Monday, March 31, 2008

March summary

A few more fish on Cake last night enabled me to increase my bankroll a little further since my last post. It wasn't looking good when I was down 10BBs for a fair while, and then went to 15BBs before I finally hit a 2nd nut flush to take a 20BB pot, followed by another 10BB pot the very next hand with top 2 pair. Won a small amount on Pokerstars as I still have the $50 bonus to clear there as well, however the play there was much more aggressive. Luckily a couple times I really did have a good hand, and they paid me off.

March turned into my best month to date, beating February by a whole $50. I believe however, I played for considerably less time - less than 25 hours for the month. For the end of the month my bankroll made it to $5,750 which was a gain of $1,400 for the month. That was made up of:

Bonuses: $447.50

  1. William Hill: $50 for 5 hours play bonus
  2. Sun: $20 bonus for playing 160mpps (still waiting for that to be credited)
  3. Cake: $120 bonus cleared (with another $70 remaining that expires in 3 months)
  4. Party: $7.5 reload bonus
  5. Chan: $250 through easypokerbonuses
  6. Rakeback: $160

  7. Fulltilt: $24
  8. Sun: $24
  9. Cake: $100
  10. William Hill: $12
Poker winnings / (losses): $790

Playing a lot more of 2/4 (and still a bit of 1/2, although mainly on William Hill) has allowed me to increase the amount of bonuses I am clearing and increase the amount of rakeback I am receivin even though i've played fewer hours . Still nowhere near enough hands to tell if I am a long term winner at 2/4, but I am very comfortable playing there now, and have shown pretty good results to date.

I did manage to cash in the Fulltilt freeroll, however, should have done a lot better when i went out with a stupid hand. Chalk that up to experience i guess.

For April the goals in order of priority are:

  1. Clear as much of my Cake bonus of $80
  2. Clear the last 250 points of my Pokerroom bonus for $210 - and boy does that clear FAST!
  3. Play my 5 hours on William Hill for the $50 bonus
  4. Clear some of the Sun bonus - maybe $20 or $50 (through double up SnGs mainly)
  5. Clear 500 points on fulltilt to qualify for the freeroll (and place in it again!!)
  6. Find a new bonus to clear

Current bankroll: $5,750

Sunday, March 30, 2008

A nice hand

Actually played a bit of poker on the weekend, so maybe did about 3 hours. The highlight would have been the following hand on Cake:

QJo in BB, with one raiser on the button and one caller. Flop of AsQsTs, which actually did match my Js. SB bets ... kinda weird, but okay, so I call, and Button calls. Turn Ks .. kaching - that's my second royal flush ever. Now, how on earth am I going to get the most out of this I ask myself. SB again bets out - so do I just call hoping to keep button in or reraise? At this point I decided to just call, and thankfully so did the button. River is 9s! SB checks the river, so I bet, and gain two callers, and take down a bit over a 10BB pot. I can't see how I could have extracted any more than that, but feel free to give your opinion. Not my biggest win ever, but its always cool to see that royal flush :)

I ended up signing up on Pokerroom through PSO. (and bubbled their weekly freeroll final which was annoying. My JJ didnt hold up v AQ). However, as far as the bonus goes - with my deposit of $150, I need to get 400 MPPs to clear a $150 PSO bonus, and then another 80 points after that to clear another $60 direct from the room. No rakeback deal is better than that, so I figure its worth my time.

I did play a bit on the weekend, and have knocked off about 120 points so far from that bonus, and my cake rackback for the month has finally hit $100. Actually ran fairly hot on pokerroom(found plenty of fish to sit to the left of), which always seems the way for ongame for me . At the beginning of each bonus I blitz the tables, then give it back just as I clear the last $50. Hopefully this won't be a repeat performance with all the fish on there!

Current bankroll: $5,600

Thursday, March 27, 2008

The fishiest table I have played on

Found a fantastic $2/$4 limit table last night. All 4 opponents had a VPIP over 65%, and 3 had a PFR % of less than 10. Two were relatively aggressive post flop which was the only small downer of the table.

The only problem was, I was getting beaten reasonably badly. One of the fish with 65/35/2.5 somehow managed to have a 55% WTSD and a 65% W$SD. With those ridiculously high winning stats, you'd think he would have a huge win rate, however, it was something like 4BB/100. He had a bad habit of bluffing super dangerous boards with nothing. However, every time I did make a decent hand, he seemed to have me beaten, so he wasn't giving it to me.

