Sunday, December 28, 2008

REVIEW OF THE POKER YEAR

Neteller: Last week $6; Current $6
PokerStars: Last week $82; Current $82 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $75; Current $60 (-15)
LuckyAce: Last week; $140; Current $140 (-)
Ladbrokes: Last week; $22; Current $20 (-2)

Total = $288 (-17)

Profit on the year: $358

Still not playing much. I lost a little bit at Limit with a bad run, some of which I've won back playing $5 SnG's. However, compared to what I used to play, I'm not doing much - maybe 3/4 hours per week.

It is instructive to look back at the previous year end review. At that time, I had just moved from 1/2 Limit to SnG's and was looking to see if I could move up the ladder. I've subsequently had a feel around at a few things including tournaments, but in the end I think I like the SnG format best at the moment.

Highlights of the year were running the dreaded "Kenn" damned close in the Raise the River league series and winning the first of the face-to-face league finals at the local Cricket Club.

The latter continue to be good fun. I'm currently running 2nd after 6 of the 10 league games. I'm going to have to develop a strategy to counter the current leader though - he's running ahead of me using a loose aggressive approach with a good appreciation of the styles of the players he is up against. Still, having a very tight image (as I do) has its advantages.

Early in the latest game, I was heavily committed with a set on the flop when another player hit a low flush on the turn. My subsequent big bet convinced this normally congenital caller to fold, convinced I had the flush too with an Ace. I didn't disabuse him :-)

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

VICTORY! :-)

Neteller: Last week $6; Current $6
PokerStars: Last week $94; Current $82 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $112; Current $75 (-37)
LuckyAce: Last week; $140; Current $140 (-)
Ladbrokes: Last week; $0; Current $22 (-)

Total = $312 (-37)

I have continued to only play spasmodically - donking off some money on S&G's on FT. Not on my "A game" there I'm afraid, but I made some of it back playing some Limit.

The victory came in the League Final of the game at the local Cricket Club. We played for 5 hours last Sunday and I eventually took it down. It was a bit hairy around the bubble, but my greater experience at Head's Up play made all the difference in the end. Good fun too and we are going to have another one finishing during the Christmas holidays.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

IT'S ALL GONE QUIET OVER HERE.

Neteller: Last week $6; Current $6
PokerStars: Last week $94; Current $82 (-12)
Full Tilt: Last week $93; Current $112 (+9)
LuckyAce: Last week; $140; Current $140 (-)
Ladbrokes: Last week; $0; Current $22 (+22)

Total = $352 (+19)

Profit on month: $19

Profit on year: $375

I haven't posted on the blog for a few weeks because there has been very little to report. Because of various changes in circumstances (playing more with my folk group being one of them) I haven't played much poker this month. What little I have played hasn't actually been bad.

I won the "Blogger" tournament on Sunday for the first time in ages. It was made more interesting by the presence of a couple of players we didn't know. They turned out to be very loose ... but lucky. I made it to the Head's Up stage against one of them with about twice his stack. Given his penchant for going large with any Ace (he got away with this on a couple

of occasions) I just waited for him and he duely obliged by going all in with Ax when I had AKs. X didn't hit the spot thank the poker Ghods! This was a welcome little boost to the Stars wedge which had been slowly declining.

Ladbrokes has reappeared because I had $2 left there. I played a $2 sng and won it and then a $5 sng and won that too so I can now afford a few of the $4 tourneys again when (if) I ever have the time. Interestingly I had an email from Laddies today saying they were lowering their rake to 5%. I wonder if this will generate them any more action. It is certainly very slow on there at them moment.

The face to face league games at the local cricket club have become quite entertaining. There are three of us who play "properly" (I'm currently running a close 3rd of them at the top of the table). A couple more guys are too loose, particularly early on but give some thought to what they are doing. One friend of mine is too weak/tight and always "waiting for cards". Nothing I say can persuade him of the error of his ways. He is unlikely to change soon since last week he finally got a huge run of cards and won! Some of the others are now beginning to see the importance of preserving chips to reach the later stages and acting on it. The "League Final", where we start with 5000 chips and 100 for each place in the final league table, should be interesting.

I'm off on holiday next week, so that's it for October!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

PATIENCE

Neteller: Last week $6; Current $6
PokerStars: Last week $115; Current $94 (-21)
Full Tilt: Last week $93; Current $93
LuckyAce: Last week; $102; Current $140 (+38)

Total = $333 (+17)

Profit on month: $89

Profit on year: $356

A minor Limit downturn, losing the blogger and bunging the $5 for the entertaining looking RaisetheRiver tournament saw me take a little drop on Stars. This was more than offset by some winning Limit on LuckyAce. In preparation for the RtR tourney I played a 6 man SnG and won it, so I'm fired up and raring to go :-) "Team Sensible" all the way!

The good Limit session on LuckyAce exemplified that most important of poker virtues, patience. I played 83 hands before I did anything more than see the odd flop from the Big Blind and fold. Then I hit a few hands, made some money with them and left.

I played a couple of small tournaments but went out in both to my current bete noire, QQ being called by Ax and hitting. My day will come.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

A NEW SKIN

Neteller: Last week $104; Current $6
PokerStars: Last week $106; Current $115
Full Tilt: Last week $93; Current $93
LuckyAce: Last week; $90; Current $102

Total = $316 (+11)

I bunged the $90 from Neteller into LuckyAce, a Pacific skin. I haven't had the time to play much there much, but at least when I do I'll be getting some bonus eventually. There isn't a lot of activity, certainly compared to FT or Stars.

A lot of the Raise the River folk complain about Stars, but I seem to run ok there. A few of us got together on Friday night to play an $8.80 tournament and see who could get the deepest. We all struggled but I managed to come through. At around the first break I had about 7xBB and went all in three hands running with 44, AQs and KK. Nobody called me, SIGH. Then finally I did get called with KK, tripled up and I was away and running. I was "in the money" when I went out 89th (of over 1,100). Some guy bet 3xBB, I went all in with my KK and got 3 (count them the beggars) callers. AK, JJ and rubbish. An Ace came on the flop and my tourney was over. Sad, as if I'd held on that one I'd have had a good chance of the final table and some decent money. So it goes.

Meanwhile I'm still running 2nd in the Thursday night face to face game. The hand that killed me was irritating. I was dealer, raised with KJ and got 1 caller. The flop was J 6 3 rainbow so I went all in. Called by KQ. Predictably, he hit a queen on the river. I still had a few hundred chips so I went all in without looking on the next hand...checked it out... AA! Same guy who rivered me hit a straight. I love the game really. :-(

Saturday, September 13, 2008

A NICE LITTLE EARNER

Neteller: Last week $8; Current $104
PokerStars: Last week $103; Current $106
Full Tilt: Last week $93; Current $93
Ladbrokes: Last week; $17; Current $2

Total = $305 (+53)

I had a really nice little session at .5/1 Limit on Stars this week which saw me win $66 like shelling peas. Lovely it was. 35% seeing the flops, callings stations to a man and I hit enough hands to make it pay. Just to highlight the difference, everything else I played this week was break even, usually for lack of hands to play with.

