Lucky Straights

The ramblings and mumblings of a wannabe poker pro

First Sit-N-Go

Just completed my first Sit-N-Go, since I developed my eye infection and placed 2nd. I’m still not fit to play as usual yet, but its been days since I’ve sat in a tournament now and I couldn’t resist.

Here’s a few hands that stand out when the action became shorthanded :

This was probably the hand I played worst of all shorthanded. Firstly I did a minimum raise, which was stupid, I should have raised more, but I new the crazy cow on my left will call with almost anything and I didn’t want to be out before the two short stacks.

On the flop I thought about re-raising, but this player would happily call all the way no matter what I bet, and without a hand yet I decided to call. I new the deuce on the turn didn’t help my opponent so I call hoping to pick up an Ace or a Queen on the river, either of which I was sure would have given me the best hand.

I then called a larger bet on the river, this was probably the biggest mistake as I new I was beat, but didn’t want to be bluffed out of a pot. In hindsight it was a clear value bet, if she wanted me out of the pot she would have bet much more, but with so much money out there, I called anyway hoping she held Ax.

Here I found kings, and was happy to see them but also very aware that this could be my last hand, and I would hate to get busted whilst a short stack clung on, but they held up for me. My opponent had made plenty of loose calls at this point, particularly against the chip leader, but I was still a little surprised to see what he called me with.

This was the final hand which was rather interesting, the chip leader knocks us both out at the same time, but it was a community pot and I had the other guy covered so I took 2nd, this is the first time I’ve sat in a game without a heads-up battle.

December 31, 2007 Posted by | Sit-N-Go's 2 | , , , , | Leave a comment

Today’s Games

Today as been reasonable but not great. I sat in two $5 Sit-N-Go’s this morning for the first time. The first one was pretty terrible, couldn’t make any moves and didn’t have any cards, total trash throughout, the second game was a huge difference, I barley got anything but premium hands, unfortunately a bad decision with pocket queens late on left me with only a 2nd place finish instead of a 1st.

I’ve just finished a $1 Sit-N-Go to add to this mornings games, which was a bit of a marathon short handed, eventually leaving me on the rail in 3rd, after the big stack called my all-in with 86s and flopped trips to bust me, beating my pocket kings. There was plenty of chips swapping between me and the other short stack and we both had gone all-in several times, I guess he got frustrated, I just wish my had QQ instead :p

I think I’ve played pretty well today, but I need to adjust my game play significantly I feel for the $5 games, not because it needs improvement, but more that I need to adjust to the opponents I’m with and the different dynamic of the game, hopefully I’ll pick it up quickly and settle in nicely. I am still going play some $1 Sit-N-Go’s as well until I feel comfortable with the new way of things though.

December 10, 2007 Posted by | Sit-N-Go's 2 | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Today’s Game

Just completed my 1st game of the day, been un-able to play until, so have only managed one game today. I came 2nd which I’m happy with as the chip leader had around a 5:1 advantage when we became heads-up, I battled for awhile, but just couldn’t double up enough to take the win. The final hand I moved all-in with Ax, was called by pocket tens, I made top pair on the river, but the same ace gave my opponent the nut straight.

I think I played really well in this game also and am keen to see if I can keep it up after having so many up and downs lately.

Two hands I think, I may have played too passively though :

1. This was the very first hand of the tournament. I didn’t want to raise it up so early, but thought my hand was worth seeing a flop with, especially with only a minimum raise out in front, a higher raise and I would have folded pre-flop. I make top pair, but didn’t want to risk too many chips, in case someone held an 8 and wanted to check-raise, otherwise I may have made a bet around 2/3 the size of the pot. When the king came, I didn’t even hold top pair so had an easy lay down. Should I have played this more aggressive on the flop ?

December 2, 2007 Posted by | Sit-N-Go's 2 | , , , , | Leave a comment

A Glimmer of Hope

Just come 2nd in a Sit-N-Go on Poker Stars, I’m hoping this is the turning point, my I still feel shell socked when I play. I’ve been aware that I can become a bit two passive when the game hits 5 or 4 handed, but I’m probably playing even more so now.

I blew it heads-up again, this used to be my specialty, but it hasn’t felt like that for a long time. Sooner or later I will take some time out to step up my heads-up game, because whatever I’m doing at the moment isn’t working for me.

I think I played well, considering how low my confidence has dropped with my game at the moment at least and managed to overcome running into some testing situations too.

This situation comes up a lot, I bet out to test the waters, and I get called all the way, usually I have the best hand as in this case, but often someone with AQ in this situation will simply call all the way to showdown. I think I played this with the correct balance between caution in case my opponent held a weak queen and wasn’t sure if he had the best hand and also putting getting money into the pot, because I’d seen the same opponent call down with bottom pair on a similar board earlier.

