Saturday, 12 October 2013

$600 Poker-Shootout

Really enjoying my poker, and decided to go for a 'next level' jump, by playing with the big boys.

Silver Star casino, which only has 4 licenced Poker tables, hosted a $600 event, which had a little unusual structure.

It was based, on 10 man tables, with a starting stack of 15000 chips, blinds 25/50 to start, 30 min levels, and antes come in, after level 4.

The top 2 players, from each table, go forward to the final 20 .. or so, who will play for .. $80k roughly.

I decided to play in the Saturday Am, section, starting 11am.

The casino is an hr or so from me, but, easy enough to find, and its a refreshingly new/well laid out casino.

I walked in, just as my nemesis Alon Arguman arrvies, and as we draw for which of the 4 tables we are playing on, he draws the same table as me. I dont especially mind this, as I know his solid style (hes v good), and, hes a face I know.

It turns out, of the 10 players, I know 4 of them, v well, so, their are 5 unknowns, althogh I recall playing with 1 before.

So, basically, the structure is a Sit'n'Go, paying 2 places .. and read up, a lot, in the previous days, finding optimum ways to play.

I decide to just play, premium pairs, down to AQ, in early position, and small pairs/suited connecters, in mid-late position, with raises of 4x Big Blind, from early position, in the early rounds, 3xBB, in mid rounds, and 2.2 x BB, later than that, if I make it.

Early on, I see nothing, as(usual) and run a bluff, which costs me 3500 chips, which gets called by Alon, .. he has 4th pair, but, it serves me well, as it shows the table, I have a loose image (they think), and I am a target to go for.

In 5 hrs of play, I see pocket Kings once (A on the board, so win minimum chips), AK once, and mid pairs, maybe 3 times. Being totally card dead, I have to steal where I can, but, have a v decent read on 2 of the unknown players, who are weak, and often rob them of chips.

Being v desciplined, I folded to re-raises, but felt I had 2 chances, to really get chips.

One hand, I have 6♦ 6♠, with the blinds 100/200, and I raise to 900.

Its called by a reg, who only plays good face cards .. and the flop comes :  A♦ 7♥ 4♣  ..

I c-bet, 1450, and its called.

The turn, BINK !! is 6♣, giving me trips, and I hope the reg, has A J, A 10, or maybe better, so I can get well paid.

I bet the turn, 2000, and he raises, 3000 on top. I shove, almost immediately, and he folds, also, almost immediately  .. but, looking back, I wish I had just flat called, and let him bet the river, as, I dont think any card can help him.

About an hr later, my stack was back to about 20k, when I pick up A♥ J♥ under the gun. Blinds were, 200/400, and I raise to 1600, just called by Alon, in the Big blind, who, has a monster stack, from getting Pocket Aces twice, once, hitting quads.

Flop comes, A♣, 9♦, 7♥, and I bet 2500. He flat calls, and am little unsure where I am. He must have an Ace, but, could also have a pocket pair, including pocket 9's or 7's.

Turn comes K♣. and here, I make a key mistake, in checking. I should have bet, 3500 or so, but didnt.

River comes, a harmless looking 3♦, and I check, hoping to showdown, but, he bets 3k. I call, and he flips, A♦, 3♠, for 2 pair .. he hit a 3 outer on the river, and won a v decent pot, that should have been mine.

A wihle later, I picked up my dream hand .. I literally have dreams about 8♥,7♥ .. never oddly, with it finishing that I make a straight. Anyway .. in the Big Blind, 4 players called, so, I also flat call, and the flop comes :

9♥, 6♦, 4♣.

Not the worst, with 8 immediate winning outs, and some back-door flushes.

I bet, into a bloated pot, 2200, and its called by a weakish player, who has loads of chips, I have a read on - all others fold.

The turn comes, Q♣, a blank, and I check, and he also checks. I was really hoping for a 10, or 5, for my straight, but, an 8♦ comes ..  and I check. .. Board now 9♥, 6♦, 4♣, Q♣, 8♥

He bets 3k, and .. into a pot of about 11k, I was getting too good odds to fold, so, called, and he shows 7♣, 7♦, giving me a winning hand. The table is well impressed with my call - Just a pair 8's, but, with my read/odds, it was fairly easy.

Anyway, I boxed on, and players got knocked out, so there were 4 of us left .. top 2, going thru. 2 players, were regs I play with, (including Alon,) and an unknown. I was short stacked, 12 Big Blinds or so, but, won chips here and there, till, Alon shoves, on my big blind, when I pick up K♠, J♦.

I only have 7 BB left so call, and he flips 8♣,8♠ .. hes 55% fav, but flop comes :

3♦, K♦, 7♥ .. and I have solid 90%  lead, to finaly win against my nemesis, but, the turn is 8♠, and I have no outs.

Its a cruel end, but, suppose it played itself.

I feel I  played really well, with nothing, and am looking forward to some WSOP events, in early Nov.

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