I also had a few punts on tourneys on Laddies, but no joy. There is little action there for anything other than the tourneys, so I'm off. I've closed the Inter account as well, so that, with $60 from Stars, I can build up a little roll to open an account on another site.

Since I'm playing Limit a fair bit, I may as well be clocking up some bonus money as well. I'm sizing up "LuckyAce" which is a Pacific skin (I've already had a Pacific account). This will also allow me to get the "poker indicator" software that is the equivalent of "tournament indicator" which I use for sit-and-goes. It seems to have everything I want in terms of real time info on opponents. I'm not bothered about getting something like Poker Tracker or Poker Office (which I used to use) as I couldn't be bothered doing the analysis that gets the best out of the software. I'm a recreational player.

Meanwhile the second week of the face-to-face league games produced exactly the same 1,2,3,4 as previous week. The chap who has finished ahead of me for both weeks has been milking the weakest player very effectively - I'm going to have to work on that :-)

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Not a lot of change.

Neteller: Last week $8; Current $8
PokerStars: Last week $102; Current $103
Full Tilt: Last week $82; Current $93
Inter: Last week $31; Current $31
Ladbrokes: Last week; $21; Current $17

Total = $252 (+8)

Back at work with a vengeance now and predictably less time for poker as a result. I played a bit of limit, but had a downswing after being up about $40 or so. The usual variance thing, where everyone started sucking out on me. AK v A7, he hits the 7, that sort of thing. So it goes.

Only one tournament, my by now regular $4.40 on Laddies which I lost when my 99 was called by A10 and he hit everything ending up with a full house. I think I really need to find another couple of 200 or so player tournaments that I can play at the same time. Failing that perhaps a 180 man sng donk on FT? Funny enough I had a similar exit in the blogger on FT last weekend when Zagga called my 6's with A10 and hit a full house.

The face to face game on a Thursday night has now gone into a league format with a final on a Sunday in 10 week's time, which should be fun. I came 2nd in the first one, so not a bad start.

I got off to a good start (unusual for me, I normally barely play a hand in the first hour) when my 88 hit a 10 10 8 flop. Two punters had 10's and fortunately the board didn't pair, which was the thing that worried me.

I got slammed later though when my two K's were called by two players (despite a 6x BB raise) and Aces appeared on the flop. Predictably both callers had Ax. However, I know that's how this game goes.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Tournaments

Neteller: Last week $598; Current $8
PokerStars: Last week $96; Current $102
Full Tilt: Last week $78; Current $82
Inter: Last week $31; Current $31
Ladbrokes: Last week; $9; Current $21

Total = $244 (+22)
Profit on month = $80
Profit on year = $267


Since it wasn't doing anything, I've taken $590 out of the Neteller account and invested it in some furniture!

This leaves me with more or less my profit for the current year, which is enough to bankroll what I am playing.

I didn't play much Limit this week, hence the minimal movement there. I did have time to play some tournaments on Laddies though...3 x $4.40 $1,000 guaranteed and 1 $6.60 $2,500 guaranteed. I finished 15th of 262 in one of the $1,000 ones and 28th of 392 in the "$2,500 one. I definitely think my game is improving at tournaments and that a serious final table
position should come. (I'll spare you the full "bad beat" tale from my 15th place, but suffice it to say that the charm of 65 off is wearing a bit thin with me currently!).

The trick is to find tournaments with around 200-300 players I think as I don't want to be up all night playing these, which is what happens in the big money ones on Stars and Full Tilt. So for that purpose Laddies is fine - especially as I'm playing with their money!

It's amazing to see how much Laddies has deteriorated since I started playing there some 3 years ago. It used to be full of mad Scandies punting furiously on the Limit and No Limit cash games, but now there is a virtual desert there. The only players they have seem to be for the tournament games - fine by me since that is what I want at the moment. Hence the desperate attempts to lure back former players I suppose. The site can't exactly be a licence to print money at the moment though I wouldn't have thought.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

ON THE UP

Neteller: Last week $598; Current $598
PokerStars: Last week $64; Current $96
Full Tilt: Last week $56; Current $78
Inter: Last week $31; Current $31
Ladbrokes: Last week; $14; Current $9

Total = $812 (+49)

I haven't played a lot of poker this week (a nice trip away to Whitby) but what I have has been successful, with progress on both Full Tilt and Stars.

I've only been going on this routine for three weeks now, but already I think it is the right thing for me. I am just finding nice loose .5/1 Limit tables on FT and Stars and waiting for my time. So far it's been working like a charm.

I'm going to use up the few dollars I have in Laddies and Inter on tournaments and see how it goes thereafter.

Meanwhile the face-to-face game at the cricket club is going on a league basis from September with a final tournament on a Sunday in November. Should be good fun.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

TILT!

Neteller: Last week $598; Current $598
PokerStars: Last week $31; Current $64
Full Tilt: Last week $56; Current $56
Inter: Last week $31; Current $31
Ladbrokes: Last week; $23; Current $14

Total = $778 (+24)

Well, I have pretty much achieved what I set out to do this week, poker wise. I played a bit of Limit through the week and made a profit at it, bumping up my Stars account and at the weekend I played a couple of tournaments on Laddies.

I played two $4.40 $1,000 guaranteed tourneys and went quite deep in them, but on both occasions I went out before the cash. Looking at them afterwards, my play was sound, I just got unlucky at the wrong times...such is the way with these things.

I blew my "player points" on BigSlick on a $2,000 tourney and my play on that did annoy me on reflection. There were a very large number of sit outs on the tournament and I picked my way through this quite nicely with a decent stack just as the sit outs were being eliminated. However on the table there was a player who had irritated me with the irrational bets he was making followed up by irritating comments in the chat box. I ended up going all in with top pair, top kicker over his bet on a 3 flush flop. He called and had the flush and I was out. Daft - and that's exactly how I felt.

Let that be a lesson learned - switch off the chat box!

Saturday, August 09, 2008

A SIMPLE PLAN

Neteller: Last week $437; Current $598
PokerStars: Last week $35; Current $31
Full Tilt: Last week $63; Current $56
Inter: Last week $31; Current $31
Ladbrokes: Current $23

Total = $754

I've been refining my plan over the holidays and decided that what I am going to do is play .5/1 Limit on Stars through the week and use half of any profits (!) to play tournament/SNG poker over the weekend. I'm hoping this will suit me as, when I am at work, I tend to be a bit tired in the evenings and don't seem to be able to play sharp enough poker for SNGs / tournies (at least not enough to make a consistent profit).

I've also ditched the iPoker network sites, as they are much tighter than Stars at the .5/1 Limit tables for some reason. I've got some "player points" on them that I can use for tournaments, but after that I'll leave them out.

Laddies has reappeared above because the sent me a gratuitous $10 and a seat at a $1000 guaranteed tournament. I finished 10th of 633 in the tournament for $20 which was nice.

