two years is an achievement I am very proud of,and I can honestly say that I will miss playing the events next year.'

DSOP 2005
1) Dhruv Doshi - 1040
2) Alex Lukin - 870
3) Guv Singh - 853
DSOP 2006
1) Tom Grundy - 1485
2) Dhruv Doshi - 1257
30 Jamie Brown - 1211
DSOP 2007
1) Tom Grundy - 2456
2) Dhruv Doshi - 2315
3) Mitesh Desai - 1766

Saturday, June 23, 2007

2nd to Last DSOP!!

DSOP Event # 8

The second to last DSOP was a £15 double chance tournament with 4k plus 4k starting chips, we had 9 runners and the game was nicely hosted by Dave Lu in his garage with the Warwick poker table! We looked like real gamblers! Playing poker in a garage at 1.30pm!

I started off really well picking up KKs twice and playing them very slow. I just flat call a raise, which I have been doing a lot earlier in LIVE tournaments with players I know very well. I feel confident enough to play flops with big pairs a lot better in LIVE tournaments when I know the players, I have a fairly tight image early on in tournament so re raising = easy fold for most players which I do not want. However in online tournament I tend to re raise as they always call anyway, especially when there is like 1000+ runners. I would not advise flat calling with AA and KKs early on unless you really know the players well. Played KKs when someone opened, I called and the BB called, Flop is 3 low cards and the initial raiser checks, I bet and BB calls and the initial raiser folds, the turn is an Ace, which should be a scare card but not against this BB who loves to out play people and the fact he flat called in the BB it is unlikely he had an Ace and called the flop unless he had A9 for top pair top kicker. I then slow down but I am calling bets. He fires the turn I call and we check the river he mucks as I show KKs. I then flat call with KKs later on and the flop is Ace high, it was a 3 way pot and I quickly muck when the Ace hits and there was a bet, later he showed his AT. So this does not always work!!

Last hand of the rebuy period, I open with AK and get called, the Will re raises who is a ROCK, it gets back to me and I immediately move all in! Caller (who thinks he is a baler, JD) folds (who flops a straight flush) (SHAME!!) Will goes into the tank, and at this point I think he has AK, which is why I moved in, trying to win the pot or get him off JJ here. He thinks and I am a tight player and in the last hand of the double chance he might not want to gamble here, he eventually calls with QQs. We are off to the races!!! No A or K and Will doubles up!!! I am left with basically no chips and take my top up!

I then picked up AAs and JD opened up, Flash then moved in and I called! This was especially sweet because DSOP also assigns points for every tournament to crown the Tinoyta Player of the Year. I won it in 2005, Flash won it in 2006 and 2007 was the last one and the decider. With two tournaments left Flash was 1st by a long way and I was 2nd, with 25 people on the leader board it is nice to be 2nd but I want 1st!! My AAs held up against Flashes 99s and he was out leaving him with 60 points, with 1st place getting 270 points I needed a win, to have a chance to catch up with him as he was 500 points ahead of me before this tournament.

Few players get knocked out and I stayed pretty clear of it all, just playing my hands as I did not see too many opportunities to exploit with air. The tournament got 3 handed pretty quickly with Dave and Will left in with me. The chips were evenly with Dave and Will with me in 3rd, I then call Wills raise with KT and the flop is K K T, he bets out and I shove! I have the nuts why am I shoving! Hmmmmmm well if I flat call I think it shouts out I have a K, by shoving it may look like I am drawing or have the T and trying to protect it and I am sure he has enough chips to make a hero call with a Draw or with JJs or AT, he calls and has K7, which is a pretty sick flop and a cooler for him. I double up and then get aggressive, started moving in a bit on Will as he has the shorter stack. I then call his raise with KQ, flop is K high and I check to him, I then give a little talk saying I am playing crazy, he bets out and I instant shove! He folds and seems a bit annoyed, the next hand I raise on the button with A7, Dave folds and Will moves in. Hmmmmmmmmm He is a rock!! However I feel he is on semi tilt, I do not have the odds to call if he has a higher Ace so odds was not a factor, I need to find out whether I had the best hand or not, I thought he was tilting after the last hand, so I called, he flips KJ and my A7 holds!!

