Saturday, 24 September 2011

Near miss in Maynooth

I managed to break my 11-in-a-row no cash streak by picking up 3rd in the PLO tournament in Maynooth. As always finishing 3rd is somewhat bitter sweet, you're generally happy that you went deep in the tournament, but you can't help but wonder what might have been. It was only a 23 person event but I still really wanted to take it down. There was a beautiful crystal trophy for first and it would have been nice to get my first live omaha win. Also the €2500 difference in prize money was hardly negligible :-)

The tournament was a €440 buy-in and took place on the Friday and Saturday in Maynooth. I was very pleased with my play on day 1. The two biggest pots I played weren't the classic omaha hands of top set vs a million outs, so I was quite proud of that. The first hand consisted of me check-potting the turn with one of those weird broadway/wheel draws + flush draw hands. I missed the river but thankfully the card did make another straight. I only had about 25% of a pot bet left in my stack but obviously I had to bet it. He deliberated for ages and eventually mucked what he said was one pair (a higher one than mine). I was lucky that some sorta gut shot had filled on the river, coz if a complete blank fell, I was probably getting called!
The second hand was another weird one. I can't remember exactly how it played out, but I flopped two pair on a two heart board. The river came putting a backdoor (nut) straight out there. At this point, my opponent bets 10k of his 20k stack. The way it played out I can't really ever see him having the nuts. The whole hand played out like he had a set until he makes that bet on the river. The bet looked so peculiar. If he has a set, he is most likely checking it or just shoving for value, the "blocker" bet does not make sense with a set here. I eventually call and he turns over the missed nut flush draw. Nicky was laughing after the two hands and 'sarcastically' posted on twitter "Woohoo down to 15 and have more chips then BCB - jamfly spewing". They really are genius/donkey plays. I made a similar play in Cork and ran into quads so obviously it doesn't work the whole time!

We started the final table 9 handed and the plan was to play 5 more hands before finishing up for the night. 5 hands later and we were coming back 6 handed the next day. The huge chip leader did most of the damage. This guy managed to get something like 160 big blinds in pre flop with J762 one suit vs Marty Smith's AAKK earlier in the tournament so it was safe to say he was a bit of a wildcard. The worst beat got dealt to Nicky when he check-raised all in with his bare aces on a 3s6hTh flop. Your man had the bare 45xx and managed to hit the deuce on the turn for a fairly huge pot. We finished 6 handed with the (approx) stacks as follows (3 got paid btw):
Seat 1 52k
Seat 2 55k
Seat 3 (me) 90k
Seat 4 25k
Seat 5 420k
Seat 6 58k

The next day started out fairly slow with a lot of pots trading back and forth. The structure was immense and it probably gave too much play if anything. We got 4 handed and I was still 2nd in chips. The inevitable coin flip came up on the bubble but thankfully I managed to win it. Half the chips went in pre-flop with me holding AAT6. The flop came T64 and we got it in. He had the 9TJK and I managed to dodge and double up. The bubble was burst when Adrian Mills was eliminated in 4th place. We played 3 handed for quite a while, with a lot of small-medium sized pots but not many huge ones. The blinds were 1200-2400 and the stacks were 370k-160k-160k so there was loooooads of play left in it. The critical hand came  when I raised otb with AsKsKcTc. For pretty much the first time 3 handed, the SB (the chip leader) 3 bet potted it. It was back on me and I have the chance here to repot it and get 80% of the chips in. There can be a case made for flatting, but I'm sure shoving is +EV so I didn't bother complicating things and just jammed it in. Surprisingly, he just flat called (leaving me 40k behind with 230k already in the pot). The flop came 964 with two spades. This looks like pretty much the dream flop for me. I have kings with the nut flush draw, and since he didn't jam it all in pre flop, I was guessing he didn't have aces. Unfortunately, he did have the QsJs9d4h for a flopped two pair. Obviously I was not expecting to see this so was definitely taken aback when he turned up his hand. I still thought I was probably favourite to win the hand [nope, 46% after flop, sickeningly though, 72% pre flop, in OMAHA!!] as I had spades, a king, board pairing etc. but alas, I couldn't hit. It was definitely a sour last hand to go out on. It was the first time he 3 bet potted it, so I assume he must have been getting frustrated. When I 4 bet potted, he obviously just decided to take a punt and hope to hit a flop. I got €2100 for my 'min-cash' so it wasn't too bad. Still, that first place trophy and €4600 would have been really f'ing sweet! 