Two hands of note. Right on the bubble I was lying 15th of 61 with a decent stack. I'm dealt QQ in the Big Blind. Under the gun (TAG with shortish stack) makes it 2xBB to go. Small blind, who has a medium stack goes all in. Tempting, but I fold as I don't want to be racing against AK or even worse a higher pair. Small blind wins with AA v AJ.

The hand I went out with I was 8th of 10 on the final table with 55K chips and blinds 5K/10K. Mid position player (no reads - hadn't played him till now) makes it 20K to go. I have 66 on the button. I went all in. He called and showed A10 off. He hit a 10 on the flop and I was out. On reflection I think this was a poor all in by me. I don't think I should have gone over the top of a raise but waited for a hand where I was the first aggressor to go all in. I was marginal favourite but I think I'd have been better off waiting on reflection.

Meanwhile the face-to-face game at the cricket club on Thursday nights continues to be good fun. I had a very fortuitous win on the last hand this week when we were down to 3 with the top two chip counts cashing. There was nothing much between the three stacks but I was marginally 3rd and in the big blind. 2nd biggest stack went all in (with A3 it transpired), top stack folded in the small blind and I insta-called with...er...58. The flop came A69. Turn is a 3. The dealer looked at me and said, "the 7 of hearts" and damn me if that's not what he turned over!

Monday, July 21, 2008

A SCOTTISH TRIUMPH!!

Neteller: Last week $437; Current $437 (-)
PokerStars: Last week $35; Current $31 (-4)
Full Tilt: Last week $57; Current $63 (+6)
Inter: Last week $31; Current $31 (-)
Big Slick: Last week 246; Current 236 (-10)

Total = $851 (-8)

My poker highlight of the week has nothing to do with me.

Mary ("mair") on the Raise the River forum has won the individual prize at the APAT inter-forum tournament in Blackpool. This was an absolutely superb effort in a tournament with 200 starters, played over two days. I followed this along with Paddy Harrington's progress in the open - making it a double. Sadly I didn't have any money on Mary however (though I did on Paddy). An honourable mention also to Lou Saban who went out 10th (on the bubble) when her A10 was felled by the mighty 98, hitting two 9's on the flop.

The Raise the River team did really well too, finishing 2nd overall to Bristol (out of 20 teams). So - great stuff all round.

Meanwhile what poker I have played personally has been sadly less thrilling. I've come to the conclusion that I'm not going to make my fortune as a sit-and-go player. I am +ev at them, but not at a rate that means I can win anything much. Basically I need to concentrate hard to do well in them and I haven't the energy after a day at work.

Sooooooooooooo.

I'm going to investigate another strategy. I'm going to multi-table some limit to make a bit of dosh during the week and use some of it to play small tournaments. I know I can win at low level limit with very little need for concentration. Then, when I have the time and energy, I'll have a go at some tourneys at the weekend. These are much more fun and lucrative too if I can be successful. It's a plan.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

I BLAME ANDY MURRAY!

Neteller: Last week $437; Current $437 (-)
PokerStars: Last week $45; Current $35 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $57; Current $57 (-)
Inter: Last week $31; Current $31 (-)
Big Slick: Last week 264; Current 246 (-18)

Total = $861 (-18)

Stats for the week make less than thrilling reading...

Played = 15.

1st = 2; 2nd = 1; 4th = 3; 5th = 2; 6th = 2; 7th = 3; 8th = 1; 10th = 1.

I started the week well enough with the two good cashes coming in the first 5 games, but I then hit a losing run of 7 (the longest I can remember for a good while). They also included going out very early in a number of games (10th is inexcusable). The reason was very simple. I was playing and watching Murray's games on the BBC at the same time. This is not conducive to good poker and I proved it. This is a mistake I don't intend to repeat. However I managed to end this run with a win and this put me back up near some sort of respectability for the week.

Still, I was on a winner with Spain in Euro 08 - a fiver at 5/1, converted very nicely by Mr Torres.

I also won my face-to-face game for the 3rd week out of 4, so I suppose cash wise I'm up for the week. I'm doing my best to try to up the standard here - telling folk about good websites and passing on poker books etc. The standard of some of the other players is definitely improving. It's good to see more players than just me picking off the calling stations.

I have to admit to a huge suck out on my final hand though. I ended up heads up against one of the most improved players with a 5 - 1 stack advantage to me. I was grinding him down when I copped 88 in the small blind, raised 3BB and he went all in and I called. He showed AA. The flop came 567 rainbow! Turn...Q. River...9! To his credit he took it better than I would have done!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

A WIN AT LAST

Neteller: Last week $437; Current $437 (-)
PokerStars: Last week $35; Current $35 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $57; Current $57 (-)
Inter: Last week $31; Current $31 (-)
Big Slick: Last week 247; Current 247 (+17)

Total = $879 (+17)

Profit on the month = $157

Profit on the year = $312

The poker week went pretty much like the previous one. I bobbed along neither winning or losing much with 2nd's and 3rd's offsetting losing games until, finally, glory be, I won one! Therein is my profit for the week = happiness :-)

The stats read...

10 man $5.5 games = 16

1st = 1; 2nd = 2; 3rd = 5; 4th = 2; 5th = 2; 6th = 2; 7th = 2.

So, I seem to be able to cash about 50% of the time, which has to be reasonable. The trick is to turn more cash spots into first places - I will put in some work on that aspect of the game.

If I can put in another profitable month at $5.5 games then I'll have a think about moving up to $10 games. I don't think they are especially tougher but obviously the swings in bankroll are liable to be larger. In the last month my longest losing sequence was 4 and my longest winning sequence was 4 also. Sharkscope has me at an roi of 15% at Big Slick, which is quite good considering it contains my big downswing in May.

Onwards and upwards!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

"A pair of sixes."

Neteller: Last week $437; Current $437 (-)
PokerStars: Last week $45; Current $35 (-10)
Full Tilt: Last week $57; Current $57 (-)
Inter: Last week $31; Current $31 (-)
Big Slick: Last week 249; Current 247 (-2)

Total = $857 (-12)

Pretty much standstill stuff on the week, mainly due to being sadly unable to convert any of my cash finishes into a 1st.

The stats go...

$5.5 10 man games.

Played: 12; 2nd = 2; 3rd = 4; 4th = 2; 5th = 1; 6th = 1; 7th = 1; 8th = 1.

$5.5 6 man games.

Played: 2: 4th = 2.

One game where I finished 4th was particularly irritating. With the blinds at 150/300 I went all in with QQ, got called by AA and lost. I battled my way back into it, went all in with JJ and was called by Aces again. No way back that time...SIGH.

Still at least I am still cashing 50% of the time, so I should make progress if I continue playing to the same standard.

The headline refers to an amusing little incident at the local cash game the other night (I won again). One of the novice players called down someone placing big bets on every street. The bettor shows top pair top kicker (AK) and the caller announces "a pair of sixes"...(Bettor looks triumphant and reaches for the pot)..."to go with that one there!"

