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Lone Piranha - Currently Swimming Through The Micros. NL10

    • LonePiranha
      Joined: 24.03.2010 Posts: 65
      My Blog.

      After a little dawdling about joining this site after a friend recommended it to me, I finally decided to give it a go and the first impressions I made I don't think were the best. Mainly this was due to my completely different views on bankroll management and some misinterpretations on the things I had to say.
      Dispite this I joined up and took my existing bankroll and deposited it on Full Tilt Poker (FTP), opting not to take the free $50 because well I had a bankroll (however small it may be) and the less personal information sent across the internet the better in my humble opinion.

      After browsing the forums and seeing other people's blogs and successes (or failure stories in some cases) I decided that I'd drop my out-of-date (possibly) bankroll system and adopt the one outlined here in the big stack strategy (BSS) while also taking on board the strategy itself.

      Before making the decision on using the strategy outlined though I had a little go at Rush Poker (2,111 hands to be exact) and at first I enjoyed the concept and the amount of hands I could play within the hour, but after a while the plays I saw were, well, ridiculous is the only word I can really muster that describes my experience and after seeing hands that actually made me laugh when the cards were flipped that cracked my premium holdings I decided the game was not for me, at least not at this limit (NL5).

      I guess a brief history on my past poker experiences should be in my first post so here goes.
      I started playing poker around 5 years ago, online on the microgaming network, and had some real good success playing cash games building up a nice bankroll (Around $3,700) over the course of a couple of years. However, I hit a few financial difficulties and had to withdraw $2,000 to help me out of a crisis. I then subsequently lost the rest of my bankroll, mainly due to seeing dropping down limits as an anti-climax to my steady rise. Plus, because I had already surpassed the lower limits my ego decided that I could play more speculatively. Wrong.

      Anyway that prompted a few months off and I redeposited after this cool off period and spun up another bankroll of around $1,500 and all was going well, until the infamous Microgaming/Tusk diabolicle state of affairs that saw poker players losing their money ($5,300,000 roughly in total) that was held at certain poker rooms. I was one of them and needless to say it put me off playing online poker.

      This did however prompt me to begin stepping into the live poker arena, where, I did okay, but never really kept track of what I entered or how much I won and bankroll was if and and when I could afford it, winnings usually got spent on partying and general trying to forget I'd just lost $1,500. I never really had a regular game and I only sat at cash tables when I busted out of tournaments early and I was waiting for friends to finish and only usually £0.50/£1.00 games.

      Now due to a recent move I can no longer attend live events without overheads of travel and accomadation, so to cure my poker itch until I am finacially stable again I thought I'd tiptoe back to the virtual felt, but do a lot of research on sites and backgrounds before I depsoited any cash (using my trusted friends e-wallet, which I don't think is technically allowed but I like the annominity of it and it adds a little more reassurance). I deposited $50 and played a nice solid game and that rose to a high point of about $210 and a low point of just $7 (not in that order) and I now stand inbetween the two at $120 (At least when I deposted at FTP).

      As it now getting on for midnight I will have to pause my poker story as I have to be up at 6am in the morning for work. I plan to use this blog as records of my progress using the BSS and of course to track my results.

      Tomorrow I shall add some of my results from hands that I have played since joining the community at (PS) and a little more insight and detail into my poker past. Feel free to cruise by and take a ganders, but please no questions on the Tusk scandal as I have had enough of that over the last couple of years and all the information is on the 2+2 forums should you want to find out more. I'll end this with a friendly caution to stay away from the lesser known microgaming skins, I'm sure that the larger ones (Ladbrokes, Unibet etc) are pretty much safe as these companies are fianacially viable, but be wary if you choose to play on the smaller ones.

