There is another piece I'm in the middle of writing, but for now it'll have to wait. For today we were up bright and breezy, did a yoga class, blew away the cobwebs, and here we are at my first table ready to rock and roll. 30K starting chips and a one hour clock. let's crack on.
Screen is showing 142/155 so far and climbing. People are busting nice and early. there's plenty of scope for small ball poker here, which suits me fine. I go up to 32K and back to 29K during the first level.
Two guys on my table have just got 30K each in preflop. One has AA, the other has...AQ offsuit. Surprisingly the AA gets an easy double up, and the AQ wanders off to re-enter like it's the most natural thing in the world.
Nearing the end of level 2 and the first break. I just lost with a full house to quad 10's, however fortunately I had the underfull and exercised a bit of pot control. still on a healthy 34K.
Back from break. Now 173/218 on the screen for day 1C. A minor spat when a player complains they were "at" their seat when the last card was dealt and their hand was unjustly killed. I never see the point in berating a dealer, even if they make a mistake. It's bad manners and bad Karma, but some people haven't read the same memo I got.
Midway through level 3, and I've dropped to 21K after getting a succession of playable hands that all missed flops or got raised if I bet. Fine for now.
Playing a full 9 handed table finally. Maybe I'm being overly judgemental, but the guy who has just sat on my right is also watching televised poker on his phone whilst playing the tournament at the table. Not sure what this says about me, but I always find this hilarious. Go figure. Maybe it's because I don't watch televised poker.
Back to 30K starting stack again.
Down to 25K. So far in the last 3 levels, I've walked into Quads three times. In the last 5 minutes, two hands back to back. That's not fun, but I guess I'm grateful I'm exercising some pot control. On the last hand I had QQ and it was checked to me on the river when a 3rd seven fell. He had 78. I wasn't betting.
24K, and the guy who had the AA earlier just got his whole stack in with JJ vs another player's AA on a 3 7 10 two spade flop. If I have to be honest, I think postflop they both played it pretty abysmally, but people of course all play differently, and once you stump up the buy in, you can do whatever you like.
Of course the Jack immediately on the turn ruins the day for the Aces, and 60K+ gets shipped to the guy who played it worst of all.
Our hero hits 46K from a less than ideal 22K, when he decides on a gear change. And also inexplicably starts to talk about himself in the third person.
I raise with Ac Qc and it gets repopped to 2400 and called in another spot. i also call and we see a flop of 2c 5 c 9h. Two overs and the nut flush draw. I'm not always going to be in love with a hand like this, however it's a nut draw and I'm fed up with pissing around waiting for someone to pay me off. I lead out pretty big and get called, the third player raises and I jam. Big stacks get won or lost in these spots, and if I was closer to 30K I might not have done it but we can't sit and wait for the nuts. I the other player folds, and the original reraiser is allin and shows 55 for middle set. Not ideal but still live. Immediate club for the good guys and no pair up, and the nut flush ships me the pot. I bust the same player shortly after for the rest of his money. Now on second break and back in good shape.
Returning from the break and a few new faces have joined us. I just lose a pot to one who has a beard and apparently no sense of humour whatsoever. Meh.
During the break, I went to the restroom, and as i was leaving a guy was walking in carrying a china plate of spaghetti in garlic and cream sauce. Seriously. Food in a public crapper. What could possibly go wrong?
It looks like despite my positive attitude and self belief, life is still determined to keep throwing crap at me. So far today, I have walked into Quads three times, and now when I have the nut flush, he rivers a straight flush. I'd already done all the hard work, and when he checked to me on the river, I just checked behind and saw the bad news. Half the table can't believe I checked to him on the river. There's little point my explaining the finer points of poker, I just take the loss and am happy it's not a much bigger one. Back to 30K again. I'm not going to complain. It seems like others are getting a lot of love, and barring the nut flush vs the set earlier, I'm getting a healthy dose of pain, but I'm tuned in and playing fine, so I'll do what I always do, keep going.
32K as we near the end of level 5. I've seen some pretty ugly stuff so far today, not just the things that have happened to me. It's why terrible players sometimes amass huge stacks. They aren't playing on any sort of a higher level or anything. They simply don't know any better and often can't see past their own two cards. Of course there are some superb players out there, but there are many more who are just awful. Don't tap the glass.
As if to affirm what I just said, AK and AK just get 40K in the middle preflop at 50/150/300. You've gotta love it.
Level 6 and 213/319 remain.
Back to 35K after a bit of heroism. I raised with 44, and when the board ran out K3KK7, I feared I was walking into Quads a fourth time today. However, 44 was good.
Back up to 45K again. The guy two to my left likes to bully, and has put in a big reraise and c-bet quite a few times and is using his stack. I decide I'm fed up with it, and play back at him with 52 suited. We dance around on the flop and on the turn he fires again and I make it 15K to go. He grumbles and passes. That'll learn him.
I played a hand badly that I could have won had I shown more aggression. I had Kh Qh, and turned a flush and straight draw. I needed to fire the river when I missed and I didn't. 44 won the pot, which was my own fault.
The buddy of the guy two to my left turned up 40 minutes ago, and has stood there waffling away about cryptocurrencies non stop, oblivious to the fact we're trying to play a tournament. I don't bother saying anything, I just put on my headphones and Spotify, and let him blow himself out eventually.
211/319 left. Dinner break in 30 minutes.
40K at the dinner break. I'm just fine with that. Back in an hour.
My neighbour on my right just made Aces full of Kings against me when the board ran out AKAK7 and I had a Queen heads up. He checked to me hoping for a bet, but as I told him, I'm not that silly.