Saturday, June 14, 2008

ANOTHER GOOD WEEK

Neteller: Last week $437; Current $437 (-)
PokerStars: Last week $45; Current $45 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $57; Current $57 (-)
Inter: Last week $31; Current $31 (-)
Big Slick: Last week 141; Current 249 (+108)

Total = $869 (+108)

The improvement in results since I refocussed my game has continued with another excellent week. I concentrated completely on $5.5 10 player SnG's. From the 19 I played the results were:

1st = 3; 2nd = 6; 3rd = 2; 4th = 1; 5th = 1; 6th = 3; 7th = 2;10th = 1.

Cashing in over 50% of games played, especially with a high concentration of wins and seconds is just what is needed. I was particularly pleased with the way my heads up play worked in the games I won, as I was behind in all three of them when the final phase started. It's a vital part of the game. Still work to be done there though, as I lost twice as many as I won.

The 10th place finish (funny how you remember the bad beats best) was a tough one. My limped pair of 9's hit a third on the flop. I went all in over a minimum raise and he called me...and hit a backdoor straight. So it goes.

Meanwhile the change of tactics in the live game at the Cricket Club paid off with a win. I limped a lot more hands early on (since there is very little pre flop raising - except from me), picking up a couple of nice pots with decent flops. In the middle and late phase I picked off the calling stations mercilessly and that was enough to see me home.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

TURN AROUND IN FORM

Neteller: Last week $437; Current $437 (-)
PokerStars: Last week $47; Current $45 (-2)
Full Tilt: Last week $57; Current $57 (-)
Inter: Last week $31; Current $31 (-)
Big Slick: Last week 155; Current 141 (+46)

Total = $761 (+44)

The week started with my lousy run of form in the Blogger continuing when my AK ran into AQ and was beaten by a four flush on the river.

I then decided to put in a bit of work on my game, rereading the Moshman book on mid-blind play in particular and it paid immediate dividends with a decided improvement in results.

I only played 8 ten man $5 games but the results were...

1st = 2; 2nd = 2; 3rd = 1; 5th = 3.

One of the reasons was that I was able to ride out bad beats such as AA losing to J10 off hitting a straight and KQs losing to K10 hitting a 10 on the river, because they happened when I was sufficiently ahead to have some chips left to play with. I ended up winning the KQs game for instance.

The main things I am doing better are noting the passive players so that I can attack them at the mid and higher blind levels and going over the top of mid and high blind limpers. This is putting me in a much better position in games.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

A GRIM MONTH

Neteller: Last week $437; Current $437 (-)
PokerStars: Last week $54; Current $47 (-7)
Full Tilt: Last week $60; Current $57 (-3)
Inter: Last week $31; Current $31 (-)
Big Slick: Last week 155; Current 141 (-13)

Total = $717 (-23)

Loss on month = $106

Profit for year = +$155

Well, the merry month of May hasn't been very merry for my poker. That must be the worst monthly setback on my roll for a long time.

This definitely calls for a rethink. I will try another month of SnG's and if I don't get the bankroll heading north again, I'm going to have to change my game.

It's difficult to know if it's my play or if I am just having a "bad trot". There is plenty of evidence to support the "bad trot" theory. I went out on the first hand of the Blogger when I went all in with KK v AK - he hit his 3 outer. I had AA beaten by AJs hitting the flush. A6s v A3 he hit a 3. AA v AK, he hit a straight. QQ v K7s he hit a flush. "Read 'em and weep" as they say.

So, retrench and like Robert the Bruce, try, try again I suppose.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

BREAKEVEN

Neteller: Last week $437; Current $437 (-)
PokerStars: Last week $41; Current $54 (+13)
Full Tilt: Last week $60; Current $60 (-)
Inter: Last week $31; Current $31 (-)
Big Slick: Last week 168; Current 155 (-13)

Total = $740 (-)

Well it's better than losing as I have been recently. Not much point in a breakdown as some of my play has involved cash games (for the first time in ages and not particularly successfully).

The positive side came from a couple of tournaments that I finished well up in: 2nd in a 45 man one and 3rd in a 27 man one.

Bad beat of the week came when my 10 9 suited hit a flush on the flop only to be beaten by the mighty Q4 off making a full house. SIGH.

So, I might continue with the odd multi-table sng on Stars. I'll also have another go on Big Slick but I haven't had much luck there so far.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

A DISAPPOINTING WEEK

Neteller: Last week $352; Current $437 (+85)
PokerStars: Last week $41; Current $41 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $60; Current $60 (-)
Inter: Last week $31; Current $31 (-)
Big Slick: Last week 221; Current 168 (-53)

Total = $740 (-53)

Played

$11 10 Man SnG's: Played 7; 3rd = 1; 5th = 3; 6th = 2; 8th = 1.
$5.5 6 Man SnG's: Played 2; 2nd = 1; 4th = 1.
$5.5 30 Man SnGs: Played 1; 5th.

League game: 4/7.

A very disappointing week's Poker all round. After coming 3rd in the first game of the week, I couldn't make progress in any of them. That 3rd would have been better had it not been for the cooler of the week. I had 77 v 66. The flop came 76Q. Turn 10; River 6!!!! Come on...his one and only out. That set the tone. I wasn't able to hit a flop to save my life for the rest of the week.

Come the league game on Friday night, morale was low, so I was unsurprised that I was overtaken at the death by kenn. Funny enough the key hand was one I had nothing to do with. Like myself, with 5 folk left, kenn was shortstacked and he went all in on the button with A6s. It looked curtains for him, when he was called by A10 but a 6 on the river saw him double up and he went on to finish 2nd while I was 4th. Good fun though and like General McArthur - I will return! I like playing these games as the standard is good, so there is a sense of achievement in doing well in them.

That is an interesting point. I'm having trouble winning outright in the face to face game at the local cricket club. I cash regularly but winning is difficult. The problem is that the standard of the other players varies from dreadful to, well "a bit average". Two or three of the "a bit average" players tend to be able to double up and again, against the dreadful ones, which makes them difficult to catch up with when I am only playing a quarter of the hands they are. I'm going to have to think out a strategy to cope with this. I think I'm going to have to try a loose aggressive game early on, which isn't my normal style at all. I usually play very tight aggressive early and then open my range as the blinds get higher. I need to adapt my game to the people I am playing against. Obvious really.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

BUBBLING UNDER

Neteller: Last week $592; Current $352 (240 to BS)
Virgin: E88; E88 (-)
PokerStars: Last week $47; Current $41 (-6)
Full Tilt: Last week $60; Current $60 (-)
Inter: Last week $36; Current $31 (-5)
Big Slick: Last week 240; Current 221 (-19)

Total = $793 (-30)

Played

10 player $10+1 games: 9; 1st = 1; 2nd = 1; 4th = 3; 5th = 2; 6th = 2.

