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

Monday, August 20, 2007

No Poker

I must be the only poker blogger who never plays poker, well not for a couple of weeks anyhow.
To be honest I've been busy with the new house etc so I haven't had a lot of time to play, but a year or 18 months ago I would have found time to play at the expense of something else.
I'm just not as keen to play these days as I was, time was I would play at every opportunity, now I can't be arsed to set up the laptop.
There is a live game I may enter on Thursday night, £50 freezeout at the casino, but my elder daughter is flying out here on the same day so I may just go for a drink or stick around in the house with her instead.
I have another weeks leave booked next week so I'll be out and about in Spain again, maybe I'll play some poker that week, maybe not.
Judging by other blogs and the forums, I'm not the only one for whom poker seems to be losing its gloss. I guess the big winners and the pros will continue, but maybe the boom is over and numbers will now start to decline.
Then again, maybe this time next week I'll have won an online multi or the £50 freezeout and I'll be back n love with the game again, Time will tell.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

At Last !! An Update !!

Well I finally got moved house, sort of.
Had to move in before all the internal building work was completed, so my bedroom has only three walls, theres a bit of plastering and tidying up to do, and then of course decorating when its all finished, but at least we are now living in our own home again and paying a mortgage instead of rent. The tax breaks for the mortgage are also pretty good out here so another good reason to buy.
The decision to move all the stuff myself because it was only 50 yards further up The Rock turned out to be a BIG mistake, I spent 12 hours lugging suitcases and boxes of 'stuff' up the steps, I must have climbed everest with the number of trips it took.
But at least were moved, we have tv and internet access so I can start playing poker again soon, in fact I may play live on wednesday night as there is a £100 freeezeout at the casino.
I've dabbled in a few sit and goes on Paradise poker the last week or so with no great success, usual routine, everyone is tight as a ducks arse until the blinds start to bite, then it turns into a crapshoot with 5 or 6 players chasing the top three places. I won a couple and made a small overall profit, but more by good luck than good judgement really.
I have a few days off booked in August, My younger daughters pal from England is flying over for a week on Monday morning, then my elder daughter is coming over for two week holiday towards the end of August, so the home improvements will probably go on hold for a while until September (wife permitting).
Mansion finally stopped there charitable daily give away of around $45k a day in the $100k Gtd tournaments, but still plenty of value available in the weekly $110k Gtd on Thursday evenings and $150k Gtd on Sunday evening as well as some lower value $10 and $20 tournaments with Gtd payouts. Thats the advertising done, check the mansion poker site for details

Friday, July 20, 2007

Sorry for the Lack of Updates

Apologies for the lack of recent updates
I'm in the middle of moving house and to be honest haven't any time for poker in between work, tiling, plumbing painting etc etc etc......

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Poker in Gibraltar

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Failure in the Main Event

My success rate in the satellites for the $11k Gtd and $16k Gtd on Betfair is pretty good, qualifying from one in every three satellites I enter. The rate goes up for the 10 seat Gtd satellites which are usually my first attempt at qualification. This gives me pretty good value with an average buy in cost in the $11k Gtd of $36 as opposed to the actual buy in of $82.50, and an average cost for the $16k Gtd of $48 against the full buy in of $109. I'm actually getting in to them for less than half price. Its all the more frustrating then, to find out that my record in the actual Guaranteed tournaments themselves is pretty awful.
Apart from one tournament, where I finished 4th for $880, I have failed to make the money in any of the main events, and the cash I did make was assisted by AA and a double up first hand.
The tournament always seems to go the same way, I lose a couple of early pots, where I stay in with draws, because opponents give me the odds to do so, then I tighten up because I feel I'm below average on chips and blind away for a bit, then a crucial hand comes about, and I have a big decision to make, to either fold and leave a lot of chips behind, or take a gamble. I always seem to take the wrong decision, or if I take the correct decision, lady luck kicks me in the teeth.
Last night I pushed with AK pre-flop from late position to try and steal a few chips, I get called by the BB with AJ and the first card on the flop is a Jack. Today I raised from LP with AQ in a multi-way limped pot and get two callers from the blinds, flop is harmless looking 2 6 T rainbow, its check to me so I push in to steal (definately not the best move I could have made) and BB calls with 66 for a set. I feel I need a little bit of early luck to settle down a bit and get 'in the groove' once I increase my starting stack I can relax and play my normal game, losing early chips makes me edgy and this leads to bad decision making on my behalf.
Maybe its because the buy in is a bit high by my standards and I feel a little uncomfortable, I seem to want to make moves rather than sit back and play the same way as I do in the satellites.
Overall though, I'm enjoying playing, though a little profit would enable me to enjoy it even more, and hopefully I'll get to play live tomorrow in the £5o freeze out.

Thursday, July 05, 2007


Betfair is slowly becoming a favourite site of mine again after hardly playing there at all following the move to Pokerchamps software.
The mtt structures are good with 15 minute levels and the higher value tournaments also have increased chip counts, allowing more poker to be played. Ive been back on the satellite circuit today, qualifying for the $16k Gtd and the $11K Gtd, via the 10 seat guaranteed satellites which offer overlay in the sat as well as the main tournament.
I Snagged £100 worth of tournament entries for around £15 which is value in anyones book.
Unfortunately the $16k main event didn't go so well, had to fold AQo early doors to a raise and re-raise pre-flop. Never really hit a flop at all as the first break approached and I was struggling with around 1750 from a starting stack of 2500 when I find KK in late position, theres a raise of 3 x BB (300) in front of me which I re-raise to 750, to push out the blinds and I'm heads up with initial raiser, flop is 8d 8s 3d its checked to me, and with two diamonds on the board, I push all in to find myself up against AA and that, as they say, was that.
The $11k Gtd was very similar, AKs first hand for a small pot, then nothing of note until I limped in late position with Ad 3d, two diamonds on the flop gave me some hope, and single opponent made it cheap enough to call until the third diamond hit on the river and I won a pot of around 600.
The joy was short lived however, a couple of hands later I'm all in Pre-Flop with JJ against what turns out to be QQ.
KK v AA in the $16k and JJ v QQ in the $11k, Thems the breaks huh ? still it was an enjoyable if profitless day, with the chance at two big payouts for a relatively small outlay, and there's always tomorrow

