Friday, March 31, 2006

Monthly Report

Its the end of March and its time to reflect on the month.

This month has been quite surreal, becoming a local celebrity has been fantastic! Once again big thanks to Littlewoods and I hope they got a lot out of it also.

On the playing front, I have played a lot better than my results have suggested. Too many times, the odds of gone against me.
However the records show+£1.7k for the month (6th best from 8) and an 8 month total of +£18k.

I expected this month to be lower than normal, as my main aim is qualification for the world series, so my concentration has been there.

April has the potential to start well, with the LOQ final tomorrow and the $600k on Sunday.
But it is time to stand up and be counted. The pressure to get my world series seat is considerable, especially with all the PR and expectations of my family, the wonderful Littlewoods and especially from myself.

I have been experimenting with many styles of play over the last month, so I can adapt to whatever situation I find myself in and as a result I do feel more comfortable in different situations.

My aims for April -
1) Secure World Series seat - It is important to be playing in at least one final each weekend where I can play. So that means either the LOQ on Saturday, or World Series on Sunday.
2) Top Twenty finish in the £50k - I am finding my Sunday performances quite disappointing, I believe that after I have given my all playing football on Sunday morning, I am not at my best on Sundays. I have two weeks without a game this month, so I will see whether results improve
3) Two Final Table finishes in the £15k - I have not been in the top 5 in this tournament since early Feb, and I would like to improve my performance here.
4) Post a top two month profit record - +£3k is the target.

This is an important month, but I don't care whether I hit targets 2,3 and 4, as long as I hit number one.

Take Care

Thursday, March 30, 2006

25 Not Out

Tonight I cashed in the 15k for the 25th time since I started keeping records. Disappointingly I only finished 24th and took home £75, but the manner in which I played was pleasing.

I suffered a big knock back when my Jacks were called by Ace 8 and lost to an ace on the river.

I didn't get many cards tonight, so it was a matter of being creative when I needed to be.
I am still pleased with my game and feel I have been playing well for most of the month. I feel though I do need a nice win to reward me for my play so far.

I went out when my pocket eights ran into jacks and didn't get any help.

Littlewoods have kindly moved the Player points free rolls to 7.30pm, so that gives me another avenue to qualify for the world series, I will play in that one tomorrow.

Still hoping for a big weekend

Here comes the weekend!

I am hoping for a couple of nice results over the next two days, as I frequently end the month well and would like to push the monthly winnings up.

However the key focus for me is the Weekend.
On Saturday I am in the $750 LOQ final, with a World Series place for the winner. I qualified for this by winning a $15 qualifier last night. I was particularly pleased with these, as when I started the Heads up I had 6k in chips compared to the other guy with 36k.
Also on Saturday Night is the $140 world series qualifier for the $1000 final on Sunday.

Sunday brings the $1050 World Series final (hopefully), the $600k six pack tournament and the £50k tournament (recently increased from £40k).

These all have a lot of potential to get April off to a flying start and get my World Series seat secured.

Monday, March 27, 2006

How do you know when its not your night?

15k - The first decent hand you have is KK and you run into Aces.
WS qualifier - You pick up KK, get two people all in on a 968 flop and you are up against JJ and A8 and the river is a J.
50k qualifier - You get QQ, hit a third Queen on the flop, and get put all in by AK, who hits a Jack and Ten to give him a straight.

Same time tomorrow then!

Sunday, March 26, 2006

No seat yet!

The $1000 World Series qualifier, did not quite have the desired result this evening.

40 players, with 2 seats available, was a tough ask with the quality of players playing.

The first hour was fairly uneventful and I ended up pretty much where I started with 2500 chips, the second hour was better, moving me on to 5000 chips. At this point there was 20 people left and I was sitting in about 10th.

The third hour was where it all went wrong. I was sitting with 77 in the Big Blind. The small blind went all in and it was 700 more to call. He turned over 87 suited and hit an 8 on the flop.

Two hands later on the button I had 10,10 and raised 3 times the blind, the small blind went all in for another 1800, I decided to call, he turned over A8, but an Ace was the first card out.

I fought my way back into it and with 14 remaining, I made a move on the button with QJ suited and unfortunately the chip leader had KQ and that was the tournament over.

It is dissapointing to not have anything to show for a couple of great days play, but if I can keep this level of play up, then I hope to be having another go next week. With the $600k tournament also next weekend, there is lots to be playing for.


Mothers Day!

