Saturday, 31 December 2011

December Result: +$162, Overall: +$3315 - Challenge Failed!

A little Christmas cheer helped my late month results but overall December was not a good month. In the end around a $63 Maui profit added to just under $100 in rakeback and freeroll cashes pushed my total to only $3315 - $685 short. Not a bad effort overall but a failed challenge nonetheless. I am particularly disappointed not to make the Sharkscope top twenty list. Probably only around $50-$75 short here. A static last couple of months has cost me as I dropped off the chart in the last week or so. To be fair I do not deserve the accolade but it would have been nice.
I am very much ready for a new poker year and a bit of variation in my play as per my last post. I have a new found respect for the real sit n go grinders out there who play the 3000 games each month not every year. It has been tough going at times and I have had to work hard to complete the total number of games let alone do well in them. My result summary for the 3000 Maui games is as follows:
Kartajana         3,000$0.55  $5  9%$1,655  -N/AiPokerYear2011 SNG Only
I will do a more detailed post analysing the figures in more detail in a few days. I will also update my blog for the new year and a slightly adjusted challenge for 2012. In the meantime please feel free to comment on my outcome.
Thanks for reading in 2011 and good luck at the tables in 2012

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Plans for next year

As we approach the end of another year my thoughts have turned to my poker plans for 2012. Having just read a new article from Jared Tendler on achieving your new year poker resolutions I have adjusted the original draft of this blog. I have reduced the number of aims (though I still seem to have a lot) and focused more on the reason behind my aims. See:
The main themes are as follows:
  • To continue my blog. It has been useful I think in terms of my focus. My results are better than 2010 partly because of it. Hopefully there are a few other people out there who are happy about this too which also motivates me.
  • To continue with my Jackpot Sit N Go focus but I will not exclusively play the Maui games. I have had good record in the other variations and it will be nice to play some other games to be honest.
  • To get a new laptop at some point. My current one is struggling a bit and I would benefit from a bigger screen.
  • To play a little less poker, focusing more on important things like my family, my health and my job whilst at the same time making more money. A wonderful concept at least.
  • To set a new challenge total of $5000 for 2012 which incorporates my poker activity on all sites, though my I-Poker activity will remain dominant. Within this to have some specific monthly and quarterly challenges. This will help my activity stay fresh and more fun. If I get in a downswing I can switch formats which has helped me in the past.
  • To learn and play some Pot Limit Omaha. The book I am reading by Phil Gordon, which is disappointing to date has a big section on it. I have previously read a lot about how learning a new game can give new motivation and understanding to a poker player.
  • To consider trying a new poker site, probably Party Poker taking advantage of a good rakeback deal. This is the one major site I have yet to try and it would provide me with a new challenge, though I am in no rush to do this.
  • Most of all to continue to enjoy my poker and spend some of my winnings. Linking my winnings to actual items purchased or specific events enjoyed should help my focus through 2012.
Good Luck and Happy New Year
Jason (Kartajana)

Thursday, 22 December 2011

Ten days to go

With ten days to go of my Maui Challenge 2011 I am in need of my own Christmas miracle! Progress in December has been slow and uncomfortable akin to Mary's donkey ride to Bethlehem all those years ago. I am only around $40 dollars ahead so far this month. My main aim now is to have a solid last week or so and end the year with a Sharkscope top twenty ranking. This is looking touch and go at the moment as I am clinging on to twentieth spot as of today.

Merry Christmas.

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Failure is an option!

With three weeks to go in my Maui challenge, my form patchy at best, the strong probability is that I will not hit my $4000 target. A shame, but it genuinely was a tough figure for me to hit playing three thousand $5 sit n gos (especially with the $1 rake). A true challenge. In the last few weeks I think I have let the growing realisation of my impending 'failure' affect my game. So I am trying here to inject some needed logic in my thinking here to help me focus on a positive end to my poker year. The aim for the year (see above) was in effect five fold:
1. To play 3000 Maui games. Nearly there. I have showed some real strong discipline to play this number of games and these alone for a year.
2. To have fun. An easy one really as I love playing poker.
3. Make $4000. OK I will probably not make it but if I only hit $3200 I have completed 80% of the total. I still maintain my failure will be down to the lack of consolation bonus success. I came so close again at the start of December with a sequence of 12123. I won't whinge too much about the details of the third but suffice to say the last few hands were pretty cruel from my point of view. It would have been a great start to December.
4. Achieve a top twenty Sharkscope leader board ranking. I am currently 18th in year winnings at the $5 level and have a good shot at staying there. A poor run in the next three weeks could cost me here.
5. Record my progress on this blog. I am happy with the job I have done in this respect posting monthly progress and lots more around once a week. I hope it has been some use or interest to others.
So yes failure is an option because in failing I will have achieved a great deal that is positive.
So get over it Jason and start playing your best poker again!

Please note this is not a concession of defeat............................My challenge continues.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Golden advice from Phil Gordon?

Around five years ago I read what was probably the most influencial poker book on my early game development. It was Phil Gordon's Little Green Book. It helped me with some key fundamentals of poker I was able to use as firm foundation to build on and improve my game. Two lessons that come to mind are protecting a good hand with solid post flop bets and going to war with strong drawing hands. Five years later following a lacklustre Blue Book he is back with a Gold Book and I am giving it a try. It is marketed as a follow up to his original green teachings but updated for the modern game. Where his teachings of green and gold conflict now follow gold. I will try. I started it last night and looks of interest.
I am need of this new material following a steady at best month or two. The last poker book I read about the mental game of poker helped me achieve a three month hot streak. Rather foolishly I abandoned my poker reading to enjoy a thriller about a kidnapping. Not a bad book (see Simon Kernick's Deadline) but it was my A game that seems to have been kidnapped so it is back to poker reading for me!
Interestingly there is a large section on Pot Limit Omaha which I may take up next year. He may well establish my fundamentals for this game as well.
Cheers Phil

Thursday, 1 December 2011

November Result: +$117, Overall: +$3153

In the end I was happy with the outcome for November but it took me a week or two to recover from a bad spell. I generated only $5 from the Maui games themselves. Added to this was my usual chunk of freeroll cashes and rakeback to make my haul for the month a modest $117. This leaves me with $847 to make in December. Possible, but very unlikely. I give myself about a 5% chance. I need to make $300 from my last few hundred games, $50 in rakeback and then hit $500 from a combination of freerolls and consolation bonuses. Betfred have doubled the prize pool for the daily freeroll which helps and I will try to play more often. Realistically though I am looking at $3500 for my challenge.
Kartajana  Click for details245$0.02  $5  0%$5  -N/AiPoker11/1/2011 11/30/2011 SNG Only x
My improvement/recovery at the end of November was sparked largely by me basically writing a strategy document for the Maui games to try to get me back to my best game and eliminate flaws that had crept into it. I have nearly finished this document. It is not quite spot on yet but is a good starting point and will help me stay focused in December as I push for challenge glory!
Good luck.