Skybet / Calculatem / S&G Shark / Dial a Dealer / Skybet

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Cash Tables

Played the lowest level mtt's this week and lost a little, mixed in with these I also ventured onto the micro stakes cash tables, with some success at first.
Everytime I lost an mtt I played some cash and won back my stake and more, so I stayed in profit through till Friday.
Thats when It all went wrong, I lost my $25 buy in for the first time, reloaded for another $25 and lost that as well so the week ended with a small loss overall.
Its interesting to note that my longest cash sessions are all losing sessions. I dont know if this is because I am staying too long on 'bad' tables, chasing my losses, or if I am quitting to take a profit too quickly on 'good' tables.
I think its the latter, so next week I'll test my theory, fingers crossed.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Back to basics

I've been reading a lot of poker blogs this week and it is interesting to note that even the top, high stakes guys have the same problems as me.
Outdraws, inconsistency, alcohol, fish drawing out on you even when you take away their odds to do so. They aren't just limited to low stakes tournies.
Flush draws have killed me this week. Its so frustrating when you read your opponnent correctly for a flush draw, push all your chips in just to deny him the odds to call, only for him to call anyway, and then hit, to dump you out. I'm starting to lose count of how many time this has happened this weekend. Yesterday it was a call after the turn getting 6/4 for his flush draw v my two pair, the latest was all in pre-flop with Qd Qh v Ac7c v TsJc flop Qc5s3s turn and river both spades to give the numpty who called 2 all ins with TJo a flush and all my chips.
I even crashed out of the 'Challenge team Betfair tournie' when my A high straight v 2 pair made a full house on the river. This game can be cruel at times.
I've had to dip back into Sklanskys books this week to remind myself just to make the play with the best EV and not to dwell on past results, after all its the fish who draw to their flush getting 6/4 on the river that will pay you in the long term. It does seem that these kind of outdraws come in streaks, where good luck only seems to come in isolated instances. I guess its because if you play the odds and dont trust to luck as much, you dont get lucky so often.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Back to the lower levels

Well after a brief sojourn at the higher stakes and a couple of days off, I returned to the familiar £2 mtt on Betfair on Friday afternoon.........
.........and won first time
Think I'll stay at this level for a while, everybody tells me that the standard of play is similar up to about £50 level, but for some reason I have much more success at the lower levels.
Until I work out why, I think I'll just stick at what I know I can make pay. I guess it must be me playing differently at the higher level, maybe a bit tighter or something
Ended the week on a high in the Betfair £5000 Cryptic Christmas Cracker Freeroll, managing a final table place, at one stage I was even chip-leader on the final table, before going out in 7th out of a field of 1000 for a £150 prize.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

All going pear shaped

After a bit of a disasterous week last week, its continuing this week, trying to stay at the higher level I played the £3 Gtd on Betfair Monday and Tuesday without making the first break.
My luck seems to have deserted me and even worse I've been playing badly.
I dont think I have any choice but to drop back down to the micro-stakes until I pull my game back together.
As long as I'm losing, my confidence is severly dented and I'm not even enjoying playing at the moment. At least at the lower levels it doesn't hurt financially and I can rebuild my confidence ready to step back up again.
I'll also play the sattelites for the £10k Gtd on Betfair, so I can maybe get a cheap entry into a higher stakes game.
Heres hoping my luck changes

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

A week at higher stakes

I have been playing in some higher stakes mtt's this week. I want to prove to myself that I can play at a higher level
I will post my results here so as to encourage me to concentrate and play my A game all week.

Monday 28th Nov Betfair £3k Gtd mtt 32nd out of 401 Scraped into the money, then found KK to treble up, got as high as 15th, then went out with AQ on the SB, all in against the chip leaders AK on the BB

Tuesday 29th Nov Betfair £3k Gtd mtt 154th out of 428 A frustrating time, limped in early pos with 55, laid it down to a raise & reraise eventually three went all in, all with AK and as luck would have it my fives would have held up. Went out reraising with 99 from the button against chip leaders KK

Wednesday 30th Nov Betfair £3k Gtd mtt 86th out of 425 Had to sit tight early on until I found pocket aces on level 5 to double up, made the break with 3k, limped into the final 100 and went all in with QQ v JJ he hit the third Jack on the turn, and 3 hands later I was gone as the blinds caught up with me.

