Thursday, February 02, 2006

Newport Poker Open 17

Last night was the Newport Poker Open on PokerStars. We just had 7 for a prize pool of $140. I just took over the season standings lead last month, so it was time to pad my lead. I played four 9 player Sit & Gos to get ready. I have not played a single online tourney of any type since my victory in last months Newport Open. In the 4 warm ups, I got 2nd in a $30, 3rd in a $20, 2nd in a $10, and 6th in a $10 for a decent profit. I played pretty well, and was a big chip dog heads up for both 2nd place finishes. I felt I was ready.

I go card dead for the first hour. After the first hour I am down to 1,000, and have won only 2 pots and 0-2 in showdowns. Things could be a lot worse. We are down to 5, and smokkee is already out. Unfortunately, Train69 has a big chip lead and he is currentkly 2nd overall just 4pts back. I start to get more active 5 way and manage to slowly chip up to about 2k. We get down to 4 way. I limp in with K7o, and flop KKx. I slowplay the flop, and Train69 bets 2/3 pot, I call. Turn is a blank, I check again. Train69 bets 1/2 pot and I min reraise, call. River is a K giving me quads, and I value bet, get reraised, push all-in, and am called. Train shows TT for a boat, but I got quad Ks for a double up to 4k. I am now way into 2nd, and Train69 has dropped to striking distance. We get down to 3 way which assures I will get money, but more importantly season standings points. 3-way lasts for over 1/2 hour as we can't seem to get rid of Dino who has less than 1k most of the way. I take the chip lead briefly on 3-4 occasions during the 3-way action. Train finally knocks out Dino, and I begin heads up with about 2k in chips to Train's 8k. The winner here will lead the standings going into next month.

We go back and forth for a while when I call a min raise preflop with 87s. Flop comes 8 high with a gutshot. When Train opens, I push all-in and get called by 55. I double up to about 4,200 in chips vs. 6,300. I think I have a good chance of winning at this point. Train is over respecting my bets, and is underbetting when I am drawing. I should be able to outplay him for the win here if I am patient. I pick up QQ in the SB. Normally this is an automatic raise for me, but I decided to play it differently. I figured If I raised my Normal 3x, Train would fold practically all holdings less a pocket pair or good A. If I let him see a flop, I could probably get a double up, if he caught a piece. Plus he might raise me preflop in which case I would stall and push. I limped, he called, flop came K52 rainbow. I hated the K, but wanted to find out where I was, so I bet the pot (900) and get called. Turn is a 5, the pot is 2,700, and I got about 3k left. I bet 1500, and Train puts me all-in. I am convinced he does not have the K, but can't really put him on a hand. I call based on the size of the pot, and the amount I had left. River is a K, and Train has the Q5 for a boat. I take 2nd place. What I did there with the QQs was arguably my only bad play of the tournament, but at the time it felt right. I wanted to extract some value from the ladies and was willing to take a risk. With Train holding Q5, he had to catch the two 5s to beat me which was quite a longshot. Well I'm in 2nd place now for the season. Better finish higher than Train next month.


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