I actually played the whole session quite well, and I dont think I had even a hint of tilt. I was receiving reasonable starting hands, however, every time I had KK or QQ and A would flop and inevitably one of the 3 callers would have an A, and i'd either end up losing the showdown, or having to fold a premium hand. After losing about 20BBs I finally left the table about 13BBs down. It did mean that I cleared my Chan bonus of $250 relatively easily though, as every single hand would have been raked.

I also fired up Cake at the same time, and found a table with one of the biggest maniacs i've ever seen. He was raising pre and every street, and wasnt afraid to reraise with 52o pre flop and also chuck in a river bluff with the same hand. I played him fairly simply. Isolated where I had a half decent hand. Called down if I had even the slightest piece of the board - even K high. He kindly donated me about 30BBs in the space of 20 mins, where I managed to score 3 premium hands in a row AJ or better. He did manage to win a few small pots off me, but paid me quite a few larger one's where I would wait for the turn to reraise and he would at worst call me down, or even bluff into the river which I would pick off.

Just working out my next site for bonuses. I think it will probably be Pokerroom through PSO, for the $150 for only 400 points.

Current bankroll: $5380

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Had to happen sooner or later

Had a relatively large downswing within the space of an hour. Well I hope its just a downswing and i'm normally a winning player ..... I guess it was typical of my recent nasty sessions, however, this one did not recover very far at all.

It seemed every hand went against me, where I was playing against a maniac second on my right, and an okay LAG on my right, who thought it was okay to steal with 84o.

Unfortunately every hand I played against those two i managed to miss, whilst the other 2 fish at the table were calling down with King high and beating those two muppets.

All in all I had dropped 100BBs at one stage and recoverd slightly to end 70BBs down when I quit. I may have tilted slightly, but actually didn't play too badly - my VPIP was around 35, and given it was 5max and occasionally 4 or 3 handed that seemed reasonable. I probably did chase a few too many hands to the river though, as my WSD was 44% with a W$SD of 25% (OUCH). I played back pretty hard at the guy steal raising, however, nothing at all hit for me. His 84o paired the 8, and he called down my raises after I reraised preflop with A9 and completely missed the flop although did have a gutshot after the turn as well as my overs. The sad thing was then seeing these guys lose it to the the fish when they were also playing with trash.

Maniac with 85/60/2 was also destroying me. With his 92s hitting the flush on the river to beat my KK, along with many other similar hands where I was a huge favourite, until getting rivered. Missed my flush draw every time which was disappointing, including 2 nut flush draws in 25BB pots. Even one of them hitting would have made a big difference. J9 called my raise cold from the button when i had raised AJ UTG .. only to see J9x flop and me unable to get away from it. Admitedly when I reraised the flop he shut down and checked the turn so it did save me half a bet in the end.

Luckily I actually hit some hands towards the end which didn't get sucked out on to recover a few BBs. The only other good thing was that since there were no 2/4 tables running at ongame, my losses were all on 1/2, so I ended up around $140 down for the session rather than $280.

I guess I was probably overdue for a nasty session, and i'm also a lot closer to clearing my bonus. Only 130 points to go, which will give me $250 tonight. problem is my roll on that particular site is now only around $160 - so i may need to deposit again just to clear it (but hopefully not).

Will have to seek out some new bonuses / sites to play at next month too, although I do now have $100 to clear at cake via the reload bonus.

Current bankroll: $5,070

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Spinning my wheels

Had a bit under an hour session, to knock off my 500 points at FTP for the month, as well as get a bit closer to completing my Chan bonus. I think I have a bit under 250 points to go to clear it now, which shouldn't take too long.

On the play side, I managed to see some very nasty suck outs hit against me early on, with a river 3 or 4 outer seeming to hit every time I actually got to the river. I managed to lose consistently with AK, AQ versus A6, A8 and with one hand hitting me two pair but my opponent hitting a runner runner straight. Oh well, down a quick 25BBs. However, in the very last orbit on a couple tables, my JJ held up for the first time after losing twice, my AK held up, and my 77 flopping trips also managed to hold up, to recover my entire 25BBs.