Today has been a good day. Aside from waking up with a hangover, I have had some good results today.

I won a £20STT to start the day off and then entered a £20 MTT.
Out of 94 runners I came 3rd, taking home £240. March total back at +£1.3k.

However it is the World Series qualifiers I have been most pleased with.
I started off in $25 Level 1 qualifier at 9pm and succesfully got through that one.
The $140 Level 2 qualifier started at 00:30 and with the clocks going forward it was going to be a long night!
Well at 4:23 am I won the qualifier and now take my place in the $1000 World Series final for a place in the main event later today at 6pm. There are currently 22 entered, so I suspect there will be 2 seats available.
A world series for £15 would be very nice!
Time to get some sleep!
One tiny quirk of fate, last year I qualified for Vegas on Fathers Day, today it is Mothers Day. Too much of a coincidence?!?! Game on!


Friday, March 24, 2006

A Spell on me?

I continue to play well, but I currently feel I am cursed!

Tonight in the 10k. We are down to 33 people and I am dealt 88. I have 10k in chips, I raise to 2.4k. I get one caller.
Flop is 242, I bet 2.4k again and get raised all in. I call. The guy turns over 77. The turn is a 3. I am about take down a 22k pot and move into the top 6.

He only has two outs, the remaining sevens, That is a 2 in 44 chance. I am 95%+ certain to win. Only five times in a hundred should I lose. This is one of them. Again! By my maths, I therefore must win the next 92 to balance out the odds!

33rd - Just £35 into the bankroll.

My day must be close by!

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Latest Press Article

My latest feature has been triggered on Google Alerts!

Here is an article about me from todays Cambridge Evening News.

Look out for the superimposed cards!


Bubble Boy Part 2

The curse of the Bubble continued last night in the all important World Series Level 2 qualifier.
With the top 7 winning themselves a seat in Sundays $1000 final, I found myself finishing in 8th place. The $592 prize for 8th was a small consolation, as I felt like I almost had one foot on the plane!

With 32 players remaining I found myself in last position and played one of my best ever short stacked games. By time it got to the last eight, the blinds were up to 1200/2400 with chip counts ranging from 10 - 32k.

I entered a pot with JT and had a great flop of T98, giving myself a top pair and an opened ended straight draw.

All in up against AQ, I thought that I had secured my seat in the final, as only an ace on the last two cards would see my departure, unfortunately the turn brought the Ace and I was out.

My consolation is that if I can maintain my current form, then some more big prizes cannot be too far away.

Media Update, a few more articles on me are appearing in regional press, here is one from the Hunts Post.

Take Care

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Bubble Boy

Tonight was a case of what might have been!
Again playing some excellent poker, I managed to qualify for the next stage of the World Series qualifiers, taking place on Wednesday night.

However, it was almost a great night, but I managed to bubble in both the LOQ and the $600k, which would have been worth another £600. The nut flush losing to Full House on the river and Kings to Jacks.

My game is really good at the moment, I am very confident that this will turn into some nice prizes soon. My total for March has slipped to +£1.1k after entering a number of tournaments over the last 7 days, but this should be easily improved upon over the next week.

My photo shoot for the Cambridge Evening News was completed tonight, so I should hopefully appear in there tomorrow.

I also pleased to say that one of the guys I am teaching to play came 4th in the 15k tonight, taking home £1,125! Nice one Fenners!

Wednesday 9.30pm World Series Level 2 qualifier $150 entry is the agenda tomorrow night, as I search for a place in the final qualifier on Sunday.

Its coming together

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Down to Business

The world series qualifying has just begun this week and now becomes my number one target in poker.
The last few days have been disappointing from a results point of view, but my game is still sound. Last nights elimination in the 15k summed it up. With just 50 players left I was holding JJ. Flop was J83 rainbow and I go out to a backdoor flush.

I am still confident that I am playing well enough to secure a world series sear and as soon as my hands start holding up, I can see some very positive results coming my way.

On the publicity front, I am currently awaiting a photographer from the Cambridge Evening News to take a few pictures of me, the feature should be in tomorrows edition. I imagine this will be last of the recent media frenzy and I can concentrate on winning some more tournaments!

See you on the tables

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Getting the Bad Beats out of the way!

I am continuing to play some good poker, but am getting undone by some bad luck.
I am hoping that by Sunday, all the bad beats will be out of the system!