So now I am Heads up with Dave Lu with about a 2:1 chip leader, I played the big stack and position very well and Dave could not do much. He then opens and I put him in with 22s he calls with KcQc and I win the race and take down DSOP and 270 points!!!!

Will post about the end of year final DSOP of all time in the next few days! hopefully before i leave for vegas!!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Oxford Cup and Poker Soc

The Oxford cup is run every year for the last six years I think and this was my last inter student poker tournament and was focused on 1st prize which was also a seat into the GUKPT London which is valued at £1,050 added by the sponsors of the Oxford cup this year. The format was a £20 rebuy and I drew my seat next to Tommo, which meant the £20 rebuy format could get expensive but on our table there were 5 dead stacks and 5 players. The tournament kicked off at around 11am and by 11.20am Tommo and I had been sworn at by the other players, one a young lady. Great stuff!! According to them string bets were allowed and swearing is the way to make a valid argument!!

The table broke quickly as there were only 5 of us and we all moved around, I found myself on Tom’s table (Flash), this would certainly get interesting apart from the fact I am his luck box! He does awesome whenever I am near by!! It helps that he is awesome at poker as well though! So anyway the rebuy period was going very slow so I stuck to my usual plan of doing the opposite of what the table does in the rebuy period, so I started raising every pot as everyone was sooooo passive. A strange point to mention is that there were a lot of beginners at the tournament who had never played live poker or had very limited experience as the way they moved their chips, sat in their seats and dealt the cards gave a lot of signs of how limited the experience was, which is surprising for a £20 rebuy which is relative quite expensive for people starting out to play poker especially students!!!

Currently writing this blog entry while playing the $50 rebuy on rivercard and the $100 freeze out, tired of playing cash today so thought I’d try the tournaments out on rivercard, especially as I lost my sats money on poker stars!! In the $50 rebuy there are 87 left from the 182 that started I am 15th in chips and in the $100 freeze 70 started and there are 59 left with me 42nd in chips! Will update the progress if i'm still in as I write this entry, so I guess this blog will turn into a love report as well!!
In the rebuy period at Oxford I helped create a 5 way Allin that was announced on the microphone! I was holding 34 against 57, 57, 99 and AJ. AJ scooped the pot and we got some rebuys are my table! I then doubled up later on with AK vs xx and then tripled up with A9 vs AQ vs KJ, lucky me!!! Flash also got a huge stack in a 5 way all in with KJ and flopped a flush!! The break came very quickly as the rebuy period was only 60 minutes long and with self dealt tables are slow players not many hands were dealt, about 140 odd runners turn up to play with about 130 odd surviving the 1st hour

I then picked up a few uncontested pots in the freeze out and took a few blinds before I went card dead and dead dead as I played no hands!! There was nothing I could really do, every time I had junk or people were beating me into the pot! Then I became short stacked as blinds went up. I had a tough player on my right, and when it was SB vs BB he would just shove against me, I kept looking down at 6-2 and kept losing my blinds!

UPDATE $50 Rebuy : Just won a nice pot with 56 as I missed my straight on the river and bluffed the guy off! Phhhhhewwwwwwwwww!

So the Oxford Cup tournament was pretty much dying for me. I then got moved to the final three tables. I survived by stealing blinds once every 2 rounds, which were the only spots I could really find, which meant my stack was decreasing a fair bit. We are playing 8 handed and UTG goes all in , I have AJ in the SB and decided with only 5 BB to call after thinking a while, the BB Simon Trumper also calls off his 4BB with 7-5 off, don’t know why to be honest. UTG had KKs and I go busto in 33rd or something like that! On the good side Guv and Flash made final with Guv coming in 5th and Flash coming FIRST!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Winning the seating and chopping the cash for a nice £2,200!!! Well Done Flash!!! I did not see much action but he was average for most of the comp and then excelled with 3 tables to go, he lost a big pot on final with JJ vs T4!! But came back strong, he even knocked Guv out who shoved with 99s and Flash woke up with QQs in the SB. So a big congrats to my boys!! Who represented Warwick well!!!!

