I cashed in the 9k on FullTilt Friday night, for my first online MTT cash in a while. I was pretty card dead the whole way, but managed to quadruple up with AK in the second hour. I then stayed card dead through the bubble, then called a 3x raise with AQ, flopped an A and pushed into AK. Ooops, still like the play though. You don't really get much more money until the final two tables, so I have no problem going agro after getting into the money. As usual the overall play was not that great. If I had the time to play these things on a regular basis, I prolly could get into a profitable routine, but I don't have that kind of time.
Saturday night was event #5 in the Orange Poker League. The league keeps points, and skims money for a 10 player championship. I had two of my most card dead tournaments ever in the first two events (see archives), but managed to get some points by surviving more than 1/2 the players. I missed event 3 while on vacation. In event 4, I made the final table of a 40 player tourney, and lost a coinflip late that would have put me in the money. The final table finish gave me some much needed points. Going into event 5, I was in 18th place, and about 4 points away from the 10th place spot that would get me to the championship. With 30 runners, I figured I would need to cash or get close to have a chance. My friend Jay, who got me into the league, was sitting a couple points ahead of me, but still outside of the top ten.
I ran into Jay out front of the host's house, and said "we got some work to do don't we"? On the first hand of the tourney, I pick up AK, and popped it to T275 (blinds 25/50), after several limpers and got a single caller. I whiffed the flop, and fired out T350, call. whiffed the turn, and fired T450, call. Whiffed the river, and we checked it down, and my AK was good against an unimproved AT. Stupid fish! That gave me a nice stack to operate in a structure that is very turbo like. I started playing some marginal hands cheaply, and bleed back a few chips. Then I took a flop from the SB with Q5 sooted. A queen high flop came, and I bet T200, and was called by Billy. Billy hosted the last event, and lives in a 7 million dollar house. He was pretty drunk already, but had accumulated quite a bit of chips, showing down some great hands. I had never played with him before. The turn was a blank, and I fired T300. Billy reraised me to T500. Not a legitimate raise, but I kept quiet. I said "Do you really have another hand Billy?". He kept quiet. Crap! I did some thinking, rich drunk guy, showing good cards. This guy must bluff as well. The $50 buy-in is prolly nothing to him. I reluctantly called. Blank on the river, I check to keep the pot small. Billy bets T500. I prolly would have folded to a push, but I think I need to call here with top pair, bad kicker. I call, and Billy was bluffing. I am up to about 4k in chips early (start with 1.5k), and in great shape.
I don't really catch any cards for a while. I get AA in the BB and raise to T500 (blinds 100/200), after a button limp, SB call. Two folds. I steal the blinds from the button with QJ. Then I got a little lucky. I flop two pair from the SB with K9 after a ton of limpers. I min bet 300 on the flop, and get one caller. The turn is a blank, and I push in for T2900. Last guy thinks and calls with JJ, and I eliminate him. This guy had slow played KK earlier, and had limped with JJ this time. The way I played the hand which made sense to me, appeared to him like I did not have the King (why push on the turn). Shortly after this the final table formed.
I really did not get much cards at the final table, but got into a couple of good situations. I got KQ in the BB and pushed when only the SB limped. He called with AT and I spiked a Q on the flop. I pushed into the BB from the SB with A9 and got him to fold A2. The key hand from the final table for me was a little strange. I was in the BB with K6o (blinds 800/1600). The button pushes in for T1800. SB folds, and I have to call for 200 more. Two limpers also call. I whiff the flop, and it checks around. On the turn I pick up a gutshot to my 6, and it checks around again. I river the straight, and I say, "I am going to represent the 6", and bet T1200, into a massive pot looking for a call. I do get a call from top pair, and take down a massive pot that has me north of 15k in chips. I would not see an Ace, paint or pair for the next hour. It was horrible. I had a pretty good read on the remaining players, but could not get a hand to make a move with. The organizer's sister was at the table, and was playing like I wanted to. She was ubertight, but picked up some hands (AA, AK, QQ) and accumulated some chips while I was bleeding away. She then was able to apply some pressure with probably marginal hands, like I wanted to. She was 2nd in the overall standings, and I have to say I respect her play well above anyone else who plays in the league. After the bubble burst, I was pretty short due to a lack of cards. Jay was still alive, on my right, and we both had enough points to make the championship table. I was still looking for a push-able hand but not finding much.
With the blinds at T1000/T2000, Jay in the BB pushed for T2100. I went ahead and pushed with KJo for T2300 knowing I would be forced in on the next hand anyway. Two others called. I completely whiffed, and at showdown Jay showed QQ, but lost to a rivered straight. Jay took fifth, and I got 4th (because I had more chips to start the hand) for a $160 cash. The organizer's sister won the tourney.
The championship will be November 11th. There is a $2500 overlay from the 5 event skim. The buy in is $50, so it will be like playing a $300 buy in single table tourney. Top 5 get paid. You also start with T3000 in chips vs. T1500, and no rebuys are allowed. I really like my chances in this. The deeper stacks and no rebuys, really play into my tourney style. I predict it will be me and Debbie heads up for the title. I think the two of us are the only ones who will know how to play it correctly. The luckboxes without the ability to rebuy will be gone early. I hope my friend Jay can hang in for a cash as well.