10 player $5.5 game: 4th = 1

$4,000 guaranteed: $10+1 71/547 for +$3.5

Bloggerment: 6/11

RtR League: 3/5

The most notable (and irritating) feature of poker this week has been the number of times I've lost on the bubble when I've been in with the best hand. If those hands had gone my way I'd have been in for a comfortable profit instead of a modest loss. I lost with KK beaten by 10 10 on the river; A10s beaten by A5 and 99 beaten by A10. On one of my 5th places my AK v 55 hit an Ace on the flop only for a 5 to appear on the river. SIGH. You have to expect these runs and I expect to see things going positive again soon (well, I hope so anyway).

I had a punt on the $4,000 guaranteed on Friday night after the RtR game. This was an interesting experience. I had made decent progress to be in the money when my all in with AQs was speculatively called by the chip leader with 86 off. He hit an 8 and that was that. Annoying but I'll definitely be back - this was very soft and I'm sure I'm +ev there.

The RtR league game was another tight, if short handed, affair. I eventually lost out in third leaving BurnlyMik and Kenn to fight it out. If Kenn won he's probably gone into the lead, so I'll need to finish ahead of him next week in the final game.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

FALLING OUT OF LOVE WITH CD

Neteller: Last week $40; Current $592 (-)
Virgin: E88; E88 (-)
PokerStars: Last week $47; Current $47 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $60; Current $60 (-)
Inter: Last week $0; Current $36

Total = $823 (+1)

Profit for month = $57
Profit for year = $261

I've played the following this week:

$10+1 10 player SNGs = 5: 3rd = 1; 4th = 1; 5th = 2; 10th = 1.
$5.5 6 player SNGs = 6: 1st = 2; 2nd = 1; 3rd = 1; 4th = 2.

I started the week playing $10 games on CD as planned but the beggars didn't weigh in with the bonus and tournament tokens they had promised, even after I emailed them to point out their non-appearance. They said wait 3 days. I waited 6 and still nothing. That being the case I've bailed out from CD and I'm opening an account on "Big Slick" (another ipoker skin) where Raisetheriver.com have a good deal going.

In the meantime Interpoker had offered me $20 to make a comeback there, so I thought I may as well. That proved profitable in the "sixpack" games and made up for the losses I had on CD.

I was a bit annoyed with myself in the game I finished 10th in. I let a maniac I had position on irritate me. He'd doubled up and a bit more betting on air and I couldn't resist calling his all in on the button against my big blind when I had 88. He had K4 off and hit a King on the river. A wicked bad beat, but I shouldn't have been in the hand so early on (and I knew it when I played it...SIGH).

Meanwhile I finished 2nd to BurnleyMik in the RtR league game to hold on to 1st place with 2 more games to go. However any one of three players could still beat me if they get the right run of results. Tense stuff :-)

Saturday, April 26, 2008

A BIT OF SHUNTING ABOUT.

Neteller: Last week $40; Current $394 (+354)
Virgin: E88; E88 (-)
PokerStars: Last week $149; Current $47 (-102)
CD: Last week $37; Current $233 (+196)
Full Tilt: Last week $243; Current $60 (-183)

Total = $822 (+73)

Since there is a lot of stuff out there saying that the iPoker network is very soft for SnG's, I decided to play some $10+1 games on there and compare them with the FT games I have been playing this year. The results from only 4 games were decisive. While I only managed four games, I won two of them at a canter and there is no doubt whatsoever that they are much softer than the games on FT. In fact I would say that they are directly comparable to the standard on the $5 games on FT (i.e pretty poor - my roi on these is 20%).

That being the case, the decision was easy. I had to change my focus to playing on iPoker. As it happened CD sent me a reload bonus offer including some tokens for tournaments, so that made my decision easier. I've closed the Titan and Littlewoods accounts, moved money out of FT and Stars and reloaded on CD. The RaisetheRiver folk have a useful sounding rakeback type deal with another iPoker skin, so I'll probably move to that after I've done what I can with the CD bonus.

Games played were:

90 player $3.3 games = 2; 37/90 and 13/90. Close but no cigar.
9 player $5.5 games = 5. 1st = 1; 2nd = 1; 3rd = 1; 4th = 1; 5th = 1.
10 player $10+1 games = 4. 1st = 2; 7th = 1; 9th = 1.

Despite the fact that I had a good week, you tend to remember the bad beats most vividly (though when you're winning overall they are much easier to bear). I had KQs all in late on beaten by K5o hiting a 5. I then had about 400t$ left and caught AA. My all in was called by the same player with 96 off and he beat me with a straight. Oh how I laughed :-(

Nastiest one I saw though was one I wasn't in, thank goodness. A guy hit quad 8's on the flop and was then beaten by quad Queens! Now I wouldn't have wanted to be his cat.

I only finished 3rd in the RtR league game this week, which was won by kenn. He played very well, especially with one hand when we were down to three, kenn, myself and hammerheed. Sadly kenn (who had a big stack from the start due to taking out dD with Aces) had position on me. This told when I raised heavily with AK to try to take out the short stacked hammer and kenn then went all in over the top of me. I couldn't call because in icm terms it was ridiculous to do so, which of course kenn knew. Hammer gave him a damned good fight in the heads up though, despite being short stacked to start with.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

BACK ON TRACK

Neteller: Last week $40; Current $40 (-)
Virgin: E86; E88 (+2)
PokerStars: Last week $149; Current $149 (-)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105 (-)
CD: Last week $32; Current $37 (+-)
Littlewoods: Last week $87; Current $87 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $210; Current $243 (+33)

Total = $749 (+35)

A much better week to report this time. Despite being above $200 I decided to keep playing $5 SnG's, since my roi was much higher than on the $10 ones. This seems to have paid off.

9 player $5.5 games: Played 8: 1st = 2; 2nd = 2; 3rd = 1; 4th = 1; 5th = 1; 6th = 1.

18 player $5.5 game: 5/18.

2 player $2.25 head's up games: 4: 1st = 4.

As an experiment I also played some head's up games and I won all of them. I'm not going to make my fortune from $2 games, but it is interesting to play these and sharpen that part of my game. It looks like there is going to be a challenge on Raise the River for the best score in 20 of these, which will be a good laugh.

Meanwhile in the Raise the River league game I finished 3rd this week, but the winner was the player in joint 2nd place behind me in the table, Mair, so she is now very close behind me in points. The next four weeks look like being an exciting battle.

Mair deserved to win last night as she was on very good form, building up a big stack and then trying to break players by calling their all ins around bubble time. She suffered some setbacks but battled back, still firing away. I lost out when my all in raise with 55 was called by hammerheed, one of whose two high cards hit (so it goes). The dangerous BurnleyMik was out first, so it is unlikely he can catch us now. That takes a serious contender out of the picture.

Meanwhile in my face to face game at the cricket club I was beaten late on in the same way by the same player as last week - my big pocket pair (queens this time) is called by Ace/rag and an Ace falls. Give me strength...or a return to statistical normality!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

A WEEK TO FORGET

Neteller: Last week $40; Current $40 (-)
Virgin: E86; E86 (-)
PokerStars: Last week $166; Current $149 (-17)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105 (-)
CD: Last week $32; Current $37 (+5)
Littlewoods: Last week $87; Current $87 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $252; Current $210 (-42)

Total = $702 (-54)

It's been one of those weeks where I could do no right. They happen.

