Monday, June 27, 2011

Letter from Doke (27th June 2011)


Doke here again. I'm halfway through my spell in the desert for the WSOP. My day 2 of the 1k event didn't last very long: 30 minutes in to the day I ran queens into kings and aces. A disappointing end but I was happy to at least break my WSOP duck with a first cash.

Since then I played two more bracelet events, both 1500s, cashing in the latest. For the first time I not only made a day 2 but with a decent stack slightly above average) so I was hoping to kick on. It was still going to plan well after the bubble burst: with 200 left I was above average. Then I lost a big flip for half my stack. My exit hand was pretty horrible, and also quite interesting as it illustrates a very common mistake. I opened to 4700 in the hijack (playing 43k) at 1k/2k/300 ante with jacks. My aggro opponent three bet to 14500 on the button. I shoved and he tanked and eventually decided he dad to call getting over 2 to 1 with ace two off. First card out was a 2, next three were all aces! Although it worked out for him on this occasion my opponent made a pretty bad mistake. Not his call: he eventually worked out he was priced in. His mistake was three betting with a hand that's going to be less than 30% nearly every time I shove. You see this mistake a lot: an aggro player finds an ace on the button and when a tight player raises, thinks "I can raise here and take the pot if he folds". The problem with this logic is that with just over 20 big blinds, any decent tight player is not going to raise fold very often. I'm definitely folding less than 10% of the time when I raise with that stack: even if I am light with something like ace ten or pocket threes or a suited ace, I'm going to hope for the best and push my chips in. And even when I am light, I'm more than 70/30 against a2o.

So a2o is a horrible hand to 3 bet here, particularly when it commits you to call. Paul Jackson calls this “poor equity": you're priced in to call the shove (have the correct equity) but a big dog when it happens. In this spot, my opponent is committing himself to put 43k in as a 9/4 dog when he gets shoved on (about 90% of the time). The 10k he picks up the 10% of the time I fold doesn't compensate for this.

This illustrates an important principle in poker: before you put a chip into any pot you should know what you're going to do if you get played back at.

Although I've cashed in two of my five bracelet events to date, the nature of these events is the big money is up top so I'm actually down a bit on bracelet events. But all you can do is keep getting yourself into a position to run good when it really matters. I have two or three more shots at bracelet events before the main event kicks off next week.

Thanks to everyone who's been following my blog and leaving me comments there and on Facebook. Although I'm looking forward to the rest of my Vegas stay and the main event in particular, I'm also looking forward to getting home, and playing EMOP Dublin in Clontarf Castle. I gather satellites are now in full swing so I hope to see as many of you as possible there.

If you are looking for a live venue to satellite into EMOP Dublin there is a list of clubs taking part in the EMOP Dublin live satellite tour on the Irish Eyes Poker Blog.

It’s a good deal if you qualify in the live sats or online as you get Team Irish Eyes bonuses like Last Man Standing, Bubble guarantee and entry to the Team VIP Lounge at the event.

Good luck at the tables - unless I'm at the same table :)


Keep up to date on how I'm getting on in Vegas on my blog
( and on Twitter (daraokearney).

For details on all Irish Eyes Poker promotions in June, including:

Iron Man Dublin Promotion (€20,000)
Summer Freerolls (€36,000)
Daily VIP Tournaments (€36,000)
June VIP Matrix Promotion


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

EMOP Dublin Live Satellite Tour

Irish Eyes Poker in association with Cue Club Events have arranged LIVE satellites throughout the country for EMOP Dublin.

All of these satellites come with the following player promotion:

EMOP Live Satellite Tour qualifying players receive:

Membership of Team Irish Eyes Poker including access to the Irish Eyes Poker Lounge at the event.
EMOP Bubble Guarantee (€2,000 EMOP package if going out of Main Event on bubble)
Last Team Irish Eyes Poker player in EMOP Dublin gets a seat to the next EMOP event for FREE (value €2,000)

Plus ALL players that take part in any live EMOP satellite on the tour receive entry to an exclusive online EMOP Freeroll for live EMOP club satellite entrants only, with a prize of an EMOP Dublin seat (value €1,100) FREE.

