July 2006
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I busted three people at the WSOP

Let’s start positive.  I was responsible for sending three people to the rail in WSOP Event 37, $1500 NL Hold’em.  My ace high flush crushed a ten high flush, a short-stacked AK was disappointed to find me with AA pre-flop and I made a broadway straight to crush two pair.

That wasn’t nearly enough though in a field of over 2800 players.  Playing 11 handed (which wasn’t too bad really, the tables were nice and big, and pretty comfortable) there were still over 30 tables of alternates.  The floor were struggling, and even made the announcement "Players can you play a bit tighter please, we are getting behind".  I found this amusing, even if some thought it was inappropriate.  Lighten up guys…

When my KK ran into QQ, the poker gods decided to let me go with a brutal Q on the flop.  There was a raise ahead of me and I moved in pre-flop.  QQ put in the third raise, putting himself all in and the original raiser got out of the way. I’d be in trouble with this hand, even with bigger stacks or without the third raise.  Playing KK out of position on a Q high flop against a set of queens – I’d be losing a chunk here even if I can manage to not go broke.

There’s no shame in losing as an 80% favourite with 3-1 pot odds (when you include the blinds, antes and the first raise) – what better opportunity can you get, particularly when you don’t really have enough chips to isolate the raiser but someone else does it for you? 

So generally I think I did OK, and could stand a fair chance when the cards go the right way – you need a mighty amount of luck to survive in this field.  If I’d won an earlier coinflop with AJ vs KT, who was all in from the big blind for less than double my raise, and then had my KK hold up I’d have been in very good shape.  I didnt try anything fancy, but I didn’t really need to, or ever have the ammunition to.  The same went for the other players – whilst I didn’t notice anyone who I’d say was particularly bad, nobody really stood out as taking control of the situation or playing a consistently impressive game.

After four or five hours, the boredom was starting to get to some, for instance QTo raising and calling a reraise all-in, but I managed to stay patient.  Considering this is the fastest structure in the WSOP (after they gave the $1000 event $1500 chips, which is just wrong) I just can’t comprehend how slow the main event would move….

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