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From beginner to adequate! (Currently playing: 12-16tabling NL2 FR Hold'em)

    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587

      :club: = Success
      :diamond: = In Progress
      :heart: = Failed

      Complete by April 1:

      :club:P lay 100 SNG's. (Completed 26 March)

      Complete by May 1:

      :diamond: Get 25 bucks in the Take 2 promotion.
      :diamond: Decide whether or not to switch to Stars. (See Page 2)
      :diamond: Get an okay sample size for NL2 to see if I'm winning. (20k hands)

      Complete by June 1:

      :diamond: Get my Elephant license.
      :diamond:D ecide on a form of poker to specialise in.

      Complete by August 1:

      :diamond: Redeem my entire 100 dollar bonus.

      Greetings PokerStrategy, and welcome to my blog about micro tournaments of all sizes.

      I'm an indecisive bastard, so I play heads up, STT's, and MTT's. I've been playing mostly HU lately, since knowing heads-up play will help me in whatever tournament setting I decide to play. The only thing I don't like to play is cash games. I always lose money in them and more importantly, don't have fun doing it. I have nothing against cash games, I just don't enjoy them. Dunno why. Rush Poker is okay, but I prefer tournament settings.

      I play on Full Tilt, as the Rush Poker comment probably clued you in on. I started with the 50 bucks on PokerStrategy, lost most of it playing cash games, got into tournaments, and started gradually winning it back. I got up to 40-ish, then lost a few bucks.

      Now I've decided I want rakeback and bonuses, so I've deposited some money I've been saving up for myself, but didn't have much I wanted to spend it on. So my bankroll is now $136.73.

      This will allow me to play, according to my BRM which I get from this article:

      $2.15 HU
      $2.25 STT's
      $1.10 45-mans or fewer.

      I've also decided I'm okay playing the 1.10 90-man deepstacks on Full Tilt, since 18 people get paid and it's 3,000 chips, so the variance is reduced greatly. I'm not gonna cash out if I'm playing the lowest limit possible though.

      For those who don't want to read the article, the idea is that you use a conservative BRM, and also cash out a certain amount based on volume. For example, for 1-table SNG's, you cash out 3% of buyins, plus rakeback and bonuses. So if I did a 2 + 0.25 SNG, I would cash out 3% of 2 dollars (6c) plus 27% of 25c (6.75c) plus my bonus (10c). So I would cash out 23.75 cents for every SNG of that limit I play.

      I'll be using that money to purchase poker books and software as I see fit for now, since it's too small to really matter IRL.

      Eventually, I shall have to pick one or two types of Poker to focus on, methinks, but for now I guess I'm still in my "sample everything" phase. I don't have any goals past the end of May for now, though I'd like to build my BR and climb the limits obviously. For now, I just want to play Poker, and figure out the type I like best. Slow and steady and all that.

      I'll warn you guys ahead of time: I don't play particularly impressive volume. I do spend quite a bit of time learning theory though, mostly on 2+2 (with a healthy dollop of this site). So I'm more likely to talk about interesting hands or stuff I learnt than the fact that I played 80 SNG's in one day :P

      Hopefully I didn't ramble TOO much!

  • 30 replies
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      Played two sets of four SNG's. Forgot how much fun they were :) I got 1 2nd place finish and 3 3rd place finishes, ended up -$0.80. Now I'm off for the night. Woo, 14 Strategy Points!

      Still getting used to the idea of having nine bucks on the table at once, but I can handle the increased pace okay (Only had 2-3 spots where I felt harried by the number of tables, and that should decrease in time). I usually 2-table these.

      I think I'll stick to SNG's for a few days at least. Despite the rake on them (I mean, 20% on $1? That's just extortion...) I seem to do decently at them, and I'm picking up the swing of them again. Most importantly, I don't have any problem multi-tabling them or playing them for a decent session's length of time, whereas HU I've been having motivation issues.

      As for my cashout money, not sure what I shall buy with it, seeing as I still don't know what I should be playing. Unless there's a universal Poker book that I really need to buy, I shall save up and wait for now.
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      Holy crap.

      Holy, holy crap.

      Today, I run absolutely, disgustingly well. Even though I feel I'm outplaying my opponents, almost every time I got into a situation with even marginal advantage, I either won, or lost and still managed to clamber back up.

