Sunday, March 25, 2007

"Playing in the dark"

Well im still not really getting much luck at the moment however im having fun trying out some of the strategies for MTT play in Arnold Snyders 'Poker Tournament Formula' book. Basically ive played a few MTT's this week with my cards covered with a piece of paper, so solely playing using position strategy. I definately feel like my aggression has been stepped up to the next level!

Its quite funny some of the names I got called in chat, for raising from position 6 with 72o, but most of the time it works. Even with the blinds very low it is surprising how many chips can be added to ones stack just by using position steals.
I pulled off a very nice bluff yesterday, basically I could sense weakness from another player who would continuation bet the flop then check the turn if weak. I check called the flop, checked the turn and pushed the river(with absolutely nothing!). My read paid off and I added 1000 chips to my stack, villain chatted he folded second pair..go figure

This kind of play is ideal when your getting cold cards and you need to keep up with the blinds. Arnold also has an interesting chip strategy which is a lot more aggressive than my usual. For example he would consider a player as shortstacked if he has 20-30 bb, and so advocates playing a lot looser than normal (Raising AJ UTg!!).
Arnolds strategies are a complete change to the tight play I usually go for, so its opened my eyes a bit. Im also noticing im getting a lot deeper in these tournaments due to building my stack early

This book is mainly geared towards fast tournaments where the blinds rise relatively quickly. Most MTTs online are structured like this so this book is ideal. Im only about halfway through but loving it so far!

On another note, ITH has setup a peer tutoring project which I think is an excellent idea. Basically you get matched up with another ITHer then the idea is both players will try to help eachother out either by railing or checking over hand histories.
This will be very helpful to me at the moment as im seriously beginning to doubt my sng game, probably due to the downswing but its likely I have leaks.
Ive been matched up with Schlepper which im very happy with, hes very active in the SNG forum and always gives constructive criticism on the many hands posted at ITH.
Hopefully I can also help him out in the same way

Monday, March 19, 2007

An Interesting Observation - Poker Peak Times

Well due to my kickboxing training for my brown belt every sunday I cannot do the usual and go out on the beer on saturday nights. Therefore with the girlfriend away visiting friends I decided to spend Saturday trying to win some serious $!

I played in a 180 sng and the $3 rebuy NL tourney on stars. Ive played the rebuy tourney once before, I managed to build an above average stack with just the initial rebuy. Unfortunately I busted just before the cash though :(
Throughout the rest of the evening I 2 tabled the $16 sngs. What I noticed was the play was much much fishier than when I usually play, this was about 11.30pm UK Time. Ive now been informed that this is during "peak time" for the US - I usually miss this as Saturdays are when I go out and drink with my mates.

So am I playing at the wrong time?? My usual playing times are throughout the week between 6 and 7pm UK Time. Ive been studying the graph on sharkscope as posted in previous posts, and it isnt looking promising. By the looks of it im just about breaking even, the trends are always the same. Up a little bit, down a little bit Up a little etc etc etc..In another words im not getting anywhere! The frustrating thing is, Im not doing anything stupid and do feel like I have a slight edge over most of the players but I just cant seem to cash enough to make a profit :(

I need to sort this situation out as it just seems my bankroll is slowly slipping away for me.

I have an idea which may improve things a bit. I think the play on party is a lot looser than stars, so this week im going to try only playing sngs on party in the week- then back to stars for MTTS and late night sngs on the weekend.
The problem is im at the point where every loss is affecting me because Im starting to worry about losing my bankroll, even though I still have enough BR to play at $16 level.....

ON a side note, any UKers watch the rugby this weekend:


Every other match we lost during the six nations just dont seem to matter any more - as the stereophonics would say 'Aslong as we beat the English..we dont care' :)

It was sad not to see Ireland get the Grand Slam the deserved, I think the French are looking strong Favourites for the world cup

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Back to normal, hopefully!

Well things do seem to be turning around, the past 11 games since coming back from the break from pokerstars I have two 1sts two 2nds and two 3rds. Ive also dished out an obscene amount of suckouts this week, Ive had quads full houses, flushes you name it - ive also had a fair few premium pairs which have all held up.

So im glad I stuck at it - though I think ive learnt a lot during this downswing, I now know that I like many others am prone to tilt. And stopping and taking a break when tilt sets in is a good idea!
Ive also been re-reading my harrington books this week, its surprising how much more info can be picked up during a reread that I didnt pick up the first time!