Saturday 3rd December Played a £2.70 + 30p satelite to qualify for tonights Betfair £10k Gtd along with fellow Betfair Flashmob Forumite AJ Cairns. Check out his Blog "3 times the big blind" via the link on the right.
Betfair £3k Gtd mtt 73rd out of 365, same old story, always short-stacked, never really got into the game, went out with 9T on BB 983 flop, all in and up against pocket eights
Betfair £10k Gtd mtt 248th out of 405 still no hands, had to grind it out for an hour, but never got into the game. Will try to qualify again for this tourney via another sattelite, maybe tomorrow.

Sunday 4th December Just can't seem to make a hand at all, no matter what I play.
My bankroll is taking a bit of a bashing at these higher levels, in stt's or mtt's all I seem to do is sit for hours pressing the fold button until I get blinded out. Every time I try a steal or a bluff, I run into a monster; and its starting to get me down.
Betfair £3k Gtd mtt 227th out of 493 I seem to be getting worse as the week goes on, ended the week with a loss of £66, thats two losing weeks on the trot. Now I have to decide whether to persevere at the higher level, or drop back down again

Monday, November 28, 2005

Mixed fortune

Well two weeks since I last posted, with mixed fortune
week ending 20th November I had a good week, won my first ever 'pay to enter' mtt on Saturday afternoon, closely followed by my second on Saturday night, this poker game is easy isn't it ?
Ended the week with a profit of over £140 so doing well towards my £50 per week target
Week ending 27th didn't go so good, cold decked all week and out of the money until Sunday, second in a £5 stt was my best result of the week and 3rd in the Betfair flashmob tourney for £18 saved a bigger loss on the week than the £30 I eventually ended down for the week
Ah well, tomorrows another day
I think next week Im going to play in the £3k Gtd £10mtt on Betfair rather than the £2 multis I have been playing, maybe I'll have more luck.
If any Betfair forumites read this, I hope you enjoy reading it, if not well don't come back, lol. My main reason for writing is to get things down to try to help my game improve, so pardon me if its not as entertaining as some.
I would also encourage anyone reading this to get their own Blog, it may help your game too, if you do, send me the address, good luck.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

A profitable week

Well, the first weeks over since I started the blog so I guess I have to publish the P & L so far
I had a poor week from Monday Through Thursday losing £40, but a second in Betfairs 8.30pm £2 mtt netted me £100 and a second again in Betfairs 6.00pm 50 Euro added mtt paid out £50 so a total profit for the week of £105.
Im setting a weekly target now of £50 so Ive got something to aim for. If I can lift my bankroll to a position where I can play at higher levels, I will readdress this, but if I can make the £50 per week, it will at least pay for a holiday.
I feel Ive played pretty well recently, my confidence is high and I havent played too many games so my concentration has been better.
More next week

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Playing Live

I played live for the first time at the Gala Casino at Teesside Park on Friday 4th November 2005.
I had been planning to go for a while, however, with no local poker-playing mates it was to be a solo expedition and I had been putting it off for a while.
The casino holds a £10 no limit re-buy tournament every Friday, registration starting at 7pm and the tourney at 8pm. I arrived early to give me time to find out what's what and found time before registratiion to read all the rules posted on a notice board in the card room. It was a good move as I learned important things like, the 50 chips are removed from the tables after an hour, and the re-buy period ends after 115 minutes.
When we started the players were a mixed bunch, some casino regulars who knew the ropes, a lot of young male internet players, some better than others, and a core of seasoned poker players.
I felt quite at home after 9 months of practice on the internet and a clear understanding of the local rules.
The first hand dealt me 88 on the BB and UTG went all in, it was folded round to me and I had a decision to make. I could either fold like a girl or push 'em in, I chose the latter.
He showed ATo and I flipped over the eights, an Ace on the flop and I was beat, "Re-buy please."
I thought that this may turn out to be an expensive lesson, but things soon settled down and that was my only re-buy of the night. I played tight straight forward poker with not too many tricks or bluffs, and made it to the break at the end of the re-buy period as leader of my table with 10,000 chips.
The player to my immediate right was obviously the worst for drink and making some crazy plays, but somehow he kept hitting, including calling an all in with 74s and hitting his flush to beat pocket aces. I made a mental note to take him on if the opportunity arose, and it did early on after the break. I had AT on the BB , three limpers round to me including the drunk guy on the SB. I raised, 2 folded and my target called. This was the position I wanted, now I needed to flop an ace. The flop came A72 rainbow he checked and I sensed my opportunity. I had estimated his chip stack at about 3500 so I decided that three bets of 1200 would take all his chips unless QQ or KK hit the board and I had to bail out.
I bet 1200 he called, turn 5, he checked , I bet 1200, he called, river was a 9, he checked I bet 1200 to put him all in, he called and showed AJ, A disaster, outkicked for nearly half my chips. I never really recovered from that and eventually went out with AQs against KK in about 40th place out of 90 plus.

