Last train to Brussels
It's not been a tremendous Poker month. February has been a tough grind online, I've busted in the second step of my EPT live step challenge almost on the bubble, I made day 2 in the Namur Winter Festival without reaching ITM places and I've been eliminated in the two satellites I have played so far for the WPT Main Event in Brussels.
I am now taking care of a few professional matters and I am leaving to Paris on sunday for three days to work on the Winamax Poker Tour finals at Cercle Clichy Montmartre. I will be returning to Brussels on wednesday March 5th just in time for my last WPT satellite at Grand Casino Viage. It's a 220€ second chance tourney this time instead of the 120€ rebuys I have been playing so far.
I really hope to be able to qualify through this one. Details on the qualifier can be found HERE.
Big up to the stakers! Death to variance!
We will be in touch soon!
I have been lazy yesterday - I have to admit. I thought I needed a day off Poker after the second leg of my World Poker Tour challenge so I did not a publish a report right away. You can imagine that I did not win an entry ticket to the Main Event... not yet! I thought I needed a day off but what I really needed was obviously 'not thinking of the callenge anymore' as I got sucked into an online sessions during which I took down a 215-player field tournament. For a moment, I thought I had lost it...
My online bankroll challenge has not been going well at all during February so far so I was hoping I could compensate with a decent live session on Wednesday February 19th. Wrong! It is a little bit heart breaking because I have been putting some serious work in those qualifiers reading shortstack strategy stuff, satellite strategy and mindset stuff. Playing loads of online qualifiers to get used to the good decisions to take on the bubble etc.
I started the qualifier nice and slow. My table was tight and quiet. Almost nobody had done a double buy-in. Clearly, the gamblers were all on the other table where rebuys were flying around and easy calls were being made. Two tables had been drawn together for this second satellite of mine.
I won't complain about cards this time. I got good games: AK, AQ, 88, 99, AA, KK. The problem was that I got either no action, coolered or owned with every single one of them. I was able to grind up my stack playing tight and aggressive mainly in position. I really make particular efforts to play some serious no-showdown-poker in those qualifiers. So, everything went well until I got AA :)
I reraise a tight middle position opener in the cut-off and the small blinds comes along. We are 3 players on a KK5 rainbow flop and it is checked to me. The pot is around 12 big blinds and I bet a bit less than half of it get rid of one oponent at least. Mission accomplished: the initial raiser folds.
A blank come on the turn, still a rainbow board, the small blind checks and I check behind. Something was odd about his behavior. He was acting nervous, his chip manipulations were kinda splashy, he was constantly changing his body position... There were two possibilities: either he had flopped like in a dream or he is just one more nervous live player.
The river is another small blankish card and Mr. Nervous now bets reeeeeeeaaallly small - 3 BBs in this 20+ BB pot. At this stage I obviously take into account that I might be behind. He can have a super funky backdoor straight, a full house or just a K. I think of it for a minute, look again at this still nervous looking guy and decide to make the bad but cheap call. He had flopped it with pockt 5s. Bravo!
After that I was still left with a playable stack for a while but I had to cope with the fact that I just had blown away a good chunk of what I had built up. I got great starting hands for some time but was not able to make chips with them. It seemed to be one of those days where the right circumstances just don't come together.
I ended up being short and got 88 on the button with a little less than 10 bigs. The pot is raised in middle position from a 15BB stack and I decide to push it all in the middle. Instant reshove in the big blind and quite rapid call from the initial raiser. Outch...
The reshove turned out to be 99 (20+ BB stack) and the initial raiser had AQ.
Q on the flop.
'Yes!' on my right.
'C'est pas possible!' on my left.
I'm outta here!
Next and last try on March 5th with the 220€ freezout qualifier.
Thanks for the attention!
WPT challenge - Round II - Fight!
It's Day II... in my World Poker Tour BRUSSELS challenge. I am playing the second qualifier of my February series tonight.
Info on the satellite can be found HERE. It is the same format as the first I played: 120€ buy-in, 100€ rebuy, 100€ add-on.
Look forward to new Viage stories tomorrow in this blog!! ;)
Day of the dead
Yesterday was the day of the dead it seems. 'Dead' because I have been card dead all night playing morron-poker with Viage dead money.
20 players showed up for last night's WPT 120€ rebuy satellite at Grand Casino Viage in Brussels generating a pool of almost 5000€ and I am amazed how low the play level still can be 10 years after the Moneymaker boom.
I won't complain too much of course because most of winning players' money obviously comes from 'artists' like that and not only from talent and skills but playing such field is 1. not easy IMO 2. not pleasant.
I played from 8pm to almost 2am and my only playable hands wer 88, TT and AJoff. The rest of the time, I have been stealing my ass off in every spot I could.
To illustrate how funky some players were I have some stories...
As I had planned it, I played pretty straight forward TAG Poker and I was determined not to rebuy before getting to the add-on period. During this challenge, if I bust in the rebuy period, I will just walk away to reduce the expenses. I reshoved TT on a 2diamond-4clubs-7spade flop after I had raised preflop and got called in the small blind. Stacks are shallow and players are lose-passive at that stage so I am sure I am ahead at that point. The guy calls my all-in and opens... Q8 of clubs (it's the 2nd level of the day and there's no particular history from former games between both of us). I ask him in a semi-joke manner: 'You really don't believe me?!'. 'I'm here to gamble!' he promptly replies. My 10s hold. 'Chef rebuy!' it goes.
Another bizarre moment was when Niels van Leeuwen, who took down last week's FRANCE POKER SERIES Main Event in Deauville for 175k€ noticed at 8 players left that this was not a regular tourney but a satellite. 'I would have played it differently if I had known', he said. There are two possibilities here. Either he has not checked the clock one single time during the whole tournament (the titles of the clock screen were 'Rebuy Satellite for WPT') or he is still dreaming of his French victory.
Then, still at the final table a guy tried to explain how easier it was for him to play Roulette after having paid a 5bet preflop all-in against AK with A3off :) Good game, man!
The cream of the cake was when I end up shoving KT of clubs on the button for my last 7 blinds. The average was about 10 bigs and 5 players were left for 3 tickets and a 4th prize of 500€. The big blind tanks for one minute or so with a 15-20 big blind-stack before making some sort of slowroll crying call with... AK. Whooooot??!
The board goes: Brick Brick Brick - Brick and BRRRRIIICK. Nothing comes for me and I am eliminated as bubble boy from this first qualifier of mine.
I am happy how i managed to navigate this mine field with no real cards but making the bubble is always frustrating.
I am playing the first Qualifier for my WPT Challenge tonight! Thanks to the stackers for their support on this one! I will do my best to make you proud... and rich :p
You will find information about this first satellite HERE.
General information about the challenge can be found HERE.
Hasta la final table!