Thursday, February 24, 2011

The craziest man in Ireland...

Well, the IPR live final didn't really go to plan. Or rather it did for a while, I moved fairly comfortably from 21k up to 27k in the early going before the big hand that scuppered my chances. Chris Dowling opened in early position, and I flatted with AQs behind. I prefer the flat to the raise here for a number of reasons: it disguises my hand, I don't really mind if a few people call as the suitedness makes it a decent multiway hand, and if I raise it probably folds out most hands I dominate while if I get 4 bet, it's a tough spot (I probably have to release the hand in the absence of any strong read). Another factor was that it was Cat O'Neill's big blind and she had a reshipping stack. Cat's good enough to squeeze worse aces and kings here that she'll just fold if I 3 bet. There's also a very strong chance Chris has no real hand: he sees Cat as a rock and Chris tends to raise blinds he perceives as rocks with any two. There was a time when Chris used to make donk sized big raises with rubbish which made him a more profitable 3 bet target, but these days he's much less exploitable as he's joined the "less than 3x" camp.

As it happens, everyone folds. The flop comes AQ4 with 2 diamonds. Chris leads at it, I raise, he reraises and I now have choice between shoving or folding. To be honest I don't think there's any real decision: if I'm going to fold top two in a headsup pot on a draw heavy board against a loose aggressive like Chris to a reraise, he can profitably reraise 100% of the time. The only reason I even paused was because of some speech play that convinced me Chris had a hand: people who don't want action on a hand don't usually talk much, and it smacked more than a little of Hollywood. However, realistically 44 is the only hand that beats me here, and Chris can show up with A4s or KdJd/KdTd/JdTd. I shoved and Chris' snap call confirmed my worst fear that it was 44. I still have 4 outs twice but I obviously didn't hit. That left me with just over 5k which shrunk to 4k when the blinds went through. Utg I picked up Q9s, bottom of the profitable shoving range. The structure was getting fast and I really didn't want the blinds to go through me again so I shoved and hoped. Nicky Sinnott called with AK on the button, first card I saw on the flop was a queen but a king also featured.

In the end, Nick Newport was a very deserving winner. He's been on a real heater since winning the Winter Festival and his results on their own merit a sponsorship deal. I'm sure he'll do very well.

I had another good five figure week online which definitely helped cushion the blow. I see online very much as the day job (or more accurately night job) so so long as that's going well I'm happy enough.

When I'm grinding, I don't usually even look at the chatbox (in fact I usually don't even have it open) but as my night winds down I become aware of it. So it was the other night when the last tournament I was in was the 20r on Stars. I was feeling pretty good and social as I'd final tabled two 10k guaranteeds on Party already (winning one, the 30r). Dean Price was hyperlagging it up (playing 42/38 full ring) with a big chiplead and I was 3 betting every so often. Suddenly he called me out in the chatbox, and said that allinstevie had just told him I was "a lagtard" and "the craziest man in Ireland". I said "sounds about right", he said "I can never fold to you again now", I three bet him next hand and he folded. Quite amusing, but Dean had the last laugh, I ended up busting on the second last table while he ended up winning. Respect.

In other news, I've managed to shift some of the weight I piled on recently. After Christmas, I'd ballooned up to an unprecendented 85 kg. At my running peak (which lets not forget was only 4 years ago) I weighed 70.7 kg. It's unlikely I'll ever get that low again unless I get cancer or something but I'd like to get back down to 75 at least. Anyway, half way there: I dipped back under 80 kg.

Plan is to play the Fitz EOM on Thursday and then just play online until Manchester. The second half of March is fairly hectic on the live front with Manchester, Lisbon and Malaga. I'm particularly looking forward to Malaga as it looks like there will be a good crew going. Jono Cruze and Ger Harraghy are both already confirmed, as is my roommate Mick McCluskey, and hopefully my consiglieri Feargal. Kudos to Feargal who continued his phenomenal track record in CPTs by scooping the Sligo CPT just before jetting off to the Alps for a skiing holiday. It's a tough life at times :)

I believe the Channel 4 coverage of the Galway UKIPT starts next Tuesday night. I may feature on it: was on the TV table for a while three tables out, and did an interview with Channel 4 immediately after my exit. Remains to be seen whether they use it or not: I have no real recollection of what I actually said :)

In other news, I've been asked to contribute a monthly column to Player Ireland from here on in. It'll be a mix of strategy pieces and reports and tales from tournaments I play in. First column will probably be on strategy for satellites which is topical with so many people trying to satellite into Irish Opens, UKIPTs and what have you these days.


cancer as a form of weightloss......probably not recommended!


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