So my balance is still the same, although I would have accrued some more rakeback, as well as getting a bit closer to releasing that bonus.

Current Bankroll: 5,200

Monday, March 24, 2008

A grinder?

Having looked at my weekend's efforts, I don't think I can really claim to be a grinder. I played maybe all of 3 hours in the last 4 days, which was a long weekend with two public holidays. I managed to play maybe 3 SNGs and the rest cash games.

The SNGs didn't go well, and I only doubled in one out of the 3. One was my own fault, where I accidently min raised towards the end instead of pushing all in, and unfortunately got called by a muppet who hit on the river to beat my pair of 6s. Oh well.

The cash games started badly again, with me managing to pick up KK v AA, even picking up a K on the turn and losing to an A on the river, followed slightly later with AQ v AA with a Q high flop. Managed to run into AA with JJ, and that really was the story of about 45 mins.

The fishiness of the tables then dried up, and I spotted a 3/6 table that was showing a VPIP of around 83%, so now was as good as any time to take a shot. Upon sitting down there were a couple of rounds before the BB got to me, so I figured I could watch for those to see what was happening. To my surprise it was folded all the way round twice .... huh .... how is that 83%??? Anyways, there was actually a fish on the table who I had good position on, and managed to win an okay pot with AK and a K high flop. The table then broke up after about 2 orbits, with me about 10 BBs up, but overall down $100 for the session. I guess it coulda been a lot worse...

My next session a couple days later for an hour or 2 went significantly better. The fish were paying me off quite well, including a guy calling down one hand with Q5o for Q high .. go figure. One amusing hand that I got blasted for was quite interesting. I was in the big blind staring at a fabulous 74o figure there was another big blind down the drain. 4 callers and I was able to check to see a flop of 356r ... sweet. One raise and a few callers so I then reraise and everyone calls still. Turn is an 8 .. sweet again. My bet causes a couple folds but one guy decides to reraise, which i then reraise. River is a 9, which is a little annoying, giving anyone with a 7 a split pot with me. I still bet and get called, by some guy who then goes ballistic at me for being a donkey, as he had KK. I thought it a little odd to be called a donkey when I had flopped the nuts for free from the big blind. Oh well. I guess I coulda stirred him up a bit, but just ignored it, as the table was donating me money fairly quickly.

Party poker also had a reload bonus and some easter promotion of free $ and freeroll entries just for getting more than 10 party points. I shoulda read the terms a bit more closely as you had to get 100 points in a day to get any bonus cash, and I was only scoring 10 for the freeroll entry that I wasn't even using. At least I cleared my $7.50 bonus in less than an hour of play i guess... and made a hundred bucks or so in the process.

Finished my William Hill 5 hours for the week bonus as well, and I think I have about 30 more fulltilt points to clear to get my freeroll entry there. That only really leaves chan poker where I need another 370 points to clear $250.

Cake had an easter reload as well, so I deposited $400 there to give me $100 in bonus that I will need to clear over the next few months.

If everything goes to plan I should clear Chan by the end of the month for a handy little boost to the bankroll :)

Current bankroll: $5200

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Almost spoke too soon ....

Had another quick 45 min session yesterday which included one double up SNG, one fulltilt 2/4 table and a couple chan poker tables.

The double up went quite smoothly, so nothin really to say there. I had top pair, top kicker and another player decided to put in a small bet on each street, and then he showed down bottom pair. Not exactly sure what he was thinking. Anyways that gave me a significant stack and with a few blind steals I ended up just basically folding for the win.

My fulltilt table was interesting. There were 2 players who were either maniacs or borderline. One was 80/40/4 and the other 60/30/8. I proceeded to get hammered a bit by these guys, particularly when I lost out with QQ v T5, and AKs v A7. A nasty gutshot didn't help either. At one stage i was down a good 20BB. I was getting a little annoyed, as i wasn't receiving any starting hands, and the other players were taking cash from the maniacs like candy from a baby. I think my VPIP was something like 12!! Fortunately though in my last round at the table before I was going to quit a hand went something like this -

