Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Season 4 rocks my poker world

We had a great turnout for Season 4 last night. Even though Tae and Sean dropped out at the last minute (with a heartfelt apology from Tae), and one of our new players, Brian, failed to show at the last second, we still managed to field 10 players for the first tourney and 11 for the 2nd! Well, actually, Krishnan played in the first tourney, busted out first and then proceeded to pay to play Brian’s empty stack! He even made the money in that tourney!!! Not that he *made* money mind you, just that he got into the money. J

My luck was not running so well though. In the very first hand, I got KQo in early position. I limped in to the pot and John, a new player to our game, made it 200 to go on the button. I didn’t know a thing about him, but I could hardly give up paint/paint without seeing a flop. So I made the call and we went heads up. The flop came AJ rag and I bet checked, hoping to re-raise his continuation bet and represent the Ace. He bet 250 and I immediately re-raised to 800. Being a new player, I thought his uncomfortableness with his surroundings might give me the edge and make him fold, but he re-raised me for 1000 more on top, leaving him with next to no chips. If he bluffed me, it was ballsy and brilliant but there was no way I could call, so I mucked.

I had to tighten up after that and I managed to drag a few pots and put myself at about 1400 chips when I picked up AQo on the button. When it got around to me, everyone had limped or folded and I raised to 600. It folded all around until it got to Paul, who called in the cutoff. Going into the flop heads up, I picked up my remaining chips and poised them over the table as if to say I was going to call anything he did. It worked too, because the flop came 332 and Paul pushed all in. I promptly called and turn over my AQ. Paul didn’t want to show, clearly behind and the rest of the cards ran. A 6 came on the turn and an 8 on the river. Paul peeked at his hole cards and turned over 89o. Mofo!!

My perfect plays didn’t help me at all tonight…

In the second tourney, I vowed to do much better. After taking a few small pots early on, I managed to bust out Nuveen, another new player, when I raised pre-flop with 99 and got called by KQ. The flop came JTrag and I checked. Nuveen overbet all in and I read him with an A-middle. I made the call and discovered I was right, but I was wrong. He had monster draws with the two overs and an OESD, but the turn and river were harmless and I picked up a very nice pot. With actual chips now, I was able to call a small pre-flop raise from Paul with 88. The pot was 3-way and the flop came 832. This time, Paul moved all in again and I was able to bust his QQ. Sweet justice. There were 7 players left and I was in a very healthy second place. Jordan was in 1st with a monster stack and everyone else was just skimming along. Then it happened. I picked up two red Kings UTG with blinds at 200/400. Jordan had been very liberal in the use of his big stack and I was hoping to get paid off big, so I limped in. Sure enough, it folded to Jordan who raised to 800. It folded around to me and I tried to pretend like I was stealing when I re-popped him to 2000 more. He stared me down and made the call. The flop was very good for me: Qh Jc 5c. I was very much hoping he hit that but I had to get more cash out of him even if he was playing something more marginal. I was first to act with about 3500 in chips left behind me. If I moved all in, he might be tempted to fold. At least that was my thinking. So I decided that 1500 was the right number to bet. The pot was over 6000, so a ¼ pot bet was practically taunting him to call. Too small to fold, too big to ignore. It was the perfect number as it turned out, since he put me (he says later) on AK and moved all in. I promptly called and he turn over two black 7’s for a hugely dominated hand. But God was laughing at my feeble plans because Wendy put two running clubs on board, which gave Jordan the club flush! 1 in 8 was his chances of winning and he happened to be the only guy to have me outchipped. So he added a monster lead to his already dominant position and I had to console myself with my huge pile of Sklansky dollars.

The night ended at 1AM as everyone left and Wendy and I played about an hour of Backgammon. Once again, I trounced her and sent her off into the night muttering about my lucky rolls. If only she played poker like she plays Backgammon…

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