Is my game sharp or what?
3. November 2004 | Category: 50outs
Saturday I got informed about the upcoming Bahamas-event in January of Pokerstars and thought that some sun could not hurt us and we should try to qualify for that neat little thing (a WPT event that is). On checking their site I found an qualifier going on that saturday night for 650$. They even had a 500,000$ guaranteed event on sunday night (night at least over here in good old europe). Wow I thought, I could play both! I went right to the cashier but got stopped by an 600$ deposit limit (no Neteller available for us war chickens here in germany). I sended them email for a limit increase but due to the time shift I got no fast answer. Ok, then I got to fight my way into it! I quickly deposited the 600$ (not even got a bonus, oh are my business skills sharp or what?) and set myself the goal to make a quick 580 at the tables to be able to play the 650$ qualifier and the 500k (530$ buyin) event the following night. I picked up a seat in a 10-20 limit holdem game and gave my best. It took me only about 2 hours and “the fish was gotten” as we use to say here, I had 1,190 USD in my account plus some FPP point to play with. Nothing unusal happened, the best hand held up most of the times and every player had some reasons for his move – online poker can be something else than that party lotto?
Well confident I started playing the qualifier where I put some early pressure on my table, stealing here and there and having a small pot in the first 30 minutes or so. I was up 500 chips after an hour when I got A8o on the button and raised about 4x the BB. The SB folded but the BB called, having me barly covered. I thought right away “be carefull, don’t bust in this hand”. The flop came down J-8-3, all hearts. I had a black ace, the BB checked after about 3 seconds. I thought ok, I’ll give it try and came our firing some 350, just a little over the pot size. Some “hesitation” on his side and a call. I guess you all know by now what he held but for some reason it did not came thru to me. Turn card was a beautyfull black ace, giving me two pair. My horses ran wild and so was I after he checked to me 1k went into the pot and I fully expected him to fold. He did not (oh well…) and called again. River was a blank and he came out betting! I had about 600 left at this point with a pot size of over 3000 and was sitting there like a duck. How could I come to this point holding A8? Katja, watching me, told me to give it up, he must held AJ or a flush. I thought about it, believed it and – still called, hoping for some total weired hand on his side like J8 or something and ignoring everything I know about the game of No-Limit holdem. Sure enough he showed me AT of hearts for the nut flush, having me milked all the way and throwing me out of the tourney. What did I thought? Why are these mistkaes done? I really like the way I put pressure on my opponents and I could even argue for my pot sized flop bet (take it or see where I am) – but how can I ignore what I see and change my thinking of his most likely hands into just a wishes-come-true behavior? Would I have done the same in B&M? I highly doubt it. Is my game sharp or what?
Sunday I did not play at all before the 500k event, mostly to punish myself for that stupid thing I did there in the qualifier (yes, not playing is still a kind of punishment for me so at least I have no poker-burn-out-syndrome yet ;). The tourney began and I got great cards right away – within the first 30 minutes I had KK two times, 3 other pairs, 20 or 21 hands another 6-7 times but I got no money! After these incredible good cards I was up 30 (for a stack of 2,530). I lost zero pots, made no laydowns so what happended? Was I on the tighest table on earth? Seemed so but others had chips well over 3k and one already 4k! I was stunned and while still wondering what adjustments to make the table broke and I got moved. Next thing I see is a pair of 4’s, raise, Button re-raises, I call (argghhh!). Flop comes 5-6-8 giving me a gutshot and a under-pair. I quickly decided to move in giveing him a hard time without a premium hand to call. But unfortunatly that was exactly what he had, I saw his AA even before the chip animation ended on my screen. No help on turn and river (as none should come, the best hand shall hold up) and I was out, ugly and quickly again. Is my game sharp or what?
Friday the german championship in 7stud starts. 32 players going into the finals, including me. Stud is my best game, I play it better as the stakes go up and the money gets deep. The championship is played as spread-limit (do you remember spread-limit? Never saw any game in USA except 1-5, no ante, lol). Still, my confidence is high and the cash games over this weekend will be the best you can dream of. Everybody comes with pockets full of euro, just some of them are tournament experienced and the play the cash games like the last limit they had in the tourney – except the cash game will be PL which create’s *many* very nice pots over the weekend… These tourneys are famous for their wild side action, I believe this is why they still happen.
Talking about wild side action, I came to think about dealer tips. Readings Linda’s PokerWorks I remember playing for the first time in a 200-400 at the Bellagio (“upstairs” oh wow, there I was, finally), dragging a very nice pot and tipping a green chip, 25$. It took the dealer a minute to get that I dont want any change and that the chip was his tip. I already thought: huhh, 25$ to less? as the pot was over 4,000 but came back to earth as I got heat from the other players! Why I give so much, I shall keep “their” money, better throw it out of the window, you get the picture. This came fully surprising to me, as here in my city you are expected to give 10eur per 500 in the pot, so a pot like this would cost me minimum (!) 50eur tip (they already took out 20eur rake). Ridicoulous you say? I agree. Go play somewhere else? No chance, there is no other game. Don’t tip? Forget about, after even one night you will get barred. I’m certainly not advocating this behaviour BUT think about this when you get the next nice pot pushed from a well qualified and friendly dealer and you object to give a nickel or a dollar! Service comes with a price and should have one and free markets will take care of the rest. When goverment comes to regulate it can get worse – much worse! Have fun with your president, by the way.
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