Monday, July 02, 2007

Three hands from Sunday

An interesting day of poker on Sunday, started off with the 10 seat Gtd satellite to Betfairs $16k Gtd. Software problems stopped the tournament after about 35 minutes, just as I took over the chip lead, but a refund of $32 or double the buy in enabled me to enter the turbo sat to the same tournament on a freeroll.
Qualification from this left me in the $16k for free, and I tried the 1 cent wsope sat next, this again crashed without starting and credited my account with $2.20 or 220 x the buy in.
4th place in a sit and go on poker stars preceded my attempt at the $16k Gtd, but I never really got going and was eliminated before the break gambling with 33 v AQ.
Some interesting hands cropped up during the course of these tournaments, first of all, in the turbo sat. With ten seats available and 11 left in the tournament, I’m sat in 6th place on the button with around 7k in chips, blinds are (from memory) 1000/2000 with a 75 ante.
Two players on the other table have less than 1200, including the next BB, and one guy on our table has 145, less than 2 antes.
Obviously in this situation with any one of three short stacks all in within the next 3 hands, I’m not playing anything at all, and in fact was hoping for pocket rockets, just so I could fold them pre-flop.
The rockets never arrived I folded 2 poor hands and after the BB guy survived, Mr 2 antes was out next hand and I’m safely through.
A similar situation in a 9 handed STT on poker stars, 4 of us left, 3 on around 4k each and the shortstack on about 1200. In this instance I’m willing to take a gamble as the difference between 3rd and 1st makes it worthwhile, I raise from the button with 85o, BB (not the shortstack) calls. Flop is Ts5s2h I lead for 3 BB’s and villain re-raises all in. I cant believe he has flopped a set, no open ended straight draw unless he has 34, so I reckon he’s on a draw, possibly has 2 spades, or more likely Ace 3 or Ace 4 for a gutshot so I call. He has the flush draw and hits on river so I’m out in 4th, but that’s the cost of ‘taking a shot’
Next one is in the $16k Gtd on Betfair, I lost a chunk early on with my usual, ‘he must be bluffing’ thought process, and end up approaching the break after an hour with around half my starting stack of 2500
I limp for 50 in early position with 33, there are about 5 other limpers and the BB raises to 300, I decide to gamble and push all in for about 1200, the other limpers fold and the raiser insta-calls with AQo. The flop is 245 forfeiting his ace and giving me hope, but he hits a three outer on the river, and that’s that.
Three similar hands in very different situations, I would be interested to hear peoples thoughts on.
Maybe I was too rash in the stars stt and the $16k, but I got my money in while ahead and long term that’s +EV
What do you think ?

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Sit & Go's

Despite taking a chunk of cash from the 'loss column' for 2007 with 4th place in the $11k Gtd, I'm still in the red for the year.
I've been playing some sit and go tournaments to try to build the profit for the year and get back into the black.
I've stuck to low stakes stuff, $10 buy in with the odd $20, and had some success, including three wins on the trot on Paradise poker $10 STT's
I've also had a few shots at the low level satellites for the wsope on Betfair and still played the Gtd seat satellites to the $11k and $16k Gtd, with rather less success.
I'm actually considering laying off the multi-table tournaments for a while and concentrating on sit and Go's and low stakes cash to try and build the bankroll a bit.
Maybe still try to qualify for the Guaranteed tournaments on Betfair from cash/stt profits (if there are any)
Live games are still showing a profit, and I may try to play a few more live tournaments, the house purchase should be completed this week, so maybe I'll buy a car once all the finances are sorted out, which will allow me to get to a few more games over the border in Spain.
I've still not been tempted onto the live cash tables yet, too many sharks for my liking, inexperienced players and newcomers to live poker seem quite happy to take their chances in live tournaments, but the cash games seem to be filled with the more experienced players and therefore seem to be of little value, easier cash games on-line imho.
All the best to Barretta who's recent elevation into the ranks of the poker pro's appears to be going well, good luck in Vegas mate.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

$11k Again

I qualified for the third night in a row for the $11k Gtd on Betfair, and sat down, full of confidence, unfortunately there seem to be as many fish in an $75 buy in tournament as a $5 tournament.
Apologies for posting another hand history, but I really expected better in a tournament which costs $75 to enter.
What makes people want to put their whole tournament on the line on level two of an MTT ? May as well play roulette ! Notwithstanding this kind of play, the $11k and $16k Gtd tournaments on Betfair are becoming my favourites at the moment, especially with the 10 seat gtd Satellite tournaments.
All I can do is take a deep breath and start again.

***** Betfair Poker Hand History for Game 220871081 *****
NL Texas Hold'em $75 Buy-in + $7.50 Entry Fee, Level:2 Blinds(15/30-(no ante)) - Tuesday, June 19, 20:24:48 GMT 2007
Daily $11k GTD #79339
Table 2 9-max (Real Money)
Seat 9 is the button
Total number of active players : 9
Seat 1: potkiller ( 2,420 )
Seat 2: PUSSYMGNET ( 2,435 )
Seat 3: holker ( 2,330 )
Seat 4: TWoods18 ( 1,895 )
Seat 5: paoulo ( 2,335 )
Seat 6: beanos ( 3,562 )
Seat 7: TMSO.R ( 2,675 )
Seat 8: keeper ( 2,895 )
Seat 9: michaelg2 ( 1,953 )
Tourney Level:2 Blinds(15/30-(no ante))
potkiller posts small blind [15]
PUSSYMGNET posts big blind [30]
** Dealing down cards **
Dealt to holker [ Js, Jd ]
holker raises to [96]
TWoods18 calls [96]
paoulo calls [96]

potkiller calls [81]

