Lucky Straights

The ramblings and mumblings of a wannabe poker pro

A New High!

After taking 1st in another Sit-N-Go, I have now got my bankroll up to its highest point $83+ 🙂

This was my favorite hand of the match, and took quite a bit of work and patience to setup (believe it or not), so I’m very pleased to pull it off.

http://forums.homepokertourney.com/index.php/topic,13290.0.html

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December 22, 2007 Posted by | Sit-N-Go's 2 | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Spirit Back!

I’ve just had a really great game that has given me my spirit back!

The game was pretty normal until it became 3 handed, and then it became a huge blood bath. The short stack battled her way up (again I’m assuming a she here) eventually taking the lead from the chip leader and I was in real danger of coming out 3rd. I was desperate to beat her at this point, not through her doing but because an observer in the chat window kept on shouting out for her to beat me, which I thought was pretty rude an angred me so much I’m about to complain to Poker Stars!

Anyways, I was getting really low on chips around the $2k mark when my computer dies! it reboots immediately and I quickly log back on to Poker Stars, whilst mutter swear words at Microsoft lol, the table pops up automatically, which was nice and saved me having to search for it, where I find the now chip leader (my nemesis :p) had increased her lead by a huge amount and I was now close enough that I might make 2nd.

I kept battling away and eventually the short stack was put all-in for the second time by the chip leader and was sent to the rail. I was pleased for the guaranteed 2nd place money, but I thirsted for the win. I didn’t change up much, and only two or three hands into heads-up, I had my opponent where I wanted her, I made the nut straight on the turn, and bet out to put her all-in, her leading initially only had $55 dollars left so made the call knowing she was beat with AT and I took down the win.

I put this win down to two key points :

1. Playing hands like KQ, JT, QJs, correctly and perhaps better then I have ever done up to know.

2. Secondly I really, really, really wanted this win, the title was even more important then the money this time, and that kept me aggressive and striving for the win, rather then allowing myself to give-up and become passive, accepting 3rd or 2nd place money.

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

A Win!

At last the bubble as burst, I have got my first win and can start to recover from my last session. I am Pleased with how I played, but I came close to the rail at a few points and the flop was kind at a crucial moment, allowing me to rebuild before we became shorthanded.

My opponent heads-up was the chip leader throughout the second half of the game, and I could tell she had some skills, but I was reasonably confident that I could beat her, as long as I did not suffer too many losses early on, as she had a commanding advantage in stack sizes at this point.

She seemed almost eager to go all-in or to commit a large amount of her stack in one hand once she had seen the flop. In my experience this type of play from your opponent is favorable heads-up, especially if you are confident in your post flop play, as you only have to run into one good flop and you can get them to commit most of there stack or go all-in when you are way ahead, of course you also have to be able to walk away from a bad flop whilst minimizing your losses.

I’ve seen lots of players who once they see a flop heads-up are almost desperate to get there money in, it might come down to pressure I don’t know, but it has forced me to change my tactics, which is probably a good thing anyway.

I used to win heads-up on pure aggression (which I found very demanding mentally and emotionally), constantly chipping away at my opponents stack, now though with players ready to get there money in, I find it far easier to just sit back and take a moment or so when the actions on you to asses the situation and when your ahead to let your opponent hang themselves by either going all-in on middle pair or committing so much of there stack that they are in real trouble from then on.

October 29, 2007 Posted by | Sit-N-Go's 2 | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Biggest Win So Far…

I’ve just come first in a home poker tournament winning my biggest poker earnings from a single tournament so far, £20 from a £3 buy-in.

The crazy thing is I went in the intention to just watch and maybe deal for everyone but got too excited as people started to take their seats so I bought in, and I’m very glad I did.

There where a few irregularities, but nothing to major so it was actually a really good tournament, and I surprised myself by how much I was enjoying it. I tried to make sure some key rules where upheld, and in the most part they where, though a couple of people kept removing there cards or chips from the table and there where a few attempts to make incorrect bets. The only real nightmare was that almost everyone was acting out of turn, especially when they wanted to fold.

I amassed a nice lead, winning my first 3 hand, but after awhile with the chip lead, I started to loose concentration so lost the lead, I regained my composure though and kept playing solidly, gradually building my stack and knocking people out until it became heads-up.

After a few bouts heads-up, I landed AJo and hit top pair with the jack on the flop, I raised my opponent all-in and he called, the turn paired is 7, but my jacks held up giving me the win.

I look forward to the next game they host, besides a few issues with the blinds and the almost constant acting out of turn it was a pretty well run game, certainly compared to some games I have witnessed.

October 25, 2007 Posted by | Home Poker | , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

18 Person – NL Sit-N-Go Victory

Just completed my first 18 person NL Sit-N-Go tournament, and I am delighted to say that I took first place, it was a battle though (especially shorthanded) lasting just over two hours.