UPDATE: $50 rebuy, odds call with A4 lost me some chips
$100 freeze 25th with 50 left

As I busted out I went and played a 25p/50p cash game which was short handed and had about £1,000 in the pot between 6 people, I bought in for £100 and played like a rock in the dealer choice game, it was a round of each with some good student poker players. It was a bit of a sad sight when I left the game thinking that was probably the last time I will play with these random student poker players that I see at every student poker competition across the UK, I wont go into hand detail but we played Omaha hi –lo, holdem, Omaha hi, Irish and 2-7 triple draw, where I pulled off the check call draw check call draw check raise stand pat bet with a pair!! Bascially some guy stood pat (no changes in 2 rounds) then I checked raised him with air and he called and then took another card! He paired up and could not call my river bet. I ended up about £145, which covered my tournament cost with a bit more cash in my pocket! Definitely helping me recover from my $2,000 downswing on rivercard on Friday!!

Poker Soc

£5 rebuy + Add on Comp at poker soc! Draw a tough table to start off with, Flash hot off the Oxford cup win, mongy and JD, I play QQs very slow early on a loses a lot of my stack and fold on the river on a T high board when flash pushed the river which smelt like a set although later he said he had the straight. I then started pushing all in as my chips were getting shorter and shorter. I then got a double up when I pushed with 55s and QT called me. But I was still short. I got very lucky against Flash as I shove with 4-6 suited UTG and he calls with 77s, I hit two pair!!! Then I lost a big flip when the button pushed and I was in the BB with 55s, this I always think is a tough spot. Blinds are 400-800 and the button pushes for 7k total, I have 15k behind, if I lose I still have 10BB and if I win I can play some poker. Now lets look at the button range, any pair, so I am crushed most of the time and any two high cards so a flip, and any Ace, which is a flip apart from A2 A3 A4 and A5. So against the range I am flipping most of the time and the way I see it if I am flipping I might as well be the 53% than the 47%, I decided to call with 3 tables to go thinking I need the chips and this could be a good spot, he shows KT and a King on the flop puts me to 8k. I stay in with two tables left then I find a great spot. Early position raises to 3k, MP is Allin for 3.2k, MP calls, I look and see KK in the SB and shove for 6k total, EP calls and Mp dwells and calls! Ok I cannot be in good shape with KKs here!! The flop is all middling cards and the dry side pot ends up with 2 Allin by the turn. I am up against 99s KQ and AT, on the T high flop!! So I am looking good also there are 3 clubs on board I have Kc and no one has a higher club! The river is a club and I scoop!!!!! Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay!!

UPDATE: $50 rebuy Busto!! I raise with AK, and bigger stack shoves, he shoved on me earlier when I raised with A7 and he just won a big pot with AA, so I figured he was quite confident to move on me, I call and he shows AA again!! The pot was 30k, which put him 1st in chips! I went Busto in 50th! Top 20 pay oh well!! A very big pot, I like to fold there most of the time but I felt he was just getting busy but turns out he just picked up a few nice hands in a row! Fair play to him, I hate calling my stack off with AK but if I win that pot I have a great shot for 1st place and $5,000 but instead I went broke!!
$100 Freeze fell below average as I was checked raised all in on a Ace high flop when I was holding KJ, but still got over 30BB so not to worry.

So back to the poker tournament at poker soc, blinds were getting high and with two table left I aimed to steal once a round to get me to final and get some points on the player of the year leader board, Flash was still in as well, infact me and him were next to each other for the whole tournament. We both get to final, he had a lot of chips and I was quite average. Then blinds were huge and it was allin or fold time! It quickly got 3 handed and Flash got knocked out and I was Heads up playing for £200 which is pretty nice for a poker soc tournament, I win a few 60/40 and take down another poker soc tournament this year! Which feels really good and takes me that step closer to player of the year!!!