      I played two sets of four SNG's each. Here's how they went down:

      Set 1: 2 1sts, 1 3rd. Total profit: $12.60
      Set 2: 1 1st, 2 2nds. Total profit: $11.80

      I actually had over 100% ROI for today's session, so I was pretty happy. Danced around my room and all that. And on top of that, I believe I'm outplaying my opponents. Making the right moves, stealing the blinds at the right times, calling the right shoves on the bubble, etc. I think I can get a decent ROI at these games even when I run average.

      In any case, that's another 14 StrategyPoints earned today, so that's pretty good. At this rate, I should easily get my Elephant license by the end of May. Once I get to around 900 points, I'll grab the free trial. I also think SNG's may be the game I want to stick with. At the very least, I'll stick with them until/unless I get bored.

      I'm getting used to the pace of four tables, managing to do it very well. Though, crazily, in my second set, I managed to be in 3 heads-up tables, all at the same time. It was RIDICULOUS. That may have contributed to my 1-2 record in them :P .

      Last but not least, I've added a goal for March. (Play 100 SNG's.)

      Total BR: $158.33.

      Thanks for reading!
    • johnwayne360
      Joined: 16.02.2011 Posts: 18
      well done mate i play sit n goes but it wasnt for me good luck wiith ur blog will be following ur updates :s_cool:
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      @johnwayne360 Thanks!

      Today I had a really, really fun session. I continued to run good, my first set giving me a 1st and a 2nd, with my second one giving me two wins. However, the second set was hilarious, as I sat at the weirdest table.

      It started out with a guy whinging in all caps about his "downswing" (He went four tournaments and lost each one by running a great hand into a better hand.) and how Poker was all luck, etc. Why he was still PLAYING I shall never know.

      We played normally for a while (interspersed with his comments, including referring to me as a girl when I attempted to tell him that variance was a part of Poker, which I found rather funny, as my Full Tilt avatar is a fish and my name isn't exactly feminine) and I was eliminated from two tables without cashing. Then things got interesting.

      I was 3-handed at one table, and SEVEN-handed at the other (This was almost an hour into the set, so it was when we ended up with a constant chatter at the table. It's All Luck (Actual name) talking about his bad luck, Bjorn calling the entire table donks and saying he'd take our money, and Ken, a fellow Aussie, laughing with me about the entire situation.

      Two people went down, then Luck got eliminated, followed by Ken, both of whom decided to rail the rest of the tourney. Luck, to continue to whine in ALL CAPS, and Ken to cheer me on as I took on Bjorn. We were joking about how much of a donk I was, as Bjorn continued to state. While this 3-handed play and chatter was going on, I was heads up at another table, so my hands and mind were constantly busy. It was awesome, and I was able to keep the pace and still play well.

      I then took down the other table, winning my first win and allowing me to focus my full attention on the interesting table. After a few minutes, I took Bjorn out, and told him to enjoy our money (which he was boasting he would take) and then took out my final shoving JTo over the top of a raise, my first real donkish move of the entire tournament.

      I also gave Ken my Skype, and we were talking over it just before I wrote this. So I had a very fun session, tested my multitasking, made another hefty profit (Total profit: $14.40. Ah, upswings.) and made a friend, too!

      All in all, it was adrenaline-fueled joy that I shall always remember as one of my most fun moments in Poker. Playing two tables, defying trolls, making friends, and winning both tables.

      On top of all that, I had a hand where I played at a level I've never played at before. Namely, I made what is probably a standard move once you leave the microstakes, but I managed to pull it off, and I'm happy.

      I got A9, raised, and got called. The flop came up 69J, and we both checked. On the turn, a 7, my opponent bet. It was a dry board for flushes, and I immediately realised I had the best hand. We were four or five handed, and I had an idea of what my opponent's range would be, and there was only one hand he could have had and not been bluffing. A7.

      My opponents at this level never check for value on the flop and there was only one hand in his range that he would value bet on the turn and wouldn't bet on the flop. The river turned up a queen, I bet half the pot, and he folded.

      All in all, I had a great day of Poker, and I'm glad to be able to play a game like this. I'm getting better: Learning new moves and skills, 4-tabling a lot easier (But I won't play more than 4 tables, my monitor isn't big enough and I want to see all the tables.) and having a lot of fun.

