Monday, June 16, 2008

Another cash but meh

Back from Waterford, where I cashed in the main event (15th for 800) without playing particularly well.

First day was fine, pretty card dead for most of the day but was patient and disciplined and picked my spots well to work the 15K stack up to 16500. The brother crashed out late in the day which was a bummer.

Second day, I drifted back to 12K, then doubled up through Connie O'Sullivan when I opened utg with KK, he raised, I shoved and he called with AK. Again, very few cards and just a few big hands, one of which was a clear mistake. I opened utg with QQ for 3500, bops from Boards made it 10500. Any rereraise pretty much pot committed us both so I instashoved for 60K. Mentally I was putting him on a range of AK or any pair above 10's based on the one big hand I'd seen him play earlier in the day (he had AK and pushed off 10's with an allin rereraise). He then started studying me and when he said "If I didn't know about you, I'd have made this call ages ago" I instantly knew what he had (Kings) before making a great call. Great until I spike a queen on the flop, that is.

I think the mistake I made on this hand was while my assessment of his range might be valid under normal circumstances (and even here I can't be sure since I didn't really see enough of him to be sure if my characteristisation of him was accurate), I failed to take into account that he's good enough to tighten up based on my reputation as the biggest rock in Ireland. So really his range was probably more like AA, KK or AK, and against such a range my move was rubbish unless I can push him off KK (which I clearly couldn't, even if he took his time) as well as AK (which I think he would lay down).

The other big hand of note was KK as well, this time on the button just after I'd moved table and not too far off the bubble. A shortie openshoved utg, another somewhat bigger shortie shoved over the top, and I'm thinking happy days as chances are they have some mix of Ace rag or smaller pairs. Then the cutoff has a long long dwell himself and I'm thinking what do I do if he shoves (I barely cover him). Eventually I decide it's an automatic shove regardless of what he does (he ain't taking this long with Aces unless he's going for an Oscar). He puts down pocket 10's (he says), the two shorties have rag aces, the flop comes 10 high (phew!) and my kings hold.

That left me in good shape. By the time the bubble burst, I'd drifted back. In retrospect, I played the bubble way too timidly, which is unusual for me. There were bigger stacks with immediate position coming over my raises, but that never stopped me before. So not a great day's play but a good result, as I came back on Day 3 with almost 1.5 times average stack, 40 big blinds.

Absolutely horrible table draw: all the players I wanted to avoid like Sean Prendiville, Trevor Dineen, Anthony Lynch, Paul Quinn and big Mick G were at my table. It just didn't happen for me: in the two hours, I got precisely 3 playable hands: 8's (which took down the blinds), AQs (which lost an allin against Sean's KQ), and AKs (which lost an allin for half my stack v. 9's when I hit an ace on the flop but a 9 on the turn screwed me). The standard at the table was so high there wasn't really any room to get creative: first raises were nearly all getting through unless they ran into a bigger hand behind. Eventually I was down to 6BB and had to push from the CO and unfortunately big Mick G woke up in the SB with AQ, a hand that dominated and ultimately eliminated me. So my entire day came down to three races (one where I was dominating, one dominated), and losing all 3 ended my hopes. Sean, who is one of the very best LAGs I've ever seen and who I think could crush any GUKPT event, recovered brilliantly to win in the end.

Also good to see Gary Clarke have a great tournament and run deep. Gary's the most thoughtful of that young generation of future Irish greats and I hope he has a really great Vegas.

The brother had a great run in the 250 side event, ultimately coming 5th. Along the way he got revenge over the Gentleman Liam Flood, and had some great fun listening to Adam Fallon's brilliant one liners.

After my exit from the main event, I played the most gruesome cash session ever which included not only being totally pwned by Jen Mason who openly mocked me as a calling station by the end (and quite rightly too, as I was just terrible against her) but also hitting the nut flush on the river in one hand and not only forgetting to bet but turning it over with one player to act behind me! I guess I was still reeling from the disappoinment of the non-event of a day 3 for me in the main event, plus I'd just come down with a horrible cold, but my God, I played that session so badly I find it hard to believe it was me. Next time I feel myself thinking I might be a poker God, I'll just need to remember that session to bring me back down.

Bizarrely, despite donating several hundred euro to the Jen Mason Benevolent fund, I finished up over 200 Euro, thanks mainly to one big hand. Jen had scarpered deciding she'd taken enough of my money for one night which left me with some mouthy Brits who thought they were God's gift and Paddies can't play poker. I'd leaked some money to one guy in particular who just kept raising with anything and betting non-stop when the following hand developed.

Good Irish player openlimped. Loudmouth Brit LAG 4 bets. Table is now 5 or 6 handed and I have 65s in the BB, a hand I quite like in this spot against this particular villain profile who I know will overbet any flop I show weakness on. Flop is a truly beautiful 655 and I check just as quick as I can get my fingers to the felt. Irish guy bets slightly under pot, English LAG min raises, I call, Irish guy call. Flop's a 4 and now I'm hoping someone's hit a straight as I check. Irish guy checks, LAG totally overbets the pot for about half my remaining stack, I call, Irish guy dies. Queen on the river and I push the rest of my stack in and shoot the English guy a "I'm tired of you pushing me around, how do you like them bananas" look which I'm hoping he'll interpret as a bluff as I reckon he can't have anything much. In fact he's had the Queen (didn't see the other car), which encourages him to call, and then go ballistic when I show him the flopped house. How could I play such shit behind a raise? God what a donkey I am! His English mate is backing him up, but saying that fish like me should be encouraged to make such bad calls. I felt like asking him what he thought I had after I called his big raise on the flop, his overbet on the turn and then shoved the river that his queen rag was beating on a board of Q6554, but it was funnier just to smile goofily like the fish that got lucky.

So now I'm giggling like a fish who got lucky, he's on monkey tilt, and I really should have stuck around for the rest of his stack but by now I'd been playing 7 hours straight, and my cold was approaching pneumonia so I headed to bed.

Great tournament overall and kudos to Neill. He was telling us of his plan to organise 6 (I think) 500 buyin GUKPT type events around the country next year which would be absolutely brilliant. It's guys like Neill who are doing a great job organising quality tournaments with great structures in Ireland as good or better than anything the UK has to offer.

Also special thanks to Joe (goodluck2me) for reasons I'm sure he knows.


Hi Dara,

Just seen this now. Thanks for the kind words. See you in Vegas I'm sure.



Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Stumbleupon Favorites More