Do mistakes cost more than variance at low limits?

    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      Ok, figured it's about time to try writing a blog to keep track of my poker life, and hopefully not bore people too much at the same time. As something a little different, i'm not just going to keep updating my bankroll, but also how much money i throw away through silly decisions each day. I'm sure we all make them occasionally, but i think it could be an eye opener to see just how much we lower level players throw the fishies back into the water!!

      I currently play on 2 sites, NL FR on Titan using the capital provided by PS, and micro MTT and SNG on Gnuf, where i started by winning money in freerolls. My current balances are Titan - $165 (playing 4 table SSS NL10/20 and every so often 1 table NL10 BSS) and Gnuf - $227 ($1.10 MTT and $2.75 20 man SNG).

      A brief(ish) history......i started playing live in a league in Australia in 2006, where it's free to play and you earn points for higher finishes to qualify for a quarterly final with a prize of $10 000 or a trip to a WPT/WSOP event with your entry paid for. These games are a bit of a crapshoot, with people having no idea what they're doing, and the hands played reflecting this. While it can be an enjoyable night out, it's not really poker and did nothing to help my poker education (apart from get me used to a variety a bad beats :D ). Currently i'm in the UK, enjoying the higher number of people at the tables when i'm actually awake. :)

      At this time, i was also playing freerolls online, and occasionally lucked a place here and there, but the bankrolls never exceeded $10 and never lasted long. Then with article readings here, and correct BRM, i've slowly built my account on Gnuf over the last 18 months, playing freerolls till i had $5, then starting out with $0.11 SNG and slowly building.


      I joined Poker Strategy in 2007, and thinking i was better than i am, promptly lost the lot with no BRM. I then introduced friends to PS, and through referral moneys, got another shot which i've been determined to do right, starting again on Titan with $75 in August 2008. Using SSS on NL10 and NL20, i built my roll to $170, then had a nasty downswing to $135....well downswing combined with the occasional poor decision. Then went on a heater trying 7card Stud, got up to $230, and downswing back to $180. Currently i'm playing mainly NL20 SSS, with the occasional table of NL10 BSS thrown in.

      This brinds me to one of the points in starting this blog (have you made it this far??). Over time, i think i may have throw away nearly half the money i COULD have made through occasional rash decisions. You know the way it goes, you play really well for an hour, get up a few dollars, then make one bad play, lose your stack and give up most of what you've made. Well, i'm going to review my play and total up these mistakes and see just how much i cost myself...hopefully it will provide the motivation to stay mentally strong at the table and eradicate these mistakes from my game.

      I hope to post some interesting hands as well, both well played and poorly played, any advice or constructive criticism is always welcome.

      Hope i haven't bored you too much, see you at the tables!

      Ian
  • 18 replies
    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      I forgot to put in my goals.....

      Titan - reach silver VIP status, get enough points (6500, currently at 2700) to get $45 to add to roll. I'd like to reach $300 roll by the end of July, and start playing NL50 SSS.

      Gnuf - get another win in a MTT, and play a $5.50 20 man SNG every so often. I would like to reach a roll of $400 by the end of the year. I would like to then use $100 of this to open another tracked account on Poker Strategy, and see about clearing some bonus money.


      And of course my main goal is to keep learning and stop leaking money through poor play.
    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      I'm feeling surprisingly good today, even after taking some beats...was up a buyin earlier today, then gave 2 back with my A-A losing to a Q-Q flush (both all in preflop), and my K-K losing to A-K ( again all in preflop). Also in a MTT finished on the bubble after pushing my 10's to a reraise from a loose stealer...alas my turn ten to make a set, also gave his AQ the str8 after a K-J-6 flop

      I think the reason i'm still feeling happy though is that i haven't made any dumb plays today (the thought of having to write to try and explain it is stopping me i think). So back to the tables, wish me luck for the afternoon session....
    • thebigheizung85
      thebigheizung85
      Silver
      Joined: 12.08.2006 Posts: 195
      good luck for your game... i like your way of thinking... instead of blaming it all on the variance and the downswing (which of course exists and heavily influences your current bankroll) you take responsibility for your own dumb decisions that go along while losing...

      the goal is to minimize these mistakes but i think you can never completely avoid them... i realize in my own play that i make more 'mistakes' when i'm losing (and the funny thing is sometimes it is for the good and you can make up for your losses but sometimes it takes you down even more)
    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      Thanks for your thoughts thebigheizung85, my thoughts are that i know variance will strike, i want to stop making it worse through poor play. I've had 9 BI downswings before, and going through the hands, i honestly think that up to 5BI was just poor play by me...that's just a crazy thought dont you think!!


      Not too bad a day today, had couple of beats as mentioned earlier, but finished slightly ahead for the day.

      Titan Bankroll $167.92
      Losses through poor play - nil (depending on your thoughts below)

      Happy that i didn't make any glaring mistakes today, i did have one interesting hand though. Stricky following strategy, it's a preflop fold, but given the call by the SB and the high likelyhood of calls from the other 2 limpers, i believe that gave me enough implied odds for a 'no set, no bet' call pre flop. Any thoughts?




