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Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Table selection

I took another shot at the "Race for Bracelets" at Full Tilt to win my seat for a WSOP event. This time it was NL 6-handed. I like that - it's fast and you play lots of hands :-)

They had 272 players giving away 3 seats plus some nice cash (between 100 and 250 for the next 3 places). I managed to stay well above average into the 20 BB's comfort zone until we were down to 100 players shortly after the first break. I did get some decent hands (not so much than in the poker-tester tourney some hours before) to create a nice table image and take down some pots were I missed the flop (but still had overcards or similar). I was even able to recreate this image quite fast after a table change.

But then - after the break - our table was broke and I went to the worst table you can imagine. I was smallest stack (still with almost 20 BB's!) as I had two of the chipleaders and two more big stacks at the table. Even fifth position had more chips than me. That is tough. It made me aware how important table selection can be - if you have a choice :-(

Two key hands started the downswing: I lost with Q9 and a Q on the flop vs. the chipleader's A9 as he rivered an Ace. Luckily no all-in as we checked it down but still a big pot. Maybe I could have been more aggressive here but the flop was scary (possible straight, maybe up against two pair or something like that).
The second key hand was a KJs that I raised pre-flop. Unfortunatly the SB and the BB answered with all-in's. I was sure I was third best here so I folded. Correct decision: I would have been up against AQ and TT. Flop was KTx and the T's made a set. But the river brought a K and I would have tripled. To bad - but still happy with my decision. That's poker!

With the raising blinds and coming antes I was short stacked quite soon. Went all-in several times with A9, KK, AA, AQ and similar hands. Got no callers but collected some nice blinds, early position calls and antes.

Finally went all-in again with 88 and about 5,000 chips (blinds 360/240, ante 25) and was called by a stack of about 8,000 chips . Unfortunatly he had TT. I got no help (we both made a flush, lol) and I was out at 40th position.

So again, Vegas is stil pending but I wasn't unhappy with my play at all. As mentioned before it feels like I'm in the right track for tournaments now. Big(ger) wins will come soon. Most probably not as big as the poker-tester guy who took down $42,000 for 4th place at the Million guaranteed at PokerStars two days ago (congratulations!) but watch out for the Shadow...


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