Still in the $100 Freeze 41 left 22nd on chips

Rivercard Roll : $2,000 Live Roll : $2,010

Monday, June 11, 2007

72 Hours and 10 Hours of Sleep!

Wow the Downswing really hit on Friday! I woke up and played some $2/$4 Heads up that went really bad, this one guy just had me in a choke hold, no matter what I did or how the cards fell I just could not get going, this is where I definitely lack discipline, I really need to learn to just walk away from games like that especially heads up games. I lost a $1,100 pot with AK on a A J 9 K board, money in on the turn he held QT, and had QQs and AAs cracked by 24 and 95, but hey that’s poker!!!! I really should have realised when to stop and or to take a break but I kept playing and kept looking at my poker balance decreasing and decreasing!!! I ended up losing $2000 in one day!!! Which made me feel just sick!!!!!!!!

On the bright side I have reached the million points on rivercard!!! Which means they will pay out a $1,000 although speaking to them recently they mentioned they may buy me in the $1,500 anyway as I think I will get enough points for maybe $1,300 and just pay them back in time in terms of points, which is very nice of them!!!

After realising I need to stop playing online I watched more episodes of heroes!! I saw the whole season in about 4 days! Pretty impressive I think! Or just sad! The thing I love about the show is that it seems so mystical and different almost spooky, which gives it an edge on the rather series at the moment!! Definitely a must watch!!!

I head down to London on Friday night to pick up my passport, planning to go Spain with uni lot before Vegas so driving back to London seemed ideal with the Oxford cup on Sunday. I drove straight to Gutshot and sat down at the £50 No Limit game, 1st time I have played no limit there but the £50 pot limit games were two tables full!! There is no max buyin and people were in for £50 , £100, £200 and I was in for £250 although someone else was in for £1,000. It was a soft soft table the pot limit vs no limit game did not make much of a difference to me as I never bet pot (except pre) but this definitely allows the weaker players to make larger mistakes. Not too many interesting hands to be honest I played pretty simple poker and got paid off when I had a hand, I tried bluffing early on but that really did not work but helped to build me a loosish image, which is fine by me. I struggle between £250 and £200 but once I got over the £250 mark I never looked back. I won a nice pot with 33s, I limp with a few others and the BB makes it £7 to go, 4 callers. Flop is 4 4 6, a good flop for me assuming no over pairs. The initial raisers checks and it checks to me, I bet out £30 and everyone folds the initial raisers then goes in for another £15 more, I call! Not happy but not folding to a small raise and I don’t want people on the table thinking I will fold to a small raise later on in the game. The turn is a 3 and the river is an Ace. I show my house! And he is upset and a bit angry saying how unlucky he is, but the truth is he had Ace high when the money went in, he was drawing dead on the turn and hit his pair on the river!!! But people love to complain!!!
I won a few nice pots with 78’s the same seemed to work for me and I managed to get maximum value out of people! In live poker certain people just do not want to be bluffed especially by a young looking Asian guy.

A topic I would like to introduce is ‘Friends at a Poker Table’, yes yes there are no friends at a poker tables, and in tournaments I totally agree!!! But in Cash games especially Live and in a non home game environment I do not like to sit on the same table as a friend of mine, so I avoid it but what happens when the guy next to you becomes your best friend after talking to him for four hours, which is just delaying the big pot you two are meant to play! If you play a lot of live cash you end up talking to people well I do! I know some people stay VERY quiet but its just boring after a while, also by talking to people you can gain soooooo much information. But there comes a point where this can cost you. For example there is this very very aggressive player who does not fold draws full stop, he loves them and willing to get his money in but he also been talking to me all day! He has won huge pots by getting lucky and paid off a lot of people, I raise with QdTd and he calls, flop is Jd 8c 9d!!! Bingo!! Bango!!!! Bongo!!! Oh btw this was a while ago at gutshot and I was stuck about £400 and waiting for a hand like this to get my money back against the perfect player! I bet out and he calls! The turn is a brick I bet again and he folds his lower flush draw!!! HUHHHHHHHH!!!! He is NOT supposed to do that! The dealer the rabbit hunts for some reason and the flush hits, he then says look I hit a flush I saved you money cause I like you!!! I go on mad tilt in my head, thinking I have you beat!!!!

