Sunday, August 01, 2004

This week's Texas Hold `Em Update: With not a little amount of fear, I entered a 100-pt. buy-in sit-and-go yesterday (Saturday) at Ultimate Bet. And immediately had a panic moment on the first hand where I was in a show-down holding a Jack-high diamond flush when the flop showed all diamonds. The player to my right raised $100. I re-raised. Everybody remaining dropped, except the guy to my right, who raised again -- but raised the minimum.

Hmmm. Vince Van Patten and Mike Sexton speak in my head, "That's an unusual series of bets, Fred. He's either got two low diamonds or is holding one high diamond."

But it's the first hand. If I'm wrong -- or unlucky -- I'm going to be out the first hand, with only 26 UB points left to my name. But I go all-in... and he follows.

It turns out he does have one high diamond, the Ace, of course. If the board shows another diamond, I'm gone. It doesn't. He's gone instead and I have over $2k of chips after the first hand.

It's a pretty tight table after that. I win a few, lose a few... mostly folding and playing tight. My goal is minimum 3rd place and 200 UB points to double myself up. The guy on my left is either having connectivity problems, doing something else or, suspicious Fred thinks, has come up with some bizarre strategy where he wins a hand, then sits out for a few hands. Suspicious or not, the guy ends up in the final four with around $1,500 of chips left. I don't want to be left out on the bubble, so I fold a lot and pray, my $2,000 worth of chips now whittled down to around $1,700. And happy days, it's now just me. Mr. Bizarro who's down to under $1k, and the chip leader, who has won like three all ins, and has about $7,000 in chips.

Chip Leader takes out Mr. Bizarro, who apologizes for making us wait after all my chat raggin' on him, and I'm in second position, albeit short-stacked, around $1,700 to CL's $8,300. But I'm playing good, as I usually do one-on-one, and CL is playing extremely tight. I either raise or fold, and, after a couple of wins, we equal. He pulls a couple of bad beats when I straight twice on the river. Writing that I realize they weren't bad beats at all. Both times he let me get to the river by not betting into me hard.

Is there anything more boring than listening to poker talk? But it's my blog and I'll write what I want to. Anyway, CL, CL no longer, with only 900 chips, goes all-in, and since it will barely take a nick out of my stack, I call him with a suited J 10. He has an unsuited Q 9, so I'm the favorite, and win with a 10 showing on the turn. He leaves as silently as he played, and I win $500 UB points.

I do love sit-n-goes. Built up my ego after too many tournies placing out of the money... even though, as I regularly assure myself, finishing in the top 100 - 200 in a field of 2,000, finishing 30 once last week in an Aruba freeroll, ain't shabby and indicates I'm a fairly solid player,

I think.

Playing an Omaha Limit tourney at Pokerstars while I write this. Almost two hours. And I'm currently 357 out of 856 in what's left of a field of 2,000. Not bad considering I don't know what I'm doing. I had to look the rules of Omaha up, and have to keep on telling myself, 2 cards in your hand, 3 on board.

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