The only player I recognise is the housefly, with whom regular readers will be familiar. He's actually a pretty nice guy, he just doesn't say much at the table, which is fine.
Early jump to 22K from 20K as I flop a set, which is nice.
Up to 28K, and as we complete the first level as I put in a small raise with 5d 3d, flop a straight flush draw, and turn the straight. The river brings another higher straightening card and also a third club which I really don't like. I like it even less when my opponent now bets 2500, but it somehow feels weak (or lucky) and I tank for a bit, and finally make the call. He tables King high for a bigger busted flush draw. Well played Kevin.
Just saw some more poker ugliness when a guy with J 10 flopped the nut straight on a 9 Q K board, and KK decided after the 5th raise on the flop that he was still somehow good. Of course, when the 9 paired up on the river he was, and the guy with the best hand going in leaves the room with a cool story about how his opponent couldn't find a fold and yet still won. l'm keeping it real at the moment and just plodding and stealing in the occasional good spot.
The clock screen shows 264/284 players at present. Almost at the end of level 2.
I get moved tables when I'm in the big blind. It seems OK so far. One young Asian kid in a garish jacket takes issue when he throws in one chip in the small blind to raise, and it gets queried. It all got sorted, but he was a bit irked about it. I'll try to contain my amazement.
Nearing the end of the third level as we approach the first break. I've gone up to around 30K which is a fine progression at this stage. You start with 20K in this with 40 minute levels, but losing a few decent sized early pots can immediately put you under pressure, so being on the right side of the curve is a good spot.
Flop comes out KA7 which looks to miss me completely. However, everyone then checks and I'm certainly not betting at it, as I don't trust any of these gringos. The turn comes a 3, and now one lump wants to bet out for 2500. Everyone folds to me, and I am just about to bin it, when it occurs to me I actually just turned a double gutter draw, meaning if a deuce or a six hits the river, then I'd have the super-disguised nuts. I decide to call as I have an OK stack, and will likely get paid well if I hit gin.
The river is an offsuit deuce, happily giving me the nuts. I resist the urge to scream out, fist-pump and then high five the dealer triumphantly. Instead I calmly bet 7900, and my opponent very quickly calls, tabling his K7 proudly for two pair, and getting ready to receive the pot. However, I give him the bad news, and he then looks like he's about to pop a major blood vessel.
"What the fuck!?! How the hell did you call and then hit that???"
"I know, it was terrible. I only had four outs". The Asian kid on my left bursts out laughing as he knows the truth (eight outs for those not keeping up with the plot). I say very little more, but the guy's head has now totally left the building, and he busts out about 20 minutes later.
I'm playing well, and also am catching cards. I just hit over 60K at 500/200/500. I have KK (what a life) and it gets bumped preflop and I flat call hoping for more action. I get it when the 3-bet comes in, and now 3 players call and I make it 8900 to play to send the message. All folds to the guy on my right who looks like he still wants to play, and he reaches for the rest of his chips, another 6K more or so, and I tell him not to do it, but he decides to move all-in. I ask him if he has QQ as I put in the chips, and he turns green and nods. I bust him when no Queens appear on the board (despite an Ace popping up to the dismay of the other guys who had folded).
Level 8 now, and I've won and lost a few, but am steady on 60K with the average stack at 37K, and 297/565 remaining currently.
I drop to 56K on the level before dinner with a badly timed bluff, but I release it on the turn when he punts in 15K, so the damage is minimal. 252/583 remain at present.
Just had a nice moment of maximum gut wrenching poker pain, to lose a pot of around 150K.
I'm in the big blind with 9d 7h, and there's a small raise to 3K and two callers. I complete to try to flop something with potential.
It rolls out 9h 9s 2h. About as good as it gets unless there's some awful cooler in my future. I'm first to speak, and I lead out for 9900. The scruffy kid who originally made the preflop raise calls, and the others fold.
Turn is the Ac, and I decide to kill it there and then, and bet almost 30,000, leaving about 30 back and basically sending the message of where I am in the hand. The kid twiddles his chips, asks how much the bet was, and after about 2 minutes, then raises me all in. Great. If I have just walked into Aces full I may actually throw up on the table. I get it in, and table my hand. He turns over... Ah Kh, for two pair, Aces and Nines, and a flush draw, one of his flushing cards of course, I have in my hand. Good shape for our hero in a monster pot.
Until of course, the river brings the Qh, which makes him a flush and decimates my stack down to about 5K.
This is normally the point where the player who loses is supposed to go off on a childish rant and tell the other guy how lucky he just got, how terrible he is, etc. I'm a bit too old to get into all that stuff, plus, I'm not a dick, so I let the dealer ship the pot, and just say nothing. Sigh.
Around an orbit later I find JJ and I decide reluctantly that this is the time. Annoyingly there's a raise to about 2600 ahead of me, which is the worst possible bet size for my stack, and I realise after two people also call that if I just shove here, I'm likely going to get 3 or 4 callers now, who will probably then check it down if they miss and bust me out. Ugh.
Luckily, the old guy who is on my right now springs to life, and makes it 14K to play, and irrespective of what he has, I have to now go with it given my present plight. I call for less and luckily the others all fold. Even more luckily, he then proudly tables 99. Shit, I'm actually ahead!
No horror stories, and I get a double up plus change. It's a start.
A few hands later I look down on the button at Kc 4c. It's far from ideal, but neither is my stack. I stuff it in, and both the blinds put me through the wringer but eventually fold. I'm back on 22K, but with the limits now at 1600/800/1600, I have a long ways to go to be back near the very comfortable stack I was on not 30 minutes ago.
The same kid who destroyed my stack earlier now raises my big blind to 3600. The old guy who had the 99 also calls, and I look down at Ad Qd, and decide I'm having none of it, so I punt in my stack in, and he winces and then folds, followed by the older guy. I'm up to 32K or so and building back well and tuned in.
Tournaments can be so disgusting sometimes.
I look down at KK with 150 players left. The player under the gun makes it 4200 to play. The guy on his left cuts out 11000 or do and raises. Great stuff. Round to me, and I make it 23,500, leaving myself about 9K. All folds to the 11K guy, who looks at my stack, and moves all-in. Let's go.
The dreaded overcard. Whatever, let's just get it over with.
Flop comes J Q A, putting me in awful shape and drawing to one King for a win or a ten for a chop. I get neither and instead of being back over 80K again, I'm walking out the door.
I hope the updates are entertaining. Trust me, when you're playing well, are tuned in, and are doing everything correctly, it still very often sucks to be me.