So where do you draw the line? (in cash) I like to be the nice guy at the poker table because I am a nice guy and I respect the rules and the game. Therefore I tend to make friends which allows me to bluff more and get away with pots, I think the key here is do not be too friendly with pay off wizards!!!

I then went home and watched more Heroes with about £505 in my back pocket, so I made back some cash I lost playing online! But still down for the day!!!

I woke up the next day eagerly waiting to watch more heroes!! I’m starting to wish I had a super power!! If I did have one it would not be anything to do with poker!!! That’s just cheating!!!!

Then went out to see Oceans 13’s ---- Really bad films!! Do not watch it!!! No twists no turns nothing special just a bunch of technical jargon in my opinion. Then went to go eat at Nandos with my brother Veer, my cousin Amar and my mate Niraj, they liked the film but I did not!! I then watched Pirates of the Caribbean, the 1st one! I know I am a bit slow but planning to see the 3rd one so got to see the other two soon! Well other one now! Dam I bet all those people who work are thinking! This student is really having a good time!! Well dam straight!! Life has to be enjoyed before all the responsibilities kick in when work starts!! You are only young once!!!

I stay up till about 6am finishing off the series of heroes, get one-hour sleep and woke up to drive to Oxford for the 9am registration!! This blog entry is getting a bit long like all my other! So will blog about the Oxford cup in a couple of days! As well as more online and live poker experiences!!!

Rivercard : $1,500 Poker Stars : BUSTO!!! Live: $1,650

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Star City , Poker Soc, Rivercard and Poker Stars

So I last blogged mentioning I was going to star City played the early tournament at 4.30pm a £20 rebuy, I played very tight as I normally do in the 1st level, watching who actually can play poker, who you should bluff, who you should not bluff and who is willing to rebuy.

In the 1st 45 minutes I did not play one hand! I know that sounds like an exaggeration but seriously it is not, I checked my BB and limp in SB but never got to a turn. I finally played my 1st hand a minute into the 2nd level with TTs, I limped in early, someone raised with 3 callers and I shoved. Somehow it helped up!! Then I saw there hands was up against Q9 A7 and Q9 so I guess it was not that hard to believe. I then played a few pots and started moving in a bit, hey it’s a rebuy after all!!! But I could not win a hand! I ended up in for £160!!! I shoved blind twice getting called by JJ and AQ was not goooood!

So I start the freeze out with 10xBB the minimum chips possible! Oh well!! The guy next to me says, ‘oh looks like you not going to be here for long!’ which I did not appreciate, although 10 hands in i doubled up off him when he limped on the button with JT and I shoved with A8, he calls! And I win! Then I looked at his stack and laughed at him :-) (I know that is bad but I really didn’t like this guy)

I get my stack up but still in the 15-20BB bracket where the only move in a place like that with the blind structure is allin allin allin!!! Someone opens up, I see AJ and I shove! This is not a move I will always do but it felt right and I feel I am ahead of his range or flipping which I don’t mind at that stage of the tournament. The short stack in the blinds finds QQs and calls, the opener thinks for a while and says I cannot fold this hand! Thinking it something like 88s or 99s, but he calls and shows JT!!!! The flop came J T x and he scooped the pot! He then tells me as I get up, JT is statistically the best drawing hand agasint any other hand, I said not against AJ, he says YES IT is!!! I left and smiled! Guv went on to make final and cashing £144 in 7th place

I played cash and just played a lot of pots, I was in for £160 and could not hit a hand, I eventually went on a little rush, and when you hit on that table you got paid!!! I lost a £100 pot with AA vs J8 allin on the flop of J 5 5 board which was annoying (Jack on the river) but somehow I was £80 up!!!

At poker soc played a shootout out style tournament £10 freeze out, I drew a tough table with Flash Dave Jambon and with only 2 going through it was not going to be easy. I played tight and was really focused on going through but going through with chips was important! (Shootout is basically the top 2 from every table go through to the next round and take their chips forward to the final table) But with only 8 getting paid and given points you need chips!