As the blinds got higher and higher I realized that a quote from Phil Gordon rings very true, “you are never as ahead as you think you are in NL hold’em”.

I can’t think of much to write about the game here, now that its over I have forgotten most of it, but I was put to a huge decision (whats new, lol) when 5 handed which I’ve documented on the Home Poker Tourney forums.

http://forums.homepokertourney.com/index.php/topic,12218.0.html

October 24, 2007 Posted by | Sit-N-Go's 2 | , , , , | Leave a comment

NL Victory

Just had another great game on the $1 + 20c NL tables. There was nothing unusual at first but around the 5 handed stage, we had one lunatic who went all-in hand after hand on blatant steels for around four or five consecutive hands, he had even lost the chip lead through this behaviour a few hands ago, and still did the same thing. Thankfully someone called him and put themselves at risk, they called with a hand I wouldn’t QJs I think, but they won out and got rid of the lunatic for us.

The game got back to normal for awhile then. I just tried to keep focused and played my some good poker, it paid off as eventual I made it past the bubble, with the clear chip leader holding around $4k ahead of me and a very vulnerable short stack who only held around $1k maybe even less.

The worse thing was as soon as I held a good hand, from pocket 9’s all the way up to pocket q’s, the chip leader would go all-in, and (chatted about it to him, afterwards) there is no way I’m risking 2nd place price money by going all-in with even pocket queens.

Eventually though the short stack is forced in and it becomes heads-up, by this point me and the chip leader have been chatting a little now and then, and after a few rounds of me almost taking the lead from him, I jokingly tell him I’m a bit of a heads-up specialist, I replies saying that he’s “noticed I’ve changed it up a bit”.

We battle at it for awhile, with me soon taking the lead, but I blow it hopelessly not long into by calling the wrong all-in, If I recall correctly he scored an ace on the turn giving him the lead again with a massive margin of comfort.

As you may be accustomed to by now though, I kept pushing back at him and eventually came even… a few hands down the line I had the lead again. A few more large pots come my way and my opponent goes all-in, this pot would give him a great chance at a come back, so I’m a bit worried, but call anyway sensing my pocket 9’s are good, he holds pocket 7’s and neither of us improve so I take the win.

This victory has come at a perfect time as I was feeling a bit down about my lack of aggression in earlier games today, (even posted about it on HPT), but I managed to pull myself out of it and this win will no doubt boost my confidence a little more.

This win coupled with a couple 3rd place finishes earlier as moved me beyond a couple of bad runs where I finished 4th twice and even 5th once yesterday and as now put me a little over $2 ahead of my deposit amount.

This is what I’ve been waiting for, now I can play and without worrying about falling behind again if I don’t make the money. With any luck I’ll make some more cashes tomorrow and start to increase my bankroll so I can think about buying into some large buy-in tournaments.


				
                

October 19, 2007 Posted by | Sit-N-Go's 2 | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Recomposed

I told you I don’t like to finish on a loss. After a break and a pizza I was recomposed and went back for another heads-up game, taking 1st place in twenty minutes.

I’m pleased to have got a win back so I’m not even, but I would be feeling amazing if I hadn’t have blown those two earlier games.

I will be Looking forward to getting into a routine of these heads-up tournaments.

October 15, 2007 Posted by | Sit-N-Go's 2 | , , , , | 2 Comments

2nd Heads-Up Win

If you haven’t guessed by the title I did decide to do another, the chance of reducing my bankroll deficit so quick and by a relatively large amount was irresistible.

Thankfully it paid off and I won. This one was over a little quicker then the last, but I have to admit I nearly lost it to my opponent pretty early on. Thankfully I realized however that he was better (against me anyway) after the flop, so I put as much pressure on pre-flop as possible, I went from nearly always raising pre-flop to raising every hand pre-flop and that seemed to work for awhile.

The next move was to throttle down if I missed the flop and generally call or check is action in case he had something. When I was sure I was in the lead or sensed my opponent was on a bluff I put the hammer down.

After gaining a nice margin of error on the cheap lead and having some flops that landed in my favor a few times, I think my opponent was tilted, as they started to be a bit reckless.

The final hand was my full house jacks over sixes which cracked my opponents flopped pair of tens.

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

My 1st Headsup Tourney

Just won my first heads-up tournament online, very pleased. At the start I wasn’t totally confident but I knew I’d have a chance, although it was a bit of a battle at times, my opponent managed to re-take the chip lead from me once, but thankfully I soon got it back.

The final hand came down to me putting him all-in with A2s, he held AK, I was dominated but caught a deuce on the turn and without improvement on the river it was all over.

It was only a $2 buy-in, so after the fee I only scored $1.80 in profit but it was badly needed. I’m tempted to buy-in for another, but I don’t want to loose what I’ve just won, haven’t decided yet. As soon as I’m back above my deposit amount I think I’ll hit these heads-up tournaments regularly, as I think I’m a bit of a shorthanded specialist actually, although I do tend to throw it away occasionally.

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