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December 30, 2005

An Even Newer New Cash Pot P.B.

Now, i'm not one to chirp ... (honest), but as a way of a confidence booster and to remind myself upon looking back at this diary that one day i could in fact play poker i am going to post whenever i crack my P.B. at the cash tables.

One of my latest logs was of my new cash pot P.B. ($1670) playing $2-$4 PLO - well, i've gone and pipped it.

However, this time it was playing $5-$10 PLO and again holding AAXX.

I am sat in the big blind with $1200 (starting stack plus re-loads = $800 so i am up $400) and i am holding AcAs6c8h - not much to tell your nan about over the left over turkey but.... 8 limpers! (yes!, the whole table wants to see the flop!) - Now normally i would like to just take a flop with my hand but decide there is enough dead money out there to be able to sufficiently augment the pot and make the bet to a size that only a few of the callers would match, so i bet the full pot. - 3 callers, all with deep stacks! - i decide immediately that i am very much prepared to abandon this hand if i get an unfavourable flop, miss completely or get any heat from my oppo's. - Omaha is such a dangerous game if you try and force marginal and weak hands - you need to hit that flop.

The all important board Jc7c6h. Ok, so now i have bottom pair (so what!) and the nut flush draw (very good). I decide to bet out about 2/3 of the pot, i still don't want to go crazy with this hand, i don't want to make the pot too big for someone else and there could be a set out there, two pairs or just about anything - it is omaha after all. - ... i get two callers (gulp!) and prey for a club....

The turn comes 6d, which pairs my 'dangler' - eek, now i'm really involved and have enough of this to justifiably go broke - (a strange way to look at it i suppose but thats the mind of a cyberfish). I am just thinking how much to bet when the first caller in the SB moves all in for $470. I am now really not sure what to do as i have another player behind me who is also deep stacked. Usually when the board pairs in omaha, you can forget your flush draws but something told me mine still might be good. I also fancied my 666 to be good too and i knew i could always redraw to a bigger full house if i was beat. I just had to think what my opponents could have....

On the flop, I didn't put either of them on JJJ 777 or two pairs as they would have pushed all-in on the flop here with those hands as they probably knew i had AAXX and with there also being flush and straight draws out they couldn't take the risk of not protecting their hands here. However, i did now have a horrible feeling that the sb had 67676 but i am sure he would trap check and let me bet here with that hand. I decided his all-in was a bet that he didn't want calling and i put him on 666 - the same as me and as i had an ace kicker, i went ahead and called. Thankfully the other opponent folded. - i am really not sure what i would have done here if he had gone all-in over the top of me - but; (a) thankfully that didn't happen :-) and (b) he showed enough weakness by just calling on the flop to suggest he wasn't having anymore of this hand - i thought he could only call with jacks full - and i had pretty much 99% discounted him to have that hand.

I was happy to see that my opponent had TcTs8c6s .. so, his hand was 666 (same as me) with a flush draw (which i had covered to the nuts), an inside straight draw and pocket tens - so his only outs were a 9 or 10 - which he missed :-) and the fat P.B. pot of $1712 was pushed to yours truly.

So there we are... my 666 held up and another lovey omaha pot won with AAXX.

The moral to the story?...... get your money in with the best of it and hope to get lucky sometimes

December 29, 2005

Let's Let Off Some Steam...........Tilt!!

Ok, so i have been doing really quite surprisingly well ont'internet recently and am happily building a nice little bank roll up on-line. However, every now and then i slip back into my cyberfish alter-ego and play so badly and loose that i have to physically slap myself and remove that horrible creature that isn't really me from the controls of the laptop.

Oh yes... I can tilt, and sometimes it can be quite unstoppable - an amazing urge to deposit my hard-grafted dough into the sweaty mits of some fat bearded Salem inhabiting trailor trash comes over me and consumes me like a contageous bug. Just this morning i had managed to win $400 in about 40 minutes playing $2-$4 PLO, i then came second in a $109 6-pack, which i should have won. - Just a minor niggle but one that was poisoning the feel good juice at the back of my brain. I didn't want to play anymore this morning, but just felt the need to go blow off some steam in a $1-$2 NLH cash game. - its amazing how expensive 'steam' is these days!....