      I guess now I have to work on my ICM. I don't shove anywhere near enough on the bubble. Problem is, calling is rather difficult, as players push far, far tighter than they should, me included.

      And lastly, an ICM question. Without reads (I need to work on that too) if Villain shoves with 7BB, can I call with K4s, assuming an average Villain? It was clearly the wrong move at these stakes, but I want to know if it would work with standard ICM. We were 4-handed I believe.

      Thanks for reading my significantly longer than normal post, but a LOT happened today! 24 SNG's done already this month: I'm getting far more volume than I used to. It's a good week, and I shall enjoy this upswing while it lasts.

      Total BR: $173.14

      P.S: I have $5.70 saved in cashouts, and I'll probably have enough to buy a Poker book by the end of the month, so are there any suggestions? General Poker books or SNG-focused ones would be my preference.
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      Only did one set today: Made a 2nd and a 3rd, so I broke even.

      I had a long HU battle that I let completely slip away. Started with a 3 to 1 chip advantage. Screwed that up. Won 2 all-ins I was unfavourable in, finally lost the third. Fortunately Kenardy is helping me with that. I need to c-bet more, basically. (He was railing me)

      It's really good to see things through an observer's eyes. I taught him how to calculate odds quickly, he alerted me to a huge leak in my HU game. I thought HU in STT's would be the same as in HUSNG's, but I forgot that you start at 75 BB in HUSNG's, and are mid-deep stacked most of it. You're basically always below 30 BB in STT HU, and that was never my strongest area. Below 12 BB I'd always just play Nash, maybe tightening up a little.

      So yeah, that's something to work on. In the meantime, I've done 28 out of 100 SNG's this month. At this rate, I'll make my goal with several days to spare.

      And it's now nearly 1 am, so I'm heading off. Thanks for reading!
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      Had a long-ass session today: 4 sets of 4. Double my previous record for SNG's in a day :) It was a pretty unlucky session, though I was able to slightly turn it around by the end. Here's how I went:

      1st set: 0 cashes. Total profit: -$9.00
      2nd set: 0 cashes. Total profit: -$9.00
      3rd set: 2x 3rd. Total profit: -$1.80
      4th set: 1x 1st, 1x 3rd. Total profit: +$3.60

      So a total loss of 16.20 today. Of course, even with this loss, I'm still substantially up for the week, with my upswing earlier, so it's easier to bear. I was quite proud of myself, actually. After 8 non-cashes, I took a 15-minute break from the game, came back, and kept playing. I then lost two more of that set, but I was able to come back and still play as best I could.

      So I guess I've had a pretty swingy week!

      My total bankroll is now $155.84.

      I also downloaded the ICM trainer. It's sort of humbling when I realise how many different parts of ICM I have to learn. I'm trying to learn it bit by bit, instead of doing general quizzes. The aim is to strongly learn a very small part of ICM each day. For example, today I did a little over 200 questions about 4-handed play, when I was the shortstack, in 60/120 blinds, when I was the first into the pot.

      I got about 90% of them, and quickly realised a huge leak I had: I didn't realise that position was even more important in the push-or-fold phase. I should be pushing TWICE as much from the SB as from the button! Tomorrow I'll probably do the same quiz, except with 80/160 blinds (More typical of 4-handed play in my experience) and with me as the bigger stack, something I need to learn.

      As my signature indicates, I think I've already figured out that I prefer STT's to MTT's and HU. Of course, I still have dreams of playing in large MTT's, but that's something to figure out another day. I guess nothing says that with a sufficient bankroll, I can't grind SNG's and still play in the MiniFTOPS and such for fun...

      Finally, I have a couple of questions to anyone who actually reads this far who feels they can answer them.

      A) I have the option of playing some live poker: A 25-dollar MTT which is every week at my local club with a 1k guaranteed prize pool. The issue, naturally, is variance. So should I be following the same rules of BRM in live poker as in online poker, or view live poker as more of an entertainment thing for now?

      B) I'd like people's opinions on what I should do with my cashouts. I have 10.65 saved up so far, and my choices are either to spend it on poker books, or invest it back into my bankroll. Over 6 months I aim to spend my whole bonus, so that would end up as 237.50 I'd be cashing out.

      I guess the question, when you get down to it is: Is it better for me to build my bankroll faster, or to slow down and learn more about the game instead? Naturally, if it was that simple, the answer would be the latter. But if I'm playing higher stakes, I'll still be able to withdraw money according to the system, and can buy poker books/software later on, with more of a cashflow coming in. Theoretically.

