Let's admit some things. Lately I have played very little online, just a smattering of play, usually in either Retardo-sized tournaments or playing some Triple Draw. I had heard about Poker Stars' WCOOP, knew that it had a Triple Draw event, but just assumed I wouldn't find the time, or the inclination. Then I learned that it was at 4:30pm. On a Saturday. When Washington, DC was going to be busy wondering exactly how much hurricane-related precipitation would fall.
Sign me up!
The previous evening I had discovered that my PC laptop was busy dying, so I grabbed my MacBook and headed over to Saunter's to ride out the rain with some TD Action. I decided to have a crack at satelliting in using Frequent Player Points, but finishing in 9th when the top 5 get seats didn't quite cut it. No matter. I had decided I was playing, come hell or high water - end even if the high water was here, I was still in. Looking at the tournament info, the structure was extremely slow (30 minute levels), and I felt decently about the 730 or so opponents.
As I was getting myself prepped, April
IM'd me; the eagle-eyed reporter had noted that I had signed up, and kept half an eye on my progress. Gracie
turned up later - apparently she had been keeping tabs on me as well.
Saunter hit upon the idea of mixing up some spiked lemonade, which sounded like a good idea to me. The tournament kicked off as I was busy enjoying my first glass, numbing myself against the inevitable junk-kicking. Although Triple Draw is my favourite poker variant, it is also the one which causes me to tilt most. The highs are high, and the lows are low. There is nothing like hitting your dream card on the third draw to win a big pot, much like there is nothing like having some numb-nuts run you down in grotesque fashion.
During the first hour I could do little wrong. I set about making the inexperienced pay, and maximising the value of my hands. I could only remember a couple of hands before the first break which raised my ire, and all of a sudden I was sitting on just over 6k, just over double my starting chips, and good enough for 14th. Nice!
The second hour started well enough, but the last half hour of it was brutal. When you are hitting draws and your opponents are missing, all is good with the world. When the reverse is happening, things get brutal. My nemesis was turning out to be "tanhampton", or as I came to call him "Mr Tampon", who was very laggy. Though I was making him pay for his occasional mis-steps he had a knack for drawing to win pretty large pots to get back into it. I wanted him to go away... fast.
It took me well into the third hour for me to get back to where I was, and now the blinds were starting to get a little significant. Bigger stacks were now appearing to take the place of the vanquished, and though the odds were that these were stronger players, I noted one in particular who didn't seem to grasp that straights are bad in Triple Draw... he just hadn't realised it. As the blinds got higher, he became more dangerous - he was a wonderful opportunity to chip up, but if he drew out, things could get ugly. Fast.
In the fourth hour I won a couple of big pots and hit my high water mark of 12,000 chips. I was feeling good, even as the blinds continued to rise. Unfortunately that was the start of my grand fall - I was unable to run down someone who was dealt a pat 9, and then had someone run down my dealt pat 87 with an 85 they hit on the third draw. And then I got mixed up in a big hand with Mr Tampon, where we both missed on third. With 3k chips remaining I bet out in desperation, trying to take down the 6k pot, but Mr Tampon called with a J... and I had a Q.
That was the back-breaker, which I wasn't able to make it back from and I finally busted out in 222nd. Definitely disappointing after my red-hot start, but I still felt good about my play, especially given the rust on my game. I'll need to do some thinking about when I should break dealt hands like 2378x and certain other situations, but that's for some other time.
At least the 0.10/0.20 tables are still full of fish. Yum yum!