** Dealing Flop ** [ 8c, Th, 4c ]

potkiller checks
holker bets [440]
TWoods18 folds
paoulo folds
potkiller goes all-in
potkiller raises to [2,324]
holker calls [1,794]
holker goes all-in

Returning uncalled bet [90] to potkiller

** Showdown **
potkiller shows [ 7c, Ac ] for a flush draw on level 2
holker shows [ Js, Jd ]
** Dealing Turn ** [ Qh ]
** Dealing River ** [ 2c ] obviously
** Hand Conclusion **
potkiller wins 4,882 from main pot with a Flush - What a muppet !!
************ Game 220871081 ends ************

I know that idiots like this will pay off in the long term, and if I keep getting my chips in while I'm ahead, I'll take their cash, but ffs, all in with a flush draw on level 2, when he must know I've hit the flop.
If it happens in a $5 tournament, I'll call him a twat and play another, but after playing for three hours in a satellite just to qualify for this, It really pisses me off.
Ah well, rant over, I'll be back, after all, if the Gauranteed tournamenmts are full of muppets like this, I'll be rich in no time
Thanks for reading, and best of luck at the tables

Monday, June 18, 2007

After the Lord Mayors Show

Well, after the excitement of last nights final table on the Betfair $11k Gtd, today I started full of confidence. (Though half expecting to go to Badbeat city).
I started off with the 10 seat Gtd satellite to Betfairs $16k Gtd but was eliminated in 15th out of 41 runners with A9 v KK on a board of AK995. I guess however I played it, I was going bust on that board.
I tried two tabling on 25c/50c cash tables on Betfair for a while, but my heart wasn't really in it so I quit after 20 minutes up $10 on one table and down $10 on the other.
The 10 seat Gtd satellite to the $11k Gtd was next up, I managed 17th out of 54 before some french numpty called my all in with the nut straight to catch runer runner for a flush, he even had the cheek to type 'bye' as I was eliminated, oh for spectator chat !!
I did qualify for the $11k Gtd eventually via the turbo sat later in the afternoon, and played a £5 headhunter tournament on William Hills at the same time, I made the final table in the headhunter tournament and raised from the button with 66 in a multi-way limped pot, 2nd chip leader calls with T8o (Thats TEN EIGHT OFF-SUIT), well of course he hits with the first card on the flop and I'm out in ninth.
The actual $11k Gtd was a bit of an anti-climax also, I lasted till just before the first break with a stack of around 1700 from a 2500 start, I hit a flop of J72 with QJo on the button and pushed after it was checked round to me, unfortunately someone decided the flush draw was enough to call, he hits, and I'm out.
I'm still pretty pleased with my play at the moment, sometimes lady luck doesn't smile on you, and sometimes she does, but play well, keep positive and keep doing the right things, and I'll end up profitable this year, just like the previous two.
Thanks for reading, stay positive and be lucky.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Waiting for the rewards

I feel like I have been playing pretty well recently without getting the reward. Played a $25 buy in $5k Gtd tournament on Paradise last night. Had a stroke of good fortune when my AJ outdrew AK all in pre-flop on what I thought was a steal by him on my BB. Then ran 66 into the Big Blinds AA when I tried a steal myself from the button.
My play on the cash tables yesterday was disciplined, and but for two strokes of misfortune would have ended in profit, a 3 outer on the river followed by a 4 outer on the river did the damage so no need for despondency.
Played some more cash on Betfair today, 45 minutes for a profit of around $10 is never going to get me rich, but its a step in the right direction, which is whats needed at the moment.
I also played a satellite to the $11k Gtd tournament on Betfair tonight and won a seat after a war of attrition for two and a half hours.
I'm determined to play my way out of this slump by concentrating on one table at a time and looking for value in my choice of tournament, and also being patient on the cash tables to undo the recent damage to my bankroll.
Update on $11k Gtd : Got off to a good start with a double up on only the second hand with AA v KQ on a Q high flop, stayed in top 20 throughout, and made the final table with about average chips. Eventually went out in 4th for $880. McLucky was the chip leader and pushing the table around a little, I made a stand with AJ when he had QQ, no Ace when I needed it and I'm out. Pleased with the payout though, my third biggest cash ever online and I think I was about due a decent payout.
Congratulations and well played to McLucky who went on to win the tournament

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Lady Luck kicks me again

I've been playing back on Betfair poker recently, I still don't like the software, but people keep telling me its the place to play low stakes cash, and there are now satellites to the evening Gtd tournaments with ten seats guaranteed in each so I thought I'd give it another try.
I particularly like the satellites with guaranteed seats, they give overlay in the satellite and overlay in the main evening tournament too, I love a bit of value.
Anyway, I decide to try the $11k Gtd satellite, still on level one, I pick up KK in mid position and there is a raise to 80 from utg, one caller so I reraise to 240, the caller folds and utg raises to 440. I do consider that he has Aces, but decide that there are a lot more hands he may have that I am beating so I push all in. He insta-calls with A8s (lol). Of course the first card over on the flop is an ace and I'm out.
Never mind, I'll play some cash, Buy in for $25 on a 25c/50c table determined to play like a rock and wait for a monster, full in the knowledge that I'll still get paid if I raise for the first time in 4 orbits.
After an hour, i'm still on $27 having peaked at $32 and been as low as $17, still waiting.
Eventually the hand arrives, utg min raises, I call with AQo, one other caller from the BB.
The flop is perfect, Q high, no flush or straight draw, BB checks, original raiser bets $2.40, I raise to $4.80 BB folds, raiser calls.
Turn is a second spade, but otherwise harmless, I decide not to risk the flush and go all in over his $4.80 bet thinking we must be splitting the pot if he calls and hoping he doesn't have AsQs, he calls quickly and shows QJo, no spade. Happy days I think until the Jack hits on the river. To rub salt in the wounds he leaves the table 2 hands later.
I persuade myself I'm not going to tilt and that a reload would be a good idea, so another $25 and I'm again playing the waiting game, this time its only 10 mins before I pick up JJ, my $2 raise is called by 2 players and I hit a set on a flop of 7JK rainbow, BB bets $2, I reraise to $5, one caller and BB folds.
Turn is a harmless 2, I push all in and get a quick call with AQ, a ten on the river and I'm bust again.
Time to log off.
I'm still trying to stay positive, I know that I'm playing well and that lady luck will smile on me again soon.
Nil Illegitemis Carborundum (Don't let the bastards grind you down)