207/340 remain. Mid way through level 7 at 75/250/500.
Up to 54K when I flop trips with KQ versus a girl who raised preflop. The money card for her on the turn was an Ace and she had to pay off a 5K river bet to see the bad news.
62K. Sometimes fortune favours the brave. I raised with 7h 4h, flopped a gutshot draw and fired again, buying a free card on the river which made my hand. I tossed out 5K and the other player who has made a few hero calls and been right was not so lucky this time.
Average chips is 50K, so motoring nicely.
I'm informed I have a hot Las Vegas female fan base following the updates. So, to that one girl out there who isn't out with her pals drinking wine tonight, I thank you for your devotion x
Took a couple of hits and missed several flops. Back to 48K again.
Two more levels remain today. I'm treading water on 47K right now. My neighbours on both sides have busted out. On my right the Korean girl with whom I played the other day now sits down. She's OK, until things don't go her way, and then her filthy temper erupts.
That sucks. Just lost a pot vs an unsmiling robot last hand of the level before the break. Down to 38K. Sigh.
Level 9, and though I'm not turning into a rock, I'm certainly being a bit more conservative than I was earlier after taking the hit at the end of the last level. The odd stab from time to time, but laying off the 74's and 46's for a while.
I make a largish raise with Ad Kd, and both the blinds who have shown a tendancy to be unable to fold, decide to call. Flop is A22. They both check and I fire 6K. They both call. Jesus. Turn is a 9. Now the small blind bets 7500 and the other player calls. I fold shaking my head. One of them has to have a deuce.
No. They both do.
One has K2, and one has 42. I need to go back and read a manual.
Just took another hit when a shitty button raise from J7 flopped 2 pair vs my pair and a straight draw. Vomit. Down to 26K. That's how easily your stack can get eroded. Just with basically one bad level, and a bunch of draws that miss or pairs that lose to scabby raises. Irrespective, I'm still playing sharp, but I won't be anteing down to a micro stack, I know that.
Little to say. My streak from earlier is over and now it's nuts and bolts for a while. 26K as we approach level 10. 180/374 remain.
Final level. 100/500/1000. 26K isn't great and I'd rather have the double up than try to chip away, but with this stack it'll likely be hand driven rather than anything else. Sometimes hand driven is easy to play. I just looked down at 92, 92, and 94 in succession.
The serial raiser two to my left just busted a player. He 3-bet with 9c 7c, and the other player smelt a rat and shoved 20K+ with AJ heads up. The 9c 7c called anyway and ran out a flush. pretty vile.
I look down at AK offsuit. Easily the best hand I've seen for ages. I prefer reraising with this hand, but it folds to me in the cutoff, so I have to simply raise. I could shove but with no money in the pot I sometimes feel this is horrible, mind you, half the table disagree with this strategy, as they seem to fall in love with AK for any amount of chips...3K, 40K, a million, whatever. They all have more chips so i guess they must be right.
I get two callers and it comes 986 missing me totally. One bets, the other raises, I fold, and when the dust clears, one flopped a nine after calling the raise with Q9 offsuit, the other had A8 offsuit and flopped an 8, both of them overtaking me. I should have just made the stupid play and jammed it all in then I guess.
Well, we're now at the fun part. Last six hands before bagging up for day 2. I've got a pretty sub standard stack now of under 20K with average chips at nearly 70K, and have had a totally card dead last level, but have just ground it out. I really don't subscribe to this "I don't want to come back for day 2 with no chips" mentality. All the time you have some chips you have a shot. However, if the spot comes up, where I can resteal while my stack is big enough to matter then so be it.
I raise with Ad 10d, and A player comes over the top for all my money. I think for a second and give up. I could shove happily with 54 offsuit if needed, but calling is just too bad a play in my mind, for all your money when you might be in terrible shape. I get shown AQ, so good fold.
Next hand and I'm in the big blind for 1k. That leaves me 16K or so behind. The woman who has earlier displayed a willingness to treak AK like 4 of a kind makes it 3500. It gets called in no less than three more spots and it's on me. I have 16K more, and the pot already has 15K in the middle. I look down at QJ. Normally to me a pretty horrible hand, however with my stack and the dynamic here I don't mind the shove if I'm not up against an overpair. Anything else is fine. AK gets overvalued, I'm flipping with a smaller pair, and AJ or AQ would have to seriously think about the call. Still, with what I've seen on this table, maybe not. I work out if I just fold and blind out the remaining hands, I will come back tomorrow with about 14,500 with blinds at 200/600/1200, so 3600 a round on a new table where I likely don't know the players. I make the decision to shove.
The woman now asks for a count, then announces all-in for around 80K with three people behind. I hate it but am pretty sure she's got AK again. The old 80BB shove....
The others fold, and one shows Ad 10d. I tell the woman she has AK, and she flips over precisely that. I can't say I like the 80BB shove, but understand she's trying to isolate, so off we go.
Flop is KQ9. Great.
Turn is an Ace. Even better. now I need a Queen or a Ten for the win.
I get a five.
So. 12 hours later with a crappy last 2 levels, I get the same result as if I'd busted first hand at Noon. I walked into Quads 3 times, and a straight flush once, but still fought my way up until a couple of ugly hands crippled me and then I was on the back foot. If I said I wasn't disappointed I'd be lying, as I think I'd played well all day until fate ruined me on the last 2 levels. There's a case for the exit hand just going into the bin, but if the shove goes through, I come back with 32K at least tomorrow, and am in perfectly good shape.
Obviously, that didn't happen. An exit 12 hours in and $1600 later is good for the character. Goodnight. I'm off to bed.