Wednesday, 27 August 2008

GSOP, Online, Paul's Blog...

Firstly a big cheers to Paul Gardener for his write up in the last blog.

Was certainly different to my quick, short and moany versions. Perhaps it will cause a change in my own writing. Very interesting subject matter paul, and good luck with the new blog. I will add the addy to my link section, but for all that would like an immediate you are.

I think paul means to call it 'golden blog' after his nickname, at the moment it is entitled 'my first week'. I think that was the intended subject title of his first post, so change the overall blog title buddy.

Pokerwise things are still crawling along for me. Everytime i take one step forward i take two steps back. It's not that i don't even know i'm playing wrong half the time, it's just that i can't stop myself. Counselling seems the best option and i'm looking into it. :)

The GSOP main event really didn't go well. 4 hours of grinding it out was highlighted by one or two very badly played hands by myself. Got pushed off a hand on the river when i really shouldn't have, the guy showed his inferior holding as i passed-he actually thought he had the best hand which was the clincher.

My demise was sealed with a squeeze gone wrong, sending me out with a wimpy whimper.
Bolton Gukpt is next week, but it could be the first one i miss in 8 months, shame but unless i qualify in the next few days i can't justify buying in for surely the 8th failure running!

Online i am playing well. I find it so much easier, yet less fun, than playing live right now. That is a real shame as live play is something you can't beat, the thrill of catching a fish bluffing, a fish folding too much and a fish going on tilt. Problem is...i might be that fish in live play right now.

Having said all this, I still have immense confidence in my own game, i'm probably only saying all this to gee myself up. Oh my god it go find a game. :)

Laters peeps,

Dom zee fish

Saturday, 23 August 2008


Hi all as you will probally guess from the inteligent writing and humerous banter this blog is not written by dom but by me Paul " goldenballs" Gardener. Many thanks to my good m8 dom for the invite and privellege hopefully you will find the following of interest and benificial.
Good card reading skills, good opponent readings, patience, luck, game selection, dedication, natural ability, fearless attitude, level headed, positive attitude, timing, focus ...
Well the correct answer would be all of them with many other skills required as well. The one thing missing from this small selection needed to be sucessful Is in my opinion one of the most valuble skills you need to aquire if you want or intend to succeed in the shark invested world of poker.In many poker books it is hidden in the last chapter if anything on this subject is written at all.
The subject i am refering to is BANKROLL MANAGEMENT.
I have been playing 11 years and i have seen many better players than myself disapear from the poker scene due to there inability to manage there bankroll.
There is in my opinion in %95 of the time two reasons for this
(1) They have leaks like horses, roulette, blackjack 2 flys climbing the wall etc
(2) Wrong game selection.

So looking at number (1) these people are not and never will be poker players, what they are gamblers simple as that. They may win quite often at local level say a £1000first prize but then donate most if not all to ladbrokes or gala,s roulette tables. Some may have a little bit of discpline and only donate half of the 1K to the above,
but you can guarentee the money will disapear eventually, either through a dry spell in comps or the inability to resist the urge to reclaim there entry fee from the blackjack table.