I have played a few other things since my last entry. The cash league final took place in Fitzpatrick's the Wednesday before Maynooth and I managed to get €1k for my troubles there. You have to play 80 hours in 4 months to qualify for a free roll with the top 3 hours-makers getting a bonus. With about a week to go I was about 20 hours behind Liam for 3rd place. The 3rd place bonus was only worth about €200 (if Liam asks, it was €600 though) but I decided to do my very best to get it. Coming into the last night, I needed 2.5hrs to catch him. It didn't look like there was going to be a game that night but I convinced them to let us play 3 handed (usually you need 4 to start a game). We were soon joined by a 4th player so things were fine. Usually in these types of situations, you end up losing €1000 going after the €200 bonus. Things were on course when after an hour and a half I was down €600. Another player bust also meaning the game was 3 handed. If the game broke and I was stuck €600 and didn't even get the €200 bonus, that would've been funny. Thankfully, they allowed us to play on 3 handed. The night finished well as I managed to win back my money and get enough hours for the bonus, doing all this whilst playing 3 handed rake-free! After playing for 3hrs, I asked if they'd mark me down for 2.51 hours for the night so the board would read:
3rd Jamie Flynn 102.76 hours
4th Liam O'Donoghue 102.75 hours
they didn't, so instead I finished a less cool half hour (as opposed to 36 seconds) ahead of Liam for the bonus.

I also attempted to start playing a bit more online recently. I decided to take a shot at a $215 WCOOP and got a min cash in that for $369. I then genuinely had the best of intentions to start grinding but obviously that did not go to plan. It was bad discipline on my part and it really is something I have to improve. I won't get into it too much here as that discussion is for another day, but if you want to consider yourself a serious poker player, you have to be making money consistently online. I love playing the live tournaments and even though you can obviously make money on the live circuit, it's not feasible to think you can make a consistent living off it. It's very possible for you to play excellent poker and brick every single live tournament for a year. 

I also played the Winamax shorthanded event this weekend. It's getting late so I think I'll save that short tale for the next blog. Next up is Killarney next weekend.

Friday, 16 September 2011

UKIPT Dublin and the ghosts of UKIPT Cork

I was really looking forward to the Dublin leg of the UKIPT. I hadn't cashed in a tournament since Dundalk so I was hopeful to break that streak in Dublin. I opted to play Day 1B as the plan was to stay in the Ballsbridge Inn for the weekend rather than going up and down on Thursday and (hopefully) coming back for Saturday.

I had to be up fairly early Friday morning before heading to Dublin, so I got up at 9am and arrived in Dublin by 1.30pm. After sitting down at my first table, a couple of people recognised me from the TV broadcast of Cork which had aired that week. The discussion of UKIPT Cork remained a common enough theme throughout the weekend and I definitely got plenty of abuse over my performance in it!

My day 1 started off pretty well. I hit a few lucky turn cards to win two decent sized pots early on. I then went on a mini heater and built my stack up to 57k. Most of the hands were very standard and I was just running good. By the dinner break I had built my stack up to 80k. I don't think I was playing my best on day 1, I was just getting in some fortunate spots. Coming back after the dinner break I lost a few hands. The first hand I pick up AK on the SB. The blinds are 500-1k and the CO makes it 3k. I 3bet to 9k and he flat calls leaving himself with only 18k behind. The flop is J94 and I just jam it. He calls with TT along with the remark "I knew you had AK". The TT holds and I drop to 50k. I lose the very next hand also and drop to 40k. I get moved table with about an hour left in the night and the rest of the day is fairly uneventful. I bag up my chips with a below average 36,500.