      Titan Poker Beige 0.10/0.20, hand converted by the iPoker Converter at Talking-Poker
      Visit Hand HQ to purchase hand histories from a range of sites, game types and levels.

      saw flop | [color:#C00000]saw showdown[/color]

      Button ($3.60)
      SB SB ($16.60)
      BB [color:#C00000]Hero ($3.40)[/color]
      UTG [color:#C00000]UTG ($8.43)[/color]
      UTG+1 [color:#C00000]UTG+1 ($2.43)[/color]
      MP ($7)
      MP [color:#C00000]MP ($15.66)[/color]
      CO-1 ($7.34)
      CO ($23.41)

      Preflop: Hero is in the BB with 4 :spade: 4 :club:
      UTG calls 0.20, UTG+1 calls 0.20, 1 fold, MP raises to 0.40, 3 folds, SB calls 0.30, Hero calls 0.20, UTG calls 0.20, UTG+1 calls 0.20.

      Flop (2.00) 6 :club: 4 :heart: K :heart:
      SB checks, Hero bets 1, UTG raises to 8.03, UTG+1 moves all-in for 2.03, MP is disconnected and is all-in, 1 fold, Hero moves all-in for 2.

      Turn (15.06) Q :heart:

      River (15.06) 8 :spade:

      MP shows K :club: Q :spade:
      Hero shows 4 :spade: 4 :club:
      UTG shows 3 :heart: J :heart:
      UTG+1 shows 7 :club: 8 :diamond:

      UTG wins 15.06 with Flush (Hearts) with King high
    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      Interesting day yesterday, it was a little swingy,
      Titan Bankroll- $164.28 (-3.64)
      Losses through poor play - 3.70

      Today was a good example of why i started this blog. I was a bit up and down today (a couple of buyins either way), and during a down point after some beats, shoved 10-10 from the BB to a BU raise (he showed AK and the flop brought an A). I was getting my blinds stolen a lot at the time and let frustration get the better of me.

      I think it's interesting that even after not having a good day at the tables, i was only down the amount of my own poor play......
    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      Titan bankroll - $135.77
      well.......it's been a pretty ordinary week all up, some variance and plenty of dumb errors by me. This blog has at least achieved one thing for me already.......identified that i hold on to mid range pockets too much when in position and facing a blind re-raise.

      So i'm $30 down in a little over a week, but how are these losses broken down. I'm down $5.60 on Sit n Go's, but not too concerned about that. I played well, and pushed at the right times to be beaten by a worse hand or run into a monster. Two bubbles in four sng's means it could have easily been profitable with a tiny bit of luck.

      So where has the other $25 gone. After analysing my game loking for mistakes, not letting go of mid range pockets (7's-10's) from BU/CO to a bloind reraise is definately a leak in my game, and something i'm making a conscious effort to improve on. Other than that, some poor play hen tired hasn't helped this week, and mistakes have cost me $14.30 by my reckoning.

      Wow, over half my losses are me just giving money away.....i wouldn't just hand some random person in the street my hard earned cash, so i'm determined to stop doing that online.

      Gnuf bankroll update - $240.51
      Stayed ahead of the game at $2.75 20 man SNG's, tried 2 $5.50's for 2nd and 5th, so pretty happy there. Not a lot of luck in MTT this week, but happy with my play.


      GOALS FOR THE NEXT WEEK

      [X] Make silver VIP on titan (should achieve this today)
      [ ] Attend a SSS coaching session this week
      [ ] Reduce the number of mistakes being made (ideally to zero, but realistically, to at least halve any 'poor play' losses.
      [ ] keep working towards 6500 VIP points for $45 bonus (currently at 3250)
    • MAGICBRYAN
      MAGICBRYAN
      Bronze
      Joined: 23.03.2009 Posts: 305
      Hi there Ian

      Just stumbled on your blog, and reading it, I can identify so much with what you say. I too have felt before I came to this site, that I wasn't playing bad poker much of the time, but then would blow my stack in one stupid moment. The most annoying part was often in cash games esp I would KNOW in my feelings , that calling that big bet on the river would be a mistake, I would KNOW my opponent had hit his draw, but I'd been betting from strength with eg my top pair, so I had to call in case he was bluffing Yeah? right. That sort of can't let go error.

      I have decided to start on this site as though I know nothing, and am attempting to clear my free $50 by playing basic sss strictly by the book.

      So far, I have cleared $30 of my bonus and reached silver status, and am really ejoying this site and all I am learning.

      My intention is to wait until I have cleared my bonus using sss basic, then start to put my knowledge from here to work a little at a time to hopefully build my bankroll, with, as you say, trying to at least ensure I am not giving money away stupidly. I will at all times follow the suggested way here.

      I think we are both learning the lesson to think before we act. Why are we about to do what we are about to do, and is it the correct thing to do ?

      I keep getting the same message from people here, not to worry about my results as much as to concentrate on always making the right decisions, then the results will come sooner or later.

