Sunday, July 11, 2010

I used to love the "ladies"!!!!!!!!!!

Well, ladies and me usually get on pretty well, but even though Ive only encountered them a few times this weekend, I'm sick of them already! Of course I'm not really talking about ladies in the flesh, but i am referring to being dealt QQ. I've had them twice here at the ISOP in Waterford, and they have cost me quite a lot of chips.

This tournament has a sick structure (good I mean), but it started on friday evening at 4pm with only 70 runners. It really deserved much more than that, but i guess with the economy in the state its in, and a lot of the serious players in vegas for the World series, low numbers was understandable. Theres also a bit of political unrest down this side of the country between the different poker fractions, so i guess that didnt help either. But the game deserved a much bigger crowd, because you'll have to go a long way to find a better structure than this.

I came up to Waterford the night before the event, decided to play in the Sattellite and managed to luckbox my way to a ticket for the ME. A lot of the players in the satellite didnt realise the difference between playing a sat and a tourney, and I used this to my advantage on many occasions during the night. It was an enjoyable game with a great "craic" athmosphere. With 12 players left and 10 tickets the prizes, I was 12th in chips. We then lost a player and we were on the bubble, and I went from bottom stack to CL and only having to show 1 hand! Played all night on the same table as Vera duffy, and she showed her class by playing great poker.

On to the ME. 20,000 chips, 1 hour clock on day 1, 75 minute clock on day 2 and a 90 minute clock on day 3 for those lucky enough to make it there. The minds a bit of a blank right now, but i'll run through a few of the most important hands.

day 1--sitting on approx 26k at the 100-200 blind level. A serial limper limps, I limp behind with 77, and larry ryan(playing 50k) (of EPT fame) makes it 750 otb. Limper calls, and i call.
Flop comes Qc-7c-3h. all check to the raiser, and he bets 1700. Limper folds. I dwell for a minute. i know larry has a hand here, either AQ or an overpair at a guess. His bet size tells me that from what i know of his play. I reckon if I jsut call and a club comes, it will slow him down a lot, so i reraise larry to 4,500 hoping he might think Im playing a flush draw aggressively. It worked anyway, because he insta shipped all-in and I snapped. he had AA, and i made quads on the turn to take away any bit of a sweat I had!

Finished day 1 on 58k.
Day 2--Still on the same table. Good player(MD) 2 to my left that is a boardie and well known to me. Blinds 300-600, I make it 1650 to go from mp with QQ. MD raises me to 5,200. Folded back to me. I think for a minute. Now MD knows me well, he's well aware of my image that I have cultavated at the table, so i reckon theres a chance he could be reraiseing me light enough here, but I figure AK to be his most likely holding. I 4 bet reraise him to 13,750. he asks me for a count, I still have 45k behind. He tanks and goes all-in for 32k more. Im sick in my stomach now, cause I know Im behind here to MD 100% of the time. I take my time but do the manly thing and fold. He shows KK. Everyone says "great fold", but its not really. Its pretty standard in my eyes.

Later day 2--I grind and grind and just love this table i'm on. Pick my spots carefully, and get up to 80k over the next few hours, and I dont remember losing a hand at showdown, not that I got to many showdowns anyway. Then my table got broke, and that was a big dissapointment.
On to my new table, and nothing really happened for me here. Had about 80k going to the table, and after about 5 or 6 hours playing there, still had 80k. So blinds are 800-1600, and a good dublin player(playing 120k) raises mp to 5,200. Im next to act, and I have 2 red queens, and Im playing about 75k. I make it 15k to go. Folded around to him, and after a 2 minute dwell-up, he flats me. Hmmmmmmmm! Flop comes 4x-4x-3x. He checks, I bet 22k, he insta ships all-in. WOW!!! Im in a world of pain here. I have nearly half my stack in the pot, and normally, its an instant call. But theres a few things that have to be weighed up, and these are the decisions that count in this kinda tourney. So what went through my mind in the few minutes i dwelt up that seemed like a few hours?
1-This is a good player. Ive been chatting away to him over the last 5 hours, and I know he loves the structure of this tourney like i do. He has told me a couple of times how he doesnt like to play too many big pots in this type of game, because theres plenty places and time to pick up chips. And I agree with him.
2- He should be aware that my range here is minimum JJ. Really, I can only have 1 of the 4 big hands. Ive half my stack in the middle, so there no way he can think he can bluff me off the pot, so i can rule a bluff out of the equation.
3-If I rule a bluff out, I now know he just has to have Kk or AA. He could do that with QQ, but aS i have that hand, he cant have it. He never does it with JJ, so he has to have KK or AA.
4-The structure. Blinds are 800-1500, I still have 35k or 24 bb's, blind levels are 75minutes long. Its a lot less than what Ive had all day, but its definately enough to play with and try to get back into the tourney.
So I fold. I tell kieth what im folding, and he's kind enough to show his KK. Even though its the right fold, I still have a pain in my gut for the next hour!!