This was a more risky situation for me I think, as I was up against two callers, but at most I credited either one of them with a very weak king, so was drawing live with my ace…

Another second pair situation

Possibly a questionable call, but it felt right at the time, on the flop I put him on Ax or a couple of over cards so took a shot and it paid off.

A nice pot with AK, at the time the most I could give him credit for was a flush draw, he’d seen me take down lots of pots through raises on the flop, maybe he thought I was steeling…

Opponent gets lucky and turns his flopped set into a full house on the turn, beating my own set with a better kicker, I realized I was beat though and got out.

Yet another stupid play to throw it all away heads-up by me.

November 14, 2007 Posted by | Sit-N-Go's 2 | , , , | Leave a comment

18 Player Come Back

I’ve just completed what started off as a very stressful and irritating 18 player Sit-N-Go, but it patience and discipline with a sprinkling of luck at a couple of critical occasions prevailed and I began to enjoy it, I was finally railed in 2nd place.

Throughout 80% of the tournament I was totally card dead, went over twenty hands with A7s, being the highest card I had dealt and naturally no flush cards or aces showed up on the flop. Later on I found AQ, but I was getting really, well angry about not being able to make moves, defend against people who always raise every pot, due to being totally card dead.

I made it to the final table though, and really hoped to just hold and hopefully make 4th through a miracle to at least not have to add another loss to my database. When some quality cards came my way though, I managed to make some moves, and with those wins managed to hold on until the bubble burst. I then stepped it up a notch, playing aggressively and began to build my stack ahead of the competition, eventually making 3rd and then finally going heads-up against the chip leader.

From the tournament data I’ve just received from Poker Stars I can confirm that I only saw the flop 28 out of 111 times, most of this action occurred from 4 handed downwards.

Thanks to this cash, my bankroll as now reached another high point of $72.75 🙂

Here’s a few hands :

# HANDS PENDING, having problems with #

November 10, 2007 Posted by | Sit-N-Go's 2 | , , , , , | 3 Comments

End of Session

Well after a little beauty sleep I decided to hit the tables again, although not a winning strategy, I was only really hoping to cash, 3rd place would do, as that 60c profit coupled with my earlier 1st place winnings would turn my earlier losses into a slight increase on my bankroll.

I did a little better then that though and came 2nd. 1st place was on the table for me, but my opponent made his flush on the river and took the chip lead at a crucial moment, my stack was decimated and I never recovered.

It was a huge battle for me, by having to resist the temptation to see the flop, following one of many huge pre-flop raises and then having to remain a float whilst I was card dead. Once it became shorthanded, the game was a total bloodbath!

I couldn’t put him on a hand which I could beat that he would go all-in with here, so I folded. Even if he only had a set with the case ace, its almost certain is kicker was better then mine.

Tired to take down a pot with A9 off suite as I was getting desperate for chips, but the flop didn’t fall my way.

Had to push all-in here, been card dead for ages and my stack was critically low, thankfully it payed off for me.

This was probably the highlight. I was fearing a straight on the turn to beat my flopped two pair, but come the river I was relieved 🙂 My opponent didn’t hold much competition here.

Here’s the hand that cost me the tournament, just not immediately. As soon as he went all-in on the flop, I new he had the flush draw. I think I made the right decision here…?

The final hand. I must have been steaming after the previous hand to go all-in here on little but hope.

November 9, 2007 Posted by | Sit-N-Go's 2 | , , , | Leave a comment

Full Circle

I’ve just finished the last of today’s Sit-N-Go’s and I feel like all I’ve achieved is return to where I started off this morning, my bankroll is about the same, although by the math I’m ahead a little, it doesn’t feel like it. Still I’ve earned another 5 FPP’s towards my total which now stands at 107.

My last game I played really well, but seemed to lose it towards the end, around 4 handed, otherwise I lead the way taking the chip lead on my first hand with a great read on my opponent and I didn’t loose the lead until 3 players where eliminated.

My heads up game was a disaster, I played several hands weakly, waiting for the perfect moment to take all of my opponents chips, and then I get it, pocket aces in the small blind, I do like I’ve done before and just call, hoping for her to come over the top so I can re-raise her, she doesn’t, the board as a slim chance of a straight draw but otherwise looks positive, I raise, she re-raises, I go all-in, she shows a flopped set of 9’s, I could have cried lol. It wasn’t all bad though if she didn’t hit her set I would have took down a huge pot and got the win almost immediately afterwards, I was well aware of the risk I was taking slow playing my aces and it just didn’t pay off this time, 2nd place money was my conciliation.

Despite only coming 2nd, its been a nice game, and a nice ending to some real crappy experiences earlier, where my two pair got screwed when the board paired twice on the river giving my opponent a hefty chunk of my stack on each occasion.

November 6, 2007 Posted by | Sit-N-Go's 2 | , , , , | Leave a comment