I've played:

7 x 9 player $10 + 1 games.

2nd = 1; 5th = 3; 6th = 1; 7th = 1; 9th = 1.

Blogger 10th/20.

...which says all that needs to be said really. I hit nothing all week. In the game where I came 9th, I went all in with KK and my opponent had AA. In the very next game I walked a flopped straight into quads.

I got so fed up I went and played some limit for a change, but just broke even.

I even lost in my local game at the cricket club when my all in late on with KK was called by A4. He hit the A on the turn.

You just have to roll with the punches and hope the turn around comes soon.

Meanwhile I came 3rd in the latest RtR league game after an epic battle with BurnleyMik, kenn, and Mair. Mair was very unlucky when her AK lost to Kenn's AQ (hitting two of the ladies no less), but kenn had already come back from the brink of death to be there at all, winning all in after all in with total air. Mik took it down to come into contention with the other two. Good fun, but we could have done with more players.

Friday, April 04, 2008

LEAGUE LEADER!

Neteller: Last week $90; Current $40 (-)
Virgin: E72; E86 (+14)
PokerStars: Last week $171; Current $1 (-17)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105 (-)
CD: Last week $43; Current $32 (-11)
Littlewoods: Last week $87; Current $87 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $248; Current $252 (+4)

Total = $756 (-10)

Best result of the week was winning the friday night League game on "Raise the River", which puts me top of the league after 4 games of 10. Nice one. It was the usual tough battle and came down eventually to Mair, Kenn, BurnleyMik and myself. Kenn was the short stack but he outlasted Mik before eventually succumbing. In the heads up, it was all over in two hands where my AK and then Ax (higher) held up for the win. It will be hard to stay there, as I know they will be gunning for me :-).

I had a go at the 6 player limit games again, but met better opposition than the one I played last week. So it goes.

I managed to go deep in most of the $3 donkaments I played but sadly, no cigar. I was winning the one I finished 12th in, when I made a poor play - calling an all in from a guy with half my stack with an open ended straight draw. I didn't hit, needless to say, and the result put me in trouble. Made hands every time, late in these things - never draws. I know that, but failed to act on it, since I had been running so well. You live and learn.

6 player $5.5 games = 2: 1st = 1; 4th = 1.
6 player limit 5.5 games = 2. 3rd = 2.
9 player $5.5 game = 1. 4th.
9 player $10+1 games = 5: 2nd = 1; 3rd = 1; 6th = 1; 7th = 1.
90 player $3+.3 games = 4: 12th, 13th, 18th, 45th.
18 player $5.5 game = 1: 6th.
Bloggerment: 5/15
RtR league: 1/10

Friday, March 28, 2008

SOME NEW PASTURES DISCOVERED.

Neteller: Last week $90; Current $40 (-)
Virgin: E66; E72 (+6)
PokerStars: Last week $190; Current $171 (-19)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105 (-)
CD: Last week $28; Current $43 (+15)
Littlewoods: Last week $87; Current $87 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $197; Current $248 (+51)

Total = $766 (+50)

Profit this month = $48
Profit this year = $204

Some profitable $5.5 9 player games bumped me over $200 so I played a $10+1 game and won that. Since I had some time this week, (holidays) I had a look around for longer games and found some $3+.3 90 player "headhunter" donk fests on FT. I came 3rd in the first one I entered (+ 8 "heads") which bumped me up nicely. I went deep in the other 3 I played, but didn't make the money. However "heads" claimed meant that I spent almost nothing on entry. Definitely worth revisiting when I have the time as I am surely +ev on these.

I made another discovery totally by accident. I had an hour to kill before going out one night and thought I'd play a quick 6 manner on CD for a change. I found I'd entered a Limit turbo by mistake. I adapted quickly, dusting down my old limit game and won the thing at a canter. The play of the others was atrocious. I just played ABC poker and they were calling down my bets with overcards, bottom pair and damn all. Amazing. I must go back and see if they are this bad all the time or I just got lucky with the table.

I tried a few games on Stars to see if I could bump my roll there back over $200, but no joy. Still, you can't have everything.

9 player $5.5 games = 6. 1st = 1; 3rd = 1; 4th = 2; 6th = 1; 7th = 1.
9 player $10+1 games = 2. 1st = 1; 4th = 1.
90 player $3+.3 games = 4. 3rd, 16th, 25th, 45th.
6 player $6+.6 game = 1. 4th.
6 player (limit) game = 1. 1st.
Bloggerment: 12/33
RtR league: 2/7

Saturday, March 22, 2008

HAUNTED BY JACKS.

Neteller: Last week $90; Current $40 (-50)
Virgin: E50; E69 (+19)
PokerStars: Last week $199; Current $190 (-9)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105 (-)
CD: Last week $28; Current $28 (-)
Littlewoods: Last week $87; Current $87 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $195; Current $197 (+2)

Total = $716 (+12)

A bit of a standstill sort of week. It started well, with a 2nd place finish in the first of the new "Raise the River" league games on Friday nights. These are on Virgin and priced in Euros (I couldn't be bothered translating into dollars). The game went well and I had a long head's up battle with "Kenn", but he got me in the end.

Following that I was looking forward to the blogger on Sunday night but despite playing pretty well, I was shafted by Jacks. First I was rivered by Zagga's Jacks v my Kings. I fought back from that and reached the final table only to have my own Jacks beaten by J10 off which made a straight. So it goes.

I just broke even on the SnG's, but at least I won a couple. It was a shame to go out on the bubble in my one $10 game - my all in with QJ on the button with an M of 7 was called by J10. He rivered the 10 and then added insult to injury by querying my play. I said nothing - no point in trying to wise up the ignorent.

1 x 5.5 18 player game: 6/18.
1 x 10 0 player game: 4th
9 x 5.5 0 player games: 1st = 2; 2nd = 1; 4th = 2; 5th = 2; 7th = 2.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Running bad.

Neteller: Last week $90; Current $90
PokerStars: Last week $206; Current $199 (-7)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105 (-)
CD: Last week $34; Current $28 (-6)
Littlewoods: Last week $87; Current $87 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $216; Current $295 (-21)

Total = $704 (-34)

A poor week, which started with and 8 game losing sequence - my longest ever. The usual thing - key hands on the bubble when KJ beat my AJ with a king on the river; AQs v AJ where he hits 4 of a suit, that kind of crap. I started playing a few 9 player games just to break things up a bit and eventually turned things round. I was -52 on the week at one point, so finishing -34 almost seems like success.

These things have to be expected of course but the result is that I am back playing $5.5 games again which is a bit of a shame.

Still, discipline is everything and I will stick to my plan and wait until I am above $200 on FT before I move up to $10+1 games again.

Stats for the week:

1 x $10+1 6 player: 4th.
6 x $5.5 6 player: 2nd = 1; 3rd = 1; 4th = 1; 5th = 3.
7 x $5.5 9 player: 2nd = 2; 3rd = 3; 4th = 2
1 x $5.5 10 player: 7th.

