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Plugging Away

I put in a short session of about 270 hands last night. I played one hand terribly - really, really terribly. I'm a little too ashamed to post it at the moment but I'll see how I feel in a few days. That terrible hand cost me 3/4 of my stack and a good chunk of my self-confidence.

The session wasn't all doom and gloom though. I managed to make back all my losses with a couple big hands. I could have made a little more on top of that had I not run a little unlucky with some all-ins. But I deserved to get a little unlucky given some of my dubious play in other key hands.

Before we go any further, let's see how things turned out in the hand I posted yesterday.

Full Tilt Poker
No Limit Holdem Ring game
Blinds: $0.50/$1
6 players

Stack sizes:
UTG: $100
UTG+1: $102.15
Hero (CO): $148.30
Villain (Button): $113.90
SB: $321.70
BB: $100

Pre-flop: (6 players) Hero is CO with Q♠ J♥
2 folds, Hero raises to $3, Villain calls, 2 folds.

Flop: 5♥ Q♦ 9♣ ($7.5, 2 players)
Hero bets $5, Villain calls.

Turn: Q♣ ($17.5, 2 players)
Hero checks, Villain bets $12, Hero calls.

River: 4♦ ($41.5, 2 players)
Hero checks, Villain checks.

(If Villain was floating me on the turn, he's got nothing so it's best to let him bluff at the pot. And if he's got me beat, I'd rather check-call than bet out and get raised. When Villain checked, I had no idea what hand he'd show.)

Final pot: $84
Hero showed Qs Jh
Villain showed 8s 7s

(I didn't expect to see that hand. Villain was tight but must have noticed that I was raising light from late position. He made a good move on the turn by semi-bluffing his gutshot draw on a fairly safe board. If he'd hit his hand on the river, I would have been thoroughly pwned.)

That last hand is a perfect demonstration of why I hate playing out of position in raised pots with mediocre hands. The situation is always much worse when the player in position is a smart player, such as the Villain in the above hand. I really hope that some more hands and more studying help to better prepare me for the various situations and moves that will become more and more common at the higher stake tables.

At the moment, I'm terrible at playing in three-bet pots and have difficulty pulling the trigger if I feel that my opponents are taking advantage of me. I'll probably put in another 10K - 20K hands at $100 NLHE over the next 2-3 months. I'm sure my game will improve drastically over that time. If not, I can always go on hiatus...

Here's a funny hand that I played the other night. In this hand, the Villain is a loose aggressive opponent who made it a habit to take small stabs at pots in an attempt to take them down cheaply. I guess he figured that small bets allowed him to invest less when trying to steal while also hiding the true strength of his hands. I wouldn't recommend that style myself but I play in a more straightforward, easily exploitable manner.

No Limit Holdem Ring game
Blinds: $0.50/$1
6 players

Stack sizes:
UTG: $95.60
UTG+1: $38.30
CO: $111.25
Button: $76.45
Villain (SB): $207.55
Hero (BB): $100

Pre-flop: (6 players) Hero is BB with Q♣ K♠
UTG folds, UTG+1 calls, 2 folds, Villain raises to $2, Hero calls, UTG+1 calls.

(I could have re-popped the Villain here. I can't remember if I was calling for deception or if I was just too afraid to raise; probably the latter.)

Flop: 3♦ K♦ 6♣ ($6, 3 players)
Villain bets $1, Hero raises to $4, UTG+1 folds, Villain calls.

(Value Raise #1)

Turn: K♥ ($14, 2 players)
Villain bets $5, Hero raises to $15, Villain calls.

(Value Raise #2)

River: T♠ ($44, 2 players)
Villain bets $1, Hero raises to $20, Villain calls.

($1 bet into a $44 pot?! He either wants a cheap showdown or is inducing the raise. I'm happy to disappoint/please him with Value Raise #3.)

Final pot: $84
Hero showed Qc Ks
Villain mucks Jc Js

(I have a feeling that Villain knew he was beat but just couldn't lay down his "premium hand". I'm just happy he wasn't playing a K3, K6, or KT.)

I'm going to hit the tables again tonight. I've put in about 4500 hands of poker this month: 1000 hands of $50 NLHE and 3500 hands of $100 NLHE. I'm pretty sure that my brain's on a learning plateau right now. I don't expect my game to improve that much over the next week but I'll keep playing. I'm sure my brain will let me know once it's digested and assimilated all the new poker information that's been pouring in over the past few weeks.

If I can put in another 1500 hands this month, I'll be good. 5000 hands represents a good chunk of my total no-limit ring game experience. I think I'd only played around 25K hands of NLHE prior to the start of this month. The bulk of those hands were played at the $25 and $50 buy-in limits. My win rates at those stakes were not very good; thankfully things are better at the $100 NLHE tables.

I really hope my persistence pays off. I'm willing to put in the time to improve my game. I just need to stay on track, keep focused, and let the chips fall where they may.

I'll be back tomorrow.Have a good one!

1 comment:

ZaneKinetic said...

yeah you have to valuetown him there. This is such a dumb line by villain.