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Credit where credit is due

After looking through some of the recent tournaments I've played and the crucial hands which have cost me a payday, or a better cash, I have come to the conclusion that I am giving players too much credit.
For example, under the 'fresh start' thread My pre-flop raise of 4 x BB was called from the SB with 34o, who then called a pot bet with middle pair on a 732 flop.
When a 4 comes on the turn, I cant see any hand I'm behind to apart from 77 so I'm sure I'm ahead, and end up losing the lot.
Maybe its me being niaive, but I coulodn't envisage anyone calling a raise on level one with 34o in a $100 buy in tournament, nor a pot size bet with middle pair on the flop.
I think Im just going to have to give a lot more thought to what an opponenet may be holding in any particular scenario, not write off some hands on the bass of 'he couldn't have called the pre-flop raise with that'.
I suppose the upside is when a player acts as demonstrated in the 'you called with what' thread. Although it cost me when he hit a 4 outer on the river, the fact that he will call my pre-flop raise with T2, a pot size bet on the flop with bottom pair and eventually get all in with the worst of it will be +EV in the long term, but in the short term its damn frustrating.
I also seem to treat too many players as if they think carefully about what they're doing, which is definately a mistake, for instance if they make a large raise, I think, if they really had the goods, they wouldn't make it so obvious, therefore he must be bluffing, or I assume a check means they have hit the flop and are inducing a raise so I slow down. In actual fact, in most cases, a big raise means, I have a hand, and a check means I've missed the flop.
The overall picture for 2007 is pretty gloomy, down £600 this year, which equates to around 25% of my total online poker profit, it is offset slightly by a £120 profit from playing live this year so around £480 down overall.
The problem seems to be that if I buy in to mid-stakes tournaments ($20-$50 buy in) I run through the bankroll too quickly and end up playing scared, but if I stick to the small stake stuff (<$10 buy in) I have trouble taking it serious and end up playing too loose, bluffing my stack away etc.
I know that just one decent win in a good MTT would put everything right, but to be honest, I cant see where its coming from right now.
Anyway, I'll be positive, try to give every game 100% concentration and hope that the breakthrough comes.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

You called with WHAT !!

***** Betfair Poker Hand History for Game 216028790 *****
NL Texas Hold'em $5 Buy-in + $0.50 Entry Fee
Level:4 Blinds(50/100-(no ante)
Tuesday, June 05, 21:02:03 GMT 2007
Regular $5+$0.50 NLH #76741 Table 4 9-max
(Real Money)
Seat 5 is the buttonTotal number of active players : 9
Seat 1: giz123 ( 654 )
Seat 2: mandalou ( 2,974 )
Seat 3: JinxRock ( 6,957 )
Seat 4: bamse11 ( 8,845 )
Seat 5: redcar ( 5,378 )
Seat 6: fishy28 ( 3,594 )
Seat 7: SCRUBS46 ( 5,788.50 )
Seat 8: fla ( 8,529 )
Seat 9: carefree75 ( 4,882 )
Tourney Level:4 Blinds(50/100-(no ante)
fishy28 posts small blind [50]
SCRUBS46 posts big blind [100]

** Dealing down cards **
Dealt to redcar [ Kc, Kd ]
fla calls [100]
carefree75 folds
giz123 folds
mandalou folds
JinxRock folds
bamse11 folds
redcar raises to [400]
fishy28 folds
SCRUBS46 folds
fla calls [300]

** Dealing Flop ** [ 2d, 7d, 7h ]
fla bets [100]
redcar raises to [1,250]
fla calls [1,150]

** Dealing Turn ** [ Ts ]
fla checks
redcar goes all-in
redcar bets [3,728]
fla calls [3,728]

** Showdown **
redcar shows [ Kc, Kd ]
fla shows [ Th, 2s ]
** Dealing River ** [ Td ]**
Hand Conclusion **
fla wins 10,906 from main pot with full house, Tens full of Sevens
************ Game 216028790 ends ************

Monday, June 04, 2007

A Fresh Start

After a couple of weeks off, I decided to make a fresh start in online poker, forget what has happened so far this year, start with a clean slate and see if I can actually make a profit.
I managed a seventh out of 77 in UKBetting Pokers 1200 Euro Gtd Tournament on Thursday for just over £50 and had a run at $10 and $20 Sit and Go's during the week.
Unfortunately I still cant seem to get back in the swing of STT's I managed a 2nd on sunday afternoon, which was exactly 20 STT's since I last cashed.
Not sure where I am going wrong in these, I seem to either suffer a horrible outdraw or run KK into AA or JJ into QQ.
20 in a row says its not just bad luck, but bad play somewhere along the line, so I'll continue to analyse my play to see if I can find the leak.
I qualified for the $16k Gtd on Betfair via a satellite on Sunday afternoon and was looking forward to playing on Sunday night, things didn't go to plan however.
I managed to win a decent pot early on with K9o in the BB on a 9 high flop against oppo's 9Js.
The table was pretty loose and aggressive so I decided to sit tight early on and see if I could get paid when I did hit a hand.
I thought the hand had come towards the end of level one when I was dealt KK utg, I raised 4 x BB to 80 and the whole table folded except the SB who called, The flop came 7d, 2c, 3d, SB checks so I bet 200 and he calls, turn is 3h, oppo checks again so I bet 600 and he raises to 1200. I can't see that he has hit the flop unless he has 77, maybe he thinks I have AK and hes trying to push me off the pot. I decide his most likely holding is 88/99 or A7 so push all in, he insta-calls and shows 3c4s for trip threes.
This leaves me with around 200 chips and a few minutes later I'm gone.
I would appreciate any advice on the hand above, if anyone feels I played it particularly poorly, maybe I could have let it go to the re-raise on level one ?
Anyway despite this I feel a bit more confident in my play, Im going to target the MTT's a bit more carefully try to play when I'm sure I can give it my full attention, avoid stakes so small that I dont concentrate properly, forget multi-tabling and above all try to enjoy it.
Thanks for reading, and be lucky