      Both are difficult questions, so any input is appreciated.

      Thanks for reading!
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      Only played one set today, as it was late when I started playing. I got to 3-handed in three tables, so I thought this ought to be a good set!

      And promptly went busto. Still, can't complain about 3 3rd's, right!? Total profit: $1.80.

      Today was mostly a theory day. I did some ICM training, learning the baffling fact that the big stack should push from the SB in any circumstance. (In ICM trainer, it says to basically always push until about 25 BB, where I wouldn't play push-or-fold anyway.) I have no idea why, and believe I shall post on 2+2 asking about it. One minute.

      ...Okay back. Post's made.

      On top of that, I also watched Push or Fold Part 2, and adjusted my early and middle ranges based on that. Learnt some useful stuff, even though I knew most of what was mentioned already. Well it is meant for complete SNG beginners.

      One small piece of information: I've now managed to achieve half my goal for March already, woo! I think I'm definitely going to step it up for April. Thinking of going for 200 SNG's and 15-20 hours of study. Really put in some serious time to try and learn more about da Pokerz.

      Well, I need to do 12 more sets in two weeks. Somehow, I think I can manage that :) I have absolutely no motivation issues, in fact, I think I have the opposite of that. When I'm bored, I basically always want to play Poker or study it at the moment. I guess Poker is quickly becoming a passion of mine, rather than just an interest/obsession.

      Well, that's about it for today. Tomorrow I'm going out all day, so I doubt I'll get any theory in, but I'll try and do a couple of sets. Also had a couple of funny hands:

      A) Opponent pushed with 1.5-2 BB's, forget exactly, and I call with 75s. He reveals...93s. How many times do you get pushes and calls like that in the micros!? (Answer: Basically never. People will fold Qx or better at 2 BB. I have seen it.)

      B) Opponent pushes with 2 BB's. I call with 82s. He reveals ATo. I manage to win. As I said in chat "I know I call with any 2 here, but that was lucky as hell."

      Thanks for reading!
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      Only played one set today, but it was a good set. 2 1st's, for a total profit of 9 bucks. I've been playing better lately: Experience is starting to give me a better idea of opponent ranges. I'm not just thinking on level 1: What is my hand? I'm starting to learn level 2: What is my OPPONENT'S hand? I think at the 2.25's, that should be enough to do very well.

      I also had a very funny hand today. On the turn, I scored my flush. My opponent went all-in, and naturally I called. She turned over triple 10's, and I rejoiced. Then the river came up...the last 10.

      But it's not over! You see: That 10 happened to be the card I needed to complete my first ROYAL FLUSH in online Poker. Monstrous bad beat for my opponent, but hilarious story for me. (And I believe I'd have laughed on the other side of the table, too.)

      Only a brief session as I'm off to play Planescape: Torment which I bought. My friend has been raving about it for days ever since he finished it, so I'm off to see what the fuss is all about!

      Thanks for reading! (And feel free to post, I honestly don't mind!) :P

      BR: $168.44
      Cashout accumulated: $13.30

      P.S: Still need advice on a book to get.
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      Another hugely long session of Poker: 16 SNG's, and about 45 minutes of Rush Poker. In total, I lost 9 bucks at SNG's today, with two no-cash sets, one set with a 1st, and another with a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd.

      As for Rush Poker, I made about 9 bucks in that, so I ended up about even today. Rush Poker is great, the players are very soft, and you can play as exploitably as you like, nobody can stop you. I just played ABC Poker, and got paid off very nicely. One guy 4-bet shoved my AK with QJ, and I got a stack out of that. Another guy 4-betted to 1.85, then when I 5-bet shoved, folded. Pretty expensive bluff...I can't imagine a hand you'd 4-bet, but not call a 5-bet.

      I now have 68 / 100 SNG's done, in a little over a week. I've really gotten a bit obsessed with Poker lately :) In fact, I'm going to a live tourney tomorrow. 25 dollar deepstack freezeout tourney. Wish me luck!

      It's certainly looking like I have my specialty, and will easily achieve March's goal.