      Until next time I bid you a good night, fond farewell and a deck hotter than the fires of hell.
  • 7 replies
    • LonePiranha
      Joined: 24.03.2010 Posts: 65
      The First Few Days

      Well, I'll begin by saying I've played no where near the amount of hands I thought I could, but time has just evaded me lately, and tiredness has also caught up so I have been curing that for the long weekend ahead. House party tomorrow, then a long weekend to recover and play poker. Best part of it is that I go back to work tuesday, and I go to hospital to have an operation in day surgery and then I HAVE to have a week off, so the volume will be getting a bit of boost over the next month and so will the learning. Both on this site and my college work which I have the grace of two weeks to do, possibly 3 depending on if I've done it and if I can play on my operation to get out of going in if I haven't.

      But with all that free time coming up I'm sure I will.

      As for the results so far, they don't look so great but it's only a small sample and I feel I am playing well but getting caught out in some hands also. I think this mainly due to the lack of information I have on some players and a few of their moves first seem restless and rather risky and then, on the hand you test them with they seem to have premium holdings. But also the main loss on the graph (below) is from Rush Poker, I do not like that game at all. -$14.58 over 2,111 hands is never good.

      Since I've employed the BBS however I have seen a small return, and the return was much higher but I made a few dodgy plays where the odds were out or I thought I was ahead, plus a couple of random beats and good wins. $2.26 up. Not massive but I am trying to learn the strategy as well, and at the moment I am concentrating on the Strategy: After the Flop - You Have the Iniative article as when I watched the video I noticed that according to the strategy I would have some leaks in my game. So tomorrow, before I go to the house party I'll read the article that goes with it. And then review it saturday when I get home before I start playing poker again.

      Here's the graph for my first few hands.

      And this is how I stand:

      Starting Bankroll: $120.07 (7c won before I realised I had to change the settings on FTP to save my hand histories.)

      Rush Poker: -$14.58 - 2,111 Hands
      NL5 FR FTP: $2.26 - 2,265 Hands
      Totals: $106.85 - 4,376 - Hands

      Hopefully next time I post the results are more positive, but if they are not then I'll look into my game deeper and post a few hands see what other people think.

    • LonePiranha
      Joined: 24.03.2010 Posts: 65
      NL5 Is Damning My Soul.

      Okay, so perhaps the title is a little bit of over-kill but, seriously grinding at NL5 has almost zero merits, and pretty much zero bankroll movement. I can't play this way and I know this site has quite strict views on bankroll management, and I will adhere them from this limit (NL10).

      It just so happened that the article mentioned in my above post (Strategy:After The Flop) was one of my major leaks which has duely been rectified and has added a little more confidence to my game (and profit).

      So I may of ignored the first step on PS's bankroll management plan, but the benefits that have been bestowed on me for doing so have been pretty good if I am honest (I'm rarely not).

      Here's a chart from when I started using the BSS across two limits (NL5 & NL10).

      As you can see still no awe-inspiring start to shout about (or maybe even blog about) but such is life and most of the beats that I've suffered have either been severe mis-reads on my part, genuine hand clashes or a plain and simple suckout. Plus, I did lose $8 meaninglessly trying to felt two fish with only a nut flush draw and only one card to come (dumbass), guess I became the fish that hand.

      Since starting at FTP here's how I stand.

      Starting Roll From Last Post: $106.85

      Rush Poker: $-14.58 - 2,111 Hands. (omitted from above graph).
      NL5 FR FTP: +$2.26 - 2,265 Hands.
      NL10 FR FTP: +$35.88 - 5,459 Hands.
      Tournament Entry: -$1
      Deposit Bonus Cleared: +$36.00 (3/10)
      Rakeback Paid: +$2.10

      FTP Acadamy Points: 2,400 (Undecided how to spend these though easy to earn).
      Full Tilt Points: 922.37 (These I can only hope I get to spend in the EU electronics part of the FTP shop).

      Current Bankroll: $179.58

      A nice increase from my last post, but I can't help feeling I'd of prefered to of added more from actually playing poker rather than the bonuses. Although, either way I am not going to complain about boosts to my bankroll. I feel very at home at NL10 at the moment, I'm slowly finding a few regular players (some to buddy and some to avoid), building up a database and adding notes to my opponents.

