Monday, July 18, 2005

Not too bad

This morning (for me) was the Charlie Tuttle memorial charity tournament, that you already know about if you read poker blogs. 6pm EDT is 7am Monday here, so normally I would not have been able to play, but the stars aligned and today is a national holiday in Japan, so I was able to participate.

I was figuring I would be knocked out pretty quickly considering that many of the blogger players are pretty damn good (cough cough doubleas) and I am still a beginner and not an especially gifted one.

Actually, I did not too badly - finished in 38th place of 144 players. Not exactly something to write home about, but nothing to hide in the corner about either.

Of course, I had certain advantages. My starting table of nine players had for the first hour or so, 6 to 7 people who were marked as "Sitting Out" and were not playing. I assume they were players who signed up to show their support and make the buyin donation but who could not make it to actually play. There were two players on our table that were being distracted by other commitments and who were also sitting out for long periods of time. So there were 2-3 of us at any given time who were really playing.

In the end we decided to take turns stealing the blinds from the away players to try to knock them quickly and get some real players in. Collusion? Yeah, well, maybe. After an hour or so of this we knocked out most of the Away players and a few live players shifted in and we started the real game. The three or four of us who had been live at the table were each up to about $4000-5000, about the same as the new Live players, so it kept things fairly even.

After that it got harder, of course. I didn't play terribly well against the real players, but I hung in there. Evan the Terrible of the Lord Admiral Card Club scared me out of a reasonable-sized pot and took a good chunk of my stack. Wil Wheaton was on our table for a bit, but I don't think we got into any pots at the same time.

I was playing too passively, though, and my stack was shrinking. I finished up with an all-in with AQo versus AJs, and he caught a J on the flop and I did not improve.

So, not my best game, but it was good fun and for a good cause and I didn't get busted out in the first 20 minutes, so I am not complaining. The game did highlight how good players recognize passive play (that would be me) and then take advantage of it. I haven't got a lot of that on Empire poker. But these guys know what they are going, and it must be second nature for them by now.

I think I may continue to play on Party/Empire to take money from the big fish and earn a bit of bankroll to play with, then take the money over to PokerStars to lose it and hopefully learn something in the process. Ring games on Stars are definitely a step up from Party.

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