(Players: please ensure you provide your Irish Eyes Poker username to the live satellite event organisers as it will be the organiser that has responsibilty to provide us with that information).


Poker Ireland Satellites: All at 6pm, all €50 with 1 rebuy and 1 add-on
23rd June Hotel Ballina, Ballina, Co. Mayo
3rd July City North Hotel, Dublin
17th July Cork Airport International Hotel
24th July Stillorgan Park Hotel, Dublin
Contact Stephen McLean for more details.

Fitzwilliam Casino, Dublin: €100 buy-in
7th July
14th July
21st July

Ken Doherty's Snooker Academy, Terenure Cross, Dublin 01 5156092: €50 with 1 rebuy and 1 add-on
8th July 8.30pm

Cue Club, Killarney, contact Con 087 2833343 for details

Jupiter Casino, Roscommon Town. Tuesday 12th July. €100 + 50 rebuy x 1. 8,000 starting stack, 8,000 rebuy. Contact Martin 085 143 2229 for more details

The Castle Card Club, Castlebar, Co. Mayo,contact club for more details

Celtic Poker Tour, contact Liam or Fionn for more details

Atlantis Casino, Carlow. Friday 15th July. Reg 8 start 8.30pm sharp €100 + 10 freezeout.

Eddie Walsh, Kildare. Wednesday 6th July 8.30pm at the River Card Club, Newbridge. €120 F/O. 20 min clock. 20 minute clock. Contact Eddie on 087 1300618 for more details

Adelaide Casino, Sligo, contact the poker manager on 071 9150515 for more details

Cotton Club, Portlaw, Co. Waterford, contact Paddy Shorthall on 087 4155536 for more details

Real Deal Poker Room, Cootehill, Co Cavan. Thursday 21st July @ 8:30 sharp. €110 entry + €15 reg. 20k chips with a progressive clock 20/25mins. All participants Qfy for the Team Irish Eyes package. Contact Damian on 087 7855396 for more details.

The Lighthouse Casino, Athlone, contact club for more details

The Poker Lounge, Waterford, contact club for more details

The Gold Club, Letterkenny,7th July, contact Jimmy on 087 9927523

JP Poker, Molloy's Pub, Tallaght. Sunday 24th July. 4pm . Start. €50 & €10 Reg. 1 Rebuy €50. Starting Chips 5k. Rebuy Chips 7k. Contact JP on 087 6448132 for more details.

The Crystal Casino, Waterford, contact Neil Kelly on 087 2828744 for more details

The White Fort Inn, Belfast, contact Sam on 0044 787 1314771 or Jim on 0044 797 7820907 for more details.

The Fortune Rooms, 1a Valentines Road Bangor, Contact Desi on 0044 793 3239140, for the Cookstown or Barney on 0044 771 4684804.

More information on dates and buy-in's for all games will be added when confirmed by the organisers.

Any operator/club that would like to be involved in this tour please contact us on

See you in Dublin!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Letter from Doke (21st June 2011)


Doke here. I'm still in Vegas at the WSOP. Overall it's been a pretty good week for me. I played two more $1500 bracelet events and although I didn't trouble the scorers I was happy with my play. I'm putting together stacks early doors more readily in these this year: I've generally been increasing my stack early on by 100 to 400 per cent. The nature of these events that have to whittle down 3000 runners plus to a winner in three days means you need to win flips from fairly on, and that's where I've been falling down so far.

I did get a number of results in smaller non bracelet invents, including a win in the nightly turbo. While I'd prefer to get my run good in a bracelet event, you can't really choose what tournaments you're going to run well in, and it's always nice to win a tournament whatever it is.

I also played my first 1K event. Actually, played is the wrong tense as I'm still in the event, going back to play day 2 in a few hours. The bubble broke at the end of day 1 so it marks my first cash in a bracelet event. It's good to have broken that particular duck: I ran into Andy Grimasson at the break and he told me he's now played 35 or
36 events without a cash. Andy's a great tournament player: it just shows that no matter how good you are, you need luck on your side, or at least not against you.

I go back a bit below average with just over 20 big blinds hoping to kick on now I have the "never cashed at WSOP" monkey off my back.