Well im shattered and need to go to bed, I have brown belt training tomorrow and I dont want to fail it again!! GL ALL :)

Friday, March 02, 2007


My results on sharkscope are looking terrible recently due to the downswing. This graph tells it all:

As you can see I lost a lot more than I thought, to think my profit was over $500 at one point. In the last week it has dropped to $141. Lol my form is 'Super Tilt', going back last week that would be about right! I even played a $55 sng for some stupid reason, when I was losing. I think it was a desperate attempt to try and get my losses back.

Whilst browsing sharkscope I had a look at the leaderboard and couldnt beleive how much some people are making from sngs!!
But what is quite reassuring is that a lot of these players have hit nasty downswings along the way, the graphs show steady inclines with a few troughs every noe and again.
I need to realise that even the best players go through dowswings and if im a winning player I should eventually make what I lost back and more.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Party Poker - I found $10 :)

And magically turned it into $96!
After my 15 sng no cashes I switched to party for a change of scenery. Found $10 in my account so decided to see what I could do with it. I played a $6 turbo and won, the played another 2 and came second.
I waited till I had around 5 buyins for the next level then moved up to the $11 turbos. The play here is very very fishy compared to pokerstars!!! I was playing an $11 yesterday, when the bubble finally burst I chatted something like 'at last the bubble has burst', another player then types 'Bubble??!'. To which another player had to explain what the bubble was, LOVE IT!

Im gonna use this party money as a mini challenge to see how high I can take it, just as a break from pokerstars for the moment. Maybe party is a better place to play sngs if the play is consistently this bad?
It would be nice if I could take it past my $250 loss on pokerstars but that may be a little too ambitious!

Im annoyed with myself for letting myself tilt, I honestly thought it wouldnt happen to me as it usually takes a lot for me to lose my patience. I noticed I started playing a lot more passive, and playing silly hands out of position.
One thing I have also learnt is that multitabling does not help during times like this, losing on 4 tables at once is a lot harder to accept than losing on one at a time..

Friday, February 23, 2007

Bad Times :(

Ok im tilting right now, 14 sngs in a row not one single cash, this is horrible!
Im down over $200 since my last post, when the fuck is this going to end....

Excuse my language im just a bit frustrated at the moment, my hard earned bankroll is slowly going down the pan. The annoying thing is Im playing my usual game, making the right decisions according to SNG poker tracker, yet nothing is holding up...not good at all..................................

Thursday, February 22, 2007

On step forward....Two Steps Back!

The title of my post I think perfectly sums up sngs, constantly one step forward closely followed by 2 sometimes 3 steps back! Upswing followed by downswing followed by downswing followed by upswing..and so on.

In my last post my pokerstars account was up to a whopping $800, now it is down to $690. My ROI is at a miserable 11.5%, granted Ive only played 113 sngs though.
At this rate I really cant see how the hell am I going to get up to 3k by the end of this year??
The plan is to play to 200 sngs at $15 then see where I stand after that. I honestly think the best chance I have at reaching my milestone is to play more MTTs, but the truth is I just dont have the time.
A lot of my time at the moment is spent training for my brown belt, I need to make sure I pass this time!

Anyway just a short update for now, current bankroll:

WillHill: $130.88
Stars: $690.88
Party: $10(I have no idea where this came from, probably some sort of bonus!)
Neteller: $271.68

TOTAL: $1103.44

SNG ROI: 11.5%

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

2 table turbo madness

Well Ive had an interesting experience playing the 2 table $15 turbos. The play is terrible, so I should be winning..right??....WRONG!
I dont know what it is, maybe im playing too tight I dont know but I just cant seem to get consistent cashes on these things. Granted ive only played 13 which isnt much at all, but I get the feeling things arent going to improve. It seems that because of the extra fishy play I am getting constantly busted by suckout after suckout.
In my last game I was chipleader on the final table, blinds were big. I pushed QQ utg, UTG+1 called with A70. What the hell did he think he was beating here?????
Of course the A came on the river and I proceed to lose half my stack. Very next hand I get TT late position, I push get called by KK :( Game over..
Theoretically I should be beating these in the long run, but how many do I have to play until things even out? My scores are one first, two seconds and a fourth.

Im now back to the single tables, things are going pretty badly at the moment. My ROI has dropped to 14% having not cashed in the last 5. So my bankroll has taken about a $200 hit in the last week or so :(

I must admit im beginning to get a bit frustrated as my BR doesnt seem to be increasing, if it does it soon drops back down again! Maybe I need to play some MTTs?

