Saturday, February 28, 2009

Allowing for jetlag

I read an article in a magazine a long time ago that was giving advice on pacing yourself for the WSOP in Vegas. The most important advice they said was to not lose your bankroll on the first couple of days at the cash tables. It's all too easy to be sucked in by the occassion and hit the tables as soon as you arrive at your hotel, under-estimating the effects of jetlag.

As an aside, we can under-estimate the value of tit-bits that we pick up along the way. Are there any particular snippets from your past that have come in useful? I'd be interested to hear.

Anyway, as I awoke at 5:00am, I suspected that I may not be as sharp as normal. To pass the time and avoid waking everyone, I managed a couple of hours of Omaha. I stepped down to PLO25 to avoid hammering my roll and ended up profiting 3 BIs with little or no risk. Again, I was aware that I was running good. I've had two more short and modest winning sessions at PLO25 and find it very passive compared to PLO100.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Sydney to the mountains of Mourne

Left Canberra at 12noon for a 5:40pm flight out of Sydney for the UK and made it with ease. I didn't have many outs had I broken down or encountered significant roadworks but all was well.

After checking in. I had a couple of hours to kill before the new A380 took off. My PartyPoker Lobby threw up PLO100 tables and I took the first 6-handed game available that didn't have a massive stack. Ran pretty good and made a $130 profit before boarding the flight.

The trip over to the UK was very comfortable in economy. The plane was brand new and the passengers seemed to look after it a bit better than normal. TV screens in the back of the seat in front makes all the difference. Watched 3 movies on the way over; enjoyed Mickey Rooney in The Wrestler a lot, Four Holidays passed the time and some other movie with Ricky Jervais seeing ghosts in NY was pretty poor.

Singapore I had about 30 mins to play several orbits of PLO100 for a further 'conservative play' profit of $20. This was a very loose min50BB table and the stack average was well over $200. I sat tight, hit hands and got no action. A safe TAG win.

Heathrow not so good for WiFi access, I reckon that the GBP10 for 24 hr access is -EV, so I decided to watch one of my recorded videos from It was a $530 S&G. I won't spoil it in case you want to watch it. If so I recommend playing 15mins-25 mins in and then skipping forward to 45mins onward. Actually, I didn't learn too much, recapping:
- early, avoid AQ, AJ, KQ, 22-TT unless in late position as they can be lots of trouble.
- don't call for a lot of chips with AJ late but feel free to push with almost any 2 cards in the right spot.
- even 88 on an 89Q flop can be trouble with a raise and a re-raise.
The standard of play seemed surprisingly unimpressive for the BI, but I dodn't see everyone's holecards.

Good news is it is almost time to board my flight! The last leg to Belfast is barely an up and down.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Off to Canberra, then UK.

Off working in Canberra and then a trip home as my mother is sick back in Ireland. Tuesday, I present at 11:00am and then dash straight off for the 5:40pm flight out of Sydney. Wish me luck as its a cheapie non-transferrable fare.

On the poker front, just finished my packing and allowed myself a few orbits of Omaha. The rest must have done me good as I played the good cards that I was dealt rather well, I think. Won all but one showdowns and a few more along the way. Turned $60 into $135 in a few orbits and then off to bed. The lull that we were all in seems to be behind us as a group.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Crown Casino Trip Report - Premium pairs

Still now online poker for a while and fitting in whatever ive games I can justify. Was in Melbourne with work Tuesday night and got a few hours at Crown. The $1/$2 game was playing so I jumped in. The BI is between $40-$80 nd to my horror the rake is 10% up to a $15 cap - ridiculous. The other players need to be really bad to win and winning fewer hands with larger pots has got to be better, so TAG is the way to go, in theory, I think, bugga who cares, I'm here to play poker and break even is probably a win.

Unmemorable hands were suited connectors and small to medium pocket pairs which all missed on the flop. Three memorable hands ...

Hand 1: All folded to me on the button with AA. I made it $6 to go to look like a steal, SB fold, BB raises to $16. Hollywooded a little and re-raised to $46 to which he inst-raised AI. We didn't show so you can guess my horror when 4 blanks were followed by a K on the river. He had AQo - moral of the story, you make most money from the mistakes of others.

Hand 2: Everyone limped to me in the SB with QQ. I made it $17 to go and got 3 callers. Flop came AKTr. Bugga. Plugged up all of the courage I could muster and pushed $50 into the middle. To my surprise Fold, Fold, Fold - managed to resist shouting Woo Hoo!