This Vegas campaign has a very different feel to it. In the aftermath to the FBI's crackdown on Stars, Tilt and Ultimate Bet, the absence of logos has been very striking. Most of the time my Team Irish Eyes polo is the only logo at the table. The big sites have no lounges here this year, and no lavish parties. People are also approaching the poker much more seriously: less drinking and socialising, more early nights. I did score an invite to one of the few big parties here this year: Bill Chen's pool party next week. Bill wrote one of my favourite books on poker, "The Mathematics of Poker".

I also celebrated my birthday during the week with a couple of drinks with my friend Mark Dalimore and Irish poker legend Padraig Parkinson. Padraig's one of the few Irish players going well in this series, having notched up a few cashes already.

I was following updates from the Irish Eyes Northern Open. Sounds like it was a great event and well done to Stephen Sammon who came 7th and to my good friend Connie O'Sullivan for figuring in the chop. Connie's an example of a great player who just hasn't been getting the breaks lately, so it's great to see him get a decent cash. Another example is my friend and fellow Wexfordman Andrew Dwyer, also a Team Irish Eyes member, who went deep in UKIPT Newcastle. My amigo Feargal "Midnite Kowby" also finished a very creditable fourth in the side event there. Great to see so many Team Irish Eyes players doing well in the runup to EMOP Dublin and I see a good many clubs around the country are signing up to run satellites on the Irish Eyes EMOP Live Satellite tour. (

While I'm in Vegas I've been updating my blog more frequently than normal, every day or two. I've been overwhelmed by the reaction so far with so many people taking the time to tell me how much they enjoy it, which makes it all worth while. Neil Channing sent me a message earlier inviting me to meet him for a coffee in the Rio and to tell me how much he's enjoying the blog.

I'm still missing playing online and the nightly tournaments on Irish Eyes. As soon as I get home I also intend to get cracking on qualifying for EMOP Dublin.

Good luck at the tables - unless I'm at the same table :)

Keep up to date on how I'm getting on in Vegas on my blog
( and on Twitter (daraokearney).

For details on all Irish Eyes Poker promotions in June, including:

Iron Man Dublin Promotion (€20,000)
Summer Freerolls (€36,000)
Daily VIP Tournaments (€36,000)
June VIP Matrix Promotion


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Super Poker Event of Europe

Super Poker Event of Europe with €1.4 million prizepool is on in Dublin next February. Win your seat in the new online satellite series from only €2 on Irish Eyes See for more details.

Letter from Doke (13th June 2011)


Doke here. I'm in Vegas at the WSOP. I feel this to be something of an
achievement in itself as late last Tuesday I found myself in Heathrow
wondering why my Virgin Atlantic flight to Vegas wasn't appearing on
screens, only to realise that the reason was fairly simple: the flight
was from Gatwick. A couple of trains later and I was at least in the
right airport, if not quite the right terminal.

After 30 hours of travel, I was wrecked enough to pass out immediately
in my hotel room in the Gold Coast. The rest must have done me good
though as I woke up full of beans (but starving!) and ready to get my
fourth WSOP campaign on the road.

It started in the $1500 event that kicked off last Saturday. I got
through day one but was shortish with just under 12k. A few times I
was getting a stack together only to lose a big one. Day 2 didn't last
very long: I got in with AK against QT and lost not that far off the
bubble. Hopefully things will get better from here.

I'm missing online like a sick addicted man misses whatever it is he's
addicted to. Apart from my favourite nightly mtts on Irish Eyes I
talked about last week, I was also enjoying the superturbo stts. My
first year as a pro was spent grinding stts, mainly on Ipoker, Tilt
and Stars. Like many others, I eventually gave this up as not that
good a way to scratch out a living, bowing to the fact that rising
standards made them beatable by smaller and smaller margins. But I
still love a good sit n go so I decided to investigate the ones on
Irish Eyes. To my delight, I found them as soft as these things used
to be on other sites a few years ago. I did recognise a few
screennames as old regs I used to play with on Ipoker: they obviously
have found this secret corner where stts are still very profitable and
are doing their best to keep quiet about it. But keeping my mouth shut
has never been a strong point of mine, so I'm prepared to be the
whistleblower on this one. In particular, I'd suggest the superturbo 6
mans as a great way to grind up a roll quickly: they're over so fast
you can bang out a lot of them in an evening, and with rakeback they
should be very profitable for anyone who plays push/fold well.