I didn't feel I played my best on day 1, but that said, had I won the AK v TT flip, I'd be returning to day 2 top ten in chips. At the end of the day, in hold em tournies, you have to win your flips.
Day 1 was a long day and I wasn't working off much sleep so I was pretty tired. The plan was to have a drink or two and then head off to bed. That obviously did not go to plan. The crowd at the bar was brilliant craic and the banter was immense. BigMickG is usually a fairly nice and tame fellow, but after a few pints he went to town on me and my Cork performance. "I was watching it and I was like 'jesus, that's terrible, what is he doing' I thought you were a good player but after watching that it's obvious you just ran like God".
That was the general banter of the night and there was plenty of slagging back and forth between everyone.

I got a very reasonable 6 hours sleep and was ready for day 2. I had 36,500 at 600-1200 blinds so there was still plenty of play. My table draw seemed pretty favourable as I didn't recognise many names and there didn't seem to be any big chip stacks either. In fact, I was probably above average chip stack wise on that table. I won the first few pots I played uncontested and chipped up to over 40k. I then pick up QQ in EP position and utg raises. He made it 2400 and I made it 6800. He then reraises to 16800. It's a really sick spot but I can't see how I can ever fold queens. I do deliberate but there's really only one move that makes any sense - I shove. He asks how much more is it and actually thinks about it for a while. At this stage I'm obviously hugely confident I have the best hand and now want a call (tbh, after he started thinking, I thought it might've been a light 4-bet gone wrong and he was working out the odds now to see if he was committed). He eventually did call with the AK and we were flipping. An ace flopped and unfortunately no turn or river miracle for me. It would've been great to win that flip as having an 85k stack at that table (I would've been table chip leader) with the bubble in sight meant I could definitely put my chips to good use.

It was disappointing to be knocked out of the main event as I really wanted another deep run. If I do win that flip I definitely have a great shot at it. After getting knocked out, I decided to get a few more hours sleep before heading back down to play the €300 side event. The side event didn't go great and I ended up busting pretty early. After busting the side event, I headed back to the bar (the plan was to actually head down and play some cash, but you have to go through the bar to get to the cash game area, and so well, you know yourself). By about 5am I decided it was time to play some cash so I headed in. I ran really well and ended up winning a decent chunk. I headed to breakfast at 7am and then watched Ireland's uninspiring performance against the USA. I had debated going back to the cash room at this stage, but I decided the better call was to just go to sleep and wake up and play again in a few hours.

I woke up at about 3pm on Sunday and started playing some cash. I was also railing the main event and high roller event a bit. Mick and Paul were still alive in the high roller, and there were still a lot of good players left in the main, including the ever consistent Jason Tompkins. Paul ended up busting the high roller in 9th after grinding a short stack for most of the previous day (no seriously, I'm not joking, he actually did grind a short stack) and eventually losing a few flips on the final table. Mick ended up cashing in 4th. Jason went on a sick run in the main event and ended day 3 as the chip leader heading to the final table. The final table also  included previous UKIPT winners Joeri Zandvliet and the defending champion, Max Silver (needless to say, making the final table two years in a row would've been a sick achievement, not to mention winning it). As it worked out, things didn't go right for Jason at the final table and he busted in 5th. I can definitely relate to those days where nothing goes right and you seem to have a tough decision every single hand. It doesn't matter how good you are, sometimes you just get days like that. All that said, it's a fantastic result for Jason and he definitely seems to be the most consistent player in Ireland by quite a stretch. Zandvliet ended up winning it (his 3rd UKIPT final table and 2nd win) which is phenomenal and Silver finished in 4th.

I managed to log my second winning cash game of the trip which did go a long to covering the expenses of the weekend. I was still down overall, but it was a relatively small amount so I have to happy.
That seems to be it for the UKIPTs for this season (unless I get lucky and bink a ticket to EPT London) so all I can hope is that Stars continue to put their resources behind it and keep the tour going next season. It does have it's faults (eg. Dublin was effectively a 485+75 tournament which is 15% reg which is a bit ridiculous) but there's no denying it's a great tour. There's enough tournaments being lost in Ireland these days, so it does seem like these online sponsored tours will be the way of the future.