Conclusions? No wins is poor. Perhaps I should be playing 9/10 man games. I'll ruminate on it.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Ups and Downs

Neteller: Last week $90; Current $90
PokerStars: Last week $189; Current $206 (+17)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105 (-)
CD: Last week $34; Current $34 (-)
Littlewoods: Last week $87; Current $87 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $215; Current $216 (+1)

Total = $738 (+20)

The poker week started really well, with two wins and a second in my $10+1 6 max games on FT. Sadly this was then followed by a downswing when I hit my biggest sequence of losing games so far...5. The net result was that I ended up more or less back where I started.

Stats for the week go:

Played 11: Won = 2; 2nd = 2; 3rd = 1; 4th = 3; 5th = 3.

I'm a bit disenchanted with 3 x 5th places, however on one of these I had the horrorshow bad beat of a flopped full house - losing to quads, also flopped! I defy anyone not to get shafted in those circumstances. Other memorable exits were KQs losing to KQ when he hit 4 clubs and in one of my second place showings I would have won if AK had held up against A10 (10 on the river). So it goes. Needless to say I sucked out myself in some cases, but these don't stick in the memory quite as much.

I played three longer games on Stars winning a $5 18 player and losing the other two.

The RaisetheRiver gang are organising another league on Friday nights this time at Virgin. I dare say I will join in as I enjoy these games - though I don't really need another poker site!

Meanwhile I won our weekly face to face game at the local cricket club. Memorable hand of the night was folding QJ under the gun and then looking at a flop of QQQ! Two guys had boats. I could have saved myself a lot of work there!

Friday, February 29, 2008

A CANNY MONTH

Neteller: Last week $90; Current $90
PokerStars: Last week $204; Current $187 (-)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105 (-)
CD: Last week $34; Current $34 (-)
Littlewoods: Last week $87; Current $87 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $284; Current $215 (+31)

Total = $718 (+31)

Profit for month $150
Profit this year $156

Not a lot of poker this week but what has been played has been profitable.

8 x 6 5+.5 6 player games: 1st = 2; 2nd = 2; 3rd = 3; 5th = 1.
1 x 10+1 6 player game: 2nd.
1 x 5+.5 9 player game: 4th.

Sharkscope tells me I have now played 93 games with an roi of 26%.

The game in which I came 5th was interesting in that I ended up down to only 340 chips at the 30/60 level (caught by slow played trips) battled my way back to parity and there were still 6 folk playing at the 80/160 level - unprecedented in my experience up to now. I lost a race with 66 v AK.

In one of the games where I came third, I was proud of myself for laying down KK when a third flush card appeared on the turn along with an all in from my opponant. I'd denied him the odds up to then but felt I had to believe him. The same player busted two other players with underpairs hitting his two outers both times. He eventually busted me when he called my all in with QJs with A2 and hit A22 on the flop. You just have to shrug your shoulders and move on. I wish I'd sharkied him, as I'm sure he must be a loser long term.

So the current thinking is to establish myself at the 10+1 level on FT and use some of the other accounts for playing longer games when I have the time.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

...and I knew it couldn't last...

Neteller: Last week $90; Current $90
PokerStars: Last week $204; Current $187 (-17)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105 (-)
CD: Last week $34; Current $34 (-)
Littlewoods: Last week $87; Current $87 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $212; Current $184 (-28)

Total = $687 (-45)

Everything went so swimmingly last week that I knew it couldn't last and it didn't.

I went out in the Bloggerment when a player (who will be nameless) called down my AA with Axs despite being denied pot odds to do it. He hit on the river and that left me weakened and I went out later, (7th of 25 I think). I'm not used to that sort of play in the Blogger.

My six handed games started with one second in 7 games before I made a comeback with two wins and two seconds, but a run of three losses left me down on the week there.

Stats went:

3x10+1 games: 2 x 3rd and 1 x 4th.

12x5.5 games: 2 x 1st; 3 x 2nd; 3 x 3rd; 3 x 4th; 1 x 5th.

One of the games I won was interesting in that I went heads up with 580 v 8420 chips and won it. I was feeling positive about my heads up game, so I joined in the rtr heads up tourney on Stars on Friday night. I had a good battle with The Cloud, who got me in the end when his 3's held up against my AK. Honour was satisfied when he went on to win the thing - well done.

Good practice for an important part of the game.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

A ROCK ON WEEK!

Neteller: Last week $90; Current $90
PokerStars: Last week $193; Current $204 (+11)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105 (-)
CD: Last week $0; Current $34 (+34)
Littlewoods: Last week $22; Current $87 (+65)
Full Tilt: Last week $171; Current $212 (+41)

Total = $732 (+151)

I've had a really good poker week, probably because I've been on holiday and therefore I've not generally been tired when I've been playing.

I've broken through the $200 mark playing 6 player sng's on Full Tilt. My agreement with myself was that, once I'd achieved that (doubling my starting stake on the site) I would have a punt on $10 games (dropping down to the $5 games if I go below $200). I came second in one of the two $10 games I played and would have won it, but for losing a coin flip. Stats for the week go...

FT 6 player sng's.

$5 = 7 games. 1st = 2; 2nd = 4; 3rd = 1.

$10 = 2 games. 2nd = 1; 4th = 1.

Sadly I played well in the Bloggerment, but after an awesomely long bubble session with Maujz, Hammerheid and Weegem, I went out when Weegem called my all in with 5's with K's (like you do). This meant that my Stars roll dropped below $200, so I played a 9 man sng there and rectified things a bit by winning it.

Meanwhile CD (which I'd quit playing on) offered me $15 to come back - so I did and won some money there too.

My little local game at the cricket club has now gone weekly and I won there too. Hand of the night had to be my poor chess playing mate Alan's. He had had a miserable run of cards all night and got to the stage where the blinds meant he had to go all in with any two - in his case, inevitably, the two were 72 off! One chap calls him and the flop comes 723. Turn 2! River 9. Alan proudly turns over his 72 for the full house. Then the other guy turns over (you guessed it) 2 9's! If it happened on Stars they would say it was rigged.

Finally, to cap an excellent poker week, I won the Raise the River League final game on Littlewoods. It was the expected harum scarum stuff as Ricky Rosa and BurnleyMik battled it out to see who would win the league, while kenn was his usual bash'em all self. Ricky was beaten on the final table to hand the title to Mik and eventually it came down to a final three battle between Kenn (big chip leader thanks to rivering Zagga with a pair of deuces) Mik and myself.

The crucial hand came when my Aces held up all in against both of them all in and then Ax did for Kenn's Kx in the subsequent all in hand. Not a big win financially but a major boost to the ego to finish ahead of so many strong players - I've definitely got a much better handle on how to play these things.

So good fun and I made some money - couldn't be better.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

MORE 6 PACKS.