Looking at number (2) This is perhaps the hardest one to spot yourself and requires honesty from you. The player enters a cash game or comp with a small bankroll. If you have only a small bankroll say 5k and you enter a couple of grovesnor tour events at £1100.00 a time unless you hit you are going to have to step back into your local level rebuy/freezeout comps but if you dont hit and are a regular weekly player sooner or later you will hit the dry spell and be out of the game due to no funds.
Without being too one sided many people from the above are more than happy to live the gambler/topsy turvy lifestyle and if they are happy with that well so be it but they will never be a sucessful poker player.
So what makes a sucesful poker player? Well its pretty simple really, in fact so simple its childs play.
Win more than you spend and keep a hold of the profit.
Many years ago i went bust through wrong game selection. I was a regular tournement winner at my local casino,s. But through making the wrong decision I went skint I entered the local dealers choice cash game. Now this game is hold em, irish and omaha maximum six cards!!!. The game is frequented by the local chinese and people with more money than i will ever have. It was,nt a major factor that i did not know the basic skill,s required for omaha so no surprise when i turned two years bankroll into chicken egg foo yung . It was,nt that hard really i did it quite skillfully. Reason wrong game selection. I was now faced with a dilema no money, and having never taking any money from my monthly income i had to go part time taxi driving to rebuild my bankroll. Friday and saturday nights driving pissheads round the scenic pubs of the north east not fun beleive me. One rainy saturday night after making a measily £70 i swore to myself if i ever got back i would never make ONE mistake again and i can honestly say i hav,nt. The following years i followed the same routine play comp lose go home, play comp make a profit bank the profit. In these two years i went on a family holiday to vegas and played a comp at the 4 queens in vegas.I there met two people at different times, one for about a 5 mins conversation the other some one who i was sat next to in the comp. I have no idea of there names but the guy at my table was your typical old style american gambler who won the event the previous night for aprox a $15000 pay day. I asked him if he was playing the main event which was $5000 to enter and he replied "not unless i cash in this he replied" oh i thought u won last night came the response " yeah i did but the dice wer,nt good afterwards" A few days later i wandered down to the queens to watch a bit of the main event and struck up a conversation with a guy at the bar.Apparently he had witnessed a bit of my previous comp play while watching a m8 on my table and commented on my play all positive stuff. He then went on too describe how he was a succesful player in vegas and enjoys a fantastic lifestyle(typical american) but the twist that followed shook me. He went on to discuss the time he went skint through playing with the big boys & had to bellboy in hotels for 4 years until he could build a bankroll. Deep down inside it seemed like was me talking to me. Well u can guess that 3 days made me realize what i wanted from poker and more importantly how to do it
As i write this blog 7 and a bit years later i am in a position to afford and play in any event i wish to. Through slightly better than average poker skills but excellent money managment skills ,ever so simple really.
So all you poker players out here ask yourself this. ARE YOU A POKER PLAYER OR A GAMBLER?
I sincerely hope this blog has not come across as too serious but as dom will tell you it is avery close to heart subject. I had the intentiion of blogging some comical and humorous tales from arond the poker scene but feel maybe as this is quite possibly a one of opportunity would take the chance to pass on this infomation. If it benifits one player then it will all of been worthwhile.
As you are probally aware dom is playing the gut shot main event as i speak so good luck m8.

Just to sign off here are some questions that need answering

Q1 will dom ever make the second day of a grosvenor main event?
Q2 will dom ever post a blog as long as this one?
Q3 will dom ever get re-raised before he raises again

Before i sign of think i better explain Q3 as it tells of how i met dom. Playing at Blackpool in 2007 in a £200 side event dom got moved to my table. It was about midway through he comp and this is how the play went. In about 13 of the first 17 hands dom played he raised every time only for someone to reraise which resulted in dom giving a bit of speech play and folding every time!!! In 17 hands we had,nt seen a flop. Anyway on hand 18 dom announces "RAISE 2600 TO PLAY" but unknown to dom some one in early positin had already raised to 6000 the comment from one of the players just had every one in stiches
" fooking hell mate your now getting reraised before you even raise" a classic
The next night in another event i found myself sat next to dom from the start and to be honest felt a bit sorry for him as Big barry neville seemed to be bullying dom all over the table, little did i realize dom was setting him up i just never picked up on it.It was only after dom played his "coup de grace" against the bully did i realize this lad can play
Well as mine host would say later peeps

Quick Recap and GSOP main event....

Played the 100nl gsop festival event thursday. Went deep, eventually finishing 17th, after losing a race. Win that and im top 5 no worries.

Still i was very pleased how i performed, especially considering the 200 event debacle.

Am sitting right now in the Gutshot- otherwise known as 'the hottest place in the world'. The club is literally like a sauna. No matter with this structure of the main event, 'the tightest player' Gus Hansen ever saw should do well.

It's a strange feeling to have immense confidence in your game, yet to beware the blow up...think i'm becoming like mike matusow!

The most important thing win or lose...and i will to be happy with my performance. Finally started reading some Harrington last night, 'when you make a mistake you lose even if you win...and when you lose but play win'.

Again this statement illustrates everything about my problems with poker, it's so basic, so standard......yet i find it difficult to put that into practise. Not any more.

Laters peeps,


Wednesday, 20 August 2008

£200 GSOP Tournie

Played the 200nl event last night, stunk it out pretty bad.

After playing so much online recently, sitting down in a live enviroment kinda threw me. Madly, i found i wanted to play every hand, no matter how low the blinds nor the position.

Had quite a tough table, although i felt i had key position on the real dangerous players. Yet, 2 or 3 key hands i didn't play like i would online, rushing in like a bull in a china shop. When i lost a key race i didn't hold on to the rest of my bowl of rice 4 too much longer and was more than happy to go home.

The 100 event will be different. The same structure as the 200 has given me a kind of heads up on how to approach it, early on there will be loads of play, and when the antes cut in it will be time to get the steal on. Again hugely standard, basic poker....yet so complex for me nowadays!!! :)

When i got back in i fired up the laptoooop for a full tilt mtt session. Got myself chip leader again early on and dictated many pots, bullying the shorties. The 17k first prize looked within reach, but i lost a couple of key pots and didn't even make the money-which was pretty bad seeing as how strong i was at the first break.