I just grind away for the next 2 hours, and i finished the day on 44k. Blinds are 1000-2000 for another 15 minutes, and then 1200-2500 for 90 minute blinds for the rest of the day. 14 players left, and 9 for the money. Heres hoping for a run of cards today. I just have to win the first serious pot I play. 1 time and all that!!!

Monday, July 05, 2010

Busy month ahead!!

Havent been blogging for a while cause Ive been quite busy with a lot of things happening in June, and not a lot of time for poker.(unfortunately). Ive been doing alright on line without shooting the lights out, but Ive made myself a promise to play much more in July, and thats a promise I intend keeping.

Had great fun last week with the Lakes of Killarney festival of golf. This was a 2 person team 3 day event (details can be found on played over the 3 sister courses at the Killarney golf club complex, Mahony's point, Lackabane and the Irish Open course, Killeen. With 3 days of glorious sunshine, the 3 courses looked fantastic and all competitors had a fantastic time. Money was also raised for the Carers association through the event, so kudos to my brother Tim who spearheaded the project. Over 60 teams competed from all over ireland,with some from the UK and Germany, and no doubt, it will be a definate sell out next year is the response of this years competitors means anything.

Back to poker,and 3 decent live events to be played this month, 2 of them in Waterford, and finishing with the EMOP in Sunny Beach in Bulgaria.
The 2 Waterford games are similar in buy-in (€500), they are both 3 day events with excellent structures. The 1st one is on next weekend in the Tower Hotel, run by Big Slick events. With the numbers playing these mtt festival games dropping around the country due to the economy, the organisers are unsure of the expected numbers, but I expect something between 120 and 150. (thats well down on their previous expectations, but coming on the back of the WSOP, I thiunk my estimate is close enough).
The 2nd event is on in Tramore on the last weekend of the month, run by Waterford poker club and Pronutz. Another excellent strucure here, and im hoping to go a few steps further than last year when I exited around the bubble time even though I had a healthy stack. I flopped a set of 8's against jay renehans flopped flush, and no help on the turn or river saw me going out and Jay went on to win it.I expect close to 200 runners at this one.

The final event of the month for me is the next leg of the EMOP in Bulgaria. A good friend of mine qualified online last night on, (sandro taddei), so the craic should be good out there. (the craic is always good at them anyway). If your reading this and you fancy a trip to Bulgaria, pop on to and you could get yourself a package for as little as €2. The casino in Bulgaria is in Sunny beach, a tourist destination, although with a bit of luck, I wont get to see much of the beach as I want to run deep in one of these EMOP's.

On other topics, went to the Kerry-Limerick munster final yesterday, and i was very impressed with the Limerick performance. I think they will take a bit of beating in the back door tournament to qualify for the latter stages of the All Ireland championships, and a few quid could be made on them.

On the sports betting front, I was extremely sick after the US open golf championship. I met my brother Tim for breakfast on the Thursday morning it was starting, and he told me he had just backed Ernie Els for ther US Open. I told him I was going down to Ladbrokes to back Graham McDowell at 60/1. He said I should go up town to PP as he saw McDowell at 80/1. So off I went and could only see 60/1 everywhere. So I said Id wait until I met Tim again that evening to find out where the odds were. And you know what happened next. Never got to see Tim again that day, never got to put my bet on, never saw any price again like 60/1 after day 1, and never felt so sick over a missed bet as I was on the sunday night. Delighted for McDowell of course, just sick at my stupidity.
On the plus side, I had the Gooch backed at 11/2 for the 1st goal yesterday, and then invested a decent chunk of the winnings on Ryan Moore @ 13/2 without justin Rose in the US golf, so feeling a bit better this weekend.

before I finish, I must congratulate sean Prendaville on his tremendous showing so far at the WSOP. Before he went over, he won two big MTT live tournaments here in Ireland, the CPT grand final, and the JP masters back to back. Then he hit for Vegas, and within 5 days of getting off the plane, he has gone deep in two fields of over 3,000 players, finishing 15th and 24th for about $50,000. He's on a heater at the moment, and when theres a good player on a heater, its almost impossible to stop him. I just hope it lasts for him into the ME.
I didnt have the chance to go to the WSOP this year, but hopefully, I'll return there in 2011.
Finally, GL to all the Irish playing in the WSOP ME. Hope ye run like god.