BTW Ive found quite a reassuring way to combat tilt and to stop me retaliating to abusing fish in the chatbox. Log on to and use the free search. When you get that 'haha bye bye' from mr fish having knocked you out on the bubble by catching his runner runner flush, log on to sharkscope and check out his username. Every time ive done this without fail it will confirm my read by showing a negative profit and negative ROI%, quite often in the thousands.
I know its sad but it makes me feel better, at least im making profit however small it may be!!!!

Yours in frustration....Trej!

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Another big one looming?

Well I feel like im getting closer to cashing relatively big in a MTT soon, ive got into the habit now of trying to play at least one or two MTTs every weekend in the hope of adding a nice boost to my bankroll.
I played a $20 180 man sng last week and came 12th, I was so close to making that final table. Theres nothing more frustrating than playing for 3 hours and busting that close to the big money! But, I think I played at my best and felt that I didnt make too many mistakes - I busted pushing A6 from the small blind into the big blind who called half his stack with A9 and it held up. Personally I thought it was a bad call on the bubble but thats just me. These things happen. My M was about 4 so it was a no brainer really..
I quite like the format of the 180 man sngs and seem to get qutie far in them each time, fingers crossed if I keep trying, one day I may get a nice cash :)

Ive used all of my T$ playing the $15 turbos. My bankroll at pokerstars is looking very healthy now.
Im not gonna be too quick in moving up this time, ive decided to wait until ive played around 250 at this level, just so ive got a nice cushion when the inevitable downswings kick in.

Im also going to try some 2 table sng turbos this weekend as I hear they are quite profitable.

So to summarise, heres my current bankroll and ROI:

Pokerstars: $805
WillHill: $130.88
Neteller: $271.68

TOTAL: $1207.56
SNG ROI: 17%

So going in the right direction at the moment

On a completely different topic im at a bit of a dilemma with the kickboxing. Basically Im supposed to be fighting in Cardiff on March 3rd, but im also starting my brown belt training on Sunday. It is very difficult to give equal attention to both mainly because I would have to train full contact techniques for the fight whilst mastering the semi-contact techniques for my brown belt. Im thinking maybe I should get my brown belt outta the way then concentrate on the fighting..hmmm...

Monday, January 15, 2007

$3 Rebuy satellite - I won :)

I entered a satellite for the sunday warm up, not really intending to play the warm up but just because I fancied playing a MTT and this one was starting soon so I thought what the hell!
I had a stinking hangover yesterday but somehow I still managed to play well! I had a bad start but a good/lucky finish. There seems to be a pattern emerging where I do well in these things when hungover!!

I had some hands in the first hour but lost all the flips, had to rebuy about 4 times. I think I may have been a bit too aggressive. So I didnt get the double up before the end of the rebuy, went in with my original starting stack plus the add on. I definately think my experience with the turbos helped a lot, I managed to make some good steals with my short stacks that helped me somehow keep up with the blinds. Throughout most of the tournament I always had about the average or just left.
The bubble was painful, blinds were something like 10,000/20,000 and I had a stack of about 57k in the bb. There were about 40 players left at this point, 32 got a seat!
This was my first satellite and first experience with the stallers, everyone did by the time the blinds got back round to me they had gone up to 20,000 and 40,000, basically putting me almost all in on the bb with 82o - I nearly cried...But by some genius stroke of luck, the whole table including the small blind folded round to me..WOOT! I folded my small blind(though I probably should have pushed really as bb should have folded practically any hand at this point, bear in mind there were 34 players left and 32 got a seat). The next hand it was all over and id won the seat :)

I decided to unregister and keep the T$, my hangover was worsening at this point lol. So thats given me a good boost, and just like my last MTT win right after the downswing!
Im thinking I may keep these T$ as a kind of minibankroll for MTTs only, that way I have a seperate bankroll for sngs and mtts so I can keep better track of where my profit is coming from..

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

An end to the beast of all downswings?

Ok its probably not that much of a loss compared to some others but it felt like my hard earned bankroll was slowly draining away from me! Finally after a nasty run of 26 sngs, only cashing in 5 I managed two seconds and a first place yesterday. So fingers crossed things will be back to normal.

I watched my pokerstars account drop from $640 to $450 at one point. Now its back up to $557. Still at a loss but hopefully I can make that up with a few cashes.
It really is tough this sng game, lots of variance it seems which can get very frustrating! I also found myself slightly tilting towards the end when none of my hands seemed to hold up and my aces were constantly getting cracked - the biggest sign of tilt for me was when I raised KJ from early position and called a reraise all in, what the hell was I thinking! I would never usually do this, and that was the first time I felt my frame of mind was affecting my actions. So I took a break that day and carried on plugging away the next day.
I noticed it affected by mood no matter how much I tried not to let it get to me, something I definately need to work on.