I received A4o in the BB. Called by UTG, Raise by MP, Call by CO, Call by Button. So I figured with that many bets out there i may as well call for 1SB. Unfortunately then UTG decides to raise, and its called around to me, so I figure for 1SB i may as well see the flop, since the pot is now quite large relatively speaking. The flop is all clubs, which seems to quite nicely match my Ac. I check, which is promptly raised by UTG, called by MP and then raised all in by CO. Button then raises again, and there's no way i'm folding here so i call a couple cold. UTG then decides to fold ... The turn is a sweet club, and although i guess there was a chance of a nasty straight flush, i'm pretty happy at this stage, so i check and when its raised to me I reraise it up. The other guys call my raise. I raise the river straight out, and one player had 9c and button had 67c. 20BBs - ship it, and i've broken even on the table

Ongame however, didnt go so well, even though I had a super fish or two sitting on my right (70,0,.35) every time I had a hand, my fishy mate had at least 2 pair of something I completely didnt expect. It kind of evened out in the end, when one kinda aggressive player decided to steal my BB from the SB when I held A8, and the flop came down A8X. I called his flop bet, and check raised his turn bet. His fold on the river gave me an okay pot, but I did finish down a few BBs. I did accrue about $10 in Chan bonus though, and i'm sure a good $5 or $10 from fulltilt since almost every pot would have been raked. Will wait and see for that though, and I still havent included chan in my bankroll, even though i've now accrued about $140.

Current bankroll: $5,010

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Mini milestone achieved

Played about 40 mins partly on William Hill as I cleared my 4th hour of the 5 hours worth of bonuses. Was tough to find a decent table on there, and ended up only a few $ up and quit as soon as the lone fish left the table. Only one more hour to clear though which shouldnt be too tricky - hopefully I find a nice loose table next time I log in.

At the same time I played a couple double up SNGs on Sun, one for 10 pounds and the other for $5. Both went relatively smoothly where I managed to double my stack in both well before the bubble, and basically then cruised through to the money.

Only hand I can think that was noteworthy was when I was dealt T8s in the small blind, and it was folded around to me. I did my usual 3x BB raise, and I was a little surprised when the button called (he had a medium stack). The flop was a sweet TTx rainbow, so my next thoughts were how to get the rest of his stack in - around 1,200 chips with me having about 2,200 behind me. I insta min raised the flop, which he reraised around 200 chips. I thought about it for a few seconds before calling. The turn was a blank, which I ended up checking hoping that he'd continue his betting, and given he raised the flop I figured there was a decent chance of that. He thought for about 30 seconds before pushing his last 1,000 chips in, which I insta-called. I guess he could have had another 10, or a full house, but I was hoping in a blind battle this was not the case. He flipped over QQ, and received no Q on the river, so he was out.

I guess he learned his lesson not to slowplay and just call a raise with QQ. A reraise preflop would have put real pressure on me to fold. Still, i'm not sure if I played the hand quite correctly, as my no limit experience is very limited, and I still haven't read any of the theory on it.

Anyways it let me hit my $5k milestone, which i'm quite pleased with, although its obviously still small stakes to many people.

Also received in my email another 15% reload offer from party up to a max of $100. I will take up some of that offer, although with only 7 days to clear and not having a lot of time to play i will only make a small deposit.

Current bankroll: $5,030

Monday, March 17, 2008

So close

Had a 2 hour long session which I haven't done for weeks last night. Played a little fulltilt, although it was a struggle to find a fishy table. Ended up playing one $2/4 fulltilt table, and opening up Chan Poker at the same time for a $2/4 table and a $1/2 table.

The Fulltilt table proved to be very rewarding. Since i have colour coded my opposition, table and seat selection is easy before even sitting down. I managed to sit on the left of a fish and maniac, and they promptly gave me about 20BBs. However, the fish then left, so i decided to quit the table in search of something jucier.

Whilst making BBs at Fulltilt, Ongame was not performing well at all, dropping a quick 15BBs. As usual a few nasty beats from the fish sucking out a gutshot or two contributed to that, as well as having a J high flush with the A and K on the board, but my opponent had the Q. There was also one decent player at the table, and I had a couple run ins with him, and unfortunately he decided to suck out a gut shot or two as well. For my 150 hands in total against him, he's running at a WTSD of about 38% and a W$SD of 75% !!! :O ... kind of annoying that he has consistently hammered me by hitting all his draws. Anyways, when my fish left that table, I had to close that one down as well.

