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Tuesday, June 06, 2006 

A Nice Little Win

Sometimes it's ironic that, when people go to a game where they had no intention of playing, but on the last minute they somehow get to do so, they end up making it deep or even winning it. I've seen it happen many, many times. The last minute sub, the guy who was just there to watch, etc, etc, somehow end up in the money in a tournament. It's like the bread that always falls butter-side down, or the phone that always rings when you're in the shower. Maybe it's just some sort of freaky coincidence, but to the superstitious, it's something to think about.

That's exactly what happened to me last night. I went to the usual North-side monday game, where they were having a mini 800 buy-in tournament. Got there late since i had no intention of playing, and was just there to hang out and watch. When we got there, the game had not started yet, so we decide to join. To our dismay, they returned our buy-ins after saying that the game was already full. At the last minute, they decide to add one more table and accomodate us and several other late-comers. As we were about to begin, another guy really wanted to play and sat down in one of the empty seats being blinded out, asking if he could take the seat. This was where i made the remark that "Oh no, it's usually the guys who weren't really supposed to play that end up winning it." And so the tourny began.

I managed to get a nice rush of cards in the first few levels and maximized each hand into getting as many chips as possible. By the 3rd or 4th level, i was major chip leader. "Ther is no skill in this game!" was my battle cry.LOL! When my little rush ended, it was time for another player, Rosh,(i dunno if i got the spelling right) who will turn out to be my nemesis for the night to get his rush, and wow, what a rush! He managed to win several big showdowns and also took out one of the big stacks at our table, giving him twice as many chips as i had. I decided to cruise my stack to the final table and then get aggressive when i get near the money, which i could really afford with my stack. Although this worked well, i also watched Rosh build an even bigger stack as he took people out left and right.

When it was down to 5 players, we were all ITM. It quickly whittled down to 3 players as the small stacks got busted, and by this time, i had already shifted gears and regained the chip lead, although by only 10,000 or something. Now, it was down to me, Jazminator, and Rosh, and by this time we had already been playing for 5 hours. We were already discussing a deal splitting the remaining 18,000 3-way, leaving about 1,500 more for the eventual winner. Surprisingly, Rosh, who said it was his first time to make it this deep in a tournament, didnt want any part in the deal, saying he wanted to play it. It was fine by me, but another hour and a half into the game, we really wanted to chop it already and get this 6 hour game over with. Still, he didnt want to chop, because i think he misunderstood that it meant ending the game and denying him of a chance to win his first tournament. The chip lead had changed again to his side by this time, and a railbird was giving unsolicited advice to Rosh to "keep playing, youre so good, it's your first win" etc.

I decided to play more aggressively and stop thinking about chopping it, and started to think more about winning the damn thing. I took the chip lead after a few rounds, mostly by playing really aggressive and winning big pots with no showdowns. Jaz got busted out soon, but not before i took a huge hit to my stack. I had A-5 spades on the SB, which Rosh called from the button, i called, and jaz checked. The flop came spade-spade-5c, so i decided to bet around 11,000 or something. Jaz folded, then Rosh looks at me and says "All in!" I took me about a minute to consider it and i decided that the guy probably was making a move, since he would have normally bet if he had a piece of the flop, and not go all-in. So i called, and he shows a 10-8 diamonds, a bluff. i had him covered by this time with about 20,000 left for me, and i was way ahead with my pair and flush draw. But as luck would have it, the 8 hit the river,giving him most of my stack and the major chip lead.

Heads-up took almost another hour, with me managing to climb back to about 50,000 but still small stack compared to him, who had about 100K. I saw that he wasnt as experienced in heads-up since it was his first time, and true enough, he never called a raise or all-in all throughout our match. I never folded a hand pre-flop on the SB heads-up too, following a few tips from Harrington on Hold'em Vol.2 on heads up play. Eventually, after about 7 hours of playing, I get A-Q on the BB, and he raised 10K, making me go all-in. As soon as i flipped my A-Q over, i saw his eyes light up and i immediately knew he had me beat. He flips over A-K, and that was that, no miracle here. I was just glad it was over. I won P5,200 which wasnt so bad, but first place was P9,500 which would have been sweeter. Great game for Rosh, and everyone who made it ITM. Great Job by the TD, and the dealers who were also really tired. The last three hands were dealt by cream himself, which sealed the deal for me to lose the game LOL!

Finally won something after a looong drought, and it was made a little sweeter by the fact that i wasnt really there to play. Maybe i'll try to "not play" every game and just barely make it to the first deal, and maybe it'll give me better luck and a clearer head for optimal play.

Looking forward to the next one!

This is a stable in every blog - esp after what happened - NEIL YOU SUCK!!! LOL... fantastic call and bet last night though...

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  • 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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