Sunday, March 11, 2007

Game Report: Stanley £10 Rebuy 9/3/07

A very strange and unusual thing happened to me this weekend.

Something so extraordinary it stretched my credulity almost to breaking point.

No, not Rangers winning a game at Celtic Park - fantastical as that may seem - the venue for this crime against perception was the Stanley Casino. The competition, their Friday night tenner rebuy - in which every single hand I played to a showdown, the best starting hand won!

I'd never played this event before, but I'd heard it was a good social game. Fifty plus runners, drinks promos, a free buffet at the break, and a game that was less wild than some of the smaller Glasgow rebuys where some tables have an all-in on almost every hand.

Having paid my starting £10 plus £1 registration fee I settled down with my 1500 chips and 90 minutes of 25/50 blinds aiming to play my usual fairly tight starting game, with the proviso that I'd gamble a bit more when big pots were there to be won.

Since I wasn't taking it too seriously, I didn't bother taking any notes, which I later regretted as I replayed a few hands in the bar with some fellow players.

Early on I found myself all-in from the blinds with 66 versus what looked like an attempt to steal some blinds and limp bets from a late position player. He called me with Q8o which was probably in better shape than he imagined, only for my sixes to hold up.

Another pot came my way when QQ all-in on a J-high but co-ordinated flop found a customer with top pair no kicker, who failed to improve.

The final hand was a real monster. Out of the rebuy period - after taking the top-up for a total outlay of £21 - and multiple limpers to the small blind meant a big pot, which got a lot bigger when he audibly sighed before moving all-in, in a manner which he'd done previously with AK.

Looking down at JJ I was 99% sure I was ahead and with a huge pot, I simply had to take on the race not only for his stack, but also those juicy limp bets. None of whom I could see calling.

Sure enough, AK it was and the Jacks held up. Which was enough to take me to the final table with a slightly above average stack.

At which point it all went horribly wrong. The blinds were escalating rapidly and no player could afford to wait for long to make a move.

I had a few blind v blind tangles with the guy to my right and when he completed pre-flop then checked to me on a flushing board I had no hesitation in betting a flopped bottom pair no-kicker.

It didn't look so good when he check raised all-in. With just enough chips to fold, and a feeling I wasn't against a flush draw I put it down fairly quickly. I heard him say to a friend he was never behind, which confirmed my suspicions of some sort of slowplayed big hand.

After which a succession of 82, 94, type hands, and no opportunities to steal, saw the blinds coming around with my M hitting 3 and K9s in my hand UTG.

So, I pushed, and got called by an Amiable Young Drunk Guy(AYDG) with AQs. Which, as was the law for this evening only, held up to knock me out.

The payout structure was that top 5 paid, and The Stanley contributed a couple of consolation dinner-for-two restaurant packages to sixth and seventh.

I finished seventh. Not sure what kind of a finish that is classed as - crypto-bubble? semi-bubble?

Mrs Div doesn't fancy dining in the casino restaurant so I'll probably be eating well before a future event!

AYDG was a real laugh. He was one of the few surviving Rangers fans at the final table and had been shortstack for hours, whilst taking a gentle ribbing about the not-quite-so-big game this weekend - hard to get excited about 'meaningless end-of-season games' - and his continuing attempts to 'fold to a dinner'.

He got his revenge by going on a wild run of card rackery just as the blinds went through the roof, getting paid with KK twice, as well as AQ against me, and a couple of other decent hands.

At one point he asked me if I knew who Howard Lederer was, and when I replied in the affimative he told me he thought I bore a certain resemblance. At the time I told him I was a foot shorter and eight stone lighter than The Professor, but on reflection no doubt he was referring to my card skills rather than looks...

I enjoyed the game and my record at The Stanley is now played two, final tabled two, with one cash (and a semi-cash?).

It was still pretty galling to hear the last few players - including AYDG - talking about a three way chop in the region of £500/£400/£400, knowing that one decent hand on the final table would have put me in with a great chance of being involved in that chat - for an outlay of just £21.

Playing these games always gives me a laugh because there are times early on when my play is so transparent I might as well turn my cards face up, but I still get callers because people love to gamble.

I love hearing the comments - 'oh he must have AA or KK again', 'this guy only plays monsters', etc., when I stick in a raise or move all-in on the flop, because it sticks in players minds.

Which means when I call a raise on the button with something like 65s, and get checked to on a ten high flop which I've totally missed, my bet is apparently interpreted as - this guy is so tight he probably called with JJ or QQ - and everyone folds, which suits me fine.

Similarly another pot I won had multiple limpers, and I checked the BB with two random cards. Whiffed the flop - which was checked around - and when the turn brought a double belly buster straight draw, I bet out - thinking if I hit I would definitely get paid by anyone who called the turn bet - only to see everyone fold. Probably putting me on two pair or better!

While the best starting hand may always have won at showdown, I'm pretty sure there were a few occasions where the worst hand won without a showdown. Which is just how I like it.

No comments: