Friday, August 8, 2008

When Weak Is Strong

It has been around 2 weeks now since common sense overtook dumb poker and in that time I have won back all of the money I lost during May, June and half of July. There are two main factors that have contributed to my recent success, nothing surprising about them, really.

The first key to winning over the last 2 weeks has been the same important attribute that I have mentioned time and time again. Patience at the table has markedly stacked the odds in my favour. The second key is actually a flow-on effect that has directly stemmed from my patient game – and it’s something that I was unprepared for, to tell you the honest truth.

It’s the second factor that I find more interesting and certainly something that can be exploited at the micro table level.

As a result of being patient while waiting for the right hand, I have managed to project a weak image to the rest of the table. What I was viewing in myself as discipline when folding on the turn or when someone played back at me, others obviously took to be a sign of weakness. As my stay at a table lengthened, so did the number of times I was raised after betting. Initially the constant playing back of my bets was irritating. Short side note here: actually, what is most irritating is when you bet and someone immediately doubles the bet. At least put some thought into it, for crying out loud.

Nowadays, though I welcome it. Over the past two weeks I have sat quietly, looked weak, taken a few pots, done the disciplined thing and folded when I thought I was beaten, honoured the raise after the flop. That sort of thing.

Inevitably the cards have come. Last night my pocket J J connected on the flop to make a set and I was fortunate enough that my opponent, who had chased me out of pots earlier, held A J and aggressively allowed me to double up. A little later my pocket A’s connected again on the flop, another set and I was eventually All-In again (after checking the flop).

The bankroll is looking healthy again, but more importantly, my frame of mind is much more positive and I’m enjoying the sessions at Party Poker once again.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Poker in August - Good Times Are Rolling

The poker has been fast and furious at the Party Poker NLHE $10 cash games and ever since I replaced the pumpkin that was sitting on my shoulders with my head again my bankroll has been in steady recovery mode. Things have been going so well in fact that I have almost reached the point where I was at the start of May. The new plan of building my stake at the table has been working with some nice profitable sessions coming my way.

Naturally enough the odd loss has been sprinkled among the wins but I’ve managed to keep those to a minimum and the poker gods have been looking down favourably on me.

I’ve also been blessed to make my way onto some tables with a few players who simply had to play every hand that was dealt to them. The opponent who puts money into the pot 80% of the time and never raises can sometimes catch you out but in the long run they’re going to lose and I’ve benefited on quite a few occasions.

This particular post is really just a note to myself to remind me of my progress over the last 2 weeks of poker play. Effectively I’m marking the fact that I have reached another short-term milestone by passing $230.00 (again).

At the risk of sounding like a broken record I am going to once again reiterate how important it is to stay patient. It has been my willingness to fold and keep on folding until I’ve actually got a hand that has put me on my latest run. That and the fact that your average micro stakes poker player who plays virtually every hand doesn’t recognise that the guy who has been regularly folding has suddenly raised before the flop.

Current bankroll - $231.05