As for me, the next tournament is the €440 PLO in Maynooth. Next week is the €550 Winamax 6max in Dublin. I hadn't originally planned on playing the winamax, but I hear the field is supposed to be soft. I haven't made my decision yet, but I'd say there is a decent chance I'll play it. Then at the end of the month is Killarney which is definitely one of the highlights of the year so I'm definitely looking forward to that one. That's all for now!

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Unibet Open

Unfortunately, there's not much of a report to be done on my Unibet Open experience. I arrived in the Citywest, handed over €1650 in cold hard cash, sat down, and within a few hours, I was standing back up again.

Heading up to it, I wasn't really sure what to expect from the tournament. It didn't have a huge buzz about it like other tournaments would, but it was still the second biggest tournament of the year so I was sure it had something to offer. I had a feeling the field would be a bit more international than most Irish tournaments, but I had no idea it would be as international as it was. I had to be back in Limerick on Friday, so for that reason I opted to play day 1A (on Thursday). I sat down at my starting table and the only player I recognised was Liam Flood directly on my left. I think there were only 5 Irish playing day 1A which tells you something about the diversity of the field. In one sense, it is bad for the Irish poker community to have so few representing at one of the biggest tournaments of the year, but on the other hand, I think serious credit has to be given to Unibet. They managed to create this tournament out of practically nothing (they probably would've been able to stage this event even if 0 Irish played) which really is a feat in itself. 

As for my tournament, it really was a case of struggling and never getting anything going. The first hand I pick up is pocket kings. There is a raise utg, a call from utg+1 and I 3bet. The flop is 942 with two spades and I get ch-raised. I think I'm probably behind here but I have to peel one. The turn is the 6h and utg fires again. Usually, this is the point at which I convince myself that either: 1) villain is a lunatic 2) villain is on a draw or 3) villain is overplaying QQ, and I proceed to jam it with my kings. Thankfully this time I decided to just take the sensible option and let the kings go. He showed me 99 for top set.

Just before the first break we were told that after the break we'd be moving to the feature table. On the feature table, my luck didn't get much better. Despite the table being one of the softest I'd been at, I still could not manage to get a string of hands together. A typical hand would include me raising with JT, cbetting the AQ9 flop, missing my draw, and showing down J-high against AT. I lost a lot of these small to medium sized pots and my stack began to dwindle. My last hand I pick up AK, the BB picks up QQ, and the rest, as they say, is history. It was very frustrating not to go further. It was a big buy-in event and the field was super soft. I couldn't believe the standard of play at my table and from what I've heard from others, that was pretty standard through out the tournament. I am definitely tempted to put some money on Unibet and try to qualify for other events on the tour.

I didn't play any more poker until the Saturday when I played both the 200 PLO scalp tournament and the 150 re-entry turbo. The PLO was going well as I built up my stack and managed to claim one bounty. With about half the field remaining (I think about 34 started) our table broke. I played one big hand where I wrongly paid off Darragh Davey on the river. I can't remember exactly how the hand played out, but it was a bit of a weird one. The backdoor flush hit on the river and I check-called with my non-nut flush. Initially, I thought I was actually good when Darragh turned over two low clubs, but upon further inspection, I realised I was actually up against the straight flush, woops! I think I'm definitely supposed to fold the river, so I've no excuses there, just a badly played hand on my part.
That hand left me somewhat short stacked (it was a pretty fast structure) and after several limps into my BB, I decided to commit myself with 5678 pre flop. The drunk guy (who was at my original table also) decided to play with me, and as luck would have it, he had just about the worst hand I could see. He showed up with TT56 with spades. Believe it or not, 5678 has only 25% against TT56 (against AAKK I  have 35%!). His hand held and I was sent off registering for the turbo.

In hindsight, the turbo went just about as bad as it could have. It was a re-entry meaning if you bust, you could buy in again. I ended up busting and buying in again the last hand before the break, and I then proceeded to bubble the final table. I ran decently (obviously you have to in a turbo) to get to the last 12 or so. I think we were playing 7 handed and the other table lost a player. Jason Tompkins (who had a big stack) was moved and I was left with the biggest stack on a table full of players playing waaaay too tight. As we all know, even if your edge is as big as it can reasonably be, in a turbo, you still have to run well. Unfortunately, I didn't run well. I didn't get any bad beats, but when you shove with 56s, and your opponent is only calling with the top 10% of his hands, and just so happens to wake up with a top 10% hand, that does sorta count as running bad. These players were never going to be shoving the T7o preflop and they were never going to make the K6 calls. They only way I was going to get caught was if they did happen to pick up a big hand after I shoved. The average stack at this point is around 10-12BBs, so all these shoves etc. must be done. You can't 'pass up a marginal shove with 56 because your edge will be bigger later on'.

So anyway, after the 56s<88 "cooler", I then get it in with KQ v KT but can only manage a chop. After that, I shove with KJ and run into the BB's AQ. If I can win this pot, it will bring me back up above average heading to a soft final table. The flop brings a king and the turn brings a jack. I'm almost home and dry until the inevitable ten falls on the river. For the first time ever, I was actually a little sick with how the board came out. I know when the money goes in pre, it doesn't matter how the board comes out, so if I do get KK v AA and the board is KK4AA, I'm actually not too bothered. This time however, I have to admit, I was disappointed the ten decided to pop up in that fashion. It obviously wasn't just that hand specifically, but it did sorta summarize the whole weekend. It was quite frustrating to run badly in a big buy-in event in which you think your edge is greater than it would in most other events. The feeling was the same for the turbo (apart from the big buy in part) but also throw in the fact that it's on the bubble.

Obviously overall, it was a bad weekend financially. But poker is a cruel fucking mistress and sometimes there's nothing you can do but keep plugging away. I am quite happy with my play. It's still not perfect obviously, and there are still faults that need fixing, but I do feel myself progressing and not making mistakes that I would have made only a few months ago. When you feel yourself improving, that's always a hugely positive thing.

Since the Unibet, I've been playing a lot of live cash. The games have been good and I've been running well so hopefully all that run-bad is out of the way for another while. Next up is the UKIPT in Dublin. I have a good record in these so I'm really hoping for a deep run in Dublin. Until next time....

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Cork Classic main event

Fresh off my omaha bubble and 7am bed time, I was ready to go again for the Main event at 2pm the next day. My starting table wasn't the easiest table in the room. There were a few players I recognised and it soon become apparent that the players I didn't recognise were well able to play. Peter 'knuckles' Higgins who won this event in 2009 and eventually final tabled it this year was two to my left and Cork legend Sean Coughlan was sitting across from me. Sean actually shared some genius strategic advice with me on the Satuday (I hope he doesn't mind too much if I repeat it). Sean has a rep as a bit of a rock amongst some of the local Cork players. Anytime he bets at a pot, they insta-fold with the remark "ah for fuck sake, sure you always have it". Armed with this reputation, Sean told me that he has started betting at more pots. "Sure I just smile at them saying 'ya I always have it but ye never pay me off!'"

The whole day seemed to be a bit of a grind from start to finish. I don't think I played a pot over 10k before the final hour. The first pot I played early on was when I was in the BB. Munster rounder "Muinteoir" was in the SB and was telling a story about about a hand where he had 82o. He limped in and I look down in the BB at......82o! I decide to fire every street. The board gets scarier and scarier and I keep firing. I convince myself that the board is getting scarier for him too and I could always have the ace of clubs. After my final stab on the river of the Jc9c4sKcTc board, Muinteoir calls and turns over the JxQc for the ole straight flush. It was early on so thankfully the bluff wasn't too damaging. I can also take pride that it wasn't the worst 8-2 loss this week!

Going into the last hour or so, I had managed to grind my stack up to 31k. It was a tough enough day as there weren't any great spots or card rushes to get me through. On the penultimate hand, I raise pre-flop and proceed to fire three bullets on a KhTh4cAh7h board. I think it made sense to make the bluffs though as I can easily represent the nuts on each street. My opponent made the crying call with the KT. I think it's one of those hands where I make the same play even if I can see his two hole cards. I'm now down to 19k and I pick up aces utg. I raise pf and get three callers. The flop is 2s5sTh. I lead out, knuckles calls behind me, and the button makes it 11k. It's one of those spots where if you do shove and run into a set, you're not surprised, but at the same time, it's very tough to justify folding the aces. If the board is 25T rainbow, I think then you can maybe make a case for folding (but not really), but given there's a flush draw out there, it's too often that one player has one pair and the other has a draw. Anyway, I shove, knuckles quickly reships for 45k total and the button dwells. Eventually the button mucks JJ and knuckles turns over 22. The turn is the 2 and the river is a J. A bit unfortunate but I really can't see how I can just give someone credit for a set and fold my aces on that flop.

This year, the main event was played as a re-entry tournament. This meant, should you bust, you would be allowed one re-entry to the tournament. This meant new starting stack and a new table (if you bust on Thursday, you could re-enter on Friday). There has been some debate whether this is a good or a bad thing. I know they got rid of the rebuy events from the WSOP a few years ago because it gave players with deeper pockets a better chance of winning the event, thus making it easier for richer players to win a bracelet. That being said though, players with deeper pockets will always have a better chance at winning at live tournaments (notice I said winning and not necessarily maximizing profit) because they'll be able to enter more of them. In theory, I think it's bad for poker, because it does give the players with bigger bankrolls a better shot at winning the tournament. However, in practice, anything that adds more money to the prize pool is a good thing for everyone. Especially in this specific format, if you don't want the hassle of thinking about a rebuy etc. you can just play the Friday instead of the Thursday. 

I availed of the re-entry option and sat down again on Friday. It's also worth noting that rebuying for another €500 doesn't mean you have to have €1000 equity in the tournament to justify your rebuy. After you get knocked out, your rebuy becomes a separate entity entirely and you only need to have over 500 equity to justify it. (in fact, since the €50 reg fee is waivered, it makes even more sense to rebuy if you think you're +EV against the field). As I'm at the reg desk, I draw seat 10. I ask if there's any other seats available as I was in seat 10 all day yesterday. I manage to get seat 9 and proceed to my table. As I'm walking there, my superstition gets the better of me and I regret not just taking whatever table I was given. As I sit down, I start to regret my decision even more as Paul Carr is directly on my left, while Zeik is two to my right.

I sit down but thankfully, within a round, I'm moved to a newly formed table. Before moving, I do get to hear Carrie's accomodation experience in Cork that week. He rang me up on Monday night asking where I was staying for the week. I said, chances are, I'll be staying with a friend but I know Liam is staying in some student accommodation for €50 for the week if he wants to ring there. I'll be honest, inherently, I knew there was a decent chance that Paul Carr and student accomodation may not be the best match, but due to the potential comedy that could arise from the situation, I gave the Paul the number and let him work away. 

So Paul arrives at Cork Student village at about 5am on Thursday morning. He goes to the accommodation "reception" and tries to check in. The receptionist tells him his apartment numer etc. and gives him the key to the room. After a bit of back and forth with directions, the receptionist decides to just bring Paul to the room. First problem when they enter the apartment block...the stairs. "Not a hope am I walking up them stairs everytime I go to my room". I'm not sure how they managed to solve the stairs problem but eventually they manage to get up to the room. At this point, your man from reception is carrying Paul's bags and acting more like a butler than a student accommodation rep. Paul is given a key and asks what door does this key open. He is told "that key opens every door in the whole place". "Are you fucking serious? So you're telling me that key will open every door? How am I supposed to leave my things here when anyone can just open my door?". At this point, living at Student Village Cork for the week is not looking a likely outcome for the Irish Open runner-up.  The proverbial straw that broke the camel's back was when Paul finally got to see his room for the week. "So I walk into the room, and there's no blankets, pillows, sheets. Nothing on the bed! What do they expect me to do, sleep on the fucking mattress? I says to your man, 'look pal, gimme back my 100 quid and we'll leave it at that". 2 hours later, Paul was seen checking in at the Rochestown Park Hotel.