      Thanks for reading!
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      Played in the live MTT yesterday. Busted pretty early: My AA was cracked by top pair which got a set on the river, then my shortstack was busted when my all-in AK met KK. Still, I had fun: The people were friendly, and as long as I treat it as more of a night out that could end up free to enter over the long run. (Players are pretty bad, I assume a 0% ROI is ludicrously easy to achieve, eventually)

      I'll probably only go once or twice a month though. I also played 7 SNG's, losing a few bucks. Not much has happened other than that: I didn't really feel like playing today, but as I'm 3/4 of the way to my goal for the month, I can afford to take a break for today.

      Thanks for reading! (even if this wasn't too interesting a post)
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      Big day of SNG's today. Did pretty badly. It was less like a hemorrhage of money, and more like the slow deflating of a tire. Here's how I went:

      4 SNG's. 1x 3rd. Total profit: -$5.40
      7 SNG's. 2x 2nd. Total profit: -$4.95
      5 SNG's. 1x 1st. Total profit: -$2.25
      5 SNG's. 2x 3rd. Total profit: -$4.05

      I've still been 4-tabling, but if I lose an SNG in the first 2-3 blind levels, I'll load up another. One of my sets was 7 SNG's. Not a lucky day, unfortunately. However, according to PokerTracker, I'm at 90/100 SNG's! I thought I had a bit more than that.

      Since my trial for PokerTracker runs out in one day, I'm gonna give you guys a graph today, instead of at 100 SNG's. As you may have noticed, I don't use graphs all that much. Hell, 100 SNG's is pittance anyway, but graphs do allow you to catch up on my progress if you don't wanna read it all. Plus, they break the text up.

      An upswing in the beginning, then a slow decline. At least I'm still in the black!

      Speaking of 100 SNG's being nothing, I spent an hour today in stunned shock at the power of variance, and sample sizes required. Apparently 1,000 SNG's will tell me if I'm a winning player. 1,000. It'll take me months to get that. MONTHS.

      On the other hand, if you want to know your ROI, 1,000 is nothing. Something like 5,000 - 6,000 is appropriate for that. To put that into perspective for me, if my ROI is above THREE PERCENT, I'll have moved up limits before I know what my ROI is. And I hope it's above 3%...

      So basically, I've decided I can't know my ROI. I'm sticking my head in the sand, because if my ROI is 3%, it'll take 2-3 years to move up the limits. I guess moving up to the 5-dollar SNG's is a good goal for this year.

      Poker is not a game for the impatient. And then there's the MONSTROUS downswings. Over 500 SNG's, apparently it's expected to lose 20 buy-ins. I'm expected to lose 30 buy-ins in a short period of time at some point in the next few months as I collect 1,000 games. I can see why mental toughness is the most important part of Poker. Without it, you'll never get good, because you won't last long enough.

      Well, enough of my dark musings: That's it for today. In the next couple of days I'll achieve my goal for March.

      I'm also thinking of entering the Daily Dollar in double guarantee week. 4 entries x 7 would equal 28 dollars spent. Maybe I should spend my cashouts on it. Something to think about : I think it'd be fun and could end up quite profitable. No rake on Daily Dollars, plus a 20,000 dollar guarantee could mean the average player gets a positive ROI in those tournaments over time.

      I have a few days to think about it I guess. Thanks for reading this long ass post!

      Cashout gained: $21.37.

      What to do with cashout: NFI. Still haven't got any book recommendations, I think I'll need to make a seperate thread for it.
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      Goal succeeded! I'm even considering ticking off May's goal of finding a form of Poker to specialise in, as I'm really enjoying the SNG's. However, I think I'll wait til the end of May to formally make that call.

      4 SNG's. 1 1st, 1 2nd. Total profit: +$5.40
      5 SNG's. 1 3rd. Total profit: -$7.65
      4 SNG's. 1 1st. Total profit: -$0.00

      I've now completed 103 SNG's this month so far.

      I've decided not to cash out. 100 bucks of bonus is going to take 1,000 2.25 SNG's to cash fully. That means that over those 1000 SNG's (which I expect to take 4-5 months) I'll earn cashout money of $237.50: Enough to move me up to the next limit, all by itself. I think once I'm at the 5.50's, I can start earning money to cash out for the books and such. (Although with no bonus, 5.50's earn me barely more than 2.25's with bonus.)

      This is just a noob talking: If the books and hardware are that essential, I could always move through the limits slower. But with no advice given on the matter, I shall consider it temporarily resolved.