Found another Ongame table which had a fish and a maniac showing around 65,50,6. I sat to the left of the maniac, and apart from one suckout, he managed to pay me off (with a lot of raising and reraising) when I hit my flush / top pair on the river, had the nut straight, flopped trips, flopped TPTK to his 3rd pair that he bet hard. He even bet into my flush and the only hand that could beat me was Axs since i had KJs. I think I made at least 25BBs on that table, so my run ins with maniacs to date have been quite rewarding.

I've now accumulated 650 of the 1250 ongame points I need to release my $250 Chan bonus.

Cashwise my bankroll has improved a little, however, it will be nice to hit the $5,000 mark. I guess if I inclued the proportion of the Chan bonus I would already have achieved that goal.

By the way does anyone know how to get your HUD info up before you sit down at the table? Gametime doesn't seem to do it but it would make seat selection on most sites a whole lot easier.

Current bankroll: $4,990

Sunday, March 16, 2008

slowly slowly

I meant to post on friday where I had managed to drop a quick 35BB, which had put me back down into the 4.6ks, but didnt have time in the end. It was a pretty typical losing session - every flush draw I missed. Every flush draw for someone else managed to hit, even runner runner more than once!!! Even the fishy players were killing me!

Didnt play much on the weekend. Ended up installing oblivion and playing a bit of that instead - oh well.

However, in the time that I did play I managed to find a super fish, with stats something like 85,0,0.4 ... I took up my position to his left, and after a couple nasty beats, proceeded to keep playing until his initial stack of $100 ran out. Admittedly I didnt take it all but got more than my fair share in that position.

I had another table going at the same time where I had a similar fish sitting on my right, however, he was more like 65,20,.75 ... and he also managed to donate a decent chunk of change to me.

So just when i was thinking it was going to take me a while to make back my 35BBs, I ended up getting it all back in maybe an hour. I've got to make sure that i maintain my discipline for seat and table selection, as it does make a HUGE difference.

In my last session I had a nice aggro fish, who managed to suck out a 2 pair showing 94o when his 4 hit the river versus my top pair top kicker. Very next hand I am in the CO with KQs and reraise pre flop with the same fish being the only caller from the BB. Flop is J82 with 2 of my suit. Happy days, when its checked to me so I reraise, and he calls. Turn is a K, so I figure i'm probably ahead now, and have a flush draw to boot. Surprisingly he bets into me, and after thinking for about a split second, I decide to reraise. He reraises back ... surely he doesnt have 3 of a kind? Maybe QT? maybe AK but he woulda reraised pre flop surely? Maybe a flush draw too? I end up calling that bet and hit my flush on the river. He checked so I raised, he called and flipped over K3o for a pair of kings. So in the end, I was in front all the way. Ship it :) ... i wonder if i shoulda capped the turn?

Bankroll: $4830

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Tilt control

Tilt is something that has never really impacted me too badly, although I currently have a bad habit of firing off a few words in the text box if I have suffered a few nasty beats. Problem is, by doing that I am either teaching a fish to play slightly better, or even worse, encouraging them to quit the table.

I really need to stop doing it. But I guess it could be worse – my actual play is not hampered too much if I do get annoyed. I have on occasion however sat out for a round to ensure my head is still in the game. Nevertheless tilt has probably cost me quite a few bets in total, so it is something I need to be vigilant on.

I basically broke even in my last session, which was quite annoying given that the table was very fishy. Unfortunately I was sitting to the right of the main fish, which just wasn’t working for me, and if there wasn’t a wait list and the table wasn’t’ so fishy I would have gotten up to shift around. I found that every steal got called, which I guess is expected. Although since I was playing a loose player I had tightened up my stealing requirements slightly, however, still didn’t mange to hit anything. All continuation bets got called, and I seemed to miss every single flop.

My saving grace at the table however, were a couple guys who were big-noting themselves, talking about how they usually played higher and were winners. I even got abused by one of them when I raised 33 on the button, fired a flop and turn bet (very dry board), and checked the river to beat A high. Next time I got abused was when I had 72o on the big blind and hit two pairs when nobody raised preflop. They were sure I was a fish, so I was quite happy for them to have that perception.

Funny thing was these ‘winners’ were pretty consistently just limping into pots, which I thought was the opposite of how higher stakes tables would work. Maybe they thought they could outplay everyone post flop? One of them however, was very aggressive post flop, which allowed me to successfully pull off a number of check raises, as well as some passive play picking off bluffs on the river.