I play a sick pot with Dave in the 4th or 5th level. I’m on the button with K2 and limp. Dave is in the SB and Flash in the BB, Dave calls and Flash checks and we see a flop. Flop is Q 8 5, they check to me and I bet half pot (to look weak), I know that one of them are going to make a play at me. Tom even gives me a cheeky look when I bet half pot. Dave then raises and Tom folds, I call with air. Dave bets the turn and instant shove and Dave mucks quickly! Shiiiiiip Ittttttt!!! Apart from that move I played really solid poker, although I actually flipped a coin to decide whether to call Dave’s allin with K high! He called Heads and it landed on Tails which meant I had to fold!

We get three handed and the structure is awesome me flash and a wild guy are still in, he opens shove on the button with like 30 BBs, I look down and see 99s, hmmmmm I think this is a really tough spot, I know that I can play small ball and steal blinds very well and take chips instead of getting all in with 99s. I lay it down! Although I don’t think a lot of top players do but I felt I could go through with more chips with a lot less risk even though 99s is a huge hand 3 handed. The exact same thing happens again a level after where Flash had a lot of chips and me and the aggressive guy had a bit less, he shoves but this time I see JJs and call, he has A4, flop is Ace high and Im down to virtually nothing. Few hands later flash gets all his chips with QQs on a 9 7 3 board where the guy had A7. Moved to final with no chips but 3BB!!! Did someone say Drupoker????????

Somehow I get lucky I shove with no callers, then I shove with 7s8s, Kader raises with TTs and Flash moves in with AK, which I felt was unnecessary. Kader clearly commiteed himself with his re raise and Flash had no fold equity and they both had huge stacks, without fold equity in that spot with AK I don’t think it’s a great move because most of the time you are beat and at best splitting, only a few times Kader has AQ there imo, plus Flash had a lot of chips to dominate the table rather than gambling there, I hit a flush, Kader hits a set and Flash loses a big pot! I then shove a few more times with no calls and then got 4 handed, Button opens I see an Ace and shoved he calls with 44s, I have A3 and go home! Good Game! I got lucky to get that far, so got nothing to complain about!!

Rivercard been going really well although a couple of bad hands hurt but that’s poker! Playing a lot of poker atm so cant complain about all the bad beats because if I do see over 100 times and if my KK loses to TT it should do Twenty times!!

Poker stars on the other hand is just sick!!! I keep coming 2nd for the $650 seat! Played a $50 freeze at DSOP last night after I went busto on the big screen, I limp with QQs about 3 hands in, BB makes it 300 to go and I shove for 3k he insta calls with K2 and flop is K 2 x, oh well!!!! That’s just sooooooo standard atm, need to take a break from stars I think! Lost in a Double shoot out for the $650 seat with 4 to go with JJ vs 44 on a 44J board!!! Just sickness constantly!!!!

Rivercard : $3,600 Poker Stars : $270 Live : $940

Sunday, June 03, 2007

1st few days of roll building!

So I played for quite a while yesterday, 1st notable hand I played was pocket ducks. I call on the button and the SB raises. BB calls and so do I. Flop is K Q 2 Bingo Bango Bongo!!! SB checks and BB bets out $20 (this is on $1/$2) I call, SB raises to $40, hmmmmm do not really like that but I don’t think I can get away. BB calls and I make it $70 ish to play. SB calls, pretty sure he has AK there and the BB folds. The SB then shoves on the turn! I instant call with my set and he flips over QQs, the BB claimed he had AK!! Oh well good start!!!! I managed to get my buyin back and the table broke, then played some $2/$4 and was doing well raising and c/bet a lot of flops.

I went through this time where people kept raising me on flops after my c/bet and of course I have air like always, so I decided to slow down a bit and really think about what kind of flops could c/bet with and what I shouldn’t. Read some thread on pocket fives where someone was having the exact same problem, he mentioned that so many players are raising flops with air and just trying to take pots away as they always put you on AK if you pop it pre, which is definitely not the case with me!!