      Good luck Ian, and if you want to follow my progress anytime I have a blog called Bryans rise to fame.

      All the best
      Bryan
    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      Thanks for the post Bryan, i'll check out your blog and follow your progress. Like you said, i think the main thing is playing well, and i'm writing here to also take responibility for when i play badly, rather than putting it down to variance or bad luck....hopefully it'll work. :)

      UPDATE - Titan - $146.84 (+11.07) 232 hands

      A good day all up, no mistakes and a couple of nice fishies...including one that was intent on chipping everyone at the table up (check calling all the way to showdown 3 times with nothing more than 10 high, no draw!!)...needless to say, he's on my buddy list for the next time he's in a mood to donate.
    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      Titan - $152.82 (+5.98) 217 hands

      Another good day with no silly mistakes, though i was tempted a couple of times against loose donks. Kept my cool even after my AK lost to the mighty 5-3 the SB decided was worth fighting back with, and still got back that loss with a little more from the same player :)
    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      Didn't end up getting much play in yesterday, but back at it today...for yesterday and today combined the results are-
      Titan - 167.14 (+14.32) 375 hands
      I did make one silly play yesterday, but got out of it losing just 80 cents, and that's all the losses through mistakes in 4 days, so i'm happy with that but still trying to keep it to a minimum. It's also nice to have a few positive days in a row!!
    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      Well...first things first, i have to say...what a brutal long weekend and morning. I've had a nasty habit of QQ running into AK and losing (5 times over the w/e), and some other pretty sick beats. And the result of that is.....
      Titan - $136.21 (-30.93)

      At least from all that carnage, i only had one loss from poor play (at the end of a session, and it was the sign to stop) which cost me $4.46, so although i leaked $5.26 for the week through poor play, it is a massive improvement on the week before.

      Hopefully the beats have had their fun with me now, i'll head back to the table this afternoon and see what happens.....
    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      I haven't been able to play as much the last few days, but gradually getting over the downswing. I've been really happy with my play, not making any silly mistakes.

      Titan - $149.09

      The downswing took me as low as $130, but there's been a nice recovery over the last day or so. I haven't had any really interesting hands over the last few days, just been lucky enough to get on tables with some maniacs. :)


      Points needed to retain silver status this month 1179/1600
      Points earned to acheive $45 bonus 3908/6500
    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      I haven't been playing as much on Titan over the last week, but have been playing plenty on GNUF. I had a nice run there, and even after dropping 6 BI (losing hands like AA v J-9, AA v Q-T, KK v A-9 etc), i'm still well ahead for the week. I was due a bit of a cooler anyway (after 15 games of $2.75 20 man SNG, i was running at 250% ROI!!!)

      Anyway, the current figures are....

      GNUF - $273.50

      TITAN - $163.46

      Titan points needed to retain silver status - 981/1600
      Points earned towards $45 bonus - 4106/6500

      Had a nice run this afternoon......end of days figures are

      GNUF - $290.25

      TITAN - $177.02
    • zivkoleo
      zivkoleo
      Bronze
      Joined: 02.07.2008 Posts: 215
      On what network is GNUF?
    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      It's part of the microgaming network. It doesn't get massive traffic, but plenty of fishes there.
    • sgaf
      sgaf
      Bronze
      Joined: 07.12.2007 Posts: 146
      lol I like your description of APL :P
    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      Originally posted by sgaf
      lol I like your description of APL :P
      How does someone in the UK know about them??
      The best description i've heard of APL is that it's like taking on the power rangers (anyone else remember that crap excuse for a tv show???)....you can take em one on one, but put 5 of them on a table and they're unstopable!
    • AussieIan
      AussieIan
      Bronze
      Joined: 10.12.2007 Posts: 366
      It's been a while since my last update as i've had visitors and been ill over the last couple of weeks. When i have played, things have gone fairly well, although i've had more than my fair share of bubble suckouts on sit n go's (JJ losing to TT, AJ losing to J5 etc)....but hey, ya get that.

      One thing i've been really happy about is the reduction in my losses through poor play....i've lost only ~$4 in 2 weeks, so much improved from earlier efforts. This has also been reflected in the bottom line :)

      I've also started to play a little BSS on both GNUF and Titan, i find that it's nice to have a change every so often, and it challenges me to think more.

      Sooooooo, the balances now are......

      Titan - $195.34

      GNUF - $320.26

      This is my highest GNUF balance, and it comes after some nice fish playing BSS gave me all their money with J-8 and K-J vs my K-K, and a deep stack running into my A-A with K-K

      GOAL wise, i wont retain my Silver status on Titan this month, i've just missed too much time with other things going on. I should be able to regain it next month though, and if i do this it will also give me enough points to get the $45 to boost my bankroll. After some swings on GNUF, i hope breaking the $300 barrier will give me the boost to push towards my goal of $400 there (originally i hoped to get there by the end of the year, now my goal is by the end of July. I also am aiming to reach $300 on Titan by the end of July, this should be achievable, especially with the $45 boost from cashing in my points)