I loaded up $200 already knowing that it may only last as long as my thinning patience would allow. It all started well until the table at-it merchant raised in late position ($10) for the 5th consecutive round. I am on the button and back raise the cheeky git with 8s-5s to $26. To my surprise, he calls (he had folded the previous 2 times) - now i know he has something and i could be in trouble but the flop could always help me (that's not me... it's the fish talking).

The flop came down 8-Q-2 (woohoo, i made a pair!) but he bets out $30 - this looks like a feeler bet with top pair, weak kicker (he wants to know if i have the over-pair or does he have top pair top kicker and he knows he has me?.. only one way to find out) so obviously having switched to 'loose-goose' mode i decide to let him know that i do in deed have AA or KK (as he already hopefully suspects) and back raise him another $60. - are you following this?..... your asking yourself whether i am the worst player in history?! - well, here's the news....just some of the time i am! He dwells for nearly his full time allowance and moves all in. Now i know for a fact he has AQ or QK but i am pot committed and have little left behind so move the rest of my stack in knowing that i am about a 4.5/1 shot to catch up (a loose fish like me knows all the odds on re-draws, live cards and back door catch ups). - Yes!!, total fish play i know but it happens sometimes.

Anyway,... i now have all my money in with 8-5o against AQ on a 8-Q-2 board just because i could't be bothered to move from the sofa and take a break and resist tilt.... or worst still fold 8-5o because i know i am behind- back to the old Greg! - i was disgusted with myself... until, wait, what's this?....... a lovely 5d on the turn! - yes!!... i caught up. i tell myself it was a great call, i had the odds and i read him for AQ beautifully. All of a sudden, i feel like Gus Hansen at a WPT final table, until another diamond on the river sends me deservedly to the chip tray and i am disgusted in myself again and severely dissappointed in my lack of patience and discipline. In with the worst of it - flopped enough to keep me interested, luck gave me hope on the turn, only to be crushed by a better hand on the river. - herein lies the evolution of the fishy hand.

So its back to basics for me. A little talking to over a nice cuppa tea and i'm ok again now. I really do recognise my tilt signs very well, i know instantly when i have that urge to do something stupid... i guess its just another step to learn to control them and respond to them accordingly. One day, maybe i'll be grown up enough to do that.

December 21, 2005

New Cash Pot P.B.

Chirp alert!!

I was playing a little $2-$4 PLO game on bluesq last night - well i say little..... everyone was sat with $500+ and it was all action. I decided to sit with $200 and see where i could get myself.

I don't get to play much in the evenings as i have more important things to do like eat, watch telly and entertain my lovely girlfriend but her train had been delayed (thanks GNER) so i decided to play for an hour or so to pass the time before going to fetch her from the station.

What struck me about playing in the evenings is that it seems there are some much more lose players and players that are willing to gamble - you just don't seem to get this during the day. I had actually had a bad day on-line up to this point and was down about $450 so (although determined not to chase) I was keen to reduce the arrears.

I won a few minor pots and stole a few here and there, which put me up to about $320, I then made about $300 on a pot where i turned the nuts (the A flush) and had the guy to my right betting into me - i put him on a smaller flush (perhaps the K flush) with a set. Normally i would re-raise here but the pot was getting quite big, i didn't have a set or draw to anything bigger so I decided that with the hand i put him on, he wasn't going to fold and i didn't fancy the board pairing on the river for a suck out so i just called to see what happened. The board brought a rag to guarentee me the nuts and to my surprise he bet again. We were both deep stacked and i knew he couldn't call if i moved all-in so i min raised him for another $140 on the end and he reluctantly mucked.

This meant i was up to over $600 in less than 30 minutes and considered quitting but these guys were gambling and I had a tilter two to my right who had just reloaded with another $500.

Then this hand occurred:

I am dealt AdAc4d7s in 2nd position. Under the gun (UTG) limps, i think about raising but on this table, i knew they would all call anyway so there was no chance of thinning the field but i knew if i limped as well someone behind me would definitely pop the pot, so i limped with the intention of re-raising if someone raised. Immediately the guy in 3rd position bet the pot ($24), seat 4 folds, the blinds both call as does the UTG limper.... back to me.