Friday, May 11, 2007

Life after poker

Still not playing online much, have had a couple of bashes at the $10k Gtd on Pokerstars at 6pm EST without much success, manage to outlast 700 or 800 but still go out shy of the money.
But summers here, the suns out and theres lots of stuff to do away from the virtual green baize.
I did play live last night, £100 freeze out, 18 runners, managed 3rd place for £330, which was a little disapointing as I was chip leader with three left before getting it all in pre-flop with KK v TT. He raises, I reraise, he jams and I cant call quick enough. Unfortunately lady luck decides to stick her oar in and 4 diamonds on the board gives him a flush and me a short stack.
Didn't last much longer after that, nicked a few blinds before getting caught with my hand in the cookie jar, and that was that.
I did enjoy it though, and I intend to play as much live poker as possible in the coming months, whatever I decide to do about the online game.
Anybody local to Gib or in southern Spain on holiday, may be interested in the following:

I haven't yet visted the players lounge, but the games at Gib casino are pretty friendly affairs, and all are welcome, so if you're in the area give it a try.

Well thats about it for now, hope the poker gods smile on you.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Time to call it a day ?

Regular readers, whom number very few, will have noticed the blog has not been updated for about three weeks.
In fact I have not even played a hand of poker for two complete weeks until yesterday.
Friday night I tried the £4k Gtd on Crypto and went out in three hands when I got unecessarily involved in a 4 way raise-fest with KTon a TJK flop.
Today I played the $10k Gtd on Pokerstars lasting two and a half hours before I reraised pre-flop with 77 while short stacked, pushed all in after my opponent checked a 668 flop, only to be called by AQ (you know the rest)
I also played the $10 deepstack on Pokerstars lasting over 3 hours before my KK was turned over by AQ (all in pre-flop)
Its not much fun at all, I didn't even miss it when I had 2 weeks off, I only played today because it was raining and I was bored.
Looking at my profit graph since I started in Feb 2005 I'm beginning to wonder if I can actually make a profit at thius game at all, 2005's profit was on the back of Betfairs birthday celebrations and the added value tournaments, 2006's profit would have been decimated if not for Mansions staff freeroll which netted me nearly £1k, and this year has been an unmitigated disaster.
Much as I admire the people who can make a steady profit, or even a living from the game, Im starting to realise that I'm not one of them. I'm keen, I'm enthusiastic, but ultimately I dont have the skill of Baretta, Dibble or Gatsby to make a regular profit.
I'm going to have another spell off and see if the enthusiasm returns, but if not, and this seems likely, this will be the end of the blog, at least as a record of my poker achievements.
Thanks for reading, and the best of luck to you all.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

When your lucks out.........

Apologies for more hand histories
Not even bad beats really, and just a $5 sit and go, but two hands in quick succession show the importance of a little luck in poker

PokerStars Game #9060675355: Tournament #46057902, $5.00+$0.50 Hold'em No Limit - Level III (25/50) - 2007/03/24 - 05:44:07 (ET)
Table '46057902 1' 9-max Seat #3 is the button
Seat 2: zhaozhao12 (2650 in chips)
Seat 3: Doris_All_In (145 in chips)
Seat 4: FU808 (1990 in chips)
Seat 5: TheConArtist (1095 in chips)
Seat 7: holker (2365 in chips)
Seat 8: Joe Momma13 (2865 in chips)
Seat 9: spindrifter (2390 in chips)
FU808: posts small blind 25
TheConArtist: posts big blind 50
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to holker [Ac Ah]
holker: calls 50
Joe Momma13: folds
Doris_All_In said, "3 suckouts"
spindrifter: calls 50
zhaozhao12: calls 50
Doris_All_In: raises 50 to 100
FU808: folds
TheConArtist: raises 995 to 1095 and is all-in
holker: raises 995 to 2090

spindrifter: folds
zhaozhao12: folds
Doris_All_In: calls 45 and is all-in
*** FLOP *** [Kh Jc Kd]
*** TURN *** [Kh Jc Kd] [2h]
*** RIVER *** [Kh Jc Kd 2h] [8s]
*** SHOW DOWN ***
TheConArtist: shows [Ad Ks] (three of a kind, Kings)
holker: shows [Ac Ah] (two pair, Aces and Kings)

TheConArtist collected 1900 from side pot
Doris_All_In: shows [2s 5d] (two pair, Kings and Deuces)
Doris_All_In is sitting out
TheConArtist collected 560 from main pot
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 2460 Main pot 560. Side pot 1900. Rake 0
Board [Kh Jc Kd 2h 8s]
Seat 2: zhaozhao12 folded before Flop
Seat 3: Doris_All_In (button) showed [2s 5d] and lost with two pair, Kings and Deuces
Seat 4: FU808 (small blind) folded before Flop
Seat 5: TheConArtist (big blind) showed [Ad Ks] and won (2460) with three of a kind, Kings
Seat 7: holker showed [Ac Ah] and lost with two pair, Aces and Kings

Seat 8: Joe Momma13 folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 9: spindrifter folded before Flop

PokerStars Game #9060704830: Tournament #46057902, $5.00+$0.50 Hold'em No Limit - Level III (25/50) - 2007/03/24 - 05:49:35 (ET)
Table '46057902 1' 9-max Seat #8 is the button
Seat 2: zhaozhao12 (2750 in chips)
Seat 4: FU808 (1890 in chips)
Seat 5: TheConArtist (2610 in chips)
Seat 7: holker (1470 in chips)
Seat 8: Joe Momma13 (2590 in chips)
Seat 9: spindrifter (2190 in chips)
spindrifter: posts small blind 25
zhaozhao12: posts big blind 50
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to holker [Jd Ah]
FU808: folds
TheConArtist: folds
holker: raises 100 to 150
Joe Momma13: folds
spindrifter: folds
zhaozhao12: calls 100
*** FLOP *** [Jh 7h 5s]
zhaozhao12: bets 350
holker: raises 350 to 700
zhaozhao12: raises 350 to 1050
holker: raises 270 to 1320 and is all-in
zhaozhao12: calls 270