So whilst the ‘fish’ destroyed me, I managed to make it all back from the ‘sharks’.

Unfortunately after a beat where one of the fish called a four bet in the BB with 44 (to my AK and UTG with AQ) and win the hand, I did put a few words into the text box, and she left. Pity really, although I would have been more disappointed if I was the one who had position on her.

However, it really is a wake up call – you’re way better off keeping the mood happy on the table, particularly when there are plenty of fish swimming around – after all – they are the one’s who you make money off when they keep on calling you down without the correct odds, or a relatively weak hand. So what if they suck out a hand or five – in the long run, they are my source of poker winnings!

Only played one SNG, and actually forgot that I was in it. Stupid Cake software brings not only the table to the front of your screen, but also the lobby and hand history whenever action is on a table to you. I had missed 5 hands, and I was very disappointed to see KK in one of my hands, and it would have been up against QQ and possibly one other with AJ. The QQ guy went all in and his hand held up against the AJ. Fortunately I actually played reasonably well, and doubled up anyways, but another lesson learned for the night!

Current bankroll: $4,800

Tuesday, March 11, 2008


Variance can be fairly annoying when its running against you to say the least. I think that right after my last post, I managed to quickly drop 60 big bets on an extremely fishy table. Nothing possibly went right, and out of the first 100 hands I had won 3. I was 3 tabling at the time and 2 were big losers, and the other was up 25BBs. At worst I think I managed to be down about $240, which is fairly large at my current stakes.

I am of course assuming that I am a winning player in the long run, and that losing is not the norm! I'm reasonably confident though that it was just a small blip where I just could not hit a draw, and my opponents managed to hit every single draw. (I even managed to lose with my KK to 42o) Anyways it wasn't a good day.

However, last weekend was the freeroll weekend for one of my rakeback providers - Thisisthenuts - feel free to ask me for a referral code :)

I entered in the Cake and Full Tilt free rolls, and managed to cash in both for about $200. I was a little disappointed with my performance in Fulltilt, as I had an average stack but went out making a poor bluff before getting higher in the money. I think the excitement of making the money kinda put me off my game a little and i lost concentration. Oh well, I will remember the experience for next time and hopefully improve.

With respect to the double up SNGs, i've also had a bit of a poor run. I've been getting my money in relatively well, but have had a few nasty suck outs. I'm running about even over the last 10 or so, where i've managed to win a few of the larger ones (being 10 pounds for me at the moment so still only small!) whilst losing a bunch of smaller ones.

The cash games also improved slightly over the last few days, so i'm actually up since my last post. I played a fair bit of 1/2 and 2/4. Did my first little dabble into 3/6 where I saw what I thought was a loose table. I was right, however, got 2 outered on the river twice and ended up losing a little on the table, however, only played there for half an hour or so.

Current bankroll: $4,800

Thursday, March 6, 2008

A tale of two sessions

Experienced two vastly different sessions when I finally played for a couple hours last night.

In the first session, I was dealt an abnormally high number of premium starting hands. Playing 3 tables, 2 x 1/2 and 1 x 2/4, I scored AA 3 times in the space of about half an hour. Unfortunately the first time I ran into 2 pair hitting on the river, the second time 3 of a kind hitting on the river, and the third time I flopped an A only to lose to a gutshot on the river.

So out of my 3 tables, I was down $150 on one, down $60 on another, and up $50 on the third at the lowest point. By the end of the hour, I managed to claw back a little, and be approx $100 down in total, through basic play, as each table had probably 3 fish and maybe 2 decent players.

After a break for dinner I sat down for another 1 hour session. This time I found 2 2/4 tables that were relatively loose. The first one I managed to get good position to the left of a couple fish, and they managed to donate about $50 to me in 5 minutes before the table broke up. A little disappointing that they left, but you get that on some of the smaller sites.

On the second table that I opened, there were only 4 players initially, with 2 open seats. I noticed one player was a maniac in every sense of the definition, and was raising preflop, flop, turn and river with any two cards. I decided to sit down to his left so that I would have position on him. I've never really played a maniac, but I figured I'd give it a go. My basic strategy was to play possibly a little looser than usual preflop, and hope to iso-raise the other players out when i had a show downable hand. After that if I had a pair or better, I was going to showdown, either check/calling weaker hands, and bet/raising my stronger ones. The strategy seemed to work quite well, and when I did play a hand I was often heads up, and managed to make about $70 in pretty quick time.