Tonights 15k, saw me lose with JJ to 88 on a 443 flop, when going very nicely having doubled up early.
Last night, again going well, I was put all in with KK on a K87 flop. The guy turned over 88 and hit the final 8 on the turn!
To cap it off in a LOQ qualifier very late on, I rose pre flop with AA and then post flop, I was reraised all in on a 826 flop. The guy turns over 10,4. The following cards were 75! Not my night!

Its a big night tomorrow, so I will happily save my luck for then.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Local Celebrity Special!

I hope you managed to catch my radio interviews this morning on BBC Radio Cambridgeshire (96.0 fm), I did two interviews one with the Cambridge division and then one with the Peterborough show.

I felt the Cambridge one went really well, the Peterborough was a little tougher, but overall they were both really enjoyable.

I am expecting to do an interview with the Cambridge Evening News later today and have a photoshoot to arrange, so the media coverage continues.

My article in the Biggleswade Chronicle hits the press today, so that will be an interesting one to read!

STOP PRESS! - BBC Look East have been in contact with me this morning, following my radio interview and are interested in doing a TV feature with me next week. That means my interview must have been quite good! Full Details to follow.

I will continue to push the wonderful game of poker and those fantastic people at This has made me more determined than ever to get my seat at the World Series in July.

On the poker front, its a big weekend ahead, with the £40k and $100k on Sunday. With my game continuing on the up, I am hopeful of a good result. I will catch you all later.

Take Care

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Another Money Finish

Tonight was more a case of what might have been.
Another money finish in the 15k 21st taking home £75, but it really should have been more.
Going well throughout the tournament, ultimately the finish was a dissapoinment.

I am questioning my tactics of being so aggressive when I could have hung on for one more person to go out and made £150. My trademark is patience and I question whether I neglected that.

However on reflection I am happy with my play, the blinds were massive and I play to win. I was called by the big blind with A6, which was a very bad call considering his stack. It was dissapointing but I take heart that once again I am playing well and consistently making the money.

Its a night off tomorrow, but I am confident of another final table performance over the weekend.


I am a Celebrity update!

Its not quite a media frenzy, but it is all great fun.

After a hectics mornings work, my PR guys were on to me setting up an radio interview.
You can hear me live on BBC Radio Cambridgeshire (Cambridge) at 08:40 on Friday morning followed by BBC Radio Cambridgeshire (Peterborough).

This was followed up by an interview with the delightful Laura from the Biggleswade Chronicle, followed by a photo shoot which I have just finished doing! I should be featuring in this weeks edition which I believe is out on Friday.

Lets hope the attention continues!
I now feel ready to take on the world of poker and will hopefully add to my recent successes tonight.


Tuesday, March 14, 2006

The first of many?!?!

After my press release was sent out on Monday, I have had my first request for an article on me, the very next day. I have an interview with a reporter from the Biggleswade Chronicle tomorrow, with a photo shoot to come. World stage here I come!

As for the poker tonight - nothing exceptional but I have managed to add another £250 to the bankroll and move the March total to +£1.5k.

The 15k was another disappointment as for the second day in succession I ran into Aces. Also the LOQ qualifier proved uneventful and I am now relying on qualifying on Friday night for Saturdays final.
The success however came in the form of the Thunder six packs. Three tournaments £20, £30 and £50 and three wins, enabled me to reigster for some more tournaments this week and register a profit to the bankroll. After this success, I have set myself a little challenge.

The THUNDER 33! I am going to play in 33 six packs over the course of the week and see how I fare.
At the time of writing, I have played 6, had 2 wins and am currently £140 in profit with a 64% ROI, not bad at all! Lets hope it continues.

I will update you on my first interview tomorrow.

An Important week ahead

Following the publication of my profile in Littlewoods Full House magazine and the sending out of my press release, this week is an important week for me to do well. If people are writing about me then it is important to me to justify that.

Monday started well, although it did not add to the bankroll, in the 15k I defended my big blind (KJ) against an aggressive small blind but ran into pocket rockets and that was the end of that.
I did however qualify for a number of events for later in the week, including the $100k Icebreaker that is being held on Sunday.
This tournament costs 5000 Player points to enter, although they have been running qualifiers for the cost of 200 player points.

As I am not a cash player it has taken me the best part of two months to amass just 200 points and with the final this Sunday, I made it to a qualifier just in time.

As this was my only shot to qualify I had to take it seriously. 178 players entered and only 7 would book a seat in the final. This game took over 2 and half hours, but when the game finished I was sitting comfortably in 3rd place.