*** TURN *** [Jh 7h 5s] [Kc]
*** RIVER *** [Jh 7h 5s Kc] [8s]
*** SHOW DOWN ***
zhaozhao12: shows [Kh Js] (two pair, Kings and Jacks)
holker: shows [Jd Ah] (a pair of Jacks)
zhaozhao12 collected 2965 from pot

*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 2965 Rake 0
Board [Jh 7h 5s Kc 8s]
Seat 2: zhaozhao12 (big blind) showed [Kh Js] and won (2965) with two pair, Kings and Jacks
Seat 4: FU808 folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 5: TheConArtist folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 7: holker showed [Jd Ah] and lost with a pair of Jacks
Seat 8: Joe Momma13 (button) folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 9: spindrifter (small blind) folded before Flop

Sunday, March 18, 2007

What is it with Flush Draws ?

I just can't seem to get away from flush drawers, I mean, how much do you have to raise to shake 'em off ?

PokerStars Game #8964256346: Tournament #44847005, $10+$1 Hold'em No Limit - Level II (15/30) - 2007/03/18 - 12:35:08 (ET)
Table '44847005 11' 9-max Seat #5 is the button
Seat 1: harley745 (5060 in chips)
Seat 2: sternace (7240 in chips)
Seat 3: HAWK012261 (5025 in chips)
Seat 4: holker (4225 in chips)
Seat 5: Prophet 22 (3775 in chips)
Seat 6: Nater311 (7570 in chips)
Seat 7: canukatm (7795 in chips)
Seat 8: Agriates (5120 in chips)
Seat 9: broncorubin (10950 in chips)
Nater311: posts small blind 15
canukatm: posts big blind 30
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to holker [Qd Ad]
Agriates: folds
broncorubin: folds
harley745: calls 30
sternace: calls 30
HAWK012261: calls 30
holker: raises 90 to 120
Prophet 22: folds
Nater311: folds
canukatm: calls 90
harley745: folds
sternace: folds
HAWK012261: calls 90
*** FLOP *** [2h Qc 3h]
canukatm: checks
HAWK012261: bets 120
holker: raises 240 to 360
canukatm: folds
HAWK012261: calls 240
*** TURN *** [2h Qc 3h] [7c]
HAWK012261: bets 150
holker: raises 1380 to 1530
HAWK012261: calls 1380
*** RIVER *** [2h Qc 3h 7c] [9h]
HAWK012261: bets 180
holker: calls 180
*** SHOW DOWN ***
HAWK012261: shows [Kh Ah] (a flush, Ace high)
holker: mucks hand
HAWK012261 collected 4575 from pot
holker said, "lol"
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 4575 Rake 0
Board [2h Qc 3h 7c 9h]
Seat 1: harley745 folded before Flop
Seat 2: sternace folded before Flop
Seat 3: HAWK012261 showed [Kh Ah] and won (4575) with a flush, Ace high
Seat 4: holker mucked [Qd Ad]
Seat 5: Prophet 22 (button) folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 6: Nater311 (small blind) folded before Flop
Seat 7: canukatm (big blind) folded on the Flop
Seat 8: Agriates folded before Flop (didn't bet)Seat 9: broncorubin folded before Flop (didn't bet)

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Flush Draws

What makes it so hard for people to lay down a flush draw ?
At the minute, 9 out of 10 losing hands for me are against someone chasing a flush against the odds.
Subtlty is just not required in $10 sit and go tournaments, no-one respects a 3 or 4 x BB raise, so you have to put a BIG bet in to tell them you have a hand
But it doesn't matter, some looney will call with rags
The HH below is typical, he cant lay it down, they're sooooooted

PokerStars Game #8945815879: Tournament #45493355, $10+$1 Hold'em No Limit - Level I (10/20) - 2007/03/17 - 10:48:04 (ET)
Table '45493355 1' 9-max Seat #2 is the button
Seat 1: holker (1500 in chips)
Seat 2: legendrey (1480 in chips)
Seat 3: Thorup1 (1480 in chips)
Seat 4: ZodiacBrave (1800 in chips)
Seat 5: melon157 (1500 in chips)
Seat 6: harryh4 (1500 in chips)
Seat 7: ScaryPapyrus (1260 in chips)
Seat 8: raul98 (1500 in chips)
Seat 9: thewizard999 (1480 in chips)
Thorup1: posts small blind 10
ZodiacBrave: posts big blind 20
*** HOLE CARDS ***
Dealt to holker [Jd Jc]
melon157: folds
harryh4: folds
ScaryPapyrus: calls 20
raul98: raises 40 to 60
thewizard999: calls 60
holker: raises 180 to 240
legendrey: folds
Thorup1: folds
ZodiacBrave: folds
ScaryPapyrus: folds
raul98: calls 180
thewizard999: calls 180
*** FLOP *** [Ac 5c Jh]
raul98: checks
thewizard999: bets 100
holker: raises 300 to 400
raul98: folds
thewizard999: calls 300
*** TURN *** [Ac 5c Jh] [2c]
thewizard999: checks
holker: bets 860 and is all-in
thewizard999: calls 840 and is all-in
*** RIVER *** [Ac 5c Jh 2c] [7d]
*** SHOW DOWN ***
thewizard999: shows [Kc Qc] (a flush, Ace high)
holker: shows [Jd Jc] (three of a kind, Jacks)
thewizard999 collected 3250 from pot
*** SUMMARY ***
Total pot 3250 Rake 0
Board [Ac 5c Jh 2c 7d]
Seat 1: holker showed [Jd Jc] and lost with three of a kind, Jacks
Seat 2: legendrey (button) folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 3: Thorup1 (small blind) folded before Flop
Seat 4: ZodiacBrave (big blind) folded before Flop
Seat 5: melon157 folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 6: harryh4 folded before Flop (didn't bet)
Seat 7: ScaryPapyrus folded before Flop
Seat 8: raul98 folded on the FlopSeat 9: thewizard999 showed [Kc Qc] and won (3250) with a flush, Ace high