Unfortunately one other player kept calling the maniac a fish, who responded by saying he usually played higher limits (20/40), and said he'd play properly from now on. So now I was thinking ... well great .. thanks for that mr muppet .. why not just let him play rubbish? Now I had potentially a decent player sitting to my right which is rarely a good thing. Funnily enough though he did limp in a lot, which I thought was odd for someone claiming to be a winning high limit player. Maybe I have a fair bit to learn about playing higher?

Anyways I think I played for another 15 mins or so after he changed strategy, and I must admit I did throw out one kinda nasty beat on him. He raised in MP, and I reraised AQ on the button. Everyone else folded which was nice, however, he reraised, and I called. Flop was Q72 and he raised. I then reraised, and surprisingly he reraised again. Hmm well he coulda had a monster I suppose, although the odds of him having QQ were a little lower as I had one Q, and I did suspect his reraise preflop may have been some of that earlier aggression. I decided I could be behind here and the pot was large already so I just called. The turn was a blank which he duly raised again, and I called. River was a sweet, sweet Q, which he raised again. Now maybe he had just filled up, but I thought it would have been unlikely for him to reraise pre with 77 or 22, so figuring that I was ahead here with trips and an A kicker, I reraised. He then called and flipped over KK. So I had hit one of my 5 outs, and I guess based on my earlier session of it happening constantly to me, they do even up at the end of the day.

So all in all I made about a $50 profit, where I thought at one stage I might have to spend another week playing just to make up for the initial loss.

Current bankroll: $4,650

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Good start to March

Well a good start as in a big win rate, but only over a few hours. I think i've played maybe 3 hours maximum for March so far, however, I have managed to make a couple hundred running quite hot, whilst still suffering from a few bad beats.

I've been stuck playing a bit of 1/2 and have had a few software problems with Cake .... i know i know, they dont have the best software reputation, but the tables can be very very soft (and the bonus and rakeback are great!!)

Played about 6 double up SNGs and managed to actually lose the first 2 which ruined a huge streak of about 8 wins in a row. Won the last 4 though, so the SnGs, although slow are going quite well. Especially considering I dont really pay attention when playing them as I usually have 2 or 3 cash games on at the same time. Basic extremely tight early play seems to work quite well at the $5 - $20 level.

Current bankroll: $4,600

February summary

Well, February turned out to be a very good month for me. I think only December has been better, since I had a relatively poor January with one huge downswing. It was still profitable though but only through bonuses.

For the end of the month my bankroll made it to $4,350 which was a gain of $1,350 for the month. That was made up of:

Bonuses: $360
  1. William Hill: $50 for 5 hours play bonus
  2. Fulltilt: $75 bonus
  3. Sun: $150 reload bonus
  4. Cake: $70 bonus
  5. Party: $15 reload bonus
Rakeback: $160
  1. Fulltilt $40
  2. Sun $70
  3. Cake $40
  4. William Hill $10
Poker winnings / (losses): $830

Overall moving up to playing a reasonable amount of 2/4 (although I still play a fair bit of 1/2) has allowed me to increase the amount of bonuses I am clearing, increase the amount of rakeback I am receiving, and since i'm also very careful on table selection at 2/4 i've actually been a winner on the tables as well so far.

Still nowhere near enough hands to tell if I am a long term winner at 2/4, but I will continue to play there when I see a looseish table (which is relatively often!).

For March the goals in order of priority are:
  1. Clear as much of my Cake bonus as possible before it expires on March 12! (I think i still have about $240 to go ... i cant believe i didnt clear it earlier, but had suffered a few nasty sessions there which had put me off ... along with the fact that you cant use pokertracker on cake!
  2. Hopefully clear the Chan bonus of $250, although that doesnt expire for another week or 2 into April
  3. Play my 5 hours on William Hill for the $50 bonus
  4. Clear some of the Sun bonus - maybe $50 or $100 (through double up SnGs mainly)
  5. Clear 500 points on fulltilt to qualify for the freeroll (and hopefully place in it!!)