I re-raise the pot now hoping to take it there and then or to at least go heads up with the initial raiser. It wasn't to be! The initial raiser goes all in for $260, the short stack next to him goes all-in for value and the UTG limper to my right calls the $260 as well leaving himself with $400. This was a funny situation for me here as I now think i am facing another player with AAXX, another player with KKXX and a third player with some sort of sick suited gambling wrap thats bound to suck out on me. I seriously consider folding as the guy to my right has more chips than me and i can see my whole stack of $550 ($350 profit) going into the middle after the flop with the worst of it. I decide that i obviously can't be behind in this situation but i could easily be outdrawn or the other guy with AAXX could catch his much better supporting hand (or workable danglers as i like to call them) - my thought process contained the words, "gamble", "value", "odds" and "you have AA FFS" and i couldn't bring myself to pass, so in it went.... the whole lot, all you can eat baby!

The pot + side pots = $1670 and i couldn't believe the junk that was turned over in competition for this monster.

Q8K9 - 4 different suits
4568 - 3 different suits
JcJd6c9h - the only guy who could seriously hurt me.

I guess by me and one other player limping, one player raising, several callers and then me re-raising had led to a domino effect of value calls and pot odds, although the guy to my immediate right with a deep stack should really have folded... especially when he turned over JcJd6c9h!!! I was fearing the worst but the side pot was bigger than the main so as long as i didn't lose that i really didn't mind. I didn't want to see a Jack or 3 clubs. The straights were unlikely as alot of cards were duplicated and i had a couple of blockers with my 4-7.

I just shut my eyes and hoped to see the money come my way..... it did, the AA47 held up for the 2 biggest side pots with the main pot of $190 going to the billy low stack who made some sort of little baby straight.

So that was my biggest cash pot win to date $1480 at a $2-$4 game - WOW!!

I am not in a rush to go and beat it but it certainly was a buzz.

chirp over.

December 16, 2005

6 in a row!

Last night, I decided to have a bash at the bluesq.com heads up duel. Basically there are prizes for the top 3 performers in each division in December. You can play lightweight ($5 and under), middlewight ($25), heavyweight (£50 & $100) or super-heavy weight ($200+).

Being your average joe, I had a go at the heavyweight section and played 3 $50 HU matches. I won all 3 and so decided to try my luck at the $100 ones- i may have gone higher but didnt want to go out of the division as it is consecutive wins in the same division that gets the prizes. I played 3 $100 ones and guess what?!..... I bloody won all them as well. - woohoo. I thought about trying for seven in a row last night but time was getting on so i decided to head for Gala casino for some live action - i wish i hadn't though as i played like a blind, hungry fish.

I resumed the duel again this morning at the $50 level and lost my match :-( - end of story!?... well, maybe not, according to the leaderboard on the website i will be in 2nd place, which gains entry into a $500 buy-in event just after xmas, so it may be worthwhile after all.

I am having a go at the $200 level next and am up to errr... 1 in a row at the moment but that is a 100% record. 5 in a row is best in class here so may give it a crack.

December 08, 2005

Back On It!

Yes, after nearly 3 weeks of internet poker cold turkey i am officially back on it. To be honest it did me good to take a total break from playing with the cyber fishies and actually start to do other things during the day than sit in front of the computer screen watching infuriating blinking avatars flashing (at times it felt like laughing) at me.

I decided to take stock of my game (internet game that is, they are totally different beasts) and analyse my results over the past year. It shocked me to realise that of the 9 sites i had folded an e-card on, i actually only made a profit on one of them (that being the bet365 rounders). All of the other sites i had just been a constant source of donations into the cyber coffers of those e-sharks just sat waiting for me to do something daft - they didn't have to wait long! - beleieve me!

Now, don't get me wrong, I am no mug at the poker table, i know i can play and i have won alot of money this year, which has allowed me to quit my job, move in with my girlfriend, pay off all my debts and generally stop feeling like i was still a student on the bread line.... However, my internet results were laughable, like really bad! So i did some research, asked alot of questions, talked to those that know internet poker, that win money and generally don't suck like me. My eyes were opened, i found it quite amazing what such seemingly little tit bits of advice could be so valuable - such simple things that most internet players take for granted i just didn't do.

I am a week in to my new approach to cyber poker and things are looking up. I initially went back to the rounders on bet365 as these were the only games i had shown a consistent profit on but i found them no longer to my taste during the day (when i mostly play), they didn't fill up quickly enough and although i would step up more often than not i found the whole process to be annoying as you are tied to those games and can't cash out until the top level. I found this to put too much pressure on that one game at the top so i decided to play elsewhere.

I now play mainly on bluesq at omaha cash, the odd MTT and SNG and its going ok. i am pretty much starting again now with a new view on things and a renewed vigour. - wish me luck!