      A funny hand today. A normal-stacked SNG has 13,500 chips in it, and I won 12,100 of them in a single pot. Three-handed, we all went all-in. They both had AK, I had TT, I won the race, and suddenly I went from the middle stack to the overwhelming chip leader heads up. I won in four hands after that.

      So it's been a pretty cool month so far, but next month I'm gonna test myself further. I'm gonna aim for 200 SNG's (About 50 hours of Poker) and 20 hours of study. The 20 hours should be a lot harder, and altogether, I expect to be taking Poker like a part-time job next month. (About 16-17 hours per week) If I lack the motivation to keep that up, I'm okay abandoning the goals if I simply don't want to play.

      I am a serious casual player. I'm putting a lot of effort into this game, but mainly because I enjoy it. I don't harbour delusions of being a pro some day. (though it is a nice pipe dream, at the moment I doubt I will achieve it, hence the name of my blog!) However, I am an intensely competitive person, and Poker is a great place to channel that.

      I've also been grinding the Sit'N'Go By The Numbers challenge on the Full Tilt Poker Academy. Every time I achieve all these tasks:

      Don't finish in the bottom 3 four times.
      Fold AJ, AT, A9, KQ, or KJ early twice, when 7-handed or more.
      Go all-in with AQ, AJ, or AT when 5 or 6-handed.
      Play 5 SNG's that cost 2% or less of my bankroll.
      Win 2 SNG's.

      I get 200 Academy Points (worth about 90c). It's free money, as I can generally get that done in 2-3 sets, the hardest part being winning two. It's an extra percent or two of ROI, and I can do the challenge ten times. So I should end up completing that challenge all ten times this month, then I'll move on to a harder one (Which will grant more points though).

      Not sure what I'll spend my Academy Points and Full Tilt Points on though: Probably tournament tickets, either taking shots at the mFTOPS or selling them for T$ to add to my roll. I haven't decided yet.

      Anyway: Goal for March completed! Woo! That doesn't mean I'll stop playing though, but I can feel free to take it easy for a few days, til April starts.

      I also found out why I "only" had 90 SNG's last post: I did six SNG's at another computer, which PokerTracker didn't count. However, I'm okay with that. I'll have to download Elephant's trial or Hold Em Manager's trial now if I want to have access to stats and graphs.

      Which is precisely why I'm not going to do it. I'll keep a meticulous record of the amount of SNG's I play in April, but even a thousand isn't enough to determine my ROI, so I'm not going to worry about it.

      Anyway, sorry about all the text: I hope the short paragraphs made it okay! Thanks for reading!
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      Last night I was on Full Tilt, checking out the 1.10 Rush On Demand tournaments. They actually seem pretty interesting.

      They generally have a few hundred players, so variance is high, but the field looks soft. (The final tables don't look especially skilled, and I assume the better players would be the ones there more often) More importantly, because it's Rush Poker and turbo (But I still get to play more hands between blind levels, since it's Rush) the tournaments end in around 2 hours. Some last a bit more, some a bit less, but it seems like a good, large MTT without the huge time commitment of many of them.

      Because I've achieved my goal for this month, I'm gonna play some of these for a few days and see if I like them. It's multi-entry, (up to 4 times) but I think I'll only enter two entries at a time, as it's Rush Poker.

      I also intend to do SNG's in April unless: A) I really enjoy the MTT's, and B) I manage to make a 60-dollar profit in 4 days. (I'm not holding my breath). The reason for this is that I want a couple of hundred buy-ins for these tournaments, and playing SNG's will help my final table ability anyway. (Where most of the money is)

      However, if I enjoy these tournaments, I may switch to them at the start of May or June.
    • gordy1957
      Joined: 01.04.2010 Posts: 325
      hello Salivanth,good luck with the rush tourneys,but give a thought to the $1.10 45 man mtt s&g they are very soft and the rake is only 10% you should be able to get 25% roi and it takes about 90 mins to win one.
      well done so far and keep up the good work.
      cheers Gordy
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      Well, played six of the On Demand ones (Three, actually, but 6 BI) and won 2.35 at one (Would have been a lot more if my connection hadn't been a dick on me). I found them a bit fun, but Rush Poker, while fine for cash games, doesn't seem like my cup of tea for tourneys. There's a lot of stuff I want to learn in Poker that you can't do in Rush Poker. Mainly reading, and using that knowledge to exploit people. I shall try those 45-mans Gordy: And I actually have the bankroll to play them according to my nit BRM!