Tonight is usually the night I play best (the night of both my 15k wins and my Caribbean qualification)and with the 15k and qualifiers in the LOQ and $600k, I am hoping for some positive results. I am especially keen to book my place in the LOQ final on Saturday, as I have been unable to play in the last two and with just four months to go to the WSOP, I want my seat assured as soon as possible!

See you on the tables

Friday, March 10, 2006

Fame at Last!

There is something very satisfying about reading an article on yourself!
In the post today was a centre page feature on me in the Littlewoods Poker Full House magazine.

Thats one step closer to me making the big time!!

A big thank you again to Littlewoods who have been nothing short of amazing in my poker journey to date and have also appointed me a PR company to look after me!

It was also nice playing tonight, as a number of people had actually read about me.

As for the tournaments it was back to the 15k and after one night out of the money, it was nice to get right back amongst it. Again though it went wrong near the end and after losing a big pot with QQ to A6, the very next hand saw my AK suited fall to 22. So it was 18th and another £150 for the bankroll. It was so nearly more, but my AK (again) came up against KK in the $600k qualifier, just 4 short of the money. March bankroll moves up to +£1.25k.

I am hoping to kick my game up a level shortly and get a few more final table appearances.

Just a note on my good pal Tony Chessa, he has been playing magnificently in the Monte Carlo Millions this week and missed out on the money by a couple of places when his Aces lost to Jacks. This guy is a superstar and it is only a matter of time before he takes down a big tournament.

Although I do have to point out that the feature on me came before his feature in the magazine and I am by far the best looking in the magazine!!!!

Its a night off tommorrow, but I will be back for the £40k on Sunday.

Take Care

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Now the cowboys are joining in!

The run of finishing in the money has ended, but I still feel I am playing well enough to take down a big tournament soon.

Tonight with just 50 left in the 15k, I pick up my first real hand of the evening KK. I put in a small raise and am re-raised all in. I call and I am up against 66. Its all looking good until the turn brings a 6.

The 10k was a similiar picture, but it was predictably those ladies that saw my exit! This time I ran into a monster 88! At least they sealed my fate on the flop this time!

March continues positively as a couple of good peformances in some single table tournaments moves me along to +£1.2k.

Let me be Lucky!

The next big win is around the corner

Another successful night in the world of poker and two more money finishes.
In the 15k I had to settle for 15th and £150 despite one of the best starts I have ever made in this tournament.

A few costly AK's knocked the stuffing out of me late on, followed by my Jacks losing to AQ on the river.

By time I was down to my last 14k, I got A9 suited and moved in (blinds 1200/2400), unfortunately I ran into AQ and had to settle for 15th.

The other tournament was the $600k qualifier. Having already qualified for the final in April, I was playing for the $530 cash prize.

I flew into a big lead early on, moving from 1500 to 10000 in the first hour, before almost losing the lot running into aces. Down to 765, it was not looking good! However some nice play got me back in the running and by time the final ten were announced I was chip leader with 25k, giving me £300 more for the bankroll.

£450 more for March, moves the monthly total to £1.1k and more importantly I am playing well and feel it is just a short time before the next big win arrives.

Be Lucky

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Can no-one throw away AK!

Thought I would have another go at the 10k tonight and am happy to say that I made the money for the fourth consecutive time, although only finishing in 29th place. Still it all adds to the bankroll, even if it is just £70.
March is still going okay and we are +£0.65k after day 6.

Tonights lesson, people cannot throw away AK.

Down to 9k, I am one off the button and raise to 3.2k with nothing 35off suit. The button (10k) flat calls me. Flop comes 275. I move all in and after a few moments he calls me for his remaining chips, he turns over AK. Got him! 20k pot with the blinds, but no the turn is a King and on come the sugababes!

Until next time

Friday, March 03, 2006

Consistency Returns - But so does the curse of the ladies!

March has started on a positive note, with two more money finishes in the 10k, to make it 3 consecutive nights on the trot.

The 10k was a tournament I had been avoiding, due to the late finish, but providing I have a built up a stack of chips fairly early, I am happy to give it a go.
Two days in and I have almost equalled the profit from last month, so March is looking promising.

I am having a night off tonight as a run of 3 late sessions has left me feeling a little jaded and I will return for the 15k on Saturday. I will not playing in the LOQ final this week as I have not been able to play in the qualifiers and I am not paying £430 for the final, so my World Series dream will have to wait for a couple of weeks. I am hoping that my good friends at Littlewoods will start running qualifiers for the World Series as soon as the Monte Carlo qualifiers are over, so that I can stop worrying about securing my place.

