Wednesday, 2 January 2008

When winning feels like losing...

New Year's Day
Mansion $100 freezeout
$110k guaranteed
942 runners

Just finished 25th in this tournament where the 1st prize was $25,000.

I was looking at the tournaments and noticed that I had a free ticket to this tournament so decided that since I was playing a freeroll anyway, why not?

Things started off poorly and I was down to half my starting stack of 3000 chips within 10 minutes after I decided to try and slow play KJ in the big blind after a couple of players limped.
When the flop came K74 I thought I would slow play again by check calling. Then when I was check raised on the rag turn I didn't know whether this was someone betting who I had tricked into thinking they were ahead or did they really have 2 pair or better. I check called the river to see that he had indeed limped with 74!

Oh well, I think I've learned not to do that anymore as you never really know where you are unless you flop a massive hand like trips.

Things improved though as I managed to pick up some good pots to give me a healthy stack.

They then went from good to better by the first break when I was 15th out of 750 odd players left.

By the next break I was chip leader and this continued for a couple of hours.

By the time we got to the money 130th place I had a big chip lead which was to be greatly increased when someone with 30000 chips decided that my raise from the big blind (see I did learn) with KK could be bluffed away with his QJ on a 984 flop. His betting was inconsistent with his hand and he bluffed all his money away by the turn with only a gutshot draw.

I now had more that twice as many chips as the 2nd place player.

I was able to use this chip lead by raising 2 out of three pots and when I did get action, because the blinds were big in relation to most people at my table's chip stack, I normally had to call and was either ahead or out drew them.

By now we were down to the last 30 players and I had 270000 out of the 1.9m chips.

And this is where it all went wrong!

Unfortunately I picked up a couple of good hands and whether my table image had anything to do with the way the hand played I am not sure.

I picked up a pair of tens in late position and there was a raise from someone with 120000 chips.

Blinds were 4000 8000 and he raised to 16000. someone with 66000 chips then called and I decided that there was a fair chance I was ahead and even if I wasn't, the squeeze would make it difficult for the raiser to call with anything other than a massive hand and even AK would be a difficult call. So I raised to 40000 which the raiser and the other player both called.

I was a bit concerned by this and thought he probably had AA or KK maybe QQ with a small chance of AK. The flop came J55 and they checked so i bet 50000 thinking that an overpair would have made some sort of bet. The raiser called and the other player folded. I am now pretty sure he must have AA. However a Jack came on the turn and he bet a meagre 8000. Now I am certain he has AA and is scared of the Jack so I reraised him and he went all in for am extra few thousand which I felt I had to call in case he did have the overpair and a ten hit the river.

I'm not sure if it was possible to put him on the AJ and whether my play was really bad or not but it cost me 150k of my 270k chips. Any comments would be welcome.

Shortly after I got a pair of sevens and raised to 15000 which was called by the same player and then another player raised all in to 35000. I reraised all in to isolate the reraiser and unfortunately my dentist had KK and I was done for. I finished 25th for $550 which is good for nothing but when I was in a great spot to win up to $25000 it feels like I've lost money!

Until next time...

Happy New Year.


  1. Hello, Mr Lott. I'm no tournament expert and don't have the record to be preaching to others, but I think your play was fine except for perhaps the final push. I say this because I think only a handful of players would be scared of the Jacks and fold an overpair. Most players just won't lay down Aces or Kings in this sitution, however much you try to represent trips.

  2. Thanks for the comment. I've spoken to a couple of people and think maybe the raise should have been bigger as I was laying quite good odds on the call (24000 into a pot of 84000).

    I suppose he might have reraised with an overpair - in which case I would have folded.

    The biggest mistake I made was thinking that he couldn't call with AJ and maybe my bet looked too small and told him I didn't have a Jack or overpair.

    Thanks again for taking the time to comment.

  3. Michael, firstly u aint done much wrong as only inexperienced tournament players call this re raise with A J FOR 30% OF THERE STACK AND THE MONEY SO CLOSE. You where unlucky and possibly u should have check called the flop. The second jack gets u in slight trouble because of the mathematics but if you are assuming he has ACES you can get away relatively cheaply.

    Always be aggressive in this position of a tournament as people tighten up. To WIN u have to gamble and be lucky mate. Rocking it just wont cut it mate.

    Happy New Year.


  4. i think given the facts
    I would have raised more with 10,10.
    U had the biggest stack right?
    with 250k and next best was 120k?
    with 40k or so already in the pot I would have put them all in or raised to 100k or so.

    If there were any stacks bigger than the 120k the it changes things. You werent going to pass to a raise with 1010 so u might as well push there.

    other than that wp and UL

    feel free to link me up.

  5. Thanks Badger, thought I had already linked you but it's there now.
    I was coming to the same conclusion - that the raise wasn't big enough - at the time I was concerned with the UTG min raise and would probably have folded if he had shoved.


    Thats a link to the sunpoker bonuses. + 35% rakeback and you are running at 50% + back to you.

    If you do decide to ign up feel free to use my link as t will get you the max rakeback.