      Thanks! I shall try some of those tomorrow. Probably 4-table them, see how I go.
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      WARNING! Long-ass post coming up! But it has pictures! And a cool story!

      So today I decided to follow gordy's advice, and try my hand at the 45-mans. They do take about 90 minutes, and I had a lot of fun playing them, including a very enjoyable (and profitable) final table experience, which I'd like to tell you about today.

      I had a middle stack (I believe I was in 5th place out of 10) one space out from the final table. Then something hilariously awesome happened. I called a minraise from the BB with KQo. The flop: KKK. After staring at it in shock, I started to wonder how I could take as many chips as I could. Fortunately, the original raiser had Ax, and was perfectly willing to allow me to stack him. Tough break for him, but that's Poker. I thus entered the final table with about 16,000 chips, when everyone else had less than 10,000. It was pretty sweet.

      I quickly managed to take out the 9th player, leaving us 2 spots from the money, and continuing my commanding lead.

      I then called an all-in from Expendables, and lost. Still had a pretty good lead though, and was feeling good.

      And then...

      A completely, utterly dominating chip lead! What caused this? A great call? A strong hand? Actually, it was my raising with Ax to, and I quote, from my head "Keep the bastards guessing". I ran into 66 with A5, and still managed to donk my way to a victory. But hey: There's no need to apologise when you're on a hot streak.

      Donk Malefico then proceeded to remove my commanding lead, by taking out the midstacked Doxiproxi, leaving me the chipleader, but only narrowly.

      They say a picture says a thousand words. I guess the same is true for beatdowns. Fortunately I had the chip cushion to last me, and he was shortstacked.

      Then I managed to take out one of the gnome twins, and things were looking pretty damn good.

      Until this all-in. OUCH. But I wasn't going to give up: Not now. First was about four times as much as the 4.50 I'd get for fourth, so bring it!

      And then, disaster struck. That is one HUGE-ASS load of chips! Holy crap! Fortunately, I'm in third, and third would satisfy me, considering I haven't played my best today. With 8BB on the button, I shove Q9o as a blind steal, only to be called by AQ AND QJ, leaving me doubly dominated.

      Donk of the year. :f_cool:

      Then, after a short, sharp heads up battle for first place:

      I go all-in with T8 top pair on the flop, and lose to T9. But you can't have everything, and 2nd is still pretty damn good for my first night of 45-mans! Now I have to win one. :s_cool:

      I may even try playing these in April, they're barely slower than an SNG, and they are a lot of fun. Plus, I've always wanted to grind MTT's. I just couldn't stand the variance. I love the CHALLENGE of them, the amount of different techniques and games to learn. SNG's are challenging because of all the "sub-games" you have to learn: MTT's even more so.

      Plus, who doesn't dream of playing in the big events? The huge guarantees, the mFTOPS / FTOPS, the biggest Poker events. I mean, sure, you can run hot for a day in STT's, but you can't exactly make a six-figure day in them :) I think I will try these: I think I shall enjoy them.

      One more thing to mention. I had an interesting hand. I limped in with A5 spades (Still in cash game mode, even though we were at SNG stacks (Way to just follow advice blindly, Sal)) and then two spades popped up on the flop, with four limpers. Pot was 105. Then this happened:

      Villain 1 raised to 90
      Villain 2 raised to 180
      Hero calls 180
      Villain 1 raises to 580
      Villain 2 raises approx. 1200 (All-in)
      Hero raises approx. 1450 (All-in)
      Villain 1 calls approx. 1450 (All-in)

      Essentially, I decided that the pot was already 550, and I only had about 1270 chips left. The pot would end up at 4,100 if everyone went all-in (which I assumed Villain 1 would) and I had 31% of the pot. Given my chances of making my flush draw were approximately 36% (Quick and dirty calculations, 2% per out, multiply by two if on the flop) and so I called.

