Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Back to School!

It has been an interesting weekend. I feel that I have learnt many lessons over the last few days.

This is why this game is so special, you have to keep learning, because everyone else is learning about you.

Friday was a decent night, my second consecutive money finish in the £15k, 25th place.

Saturday was the $250k tournament and after a decent start it went sadly wrong. Firstly I got too cute with Tens and lost to AK. He put in a heavy raise prelop, which put me off AK. After two kings on the flop, I thought he had missed. When he bet out I assumed he had missed, but a call of my reraise told me otherwise!

The big lesson for Saturday was limping can be very dangerous. A lot of the pros live by the saying pump it or dump it. I limped in with a hand instead of raising and the big blind holding 73, enjoyed the 7J3 flop more than I did! If it ain't good enough to raise it ain't worth playing - another popular saying and one I will pay more credence to in the future.

Sunday was the big night, the WSOP qualifier. This was the one. The first hour was spectactular I moved from 2500 to 6500 and was leading the tournament.
Then I get KK, I put a normal raise in, we get a call and a big all in. I have to call. He turns over 44! Christmas! 67AJ is the first four cards. Boom! river is a 4! Ouch.

I have to regroup and to my credit did so. By time we got to the final table I was in 5th, with the top two going to Vegas. At which point I did not get even a marginal hand for an hour. By time I get a hand in KQ, my chips are getting low and I am called by 66 and go out in 8th.

The lessons here, you can't always wait for a hand, you are playing the players, if they are constantly stealing - reraise them, put the pressure back on. You are never guaranteed to get cards.
Also play your normal game, when the stakes are high it is easier said than done, but I so want to win my seat, that I tighten up more so than usual. From now on, I play my normal game in all tournaments.

The £50k gave me another lesson. Even when you get a hand, you can never be certain. With only 75 left in the tournament and prizes for top 50. It was looking good when I got Aces in the small blind.
Fourth position calls, button raises 5xBB. I go all in for another 3000 chips. A nice pot to take down.
BB goes all in and button calls! Its a monster theres almost 20k out there.
Button has KcQc, BB JJ.
Flop Kd7sQd. Disaster, in a whole heap of trouble now. The turn is 7d. Get in. A higher two pairs! River is a harmless looking 5d. But wait four diamonds on the board, my Aces are black and BB Jacks are red, gutted I am out to a flush! Theres no guarantees in poker!

Plenty of lessons learnt!
I will not be playing much this week because of the Champions League final. Come on the Arsenal! I will play in the 15k on Monday and return on Thursday. I am also having a week off WSOP Qualifiers.
Confidence is a little dented, after discovering I still have so much to learn, but I am ready to take the tables with a little more knowledge and perhaps some more flair!

Good Luck All

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