Saturday, 26 January 2013

Choose Almeria

Its still snowing here in the North West of England. Its cold, dark and a bit depressing. However, as hoped for my luck has returned a little in the second half of January and I am progressively pulling back my early month losses. My win rate in the Maui games is much better and last night I won a forty five man sit n go on Pokerstars for $90. 

When the days are short and the nights are freezing like this I am a little jealous of my sister who lives in the Almeria region of Spain. Growing up together we were both exposed to the wonder of gambling: on horse racing, football and even cards. In those days three card brag and pontoon were the games of choice. It was me though who was most consumed by gambling which has remained a constant throughout my life. Surprisingly then it was my sister Linda who took the biggest gamble of all when in 2006, disillusioned with life in England, she decided to move to Spain and start a new life. Seven years on she is still there, enjoying the sunshine and has just completed a website highlighting the wonder of Almeria. Check out:

The site looks great and she has put a lot into it, though I think she might be a bit short of information on local casinos and other recreational gambling! I will have a word.

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Routine Losses

In January last year I posted a blog entitled January Blues. The weather here was cold and miserable and my poker form wasn't much better. A year later these now routine January weather and poker issues have resurfaced. I am cold, running real bad poker wise and getting a little frustrated.
As part of my poker plan to improve my win rate I have been experimenting with my evening routine, playing more games at once in one session rather than two smaller ones. Certainly this is more time efficient but I have yet to see the real potential due to a significant downturn in fortune. My coin toss win rate feels like 25%. A significant thought for me right now is how badly am I running really compared to how well am I playing. I am certainly not playing my A game. I have reviewed quite a few hands to give me confidence that it is really my luck rather than my play that is the problem. I understand that Holdem Manager software can help here in that it can show you how well you are running compared to all-in equity expectation. I may well give the thirty day trial a go to see if it is of benefit.
Half way through January a particular game has really helped me, given me the inspiration to write this blog and hopefully turn my luck around. As part of an inevitably losing session, one game stood out. Before it even started Serhar was complaining about a previous game in which no doubt he had been robbed of victory. He spent the game complaining about his luck and the bad play of others. Never an endearing quality but usually of interest. Meanwhile, I combined some bad play with some bad luck of my own to leave myself with fifty chips. The next ten minutes were unexpected and thought provoking. Sehar when second in chips was knocked out AK v A7 by his only serious opponent. He was not happy, especially then seeing me double and treble up a few times to become a contender. I was called some names that I can assure you are entirely unjustified. Eventually I finished a wonderful and uplifting second for $15. What did I learn from this game? One, that there is always someone having worse luck than you and letting it get to them more. On examination Serhar is a winning player which emphasised the situation even more. Secondly and more importantly following an outrageous series of misfortunes, lost coin flips and bad beats, it reminded me that Luck Avenue is not a one way street in Runningbadsville, Tennessee. Only a few weeks ago I was posting about a hot streak. My luck will turn. I just need to be there, ready to capitalise when it does.
So, in the second half of January I will play well and run good. You never know the sun might even pop out at some point.
Good Luck

Saturday, 12 January 2013

The Rio Rhyme- Rio Jackpot Sit N Go Strategy

Following on from the great success of my Maui Mantra I wanted to capture my Rio Jackpot Sit N Go strategy in a memorable ditty. So here it is:

Get stuck in and use position
In level three make a decision
Bubble time, push-fold with precision
Then be lucky, the win is your mission

Strategy is very important in the jackpot sit n go I feel, though arguably you should have a somewhat flexible approach. Certainly adapting to your opponents play is important especially in these six handed games. However I do feel it is genuinely helpful to have a memorable strategy summary. It is easy to get caught up in the moment and play a non optimum style. To translate my rhyme you need to be active early in these games looking for a opportunity to double up. This is the best route to victory. Using position can help here. By the end of level three you make a decision based on the chips you have in terms of playing to win or playing to cash. Soon bubble rules kick in. Later, heads up, a combination of aggression and good luck are needed. If you are brave/foolish enough to take on the Rio games good luck to you, you really will need it to beat the rake and the regulars.

See Maui Mantra: