Thursday, 26 March 2009


"Dot, Dot, Dot, Dot, Dot" thought Pac-man.

"......oooo.....fruit" as he glided through the cherry.

"Hmmm - that blue ghost Inky is getting a bit close"

"Dot, Dot, Dot, Dot, Dot"

"Ah-ha.......power pellet!"

Inky looks down in horror as he realises he is now flashing white, and turns to flee.

"Ha Ha......not so hard now, are you Inky?" bellows the spherical yellow hero as he gives pursuit.

After a few more seconds Pac-man charges round the corner of the maze, before realising to his horror that Inky has been restored to his predatory blue colour. Pac-mans pulls a cheeky u-turn, but it is too late, as Inky slays him with a wink, as Pinky and Blinky look on impassively......

The tenuous link between this early 80's computer game and poker, has been my woeful implosion two weeks in a row on a Tuesday night at the Loose Cannon. Twice I've started very strongly, getting in the region of £500 up, before convincing myself that I am invincible and over-cooking my hands to death, and ending up about level. On the two nights various combinations of Inky (Hass), Pinky (Honest Dave), Blinky (Jody) and Clyde (The Baron) have been waiting for my power pellet to run out before ending my game.

My evening can be split into three distinct periods:

1) Early Round of Each Cash
I played super solid cash for the first 2/3 hours, hardly putting a foot wrong. I made £150 even after losing a sizeable Omaha pot when I flopped a set of Aces with AAQJ. Sonny and myself got our stacks in with my opponent holding the middle set + flush draw, and unfortunately a diamond arrived immediately on the turn.

2) £50 Tournament
At 10pm, we changed to a ten man holdem tournament. For the first time in a long while, I played a tournament really strongly and took it down. In the early stages I played a ton of pots in position and didn't hit, thus reducing my 5k starting stack down to 4.5k. After that, I was generally the table aggressor, and 3 bet frequently pre-flop. I never really doubled up (until the late stages) but accumulated chips steadily. I also won about 50% of pots pre-flop when the blinds were high 4 handed, just because some of the other players didn't seem too fussed about defending their blinds.

Some key hands I can remember:

A few limpers at 100 and I make it 500 out of the BB with QQ and Fluke calls. Flop arrives with two Kings and rainbow so I check, because nobody with a King would ever bet here. Turn brings the flush draw, so I elect to bet representing King protection and take it down.

Four players left and Deven raises UTG to 2200 with what I later found to be AQ. I make it 5,700 with A9 which would pretty much commit Deven (although would only be about 30% of my stack). Deven passes. I am surprised Deven didn't stick his stack in here, as I had been 3 betting pre-flop fairly liberally. There were some bubble dynamics at work I guess.

Deven has now departed, and chip leader Freddie raises UTG to 2400 (blinds 400-800). I shove for 14k total with AT. At this point, the big blind who hasn't played a hand for ages puts his 8k stack in. Oh dear. Freddie reluctantly calls to try and win the tournament then and there with KQ. The BB has, of course, AA and I'm in horrible shape.

Board runs out: 7, 8, KING, TEN, TEN (I run bad ;))

This lucky hand puts me in a hugely dominent position, and I finish Freddie off shortly afterwards. I win £250 for my efforts, plus £40 in Matrix bounties (See The Baron's blog for Matrix explanation).

3) Time to face the Ghosts

Of course, at this point I should have gone home with my sizeable profits, but of course I then sat down in a £1/£2 Omaha game and promptly lost £420. At this stage of the evening, I had taken my power pellet and felt invincible. I was repotting Dave and Hass with gutshots and other dubious draws. I mean, what was I thinking?

Naturally, after a while the ghosts stopped flashing white, and simply waited round the corners for me to charge headlong to my doom. It's so annoying, in that if you add this loss to the amount I spewed away to Jody last week, I've basically lost a WSOP buy in worth of profit. Silly, silly, silly.

Most of my cash went to Inky and Pinky. The orange ghost, Tom, didn't see much of it, although I gather Pinky took a power pellet of his own after I had left and spewed up most of his winnings.

Next time there will be no feelings of invincibility - I'll hopefully just concentrate of harvesting the dots on offer in an orderly and controlled fashion.

P&L GBP 2009
Live Tournaments (40)
Live Cash 1453
Online Tournaments (1,867)
Online Cash (250)
Poker Festivals (675)
Rake (775)

Total (2,154)

1 comment:

Steve H. said...

But when you get that good - and I mean that good, pacman always wins - chew them blue flickers up!!!