In another mtt i reached the money b4 gambling on a flush draw which missed, again against the bullets- something that keeps happening recently.

I've basically decided to play the gsop main event this weekend too. Looking at the structure left me salivating, something i hope the gutshot's bad 'air con' unit won't force me into due to heat exhaustion. Their machine they've installed looks like a 1970's mad scientists time machine. Which dsnt work either for time travel nor air filtering!

Trading is going very nicely right now, however i'm kind of worried that once the olympics stop i'll have to start trading the horses and stuff again. Will find that very dull compared to the frantic finishes in the swimming and the like.

Wish i could go to a footie match this weekend, but it would clash with the GSOP, work gotta come first and all. Got a feeling spurs against sunderland could be a good one too.

I am running out of things to say here which is scary as i don't feel i've said that much. Read Alex's martin's blog earlier. The guy can write 4 england. Guess i need to go down the hand analysis route on this blog a bit more, so next post i will...well maybe.

Gotta run....

Laters peeps



Just felt like a quick post seeing as it's been a week.

Not much has been going on to be honest. Grinding it out online-with varied success, whilst becoming addicted to sports like swimming and judo, thanks to the olympics.

My sleep patterns are very strange right now, probably due to living on chinese time. As for poker it's up and down all day long. Keep going deep in mtt's but not deep enough. Led another big tournie on stars 4 a long while on sunday, thought i was on 4 a big score b4 3 bad beats in a row did 4 me.

Tonight i play my first GSOP event. It's the gutshot's best festival imo, and i normally do okay in these events. Will try play the main this weekend too.

In other news a friend of mine asked if he could do a guest blog on here, why next blog may be more fun than my drivel ppl!

Laters peeps.


Tuesday, 12 August 2008

GUKPT'S = 7 day 2's....

Luton went with any gukpt for me really. Yet agin i failed to realise the old adage that you can't win the tournie on the first day...let alone the first level.

Broke my own record by busting within the first hour. Arrived at my table to find Iwan jones, Ian Cox, a couple of other circuit regulars and generally quite a touch table.

However, these things don't bother me. I'll put myself up against anybody in a poker tournament, i know i have more than a good enough game to compete, and eventually win of these things. Yet its all about timing and i don't appear to have that right now. Better get myself a new watch.

Seriously though if i was a car i believe i'd be stuck in gear, i am most certainly in need of an MOT on my live game. Just to illustrate, here's how my tournament played out.

First few hands i fold not wanting to get involved with marginal oop early doors. Looking for hands to play with position i somehow manage to play 2 rags in the small blind to an early raise from a scandi, thus contradicting everything i've just said. Three handed i check raise the low flop-i missed, before fire/folding the ace turn. To massacre a hand more badly would be quite an acheivement although i guess if he folds the turn it's a bonus, yet def a -EV play overall. Then lost a bit with bottom two against a flopped straight, with the nut flush draw, at least i folded on the flop.

So a couple of thou down already i lose another hand where i won't fold when i know i should, for gods sake its 25-50 Dom!!!

Sitting with 7k i build to 8.5k when i take down a 3k pot with the nut flush, Ian cox cleverly keeping the pot small flatting with the 2nd nuts. Then comes my exit hand.

Utg has been limping far too much and players are coming along with relish on the domino rally. As i am UTG+2 I decide to bump it up with KhQh, to try and isolate somewhat against the loosey and at least make the pot less than 8 handed oop. In hindsight my hand can play reasonably well against the rest of the table. This early on top pair isn't worth worrying about, so really i'm looking for 2 pair min to go deep with, so basic...yet so difficult for me to comprehend when i build the pot with my 'premium'.

One good thing about my raise to 225 was that Iwan jones, who has dbld up already with a set against someone who chronically overplayed 8s on a 7 high flop, immediately reaises to 775. This should signal alarm bells as not only is he raising an oop raise but he himself is well out of position.

I've only played against the guy once b4, but everything i've heard about the guy, can see about the situation tells me minimum queens, minimum.

Yet i call pretty quickly, partly not wanting to appear weak, partly hoping to connect huge and get a nice chunky pot against a dangerous player.

A 7 high flop with two hearts looks nice to me, so i check, when he fires 2k into the 1700 pot i immediately push. He insta calls with bullets(no Ah)and i miss.

Just like pocket snowy man i have donated to mr jones on a 7 high flop. Again if i hit, i don't look so silly, yet again a -EV move overall. I don't mind my check push on the flop as if i'm going to play the hand i can't chicken out then. Yet preflop....fold, fold....and ummmm....fold.

