Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Introspection Time

After the Duke tournament finished up, J.O. commented to me, "James, you need to start being able to play bad hands. If you play only good hands, everyone will recognize that and drop out as soon as you play."

Very true. And I knew that, of course. Everyone comments about being able to mix up your play so you'll get action on your good hands, but to be honest I haven't needed to do that online. At least, it's much less of an issue when you're playing on a site with 20,000 players logged in and on tables with 8 people you've never seen before and 1 you have. And many of these players aren't that great, so they are going to be slow to pick up on your play style, if they pick it up at all.

But now that I am playing every week or two with a group of the same 20 or 25 players, many of them pretty darn good, I am getting read much more easily. Time to start figuring out how to vary my game. I have a feeling this will take a while.

It is some small comfort that when I ran the autorating function of PokerTracker last night, it upgraded my icon from "Tight Neutral" to "Tight Agressive Solid (Good Player)". Thanks, pal, I needed that. I guess I have got my aggression up to about where it should be, though I may still be doing the right things at the wrong times, which PT will not be able to pick up on.

When I first looked at PT and loaded my hand histories and looked at the data, I found with chagrin that the hand I most regularly lost money with was... 8-9 offsuit. Yer kidding. I'm not really playing such a lousy hand, am I? Twenty-two times, this thing says?! Am I an idiot? I'm still hoping to find that I was sleepwalking to the computer and playing this crap while unconscious.

Last night I checked and found that my most losing hand was... A-8 suited. My second-most losing hand was... A-5 suited. And my fourth most losing hand was... A-J suited! At least I can see a trend here. I am calling too often with AXs to try to flop the nut flush or nut flush draw, and it's not paying off enough to make it worthwhile. At least this I can deal with.

In case you were wondering, "Hey, what was your third most losing hand?"... it was Q-5 suited. I'll be seeing a doctor about the somnambulism soon, I promise.

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