Level one he wants to call a 12 x BB reraise with KQs ?
......and I know I should have raised more on the flop, but in all honesty he's calling no matter what, and I know the check on the turn means he has hit, but I push anyway, just to make sure.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Post when your winning

Sorry for the lack of recent updates, it seems I've fallen into the 'you only blog when your winning' category.
I've been running bad all year to be honest but getting worse month by month.
I actually made a small profit last week ,due mainly to winning a couple of $10 STT's and a money finish in the Crypto £4k Gtd
I was chipleader at the second break in the £4k Gtd before being outdrawn 3 times in quick succesion to end up in 16th of 360 for £40 when I thought a grand was within reach.
Back up to the $25 sit and go's this week, but the standard of play is truely dreadful, I've just had a 4 x BB raise called by a muppet with 74o who obviously then flops two pair against my AQ with a Q74 flop, half an hour of careful rebuilding later I have my chance for revenge with KK, again he calls a 4 x BB raise, this time with K2s and flops a flush.
Its enough to make me want to pack it all in to be honest, after winning £700 in 2005 and £1600 in 2006 I'm already down £350 this year.
If I thought it was because other players are better than me and Im just getting left behind, that would be bad enough, but to be constantly outdrawn by complete idiots is driving me mad.
Its just not fun any more
Since typing this Ive just crashed out of 2 mtts on Crypto with AKs v A9o then AKo v AQs
Its so bloody frustrating, its the type of crap you expect in $5 tournaments not $25
I think I need a few days off

Monday, February 19, 2007

A better weekend

Well, this weekend went a little bettter than the last one, which wasn't too hard considering.
After last weekend, I was a bit sick of poker and hadn't planned to play during the week as a kind of cooling off period after tilting on Sunday, but I did play in the Crypto £4k Gtd tournament on Monday night and finished 19th of 415 for a £42 return.
I then laid off the poker all week until Saturday, where I avoided the cash games and played a couple of $25 sit and go's on Betfair with no success, I also played the $1750 Gtd, which is becoming a bit of a favourite, and ran well until I bubbled in 19th.
Sunday I played a few $10 sit and go's on Pokerstars with 45 runners and managed a 8th place and a 12th place with 7 getting paid.
So onto Sunday night to try to turn the week into a winning one, I decided to try the $50 buy in $25k Gtd on Pokerstars at 9pm and play the $1750 Gtd on Betfair simultaneously to keep from getting bored.
The $1750 started well when my pocket Queens won against KK and AJ with a Q on the turn, and then went from good to better when with 46o in the BB I Flopped the nuts with 357 rainbow and had my bet raised and reraised by A7 and TT as we ended up all in to take my stack up to 9k and the chip lead on level 2.
After that start,things had to quieten down, and they did, but I reached the final table in 6th place, and thats where I finished when my 66 ran into pocket aces giving me a $96 return.
The bigger tournament on Pokerstars didn't start so good, 3 hands in I get dealt KK on the button, in an unraised pot, I raise from 20 to 80 and get two callers.
Thje flop is a nightmare AAx, I bet out 160 and keep one caller in the pot, turn is another Ace, oppo checks, and so do I, river card is harmless, and oppo bets out 360, I put him on a smaller pair and consider pushing all in, but Im scared of the case Ace, and dont want to crash out this early in a (for me) big buy in multi so I just call.......
....and he has the Ace.........lucky escape for me, opponent congratulates me on not going bust, and we move on.
Next hand of note was QQ, I had recovered a little, back to the 1500 starting chips, when I pick up QQ in late position, no raise in front of me so I raise to 4 x BB, early position limper reraises, I push and he insta-calls with AKo.
For the first time in living memory, my pocket Queens stand up against overcards and I double up to 3k.
A little later I get a huge stroke of luck when I fluke a flush with 99 v KK and I'm up to 9k and going well in the top 20.
The crucial hand came with the blinds at 300/600 and I have 99 again on the button, its folded round to me and I make it 2400, and get a call from the BB.
The flop is Th 7c 2s, and I make the mistake of not raising enough, because Im worried by the Ten, oppo checks, I bet 3000 and he flat calls, turn is 6h , oppo again checks and I bet 3000, he calls, by now I have no idea what he has but Im worried by AT or an overpair, the river brings a third heart, but to be honest Im not considering the flush until he bets 6000, with over 20k in the pot, I call fearing the worst (probably not thye best move), and he shows A4h.
Pretty poor play by him is rewarded, but if only I had raised more on the flop, I would have been in great shape, instead of crippled, from here I manage to limp into the cash, going out in 149th of 1179 for about $100, when an attempted button steal with A6s runs into A9.
Two cashes make it a rare profitable week in 2007, but also a string of 'could have beens'
I would be interested in peoples thoughts on the 99 hand, it seems that the conservative thinking which saved me early on with KK cost me later with the 99 hand.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