Now the curse of the ladies! Most people who know me know that when I am dealt a pair of queens, it spells trouble, but my latest curse is slightly different. During the last few days I have been listening to music after the first two hours (to keep me awake mainly!). The previous two nights had seen me go out of the tournament on the same song - Sugababes - Red Dress!

Last night I was sitting happily on 30k with just over 20 players left when it came on. Before the end of the song I was out!

I am dealt AQ diamonds in mid position and the very short stack goes all in for his last 1k, the next short stack throws all his chips in 7k. I decide that the short stack is going in on any hand with blinds at 600/1200 and the next guy has probably got a decent showing, but not that good as he would have probably encouraged some action. So I join them and throw my chips in. I am up against K9 and A10, a good read and provided it holds up about 10k more chips for me.
The Flop has mixed blessings a Ten, but two diamonds. However an ace and a six with no diamonds dont help me.

A few hands later I pick up KQ in the big blind. I am raised by the new chip leader (Just got very lucky calling an all in bet with JJ to AQ on a QQ3 flop - hit a Jack on river!) to 3600, I am not too worried about this, although he will probably call a reraise so I decide to call. The flop comes down Q62. I bet out 5k which he calls. From his previous play I know I am in front as he did not reraise, I suspect he is on a ace, mid high kicker or low/mid pair. The turn comes a another 6 and decide to take down the pot there, by putting in my remaining 9k. He calls with A6. Harsh but thats the way it goes. I could have put a smaller bet in on the turn but I would have been pot comitted, so was as well to go all in. So ultimately I am comfortable with my bet and I never put him on A6.

Dissapointed I look up and those ladies start to fade out their song about the red dress, damn those ladies! If I see a lady in a red dress in the near future, warning signs will be going off! Next time they come on, I am changing the channel!

Be Lucky

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

But I had AK!

There is something about the last day of the month, that focuses my mind.

It is the day I post my results for the month. February +£0k. Hmmm, my first non profit making month. It had not been a bad month, but due to other commitments, I am finding myself paying full price for tournaments rather than qualifying for them. So my winnings may be going up, but my costs are also. With one night left the quest to show a profit was on.

The £15k was not going to be the solution, as that ended early, the $600k qualifier was looking very promising, but when someone hit their gutshot straight draw on the river that was the end of that solution.

So it was the £10k that was my last chance, I do not usually play in this event as it finishes at 2am and getting up at 6.30am, leaves me a little drained for the day!

I had managed to lose half my stack in the first 6 hands and I was resigned to a non profit February.
However just as I was about to lose interest I flopped a full house and doubled up. It was time to start playing.

I slowly worked my way up the leaderboard and really started playing well. After we were down to 170 players, I was moved to table 1 (always a good omen!), where I was to stay and therefore get a feel for everyone around the stable.
When we had 20 players left, I was in 3rd place, on top of my game and only forseeing one outcome - victory.
At 1.30am there was six players left and I was a narrow chip leader. Guaranteed £500 at this point (therefore sorting February out) I was only focused on the £2.5k first prize.
Then came the crucial hand. JJ in the big blind. I have 130k Blinds were 1.5k and 3k. Seat 3 'bradpit'(105k) puts in a raise of 12k, which I decide to reraise to 36k. Brad calls.

A great flop 7 high, with 2 clubs. I checked the flop, hoping for a bet and brad obliged with a 12k bet. This was too small a bet for him to have a bigger pair than me, also he would have gone all in already. I immediately put him on two overcards and move all in.

To my great surprise he called my bet with Ace spades and King Clubs! Fantastic. This would put be so far clear, I should go on and win the tournament. Turn is a 9, excellent - oh hang on its another club. Surely we can't have four. The river is a fourth club! - I have just lost a monster pot.

I type unbelievable into the forum and get a sarcastic comment back again. I asked him how he called a bet that would put him out of the tournament when he had absolutely nothing. His reply ' but I had AK'.

Ultimately I went out 6th place when my 99's crashed out to AJ. February at least ended up +£0.5k, even though it could have been so much more. I take comfort in the fact that without these type of players my success in this game would not be so great, also the fact that I am back on a final table again.

But those immortal words will stay with me for a little while. 'But I had AK!.
Take Care