Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Man go all in pocket 5's, man win with two pairs

I take great pride that I recently learned how to fold a big hand, but folding the nuts on the river, as I did on the FT in the Fitz last night, to a smallish bet is probably taking things too far.
How I ended up in the Fitz is another story. I headed into town for the Sporting Emporium satellite to the Betdaq thing, not realising it had been cancelled until informed so by the snooty coat and tails doorman who informed me there was a private function and no poker tonight with a look and tone that said he was pleased not to have to admit poker riff raff for once.
So I legged it for the Fitz not even knowing what was on, muttering under my breath about not knowing why I even bother with the Emporium, a place I've never felt welcome.
Fiz tourney was a 50+5 freezeout, or Double Chance to be precise (bugger all diff if you ask me), with 70 runners. I missed out on the early bonus chips so I was already down 10%. Didn't bother cashing in my second chance chips for once because of this, as there were two many people who could eliminate me now (my normal strategy is to cash it in straight away, or at least as soon as someone doubles up).
Table was a mixture of the usual Fitz crazies and a few young student types who knew what they were doing. It's been ages since I played one of these type tournaments so I decided to revert to my old rock strategy and sat patiently waiting for a hand. When I eventualy got one, I more that doubled up. UTG limper, UTG+1 min raises, 2 or maybe 3 calls from the young students who are regularly outplaying the other guys after the flop, I wake up with Kings in the SB and raise it to 1100, aka half my stack, everyone but the min raiser folds. Flop is 964 rainbow, I shove, the guy snap calls with QJ. Standard Fitz fare really: two picture cards good enough to raise any position preflop and once he hit his flop, by God he wasn't going to allow himself be bullied into folding by any raise and pushed off his two overs and open-ended runner runner gutshot possibilities.
After that, my stack hovered up and down 25% until we were in the push or fold section. Turbo sit n gos have really improved that aspect of my game, I picked my spots well to the point that I never went in behind when the cards were flipped over even if I was occasionally reraising allin with pretty marginal holdings as I had a very firm grip on different people's differing ranges. More crucially, I never got outdrawn either. The hand that set me up for the final table went like this: I'm down to just over 9K or six big blinds, UTG, raises 2.5 BBs, I shove AQ, SB (Brian, a decent regular but he overrates most Ace high hands) reshoved, original raiser called. I hope I'm racing against two underpairs but obviously worried there's a premium pair or an AK in there, but no, both of them have Ace jack! That more than treble up gives me a good stack all of a sudden, it gets a bit bigger when the now short guy to my right shoves from the SB and I call blind getting 6 to 1 and hold, and even better very next hand when an oldish guy raises 2.5 BB from early position, I shove AK from the small blind. He snap calls for 20K so I immediately think trouble at mill aces or kings so you can imagine my surprise when he flips over 8 7. Sooted, of course.
Final table featured one of the students, General Zito, Rita the rock and a few old regs I recognise but don't know by name. I have about 70K or 20% of the chips. First hand, I raise on the button with KQ, General Zito calls in the BB, and folds when I bet the K high flop. He shows QJ so it's a shame no Queen came. Another "blindsteal" with pocket 9's and now I'm moving when my horrorshow hand arrives. Rita calls from MP, I raise to 9K (3 BB) with AQ, she calls. Flop is A106 with two spades. She checks, I bet 10K, she calls looking not very happy. Turns the jack of spades. I think my ace is the spade so I check back. It is. I check behind figuring Rita's not going to call another bet with a worse hand and now I have the nut flush draw. River's horrible though: Q (non spade), giving me top 2 but when she bets 10K I know she's hit her straight. I make an easy fold with (I think) top two, beating myself up about how badly I played the hand, but turning the cards over to show everyone what a clever boy I am to at least be able to fold on the end. Gasps all around and it's pointed out to me I folded the nut flush. I look down and to my horror see the my Q was also a spade. Worst fold ever.
So now I'm sitting there thinking that's by far the biggest mistake I've ever made at a poker table. Then I think that letting it affect me would be an even bigger mistake, and thankfully I don't (helped by a timely period of card death, I must say). Standard TAG stuff all the way, picking my spots and committing to a pot or not playing at all, and we're eventually down to 4. As usual in the Fitz, only the top 2 prizes are worth shooting for. When it gets 4 handed, I have about 70K, General Zito (who tightened up as usual and barely played a pot so that his initial chip lead withered away) has about 55K, an old female regular has about 40K and the overwhelming chip leader who I've never seen before but has played well and clearly understands pot odds and the aggression principle (which gives him a massive edge over the average punter already) has the rest. Blinds are now 4 and 8 so there's no hanging about, I have 5's UTG and shove, General Zito calls with AK, I hold, and General Zito delivers one of his trademark rants ("Fuck's sake. Man go all in pocket 5's, man win with two pairs").
Now we're three handed, 400 yoyos for 3rd, 700 and 1170 for 2nd and first, so it's a matter of sit tight until the shortie goes. The massive chip leader knows what he's at thankfully, he has position on me but realises I could still hurt him, so he keeps out of my way but attacks the shortie when I stay out. Mostly I have shit I'm unwilling to get involved with since he has immediate position on me so I've drifted back a little when he finally takes her out, and he has almost a 3 to 1 chiplead. He looks over at the prize board, and says "My friend, chop?" which was extremely decent of him. Obviously I'm more than happy given the chip situation, so much so that I think I'm already across the table shaking hands with him by the time he gets to ch.. Obviously I'd do the same for him in future if the situations are ever reversed.
In any case, that's three consecutive FTs and cashes (in between the two recent Fitz excursions, I won a ticket in the IWF daily sat on Paddy Power poker on Monday) to officially bring my recent slump of 4 consecutive tournaments without a cash to an end :)


Nice playingh! But "Ouch!" To folding nut flush... sure it happens more than you think, I observed two players do it last Sunday as well, one crediting the other with a house(!)

Thanks Queen. I didn't even have the excuse of a paired board though, so I'm going with tiredness since I'd only about 6 hours sleep in the previous 4 days and had done a 3 hour run in the afternoon.


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