A bad weekend

Had a terrible weekend, so bad that its took me a whole week before I could bring myself to blog it.
Started off last Saturday playing 0.25/0.5 ring games on Betfair, I'd had a prety good week on cash so far and decided to try and improve the finances a little more by playing Saturday afternoon, whilst watching the football on tv.
Well to cut a long story short, it ended up a bit of a disaster losing $130 before I decided that I still had no cash game and packed in.
I've heard other people say its harder to win on the cash tables at the weekend than it is on weekday evenings, and thats what I have found too.
But worse was still to come on Sunday, chastened by my losses at the cash tables I decided to win it all back on the $25 sit & go's on Betfair and Victor Chandlers.
I then suffered the worst run of bad beats I have ever seen which, I guess started tilting me to even worse results.
I won't bore you with all the details, but I had AA beaten twice by smaller pocket pairs outdrawing on me. AKs v KJo losing as oppo made a flush etc etc etc
In all I played 15 games for a total buy in of $412 and all I managed were two third places for a total return of $90 :(
I started off 4th, 4th, 3rd, 5th, 3rd, 4th, before the tilt set in and I lost my complete bank on VC before I had the sense to log off.
Over £200 in a weekend is a disaster, but at least, hopefully, I can learn a lesson from it and not make the same mistakes again.
Funnily enough, one thing I did learn is that the standard of play on the $25 games is no better than in the more familar lower stakes games, sounds a little crazy after losing £200 in a weekend, but at least I have the confidence that I can play at this level, and I feel I have nothing to fear from the average $25 stt player
I guess time will tell if this is true or not.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Moving on up

Back to a familiar theme this week, starting a determined attempt to step up a little in my tournament play.
I've decided to give up on the Crypto £4k Gtd, as although the std of play is generally poor, the blind structure turns it into a crap shoot befoe the final table is even reached.
I've turned my attention recently to the $25 Gtd on PokerStars which usually has a total prize pool of between $40k and $50k for a $50 buy in. I havent had much success in it so far, though from the 5 times I have entered, 3 times I have lost with a pocket pair against a smaller pocket pair, in the words of Phil Helmuth 'If it wasn't for luck, I guess I'd win them all'.
The standard of play on Pokerstars does seem better than a lot of other sites, I know it sounds strange, but I think this will help my game, too many idiots playing junk make it very difficult to put anyone on a hand. When a guy calls your 5 x BB raise pre-flop and the flop comes A33, you would assume that unless he has flopped quad threes your AK is ahead, but then they turn over J30 and your out of the tournament.
I've also been playing on Betfair again recently, the $1750 Gtd runs alongside the stars $25k Gtd and I like playing them both simultaneously to help stave off the boredom in the early stages and reduce the temptation to play too many hands.
I've also moved my cash game from stars to Betfair as the cash tables are undoubtably looser and easier to win on, I may try Crypto for cash in Feb as they are giving away up to £100 bonus for earning fpp's on UKBetting poker in Feb.
The year hasn't started too well with no major cashes in tournaments and an overall loss on cash tables, in conjunction with the increased cost of playing the higher value tournaments, but overall, I'm fairly happy with my game.
I think my luck hasn't been great so far and when it turns, I'll be in the money again.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Ring Games

I'm still on a mission to improve my cash play, and at the same time, trying to earn enough FPP's on Poker Stars to release a $50 bonus.
My game seems to be improving, in as much as the losses are smaller than before, but I've already lost $50 trying to earn the bonus and I have only half of the FPP's required.
I think the stats show where I am going wrong, I'm playing too many hands and my win percentage at showdown is still below 50%
I seem to have got over my previous problem of losing whenever I played for too long, or to put it another way, playing too long when I'm losing.
I managed a 2 hour session on Saturday and a three hour session on Sunday for a total loss of just $7 and no reloads required.
I feel now for the first time that I know what Im doing when I sit at a cash table, still a long way to go , but at least I can see light at the end of the tunnel.
Im still hot on the heels of a win in the Crypto £4k Gtd, played 4 times last week and only missed the money once when I had QQ and TT outdrawn in succesive hands.
I watched fellow Betfair forumite and ex-Blogger Wyld play in the Mansion $100k Gtd on Thursday night. he played really well before coming unstuck near the end with AQ v AK to just miss out on a final table placing, but did take home $1000 for 11th so congratulations Andy and very well played. Maybe another couple of wins and the Blog will be resurected.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Mansion $100k Gtd

Excuse me using my Blog to promote Mansion, but the $100k Gtd tournament which is on every night on Mansion Poker has been moved to 1800 GMT to suit European customers.
Anyone looking for value should make a beeline for this tournament which in recent days has been at 0300 GMT and aimed firmly at the American market.
Recent tournaments have been undersubscribed to the extent that Mansion have been putting up around $50k added in the tournament every day.
The entry cost is $100 with $90 of that going into the prizepool, the extent of the overlay, however, makes it the best value in online poker at the moment imo
How does $24k to the winner sound.
The tournament is on every night until further notice, so make hay while the sun shines

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Stop Press

I forgot to mention Baretta won the second of the Mansion Staff freerolls for £1500

Saturday, January 06, 2007

A Profitable Xmas

Well after a pretty bad run in December I was true to my word and had a few days off, coming back to play in the Mansion Invitational Freeroll for staff only with £5k Added and finishing 2nd of 108 for a nice xmas bonus of £925.
Deposited on Pokerstars soon after and played on there for most of the holiday period, with mixed success. I do like the site though, its possible to simplify the look of the tables and use big numbers on the cards for ease of use, must be a godsend if multi-tabling. The structures are good too, longer levels than Crypto, where I have been playing recently.
Followed up my second in the Mansion Staff tournie with a 10th place out of 110 in the second staff freeroll for £50, which coincidently was the buy in for the live tournament at the Casino on Wed 3rd Jan.
Managed another final table there too, agreeing a chop heads up for second place and £335 in Prize money to cap a profitable festive period.
I guess its the time of year to set out my objectives for 2007, so here goes

1. Firstly I think I will play less poker in general, look for value in Multi-table tournaments, and play at a highr stakes than in 2006

2. I'll set a profit target for the year of £2500 which is what I set out to achieve but failed last year.

3. I also need to address my cash game (If indeed I have a cash game) and try to at least generate a profit from it over the year.

4. I also want to make a profit from live play, as I managed in 2006

5. Maybe a final table on one of the larger Gtd tournies by the middle of the year and a win by the end of the year, or failing this to qualify via a satellite for a big live tournament

Well thats about it, thanks to all readers for looking in in 2006, and I hope you will pop in from time to time in 2007.

Wishing you all the very best of luck at the tables as well as in life