Although I suggested in my last post I should maybe try another site I realise this isnt the solution when on a downswing. Eventually things have to get better for a winning player, so say the stats...

So to summarise my progress in the $15 turbos:

Played: 71
ITM: 38.0%
ROI: 16% - EDITED: My ROI Isnt 28% I miscalculated. Not as good as I thought but still early days

I cant really complain, I have a positive ROI though I realise this doesnt mean much at the moment for such a low count.

Im enjoying this blogging thing at the moment, I find it quite satisfying having somewhere to deposit my random rambles lol

Friday, January 05, 2007

Downswing Again :(

So far 10 sngs in a row, not even one cash!!!! This is beginning to get very frustrating, the amount of times ive gone out on the bubble 2nd in chips but low M. Push with a premium pair first in and called by the big stack who hits his hand on the flop or river, Im determined not to drop down to the $6s though, im positive this is variance so I must be due an upswing eventually!

Im always tempted to try another site at times like this, I know I should face the music though really. However Interpoker are running a nice reload at the moment which can now be cleared by sngs, but its only running until the end of the month. So Im considering depositing there and playing until the end of the month, at least to stop me tilting as its bound to happen eventually if this downswing continues!

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Happy New Year!

Well how quick has that year gone, I cant beleive its 2007 already!
1strules comment gave me a much needed kick up the ar*e. Basically it feels like im on a bit of a downswing at the moment so for some reason I feel less inclined to post, which is wrong really. I cant just post when things are good, the whole idea of this blog is to outline both my ups and my downs.
Thing is though, I hate complaining about badbeats and the like. Ive had my fair share over the last few weeks but then Ive also served a few so I cant complain, thats poker variance :)

This hand came up a few weeks ago, I cant seem to find the original handhistory text but I did paste it into

It always makes me smile lol. I had been reading Phils Little Green Book prior to this, and I remembered a tip he gave where he reccomended sometimes betting the pot with a good hand if an ace is on the board hoping to be raised. Well thats what I did here, I had 2 pair completely disguised in a multiway pot. But this was also bottom 2 pair meaning I would like to limit the fields.
I didnt get the raise I hoped for but got the call. My hand got even better again on the turn. I had the feeling this opponent was going all the way here, I played the hand very slowly ( I purposely took a long time to call his raise here to try show weakness), the check on the river worked perfectly and induced a lovely all in from villain with A6o!!!!!

Ive had some nasty hands since then but as I said I dont like to post bad beats, most people to dont want to hear bad beat stories!
So at the moment Im playing the $15 turbo sngs, according to my records my ROI is 55% at the moment but thats only over 22 sngs. Ive lost the last 6 though :(

My xmas was brilliant, very relaxing, very nice to see all the family again. I think I may have over indulged though, have some work to do in the gym lol.
New Years Eve, well it wasnt the best but im not gonna go into that, long story but I ended up home by 10.30 while the missus was collapsed in bed!!
I decided to play a 180 man $10 sng again on ps, I came 11th. I have a feeling I can probably make a good cash in one of these again soon. Maybe I should try the $20 180s?

So far as I said ive only read most of Phils little green book, its a good one though. Lots of very useful tips, and its all very easy to follow!


Well I had to take advantage of the pokerstars reload, they dont come around often. I needed an extra $600 though, so I cashed everything out of WillHill and Bodog, plus had to redeposit an extra $300 from my bank account although this will be going straight back into my bank account once the 48 hour wait to withdraw has elapsed.
So I have to gain 1500 fpps to get $150, however I have 180 days to do so. Hopefully I can clear this playing sngs.
Ive played quite a few mtts over christmas and not cashed big in any so though my ROI is good in the sngs my bankroll still aint going up:

Pokerstars: $1212.6(Not for long, $600 back out to neteller, $300 back into bank acc)
Party: $18.17
Ladbrokes + Bodog: $3 on each
Neteller: $81.68

Total Bankroll: At the moment stands at $1318, this will drop to $1018 once the
$300 is withdrawn back into my bank acc.

I really need to crack on with this quest and try get the bankroll moving in the right direction, a year isnt long really. I know other people have done it so I dont see why I cant, I think I need to be a bit more of a gambler and not be too afraid to move up the limits.
Well thats it for now, I could go on forever but Id better stop as I dont want to bore anyone to tears! Hope xmas went well for everyone, happy new year all :)