Hand 3: Late at night, all regulars at the table which is getting more aggressive. 5 limpers to me in CO. With KK I decide to limp expecting SB to raise. He'd been raising $17 to steal pots and $6 to build pots. Not a bad strategy, I guess. He duly raised to $6 and everyone called. With me almost last to act now I got to bump it up to $56 and with a lot of banter, everyone reluctantly folded. Happy enough to win without trying to avoid an A.

Big winner on the night was Crown Casino; Little winner was me with a profit of $20 and quality table time under my belt.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Been walkabouts

Haven't played online for over a week and will probably not play during February. I am hoping that the break will clear my head a little and let me think through some deeper strategy. I'd like to get back into posting on 2+2 and watching some of the Stoxpoker videos.

So what else have I been up to. Well, I have been playing a few live games which I hope to continue. With 200 hands max in a session, it is very prone to variance. The Friday night home games have been tough. Last night my flopped set went down to a river, river straight. Not unusual as it is very rare to win a big pot without showdown. I lost $15 which felt really good because I had bought in again for another $100 about an hour previous when I was down over $200 (mainly thx to my set getting sucked out on late in the session after being patient. I loosened up considerably after that as I've always been a reasonable short-stacker.

The pub games haven't been going so good. They don't really suit my style as the blinds go up too quickly. On Tuesday, I had A5 on a flop of 533. Thought I might be good but opponent had flopped quads - out 4th hand.

Tonight is a bit of a crazy night. While we have been having terrible bushfires in Victoria, Sydney has had a number of consecutive rainy days mid-summer after our own mini heatwave. My wife is overseas, so my daughter thought that she'd have a party with 70 of her friends. Big softie agreed and now with the inclement weather has even offered to partition off some of our office and be the only bouncer. Thankfully, I grew up in Belfast.

So far so good, my daughter set down the rules early (I'm the other side of the partitions watching for intrusions and monitoring the hype levels). It's approaching 9pm, so I only have another 3 hours to go, touch wood.

This week I am off to Melbourne overnight so I will probably hit Crown casino. I just had my best result ever about a week ago running $80 up to $850 before losing a couple of hundred on my final handon a TJQ4c board, I had the K and was All In and my opponent took forever to call. When he hesitated I knew I was good as it was his first time in a casino. So I wanted a call. The old adage, be careful what you hope for. Anyone else, it would have been the worst slowroll ever as he had the Ace. To his credit, he was being straight up and I'd stacked him before, he was concerned abouth the Kc9c. Fair play to him.

Party Update: Luckily needed the toilet and went in to find an alcohol fueled pigsty. Got someone to clean that up and then sprung a few others drinking openly and a few more bags containing quite a bit of alcohol. Found the owners and ejected them. An over-zealous British backpacker misunderstood me and took on the role of bouncer, evicting everyone. Actually worked out well as most wanted to come back in and were happy to turn in their alcohol. It was funny to be party of an amnesty and the kids that were left handed over heaps. The potential trouble makers have thankfully headed to an open house in Northbridge whose parents have gone to Armidale for the weekend. Another teenager in trouble Sunday night, I suspect. Party is now back in full swing by 10pm and a number of the kids have come to me and said it is muc more fun this time.

Back to poker, happy to be back blogging. Enjoyed catching up with the Blindman's Telesina fun, Laff's wins and BCG's steady climb up the charts like the Beatles. Jesse's move from Oracle to Hold'em proves to me that its possible, his blog also lets me know how much I still have to learn. And last but not least, Adam still cracks me up.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Mixing it up with the Telesina mafia

I'm hooked on Telesina, it is just the best buzz. Like my early days of trying to work out PLO. At least there were books then, this is learned the old fashioned way, toe to toe combat.

The Italians have got this game sussed and with so many cards out there, I am surprised that there isn't more collusion, but there doesn't seem to be. All of the comments are in Italian and I think Pesce must mean fish. I'm sure that my approach is unique and will soon come a cropper. I'm swinging wildly but having a hoot and racking up valuable VIP pts. That's the main reason I stuck it out. The pots are big and if you get in amongst it, they mount up.

I've just seen the new NOIQ Race Leaderboard and I'm in 504th spot. An extra special push tomorrow night, I hope. Just had a lucky streak and am standing up from the .10 Euro table with EU210 having sat down with only EU40. Had taken a beating before that though and have leveled back up, I think, I haven't found Telesina Tracker yet.