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A Grueling Match

I ended up playing a fairly grueling heads up match at Titan Poker last night. Although things started off quite poorly, I ended up winning close to a buy-in ($50 buy-in though...) over the course of 560 hands. It was just one of those nights where I couldn't seem to pick up a hand when I needed it. Heads up poker can be exhausting...

I'd played with this particular Villain a few times prior. Overall, I had him stuck about five buy-ins over the course of our matches. I thought I had a good read on this guy before I sat down to play last night; however, my read was off in many ways. Mind you, I'm looking forward to the next time we meet. I believe that I'll really be able to do some damage if I can manage to keep patient, hit some cards, and stay one step ahead of this Villain.

I don't have any hand histories with me but I'll see if I can give a re-cap of the match.

  • I semi-bluffed a couple streets and made a bluff bet on the river. After missing my draw, I saw the opportunity to do some cheap advertising and it worked. Villain would now allow me to value bet three streets with many hands.
  • A scant few hands later, I flopped TPTK and value bet all three street for about 70% of Villain's stack.
  • Villain had been three-betting me a lot from the big blind. I decided to flat his three-bet with my 5 4 on the button. Flop came down KQx with two diamonds. Villain donk-bet into me and I put him to the test for the rest of his stack. Villain jammed and I had to call given the odds being laid. Villain showed top two pair. I hit my flush on the turn and Villain filled up on the river to take down the pot.
  • The next hour or so was a blur of poor hands and missed flops. I couldn't even use my aggression to pick up pots because the Villain rarely folded. Value-betting was the only tool I could really use against him.
  • I was down about two buy-ins when I picked up AKs on the button. I made a standard raise and Villain three-bet me; I called the three-bet (read-based reasoning behind this decision). Flop came Ace high. I let the Villain bet into me on the flop and turn. On the river, I pushed the last of my stack in and Villain called with AJ.
  • With a solid read on my opponent's play, I started loosening up and playing more post-flop poker. Villain was still catching a lot of cards but I was still confident at this point.
  • I flopped a set with my pocket 3s and got two streets of value (flop and river) to put me up for the session.
  • Villain and I sparred for another 20 minutes before he called it a night.
I'm looking forward to playing against this Villain again. In a strange way, I think he is probably hoping to run into me again. I'll be more than willing to oblige the Villain with as many matches as he'd like to play.

Until our next encounter, I'm going to think about last night's match and see if I can come up with some new and interesting ways to use the reads I gathered last night. I'm positive that I misplayed many hands by not three-betting enough. And I may have folded a little too quickly in some spots. All in all, I'm content with my play last night and I'm happy that I was able to adapt my game and pull out a small win.

Have a good one!

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