      I lost the pot, but I believe I made the right choice, even if it seemed strange: Go all-in with a draw I knew I had a less than 50% chance of completing, as I would get to triple up otherwise. Of course, a chip won is worth less than a chip lost, but since we were early in (Over 35 people left) I felt the difference was worth it. What do you guys think? (My chip counts may not have been COMPLETELY accurate, but use that as the calculation)

      I shall have to make my goals for April now. Probably to play 150-200 45-mans. I'm wondering if I really have to commit to a specialty. Especially if I decide I want to be an MTT player some day. However, it seems like the right thing to do. I'll work it out someday. If I can enjoy MTT's, and make a profit in them, and handle the variance...I think I can follow my own advice.

      Play what's fun, not what you think will make you money. In the end, MTT's were always what I dreamed of being able to grind. I just wasn't sure if I'd end up able to. I'll be studying the MTT stuff on 2+2, including their hand forums, and the hand forum of PokerStrategy. (I've already read all the PokerStrategy MTT articles that aren't Gold, and I can't see myself reaching Gold in the near future, given that it requires a minimum of 250 bucks of rake in one month.)

      Well, hopefully you read all the way to the end of this one. If you did, thanks for valiantly pushing through! This is gonna be my wrap-up post for the month. I achieved my goals, and now it's time to take a couple of days to enjoy the 45-mans and make my plans for April. Also: I'm not gonna make an April Fools' post. There's enough of that online already. Maybe next year, when I have readers who might actually care if I say I'm quitting Poker due to gambling addiction or something.

      See you next time!
    • gordy1957
      Joined: 01.04.2010 Posts: 325
      Hi Sal,
      gratz on your 2nd place.How many did you play?
      About your Axs hand,now I may be talking complete bollox here,but I think it was a very bad play.
      The way I see it is that your calculations are only good if your A flush is the absolute nuts and it isnt.Sometimes you will make your flush and still lose.
      With that kind of betting post flop you have to think that you are against 2pair or a set and 2 pair has 4 outs to your 9 to make a full house ,while a set has 7 after the flop and 10 after the turn and that reduces your odds considerably.
      So against 2 opponents and facing a pot size raise....fold.
      Good luck and keep on grinding.
      cheers Gordy
    • Salivanth
      Joined: 01.01.2011 Posts: 587
      Thanks Gordy: However, I knew I'd lose if I didn't make a flush, so I think the set odds can be discounted, as flush beats set. You're right about the full house thing, however. That was a mistake on my part.

      I played six of them, made a total of 4.95 in profit. Well, I know never to make that mistake again, so I think that's worth the buck ten I paid to learn it :) Essentially, I consider it cheap coaching :)

      I think I tried to calculate it "quick and dirty" when that kind of thing just doesn't work. I don't have exact numbers, but when you consider tripling up isn't triple $EV, the fact that I probably had a slight edge at these stakes, at least early on before the donks die out, and the fact that a flush could be beaten by a full house, I think those added up to make it a -EV play.

      Essentially, I try and mimic concepts that I learn, but aren't able to apply them correctly. I attempted to bully the table with a big stack, and lost a big part of it. I tried to make a complex EV calculation, and got it wrong. I think I need to build my theoretical knowledge more. I'm wondering if I should I try and learn through experience as well, even if it's -EV in the short term to practice these concepts without mastering the theory. I'll probably learn faster though, so I guess the question is, is it worth losing money in the short term to learn stuff faster?

      Thanks for the advice, mate. Always good to know when I screw up and how. I'm sure I make thousands of mistakes every hour, after all, considering any time I miss out on an EV play, however small it may be, or fail to pick up a piece of useful information is a mistake. I don't think it's possible to play perfectly, but all I can do is work at it.
    • gordy1957
      Joined: 01.04.2010 Posts: 325
      As if to illustrate my point,I played this hand today.
      Blinds are 25-50 and I am UTG with AQs ,I raise to 200 and get called by MP3,everyone else folds.
      The flop comes 8s 2s 4h ,so I have flush draw and 2 overcards.I make standard Cbet of 300 and get reraised to what?
      Weeeell I pushed,I figured I had 15 outs against most hands plus some fold equity,but I was wrong.
      He called and showed pocket 8s,so my monster draw had shrunk to 8 outs to make a flush and he had 7 outs to make FH or quad 8s.
      A 4 on the turn and I was drawing dead and out of the tourney,wich left me banging my head against the wall and calling myself all sorts of names.
      How can I give advice if I cant even follow it myself?

      Oh well maybe I will learn this time.
      Cheers and good luck Gordy.
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