Hitting online donkaments like a demon this week. Already gone very deeep on 2 full tilt mtt's without cashing huge. Need to get back to the trading i think too while grinding the sit and go's. I have a 30% roi on ft right now.

Laters peeps.


Ps- Big shout out to my friend alex who made 3 final tables in side events at luton this week, and finished 12th in another-brilliant performance mate.

Wednesday, 6 August 2008

'Lovely' Luton....

Here i am sitting in the g casino blogging away, bit bored to be honest.

Won my seat to the main today as planned so don't need to sell any shares. Am playing tommorow...I WILL make day 2.

Boredom is because there really isn't much to do here till tmrw. The casino sit and go's are organised quite shabbily with lists remaining for hours on end. Cash games dominating the scenery. Funny i thought those stt'd wld generate more players 4 the main event, which is surely a good thing.

Booked into the easy hotel tonight. At 30 quid a night its cheap as chips, which is just as good as you get a box with a shower. Still won't be in there much.

Last night was a huge grind online which should have ended profitably but instaed ended with a bowl of rice after throwing away two huge chip leads in nice guaranteed tournies on full tilt.

Still i'm extremely confident about my game right now, even so much that i feel my 200-1 bsq price is value 4 the main. Predictions are possibly foolish but i feel a bit of a rush coming on.

I've added a couple of links to my blog. Both write on the betfair site and are good reads. Personally i feel i need to broaden my vocablary while writing on here. Something that can only be helped by reading other's blogs.

One blogger, mr keys, is attempting to blog every day for the near future. Good luck with that mate, can't say i envy you that task james. There's only so much to say...god i'm dull.....:)and on that note....bye peeps!


Sunday, 3 August 2008

So close yet so far....

Just placed 98th in the sunday million out of 8000+ runners. Was good for a couple of k yet i'm not really too happy about it. Ran really well early on winning most flips and not having my raises re-raised too often.

Eventually got myself into the top ten when we entered the money with 1200 odd left. By the time we were down to 600 i had built to 500k when the average was 140k and i was firmly planted amongst the chip leaders.

Then things started to slow a bit with players re-raising my late positional openings. I had to tighten up quite a bit, living off the occasional squeeze play after suddenly finding mysellf card dead.

Then with 150 players left i had a chance to break the 1 million barrier. A big stack with over a million opened for a normal raise of 3x the bb. The maniac on the button who had been constantly pushing and calling with horrific frequency shoved for about 400k. If the action gets back to the initial raiser i feel he instant calls this guy as he claimed he folded a medium pair as i pushed. Yep i found myself sitting in the bb with ak, so i shoved and find myself up against q8 off-a good hand for the maniac in fairness-when you'd seen his range previously...obviously this is said somewhat tongue in cheek. Of course the queen spiked the turn and i went from potential top 5 to bottom 5. Managed to hop along from then into 98th finally getting it all in with aq against....ak. King on the etc.

Obviously my crippling hand isn't a huge beat, just wish i could sometimes run good on those crucial showdowns. First prize tonight was 200k from the 1.7 million prizepool. Nice flat payout structure with an enjoyable blind structure-i'll be playing again. I don't actually play all the sunday comps all that much, but think i will from now on.

On friday i played live for the first time since vegas.I popped down to my 'lucky' casino(the empire) for their 200nl festival event. I found it totally refreshing to play in a casino once again, in comparison to staring at a screen 4 hours on end. Early on i found myself on a potentially tough table with a couple of gutshot players, Nicky P, and Koresh of late nite poker fame. Luckily for me koresh doubled me up early on when his allin call pre with 24 off failed to improve against my ak.

Managed to build up to around 16k from my 5k starting stack when i got moved to another table. Lost a couple of pots there before being moved again with 13k and around 23 bb's. Sitting down on my new table i noticed quite a lag on my immediate right. I managed to get it allin pre on my first hand with a coin flip situation with aq against 9s-which i lost. Although i hate flipping with no fold equity-i called his push- i felt this call was the correct one against THIS player. He ended up chopping the comp i believe, luckily a mate of mine finished 4th giving me my buy in back thanks to a ten percent swop.

With luton gukpt on this week i should be playing quite a bit more live poker. Not entirely sure what days i'll go but wednesday is looking favourite with me having one last attempt at satting into the main. Either way i'll play some smaller side events as i try to lose my gukpt curse of never cashing in one single event. May try and sell some of my action into the main if i play, so if your interested let me know.

Ok i've droned on long enough for now so will leave while i still have some dignity left!


Ps- The new statistical 'dom' is going ok, the sports trading is giving me a regular wage, and seperating it from the poker is proving to be a good idea, now if i could just win some money at poker....:)