Level 2, and some pretty big pots being played early, though not by me. One Aussie kid flopped Quads with QQ vs AK on a QQKA3 board and it all went in, and then another guy had AA vs JJ, so plenty of money moving round the table. I'm still on the 20K start, and hoping for a better run than yesterday.
A bad beat of sorts as I get moved tables from the big blind. A whole new bunch of faces to figure out already. I lose a pot with Ah 10h when it comes A 8 9 and I bet out, get raised, fold, and am shown A8. Marvellous.
My enthusiasm is dented slightly when I run JJ into KK, and lose 4K. We are on level 4 and the big blind pays the ante for the whole table. Screen shows 300/348 right now, and I'd like to come out of the blocks with a pot I can win.
Poker tournaments can be cruel when it feels like you're struggling to win a hand. I just mucked AJ offsuit preflop to a sizeable raise as it's a pretty shitty holding and doesn't stand up well too often when the Ace flops. Of course it then comes out AJ9 and an old grunter wants to shove for 13K on the flop. Marvellous.
First break and I'm on 13,500. Not the best of starts, but I've done little wrong. Grin and bear it. Off outside for some sun.
It does precisely that when I'm in the big blind with 86 and the flop comes out 682 all clubs. The other guy in the pot fires out a bet and I simply call as people seem to be calling with any drawing cards. The turn is the Ac putting 4 clubs out, and irritatingly, the river is a fifth club, and now this guy wants to bet 1K into a pot of 7500 or so. I make the call and he shows 10 10 with the 10c to scoop, and would have called a shove on the flop with it anyway. Down to 8K.
Patience is a virtue I guess. I make it 1K to go with QQ, and an older guy shoves in his whole stack, the rest fold, and we get it on with my Queens holding up vs his 10 10. It felt like very hard work, but at least I'm back to 16K again as we approach level 6.
A flurry of bust-outs as AK beats QQ, QQ beats AK, and AK beats 10 10 means we are about to get new players. I was involved in none of the hands. Now 306/433 as we start level 6 and 400/200/400.
Level 7 nears and I'm not seeing much. I'm a big believer that once you have the table sussed, then actually having good cards means very little, and you can raise regularly with gleeful abandon. However, when the table is full of guys who like to invent a flop they might win with, and who will call you down regardless, that's not the way forward, so for now it's nuts and bolts. 16K has become 11K, and I'm just grinding along right now.
Level 8 now, and it's still a grind. I'd love to be able to write something spicy, but sadly this table is basically just have the best hand and have it stand up. No one is big on conversation, and the humour quotient is sadly absent. Never mind, you can't always have it good.
I've rocked it out, and on 7K I decide I need to make a stand. My 66 gets called by AK, and a flop of 6A2 and no turn or river horrors means I get a full double. Another orbit and 98 on an A98 flop keeps me in the mix. Now we have 306/490 players, and I'm on 15K as we near level 9 and 800/400/800.
Level 9, and the Indian kid two to my left continues to walk on water when he puts in a button raise with K8, and the blind shoves on him when he wakes up with QQ. Of course the King immediately flops. It must be nice to run like God.
269/506 remain and it's been a long slog so far. I've held my own but there's been very little finesse to it. It's mainly been choose the moments and bang it in, which isn't very skilful, but sometimes, that's just what needs to be done.
Level 10 now and we're at 1000/500/1000. I have around 7K which isn't great but is still a threat. We've lost half of the field, and all is folded to me, and I look down at Kh Jh. It's not a great hand, but versus the blinds neither of whom have a ton of chips, it's well worth the shove. I jam it in, and the big blind says he can't fold, and calls me for about 25% of his stack with...
54 offsuit. Well played buddy.
The board runs out 2 2 A 9..... 3, and he rivers a straight to bust me. I won't lower myself to say anything. I exit the room and realise I still have a lot to learn about the finer points of this game.
WSOP $1500 tomorrow. Winning something and getting a working stack would be nice.