Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Joe Speaker & Sit n Gos

One day after reading Joe Speaker's guest post on Pauly's blog regarding low-limit MTTs, I enter my first ever 180 SNG on PokerStars and finish 3rd. Coincidence? I'll let you decide. My first final table appearance since an extremely drunken Wil Wheaton sponsored tourney a month or so ago.

Overall I was happy with my play - which is a statement that could earn me the title of Captain Obvious. I finished 3rd! I mean, come on! But nonetheless, I was more than happy with my play. I do have to admit that when I play MTTs on PokerStars and FullTilt I tend to find myself more shortstacked with relation to the blinds than I really feel comfortable with, which I'm not sure is a reflection of my playing style, the structures of the tournaments, or my mental makeup.

During the tourament I managed to play very solidly the first hour, accumulating chips when I could, and not getting too frisky with marginal hands. I seemed to pick the right people (and opportunities) to steal blinds and antes during the main body of the tournament, which helped. I really didn't get a lot of good hands; in the almost 4 hours of play I got A-K twice, A-Q once, J-J three times and 10-10 once... so getting to third was nice. I also managed to win two coin flips (one hich vaulted me from "about to bubble out" to "got some chips to play with"), twice had all-in situations where my higher pair held up over a lower pair, and even had a Q-9s versus J-10s break my way to put me into contention for the final table.

I think Joe's "don't be a pussy" mantra definitely helped me steel my resolve in making moves when I had to - taking the "if I do this I have a much better chance of success; if I lose, I lose, but this is still the right move" is very liberating. Making moves as required with that mindset is great, though of course it helps if those moves come off!

I do seem to have a little problem with bluffing on the river, which I may have to examine more closely. There was one hand in particular where I read the other player as weak, making a far-too-small bet on the river. I re-raise, he calls, I suck. I did this another couple of times during the tournament, one time where I actually had a hand (albeit pocket 2s) that managed to hold up even though when I saw the call I expected to lose.

My biggest disappointment was my final 3 play. When we got down to the last 3 I was actually at my high water mark, just in the the chips lead, though all three of us were extremely close. Unfortunately I managed to blow through my stack in short order, capped off with losing to an Ace high flush when I held a King high flush. This doesn't sound like I completely sucked, but trust me, it was worse than it sounds. The villain in this case had been annoying me quite a while - this player had been on my left for most of the time, and I had noticed that he would always limp or cold-call raises before the flop. I can't recall an instance of him leading out pre-flop, he was happy to get into the pot and then outplay you. Which he did to me most of the times we were in a pot. I never knew where I was in a hand, and only got him to lay down one hand when I just kept firing bullets until he gave up. Which I was proud of doing, but definitely was harrowing. And I lost in the long run, of course.

I definitely am not that confident in shorthanded play, and is probably an area I should work on. And yes, I see you over there, screaming at me to read "Harrington II - Electric Boogaloo".

But overall, I was pumped to get to 3rd, and while once I was there I would have liked to win the whole show, it was not to be. Amusingly Joe's advice about being a good guy also worked. Normally I am pretty happy at the tables (see and ), but I can get ticked when people are just dicks. Well, at the final table, on my left, was one of those. I took a pot away from him, and he congratulated me on the bluff, warning me that he would nail me if I kept it up. I ignored the comment, and kept working away. Mr Dick then tore into other peopel on the table, including one guy who I had watched luckbox his way around for most of the tourney. The Luckbox natually put Mr Dick out on a bad beat, which caused Mr Dick to go ballistic. I congratulated Mr Dick on playing a good game, and this guy proceeded to thank me for being a gentleman, ripped intot he luckbox, and cheered me on from the rail, though I am afraid I let him down. Sorry, but you're a dick.

So my first 180 SNG was a success, and I will have to try another one. Not sure about tonight, as I am going to try to be at home in time for the Omalympics on Pokerstars. Remember, PLO8 is your friend! I am not that great at the game, and have never played it in a tournament like this, but it should be fun. I look forward to giving Drizz, or one of the other people who can actually play the game, my stack.

DADI: Omalympics PLO8 tourney (PokerStars 8pm CST: password blogsaregay)

See you there.


  • Somehow I managed to give you my stack, and yet still get to the final table. Perplexing.

    By Blogger Wes, at 12:02 AM  

  • That's probably because I'm even worse at PLO8 than I am at Hold 'Em. :D

    By Blogger Garthmeister J., at 9:23 AM  

  • Nice goin, garth.

    My nominal fee is 10%, but for you, I'll take 5. :)

    By Blogger Joe Speaker, at 2:45 PM  

  • Cheers Joe. And it would be cheap at twice the price. ;)

    By Blogger Garthmeister J., at 2:59 PM  

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