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Tuesday, May 09, 2006 

The Big Game, Getting Staked, and the Tagaytay Tournament

I was reading one of my earliest posts "Playing REAL Poker" (sept.20,2005) where i first tried playing the "Big" game, which back then was the 50-100 game at the Bombay Bicycle Club, played usually by only around 4 players namely Big W, NickKGB, Pokemon, and BarbieMla. It amuses me when i remember the thrill or playing for "real" money, since today i could play for the same amounts without any stress or fear. An all-in for more than 3,000 left my mouth dry and my heart pounding back then. Nowadays, the chips have no monetary value to me anymore, and i treat them as bullets that i use in battle. The "Big" game today has evolved into a real big game, with pots hitting six-figures and bets that could be the monthly salary of an average filipino.

It's been a while since i posted an update about my games, especially since i took a big hit to the bankroll early this year and was delegated to mostly spectator status in the ring games and was mostly playing low stakes home games. Starting from scratch, i am slowly building up the bankroll again, and i find myself having more fun and being more relaxed playing the ring games than ever before. And you know what? i believe it has vastly improved my game. Since the start of this month, i noticed a steady upward trend in my poker stats, booking big wins (relatively) almost every week. I figured out my poker formula for success. Short-handed game with a couple of maniac players in the mix, plsu most importantly, no bad beats. Last night, i had more than 10,000 in my stack in a 20/40 game because all my big hands held up. No bad beats. No river bombs. If the math holds up, im sure to book a win since i almost always never ever go in if i'm not the one who has the edge.

I have never been a high stakes player, and i dont think i will be taking a stab at the big game anytime soon. When i say a "big win", for me, that's cashing out 4 or5 times my buy-in, which usually translates to between 4,000 to 6,000. On an average day, i would normally book a win if i double up within 3-4hrs, anything more i consider a bonus.

Eventually, if i build the roll enough, or maybe even book a big MTT win, i'll take a stab at the big table. I'd love to play those guys more often, because there's something different about playing a game full of quality players who truly love the game.


Kath also booked a nice win last night, with the help of Neil "Dirty ice Cream" who staked her in the game. It's funny because people are more confident at staking her than me, since they see her as a better player. It doesn't really bother me because i taught her how to play, and for me that's the best compliment i can get. She finds herself playing better when she's being staked, since it means she has to gain the confidence of the person who staked her and feels that she has to win no matter what. She's always had consistent results when being staked, and her biggest wins at the felt were when she was staked by a fellow poker player. Excellent poker players recognize other players abilities, and some of the better players out there like Jun Uy, Neil, Mischa, Nick, and Atty. Eric, have no problem staking kath since they recognize her skills at the felt.

Getting staked is a good way for a player to build their bankroll without fear of going bust, and as long a you gain the trust and confidence of your fellow players, you wont have trouble finding people who will invest in your skills.


The Tagaytay Casino Tourney just adjusted their tournament structure, making it better and more skill friendly, and this will surely attract more players to come and play. It's great to see that our local tournaments are evolving into Internationally accepted standards, and that our voices are being heard and heeded by the powers that be, PAGCOR. Thanks to the Poker Godfather for making an offer they can't refuse, and changing the structure to be more player friendly.

I'm almost sure that i will play that tournament too, and i'm slowly building up my buy-in through the ring games, since there are very few sattelites going on for the game.

It's been a while since i've won in a big MTT, the last really big one being last September 2005, when i placed 3rd in a field of 107. Since then, there has hardly been any big MTT's, and it's usually the weekly 3 or 4 table games which i havent really been consistent in. I'm crossing my fingers for Tagaytay. I hope i'm due for an incredible run of good luck and book an ITM win in that tournament.

May the edge be with me!

Yehey, finally i get mentioned (albeit as a mere extra) in Maverick's blog!!!

mentioned as one the skilled players hehe

Nice writeup once again. Best part about your posts is the reminiscences of days gone by. And yeah, you're due for a nice MTT takedown dude.

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Quote of the Day

  • The best poker I've ever played has always entailed peace. A relaxed comfort. Eyes open, ears open, radar up. Absorbing my opponent's every message. Taking them as they come. Not mixing what those messages are with what I want them to be. It's like an aerial view. A view from above the myriad luck-dependent reactions of those many people who never gain such a peace. And when you gain that view, that peace - when you'd rather have the truth, no matter how disappointing, over a false hope, no matter how desirable - then you're a player. The hand you're on slips into a stream of thousands of other hands, no one of which, because of your lofty view, seems unduly important, no false fearful emotions rise within you. When you gain the peace of lofty perspective, you're a player, and when you're a player, you're free.- from "King of a Small World" by Rick Benett
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