      Another nice little point (at least in my opinion) is that I am currently also running just under EV ($4-ish) as well, so in my mind this says I am making the right choices and not just getting lucky.

      Until the next post I'll be pondering this question. Am I rebuilding a roll again, or just getting some good cards that allow me to make good decisions?
    • LonePiranha
      Joined: 24.03.2010 Posts: 65
      [CENTER]10,000 Hands Playing The BSS.[/CENTER]

      I'll start with the graph:

      10,033 hands into using the BSS and I am running okay, and not really finding any major flaws in my play other than letting the lucky fish get to me a little and sometimes making the wrong plays against them.

      I am currently running like this:

      I'm thinking I could loosen up slightly, but I have been rather card dead over the last 2,000 hands, so that could be affecting my VPIP here. I'm also still running very close to EV so I think that's a positive and leaves less questions to be asked.

      I'm going to change the way I was posting BR things at the end of the posts as well as it started to look a bit crowded.

      Poker Playing Profit: $58.42
      Total Bonuses Unlocked: $48
      Total Rakeback Paid: $2.10

      Current Bankroll: $211.81

      Overall the first 10,000 hands have been a nice steady grind with not to many suckouts and I've also found that I am limiting losses by using decent pot control in most instances if I feel I could be behind.
      My continuation bets are also working for me now that I have read that article and I've implemented it.
      On the subject of articles, I'm pretty much done with that one now and I am going to be browsing through to see if I can find any articles that may make me aware of a few more leaks in my game, lets face there is always something you can improve with this game.

      I am now starting to use the hand evaluation boards as well as I feel this may keep me in line if any speculative plays I dream up are going to lead me to far astray in the long run.

      Now back to learning, grinding and hopefully continuing my progress and posting better results over my next 10,000 hands.
    • Jeffers16
      Joined: 03.09.2008 Posts: 304
      Always nice to see a blog where the author isn't on a completely different level than myself and is also playing BSS.

      Will definatly follow.

      Good luck!
    • cojonel
      Joined: 02.07.2008 Posts: 1,039
      Originally posted by Jeffers16
      Always nice to see a blog where the author isn't on a completely different level than myself and is also playing BSS.

      Will definatly follow.

      Good luck!
    • LonePiranha
      Joined: 24.03.2010 Posts: 65

      The Micro Limits.

      Micro limits are full of great players, awful players, students of poker, complete idiots, fools with pipe dreams, angry losers, nits, twits and twats and any of those could apply at any time when my HUD reads (1). Which is a lot at micros.

      The Great Players:

      The ones that will make it in thier own respects in the poker world, some will be known, and some will remain a secret online - Making a monthly salary for themselves. They are at the low levels because they are rebuilding their bankroll because they didn't use any form of bankroll management, or the car packed up, at the same time as the boiler and the washing machine, and that's the month they then play the worst poker in their lifes. Now that person has a little job, a lot of poker knowledge and a tight-rope budget, but somehow they managed to get up $200 and now they play, learn, face defeat, feel the passion, and win, but they know their bankroll management plan and they know they can win if they apply themselves correctly.

      The Awful Players:

      These players are either new and finding their feet or sometimes they just believe they can play and spout out poker termonology at random moments to look like they understand more about the game. But, will rarely be able to back up what they are saying by giving the actual outs they had in relation with the pot size and then telling you the actual odds they had to call our overly large bet on the flop that bought us top set but left him looking for a club to complete their ultimate goal.... The Flush Draw. Enough said I feel.