My second attempt went a little better a week later, by coincidence I drew the same seat on the same table as the week before. I never had a hand until dealt AKo on my BB. There were 6 or 7 limpers so I raised all in, only to get 3 callers, none of which had a pair. The board was all low cards and I won the hand with Ace high to quadruple up and get right into the game.
I never lost a hand that I played to showdown before the re-buy period ended and at this point I was handily placed with about 18,000 chips. A talkative internet player called Ty was the chip leader on my table at the break with a hefty stack of about 30,000.
After the break I had a run of good cards and made the best use of them. Dealt AA UTG I elected to limp and hope for a raise, it duly came from a highstack and I hesitated before going all in, he quickly called and showed AKo, my aces held up and I was handily placed.
An aggressive player with a large chip stack was moved onto my table and began stealing blinds with large raises. In mid-position I had 66 and with the aggressive player and the talkative Ty limping in I announced a raise. as I went to my stack to count out the chips to raise, Ty said, "It had better be a big raise to push us both out". I pushed out a small stack of green 1000 chips, "5000," I said, as the table folded round to the aggressive big stack, Ty did me no favours by saying, "Thats big enough," letting the aggresive guy know he was folding. "Not for me," he announced, pushing his chips in, "I'm all in."
The show of bravado and aggressive raise suggested to me that his hand was weak and he didn't want a caller. "I call," I said, and a flicker of fear in his eyes confirmed my read. He turned over A4s and I revealed the sixes. They held up and I had a nice stack of about 50,000.
The increasing blinds ate away at my chips while I waited patiently for a starting hand, and a big guy with a big pile of green 1000 chips arrived at the table. By now we were down to the last two tables and I actually began to think about making the final table and getting in the money.
With 7 players left on our table and the blinds at 1500/3000 I looked down at AKo. Two folded ahead of me and I raised to 8000. The big guy called, the blinds folded and we saw a flop of 9TJ rainbow. For some reason I knew I was still ahead, I sensed his hand was weak and his call had come from the security of the chip lead. I pushed 'em all in, but he called immediately and I worried I had misread him. When he flipped over As8s I was delighted, anything but a seven I thought, however the poker gods conspired against me, he hit runner, runner spades for a back door flush and I was out in unlucky 13th.
As I left I felt quite happy that I had got my chips in with the best of it, as I had all night, and if I continue to play like that a final table finish is only a matter of time.
There is always next week.......

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Poker for beginners

I've been reading poker blogs from some of the high stakes players on Betfair Poker, and decided to produce my own as a Poker Rookie.
I play online to small stakes, £5 & £10 stt and £2 mtt, mainly on Betfair, but also on Wm Hills, PartyPoker and Ladbrokes
I started playing in February, and I'm approx £500 up since then so I think I can make a steady profit on the low stakes tournaments, having played over 700 tournaments in that time.
What I really want to know is can I move up through the levels to play at a stake that will give me a regular second income, or even allow me to give up work?
The problem seems to be confidence, when it's high I play well and win, when its low I play poorly and lose, but the more I lose, the lower my confidence gets - it's a vicious circle.
Maybe this blog will allow me to analyse my play, improve my profits and lift my confidence levels.