I have also started playing AAs a lot differently; this is definitely the hand that you make a lot of money with on cash and in tournaments. I basically been playing it very slow, just limping and trying to get the pot heads up but if I limp and four go to the flop I will definitely be able to let it go. But most of the time I get it heads up and try and really go for the big pots even if that means checking the flop and the turn and giving them a chance to catch up. So far the plan has worked making a lot of money with AAs, although lost a $900 pot yday with AA against 44 after I limped re raise from UTG flop was 4 7 9 all spades and I was holding the As, we get the money in the turn was a spade! But the river paired the board!! Yuk! But AAs still my favourite hand!!!

Another interesting hand at $2/$4 was UTG opens I call with Akoff and the button re raises to $55. UTG calls and I call. Obviously could play the hand differently but I was in the mood to see a flop, also had position on the UTG raiser although it had now been taken away. In terms of reads I guessed the re raiser had AK JJ QQ KK AA, had not seen him get out of line at all. Flop K J x, ok good flop for hitting top pair but since I played the hand slow pre I like to stick to that line of thought and play pretty snug in this spot. UTG checks I follow and the button bets out $110, UTG calls and I call. The turn is a brick we checked to the button who now checks, ok pretty sure he has QQs here. But I have know idea what UTG I doing! The river was another brick and UTG checks, now I should be valuing betting here to try and get QQs to pay me off but the pot was pretty big and I was still a little bit worried about UTG, also I give the button a chance to bluff at the pot. Also if he has AAs here which is possible I think he checks behind and I get away from another bet. He could easily be controlling the size of the pot with the bullets here and be happy with the $500 in the middle. He then checks behind and shows QQs my AK is good and maybe missed a bet there but oh well, UTG had T9, just a gutshot hoping to get lucky!!

Controlling pots is something I have stopped doing on the turn, this is more of a Barry Greenstein play. If people are check calling and calling they are probably on a draw or on too sure about their hand, I am more than happy to check the river in position but checking turns with Top pair hoping to control the pot is something I used to do, which I feel is really weak, especially as you give them a chance to bluff you on the river if they miss a draw and you can only beat a bluff. You basically give yourself a tough decision, which I don’t like to do in poker. So for example, I have KJ and raised and get one caller, flop is J 9 3 with two hearts, he check I bet, he calls, now I will always bet out on the turn and not control the pot even if a Q/T/8 or a heart peels off. Then on the river he is more likely to check to me as I have fired 2 shells, I will check behind if I feel I am beat. (but depends on the board.) If I am out of position I will fire the river and fold to a raise, basically put a blocker bet out to avoid calling a larger bet or folding the best hand. If I get raised and depending on the player I say well done fold and move on. A lot of the times yday I was betting the whole way ahead even when I just had T high, they catch up on the river and I checked behind them, meaning I got all the money in the pot ahead and nothing when I was behind which is pretty much all you can do! Ship those Slanksy bucks!!!

Currently about $650 up on Rivercard! And some more action points for my $1500 seat!

Poker Stars!! Hates me!! And I hate them!!! Played a few 1000 runner comps and keep getting deep like in the top 2-5% but cant seem to do better, this really sucks as you play for 5 hours and get about 4x your money back, considering these are $8, $10 rebuys its not a great amount especially when 1st gets around $5-$7k!!

Just played a few sats just now for the million and WSOP qualify as well as a $10 rebuy, lost with A8 vs T3 all in pre, QQ vs AK vs A7 all in pre, KKs vs AJ all in pre and some other crap along the way!!! Was pretty sick considering it happened in the space of ten minutes with my housemate wondering what is going on! As I am not doing great online Guv has suggested going to StarCity in Birmingham to play the £20 rebuy at 4.30pm and the £20 at 9pm, if we want, so I decided to go as my luck online ain't great at the moment! Playing some $2/$4 now which is going ok SO FAR!!!

Rivercard : $2,600
Poker Stars : $450
Live : $1000