      Students Of Poker:

      Look out for these types of people, you play at the same table with him for 5,000 hands, you've got a wealth of hand histories and they all mean jack shit anyway, because this week he has learnt more and shown a few hands in the forum, now they have the power to get a forum of people that could potentially be thousands and pit the combined brain power of poker players everywhere and try to find where the villain went wrong and they played correct, and how could it be tackled him next time.?
      Students of poker also tend to play a lot of hands and spend a sometimes immense amount of time at the virtual felt.

      Complete Idiots:

      These fools just play like they have Aces when they are involved in a hand and either call everything and throw what they have left behind after the river has been dealt. Or they raise every hand they like the look of 8,3 - A,2 - A,A - K,K you get the picture. They lose a lot... Ask them when they get paid, make sure your online that day.

      Fools With Pipe Dreams:

      These are the people that are intensively trying their best in every hand with dreams of stardom, WSOP bracelets, and lifestyle of a millionare, playing the WSOP every year chasing records that were set by legends of the past, they know the poker players, and their most intricate moves. But, can they play poker?
      Usually also faced by an almost emotional attachment when they lose or win.

      Angry Losers:

      We all know the guys, they lose a big pot and then continue to get more and more aggressive and you just sit and wait for him to raise at the wrong time, and it's a nice winrate from there for at least the first hour of our session. These are the most popular people on poker room buddy lists, but not because they are liked, more like tolerated (or muted) as long as he brings chips for us each week.


      These people sit it out await the hands that are less falible and then pounce on any unsuspecting little fish that may have swam through it's lair of VPIP 6.1% and PRF of 2!


      The kind of player who could actually play well, if he didn't just have random moments of aggression, or they sometimes show their cards when bluffing or winning giving anyone that wants it the history of how they play. Or they play really well, then make poor choices after they lose a stack against a "lucky" opponent. Somehow they let themselves down, and everyone can see the fault. Except them.


      These are usually people having a gamble with their wages, a lucky fish over playing because of a few semi-decent hands that saw him win earlier and now he thinks the Gods of poker have now chosen him to the next Durrr. Until, they get wiped out. Or people with a bigger bankroll giving off steam, people that are generally crap, and if they lose it's never their fault and they will then proceed to lash out and tell everyone their leaks, and how shit they are etc. and then obviously the easy tilters that just reload.

      I had a bit of a steam roller session on tuesday night that saw me drop by the best part of $46 is still the reason I only graced the felt yesterday for long enough to get 5 points to secure the first $5 from the Take Two Promo at FTP, and I won a buyin (Almost anyway, $9.98 up) by venturing into Rush poker just for points and playing nitty. And I also unlocked another part of my deposit bonus to take me up to 50% which equates to $60.

      This is what it has done to my BSS graph that was actually starting to get somewhere.

      I'm not really that concerned as I am still in a profit and still up by $70 overall.

      Bankroll: $191.51 (+$5 not recieved from Take Two).

      Just an off day I guess I was tired, worried about the operation (which is done and hardly hurts anyway) and not really focusing, plus taking a two day break (except 5 points earned on Rush poker each day for take two) to relax and recover from the loss at poker and the operation. But now I am off to get my 5 daily points, and then relax and recover.

      Hi Jeffers and cojonel cheers for stopping by I only hope it gets more exciting. Although as it's poker I'm sure it will. [/COLOR]
    • LonePiranha
      Joined: 24.03.2010 Posts: 65
      The Redline Challenge

      So, as I've moved in with a mate who also plays poker and kind of rekindled my love for game a bit.
      All was going well until I decided to take him up on one of his "prop bets".

      The bet was to get my red line back above the break-even line in 10,000 hands. And if I managed this he doubles my bankroll regardless of the amount in it. If I fail, I have to pay for accomadation, entry fee and food at The International this weekend for the £30 deep stack on Saturday. Also, I had the option of a friends house for accomadation so that was certainly reason to take the bet (he didn't know this was his accomadation) given the money I'd save.

      At the start of this challenge I had $190, so would of been a nice score if I succeeded and kept a nice winrate.

