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Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Showing too much respect!

The image that you forecast to your opponents at the table is an important factor when they are up against you in a hand. Last week's poker night is a fine example:

I had a solid evening of poker, play lasted just over 5hours and I never found all my chips in the middle once, even though before the first hand was dealt I declared to my poker mates "I will guarantee and show 3 stone cold bluffs for the night". So they knew I would, they just didn't know when, this worked well in my favour because I was getting loose callers when I had the Nuts, and players folding to bluffs.

I felt I played loose aggressive, and the only thing I would change is the unnecessary flops I pay to see. There were many stages in the night where the best cards I received was like 3h 9h, and I would call small raises just to see the flop - even though I folded when I missed, the calls chipped away from my towers of chips. My mental goal was to stay patient, focused and 'incontrol', and by this I wanted to keep it strictly business and not make too many haphazard big calls. As a result the only story I managed to extract from the evening was against a pretty tight and calculated player, that however makes a few 'over calculated' decisions.
Play was down to 4-handed, I'm in Big Blind and receive A5 (off suit). The player UTG raises R5. Action folds round to me, I re-raise what is essentially 7x BB. He calls after a minute or two of thinking.
*I immediately put him on a mediocre hand (small/ medium pair, medium/ high suited cards). Flop comes [5 6 5]. I make it R21, he RAISES 2x my bet. I feel I'm ahead so I RE-RAISE by R60... Then, out of nowhere he SNAPS ALL IN about R200!!!! And without giving it much thought I FOLD. Possibly because I put him on the small pair and his tight play throughout the night made me cautious. Or because I regard him as one of the more experienced and calculated players at the table.

Even though many players sitting around the table were unsure as to why I LAID IT DOWN, I feel that as chipleader its not really wise to get too involved in hands with 2nd highest stack at the table.

STRATEGIC and FOCUSED are the two words I will be taking with me to the next poker table I find myself at.


It has been weeks since I found the time to post a blog, I was writing my final university exams. They went pretty well, the last paper I wrote today Statistics even had a couple questions relating to poker - I had a good few giggles in the exam room. Anyway thats enough about me, while I was slaving away at the books, I had one eye on the Live Broadcasts of the November 9, WSOP!
Whenever I wasnt infront of the pc watching it live I was getting tweets from the pros, or mobile chip updates on . It was a pleasure watching Martin Staszko and Puis Heinz battle it out for the $8.7million.

I never knew much about Heinz before the final table, but watching the highlights reel, "I run good" -Heinz, was the perfect way to describe his play. The 22 year old German was pretty aggressive when ever he sensed any weakness in his opponent.

 The tournament started with over six thousand players, only 9 of which returned a month or so later on November 9, these included my personal favourite Ben Lamb, Matt Gianetti, Phil Collins, Eoghan O'Dea, Bob Bounahra, Anton Makiievsky and Sam Holden. A young, yet pretty experienced table of potential champions.
The heads up duel between Staszko and Heinz started off a tad uneven with Staszko having 117,3 million chips to Heinz 88.6 million chips - action went back and forth for 119 hands. Which makes the victory an even sweeter one with Heinz playing pure heads up, and being the more aggressive of the two, which ultimately won him the Bracelet.This hand is what crippled Stasko's stack:
Staszko limped in from the button and Heinz raised to 7.9 million in the big blind. Staszko called it pretty quickly, the flop came 10c 7c Ks and Heinz continued out with 8.2 million. The Czech was having none of it, though, and he raised to 17.5 million total, sending the decision back to Heinz. He spent a few moments thinking, then leaned back in his chair and sipped his water as he pondered. He shuffled chips for a bit, then leaned back over the rail to shoot a glance across the felt. A few seconds later, he announced his all-in reraise for about 70 million total!
Now it was Staszko with the decision, and he doesn't normally tank for the camera. Indeed, the call came just a minute later and the cards were on their backs with Heinz at risk.
Heinz: Ah Qh
Staszko: Qc 9c
"He's ahead!" Heinz's fans began to get giddy as they leaned in and gazed up at the monitors. The ace-queen was indeed the best hand, but Staszko was drawing live to the clubs and the nines left in the deck.
The turn was the 3h. Camp Heinz burst into another celebration as their guy was just one card away from a monster double. He just needed to fade Staszko's draws. The river was black, but it was the 6s, and Heinz and his rail enjoyed a big celebration together. After that hand, heinz was back in commanding lead with 161.5 million to Staszko's 44.4 million.

The tournament end with Ac Ks vs 10c 7c. A very well played and well deserved tournament!