Back to the poker. This day 1 went a little better than the day before. I picked up a few hands and was on the right side of a few coolers. It did look like as history was about to repeat itself as I managed to play 4 big pots in the last level. Thankfully, I won 3 of the 4 (even though the 4th one was the biggest one) and managed to finish the day on 45k. I was happy with my play and felt confident heading into day two. 
I manage to chip up and have over 60k at my peak. I play one hand quite badly where I pay off a river check raise. I can't remember how the hand played out exactly, but I remember thinking on the river, surely he wouldn't bother check raising with bare trips here (the flop was 99x), after all, he can hardly expect to be called with worse? Obviously I did call with my turned top pair and he showed up with Q9 (bare trips). It was a weird one, because I actually tried to squeeze out a thin value bet on the river, and then when I got raised, I got confused. That said, it should be a pretty easy fold. If I just checked back the river, I would've saved both the bet and the call.

At the 500-1000(100) level, I'm playing about 40k. I raise utg+2 to 2500 with AJo and a player behind me shoves for 19k. The BB then calls 2500 not seeing that there was an all-in, he then proceeds to fold (effectively meaning there's an extra 1500 in the pot). I need about 38% equity against his range here to call. I was quite active and knew he was a competent player so he could definitely be shoving somewhat light. That said he hadn't really gotten out of line too much so he deserves credit for some sort of decent hand. I end up calling and he shows up with JJ and it holds. I did the sums when I got home and against a very tight range of AJ+ and 77-KK (I decided to rule out aces since I hold one and also, if he did have AA, decent chance he doesn't shove) I have 35.5%. Against a loose range of 22+, AT+ and KJs+, I have 44% equity. His range probably lies somewhere in the middle so I'm pretty happy with my call. You also have to factor in the whole gigabet stack playability etc thing. If I call and lose, I'm down to 18k which is an easy enough stack to play. If I call and win, I'm over 60k, which I think is a big enough stack to really put pressure on opponents. If I fold, I'm left with 34k which is neither a reshoving stack nor a steamroller stack. I'd still be comfortable playing 34k as it's still enough to be able to play poker with, but I think taking a race at this point in the tourney is fine. The next hand I pick up AsKs. Fox raises utg to 3500 and I reship my 18k. I run into AhQh which makes a flush on the turn. Obviously nothing I can do, that's just poker. 

Overall, it was a pretty bad week financially in Macau. I played an Omaha cash game on the Friday night which I won about a monkey in. I'd also won a ticket to the main event so it looked like I'd at least have my main event entries covered through that. However, I started playing a cash game on Saturday night. Long story short, come 7am Sunday morning, I have a 700 euro stack and manage to play a ~€2k with KT on a T42 flop. It's one of those cash games where I think only people that have experienced them know what the ranges are like. It ended up being 100 each 4way preflop. The flop came T42,  and the SB lead out 200. The player to my right shoved for about 400 and after some deliberation, I reshoved for my stack. Then unfortunately the player behind me started to dwell and eventually called with T2. It was quite unfortunate to run into his two pair as I was ahead of both other players and I had no way of knowing if he was strong or not. I was only in for €400 in the game but winning that pot would have put me into profit for the week!

At 7am on Sunday morning I leave the casino to head towards the car to go home. Paul is sitting in reception with Tommy the doorman. Paul had been drinking and was a little worse for wear. Upon calling every hotel in the city, he couldn't find a place to stay. The only option was for me to drive him back to Limerick and he'd come down to collect his car the next day. He also could've stayed at student village but unfortunately he had no bed clothes with him.