Neteller: Last week $190; Current $90
PokerStars: Last week $199; Current $193 (-6)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105 (-)
Littlewoods: Last week $22; Current $22 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $152; Current $171 (+19)

Total = $581 (+13)

Poker was simple this week. I played the bloggerment on Sunday night and finished 5/24, which was ok, except that it was out of the money and so a tad disappointing. I'm going to have to put in some time on Stars soon to get the bankroll going in the right direction again.

I played 13 six player games with the following results...

1st = 2.
2nd = 4.
3rd = 4.
5th = 2.
6th = 1.

It's easy to see where the improvement needs to come. There is no excuse for going out 5th or 6th in these things, though I did have the excuse, such as it is, of having good hands each time it happened. Disappointing also not to convert more bubbles into the money, but so it goes. My notes tell me that on three occasions I went out to coin flips where my overcards didn't hit against a small pair.

My best run is 4 games of these consecutively in the money and my worst run is also 4 games without scoring in the 25 I have now played.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Playing short handed.

Neteller: Last week $190; Current $90
PokerStars: Last week $204; Current $199 (-5)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105 (-)
Littlewoods: Last week $22; Current $22 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $132; Current $152 (+20)

Total = $568 (+15)

Profit for month $6.

This week I made my main format the 6 player $5 games on FT. Results were:

Played: 11; Won 4; 2nd 1; 3rd 4; 4th 2 for a profit of $28.

I played 6 x 9 player games finishing 2nd twice for a loss of $8.

I seem to have a good feel for the short handed sit and go's and I was particularly pleased at winning 4 out of 5 of my head's up situations. The watchwords in these are patience and aggression. Wait for a hand in the right situation and then go for it vigourously seems to pay dividends for me.

I've only made $6 on the month but I'm not bothered, as this has been a learning experience for me. I think the most significant point is that I have made +52% on the stake I put into Full Tilt and I am running with a positive expectation at this style of poker. The plan now is to get to $200 in FT and then up the stakes I play for and see if I can still run positively. Lose and I drop back down again.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

"A Chip and a chair".

Neteller: Last week $190; Current $90
PokerStars: Last week $209; Current $204 (-5)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105 (-)
Littlewoods: Last week $22; Current $22 (-)
Full Tilt: Last week $110; Current $132 (+22)

Total = $553 (+17)

I had a hilarious experience heads up in a 9 player sit and go early this week. I went into the heads up part of the contest with just over 3000 chips v 10,000+. We battled away,until I had a slight chip advantage and my opponent called my big blind and I checked with 35. The flop came 346. I went all in with my pair and open ended straight draw. He called with AJ and hit the J, while I missed all of my outs. This left me with 240 chips to his 13,260.

Since we were at 200/400 blinds I was all in automatically in the next hand and won it. I then went all in without looking for the next three hands until he finally cracked and called the third one, which I won with total air. My chips were at least now numbered in the thousands again and I went to war going all in with any 7 or bigger in the small blind and going over the top all in if he called my big blind (which was a big habit he had). I could feel the tilt all the way from Texas and eventually he cracked when I had gone into the chip lead and called my all in when I had A10. He had 95! Nothing hit and I won. I wouldn't like to be his cat. :-)

As Cogsgoine on RtR commented, his non-calling of my early all ins was nothing short of criminal.

Anyway I was happy with that one, when along came another last night. I was down to 25 (count them) chips with 5 players left and the blinds 100/200 and managed to get back into the game sufficiently to finish 3rd and was at one point level with the other 2 after the bubble burst.

The vital importance of constant aggression during the bubble period was fully demonstrated in both cases. I definitely think I am getting the hang of what is required for these.

Played this week:

2 x 18 player SnG's: Lost both; -11
8 x 9 player SnG's: 1st=1; 2nd=2; 3rd=2;Lost 3. +19
1 x 6 player SnG: 1st=1; +14

So, I'm not making a fortune, but as my game improves I expect to increase my roi and I will also move up to $10 games.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

BACK ON TRACK AT FT

Neteller: Last week $190; Current $90
PokerStars: Last week $220; Current $209 (-11)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105
Littlewoods: Last week $27; Current $22 (-5)
Full Tilt: Last week $77; Current $110 (+33)

Total = $536 (+17)

I played 7 x 18 player $5+.5 games on FT, winning one and coming second in one. I final tabled all of the games I lost with a 5th, 3x6th and a 9th. The usual bad beats for and against were registered. I was in a strong position in one game when my KK was beaten by at 1010 that hit. In another game my KK was beaten by A7 hitting. However I got my revenge on that beggar
when my 88 v his Aces hit a straight! You just have to live with this sort of thing. It's going to happen and you have to convince yourself that so long as you are making +ev decisions it will come out right in the long term.

I also played a $2 x 18 player and won that as well.

Mind you my more aggressive style in the RtR league game came unstuck when, with 6 from 16 left I went all in with Q8s after an early position limper posted. Two better hands called me and that was that. Oh well, you have to try.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

FULL TILT - AN APTLY NAMED SITE.

Neteller: Last week $190; Current $90
PokerStars: Last week $223; Current $220 (-3)
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105
Littlewoods: Last week $44; Current $27 (-17)
Full Tilt: Last week $100; Current $77 (-23)

Total = $519 (-43)

I decided to open an account on Full Tilt as they were reputed to have a good structure for Sit and Go's, as indeed they do. It is indeed a nice gradual affair. The only problem is that I haven't been able to make much of an impression there. The record is Played 9; Won 0; 2nd 2; 3rd 0; Lost 7. Not good to put it mildly.

I'm not entirely sure why, as I don't think I've been playing badly. Still, it's hardly a massive sample, so I'll bash on and see if I can turn things round.

None of my other games played on Littlewoods or Stars went particularly well either - it's just been that sort of poker week.

I'll take a break and hopefully return to form soon.

The RtR League game ended quickly and ignominiously too, when I went all in with JJ against Kenn's AQ and he hit one. A coin flip of course, but I shouldn't have gone there really, early on, and normally I wouldn't. That "all in" button is so tempting!

Saturday, January 05, 2008

A BIT OF REORGANISATION OF THE BANKROLL.

Neteller: Last week $190; Current $190
PokerStars: Last week $223; Current $223
Titan: Last week $105; Current $105
Littlewoods: Last week $44; Current $44

Start of Year Total = $562

I've taken some money out and reorganised the bankroll to start the new poker year. I had too much money sitting in sites I wasn't playing at. For the time being I'm going to concentrate on Littlewoods and Stars.

Poker highlight of a week when I didn't play much (too busy with other things) was the League game at Littlewoods with the RtR folk. I eventually finished 3rd (in the money) but could have done better had a couple of key hands gone my way. As the winner BurnleyMik commented my more aggressive play made a significant difference I think. Trapping Mair with a set gave me a good stack going towards the bubble but that phase seemed to take forever due to the shortstack's hitting their hands repeatedly. A good game where, for once, I can't remember a particularly bad error.

So objectives for the year...

1. $1,000 profit for the year.
2. Reach the final table in 200+ player tournament.
3. Play $10 + $1 Sit and Goes with a return on investment of +15%.

Achieve the second two and the first one won't be a problem!