      I won. But at the cost of my winrate which was running in a positive and sometimes dropping into the negative but to be honest a little bit shaky. It's amazing how aggressive you have to be but also opened my eyes that NL10 is easier than I first imagined when I started playing Poker again.

      Anyway, thought I'd post my graph, in case anyone is interested.

      I obviously finished my challenge and won! But at what cost?

      I don't know if I can play at these limits with a standard attitude now. And if it hadn't been for my appalling luck over the last 1,000 hands playing uber aggressive, I feel I could of come out in profit. I elected to take Rush Poker as the playground for this challenge (even though for normal poker I feel this is a bad game) as I thought players HUD's are less useful, and many don't bother. Plus, I have the the bonus I am sitting with different people a lot of the time.

      Example of bad luck. Never happens when you have just bought in and you only lose one stack does it!

      Grabbed by Holdem Manager
      NL Holdem $0.10(BB) Replayer
      SB ($10.36)
      BB ($16.61)
      UTG ($22.96)
      UTG+1 ($12.77)
      UTG+2 ($10.49)
      MP1 ($10.60)
      MP2 ($13.65)
      CO ($8.05)
      Hero ($31.09)

      Dealt to Hero J:club: T:diamond:

      UTG calls $0.10, fold, fold, fold, fold, fold, Hero raises to $0.50, fold, fold, UTG calls $0.40

      FLOP ($1.15) 7:heart: 8:heart: 9:diamond:

      UTG checks, Hero bets $1.15, UTG raises to $2.30, Hero raises to $30.59 (AI), UTG calls $20.16 (AI)

      TURN ($46.07) 7:heart: 8:heart: 9:diamond: 8:diamond:

      RIVER ($46.07) 7:heart: 8:heart: 9:diamond: 8:diamond: A:club:

      Hero shows J:club: T:diamond:
      (Pre 47%, Flop 65.1%, Turn 0.0%)

      UTG shows 7:spade: 7:diamond:
      (Pre 53%, Flop 34.9%, Turn 100.0%)

      UTG wins $44.07

      That's just one of many, but this was the biggest pot I lost. But I also feel this is more than deserved after playing the way I was, you would not believe the amount of 20 - 40 BB pots I bluffed my way to winning whilst doing this challenge sometimes just holding 2 undercards to the board. Just to show you the kind of aggression I am talking about here, look at these stats.

      I really enjoyed the challenge, and it made poker feel fun, but it's also going to help my game I feel in the long run, because although I made plays that I would never normally dream about as I was bluffing just about every hand, it showed me a lot of situations where a bluff would be feasable.

      My bankroll paid the price in the end though (had I not had the double your bankroll offer), and it slipped to a measly $120 (not including bonuses I had unlocked, but that was part of the deal that bonuses don't count so he didn't have to pay more) and now my bankroll is $250 dead. I wanted a round figure and managed to get an extra $7 something out of him.

      So that's what I've been up to over the last couple of days.

      However my stats on HEM look terrible and I am tempted to start a new database with a nice round $250.

      Also, I am still attending The International on the 17th to play my first live tournament for a while, if I go out early (Which I hope I don't) I may have a look at some of the cash games, but if I am informed correctly NL100 is the lowest table stakes and they are played £1/£1 which I found odd.

      If I cash a decent amount, I may enter one of the larger buyins they have running on the Sunday but I am not holding my breath, I am however really looking forward to it. Live poker is much more exciting and seeing your opponents makes it so much easier to read them.

      I am giving up on the font and colour and staying with this standard look. Mainly because I am to lazy to keep doing it.

      I've also managed to build up over 7,100 academy points and just under 3,000 FTP's to go with my $250 bankroll, plus I have probably paid a lot of rake and I'll maybe get a nice rackback payment on Friday. Overall I made about $30 on this challenge, so not the outcome I would of liked. But I did get to win the first prop bet that I've been issued since my return to the felt and I have no severe change in my roll.

      Bankroll $250