While I'm in Vegas I'm planning to update my blog more frequently than
normal, every day or two. This will probably give the blog more of a
Dear Diary feel than normal, but hopefully it'll be of interest to at
least a few of you.

Best of luck to all the Team playing in the Irish Eyes Poker Northern Open this weekend in Dundalk. And to Team Pro Paul Lucey who coming to Vegas next week.

Good luck at the tables - unless I'm at the same table :)


Keep up to date on how I'm getting on in Vegas on my blog
( and on Twitter (daraokearney).

For details on all Irish Eyes Poker promotions in June, including:

Iron Man Dublin Promotion (€20,000)
Summer Freerolls (€36,000)
Daily VIP Tournaments (€36,000)
June VIP Matrix Promotion


Monday, June 06, 2011

Letter from Doke (6th June 2011)


Doke here. I'm heading to Vegas for the WSOP this week. Over the next
few weeks, I'll be keeping you all updated as to how I'm getting on
over there and also on Irish Eyes news.

I've settled into a fairly steady nightly routine playing mtts on
Irish Eyes. My favourite is the main €10K game that starts at 8. I've
had a lot of success in this in recent weeks and this week got my
first actual win in it, or to be more precise, 4 way chop. I don't
usually agree to chops online but the other 3 players left at that
stage were all pretty good so I reckoned it was going to come down to
flips and coolers. I also had the disadvantage of being to the
immediate left of the most aggressive player on the table. I wasn't
enjoying the fact that he was reraising me almost every time which
meant I was either going to have to wait for a hand against him, or
make a big risky move without a hand that could come a cropper if my
timing was off and he actually had a hand. The final factor was that
this was the last tournament of my evening session to finish (which
tells you how good the structure is) and Mrs. Doke was getting
impatient about dinner :)

For those of you who like faster tournaments (and I love a good turbo
myself), there are two good €10 rebuys that start at half six and
twenty five past seven that are great craic and very good value. I
also had a go at qualifying for EMOPS Dublin on Irish Eyes during the
week. I made the final table with a decent stack, but then lost two
races in quick succession (the second and fatal one to well known
Irish player Tony Baitson). So I'll have to give that another crack
when I get back from Vegas.

Live, I played the CPT grand final in Carlow. I never really got a
stack going but hung in as long as I could. I eventually busted about
a dozen or so from the bubble, but I enjoyed the weekend. Last year I
lost a flip in this event 4 handed to eventual winner Sean
Prendeville. Sean went on to claim the title and chop the money with
Jason Tompkins. As many of you may know, Jason is in bad health at the
moment and required an operation during the week. Jason's one of my
favourite people in Irish poker and I'm gutted for him that he can't
make Vegas this year but I know he'll be back.

I also ran into my Irish Eyes team mate Paul Lucey in Carlow and we
talked about our plans for Vegas.

The other highlight of the week was claiming a so called Triple Crown.
This means nothing to most people, and you get nothing for winning
one, but means a lot in terms of bragging rights for serious online
mtt players. To win one, you have to win three big tournaments on
three different sites in a 7 day period as verified by online site
Pocket Fives. Someone told me I am the first Irish player to have won
one, but I don't know if this is true.

On Sunday afternoon, I appeared on Dublin City FM's afternoon sports
show to talk about the WSOP. This was my second appearance on the show
and I look forward to making more when I get back from Vegas.

In addition to this weekly letter to Irish Eyes players, you can keep
up to date how I'm getting on in Vegas on my blog
( and on Twitter (daraokearney).

Good luck at the tables - unless I'm at the same table :)


For details on all Irish Eyes Poker promotions in June, including:

Iron Man Dublin Promotion (€20,000)
Summer Freerolls (€36,000)
Daily VIP Tournaments (€36,000)
June VIP Matrix Promotion