3rd July 07 at the WSOP, Raj is playing in the warm game arranged by
Ladbrokes, $1500 Fixed Limit Holdem. Its not really his game so he is
hoping just to get cards that he can play with. Starts with 3000 chips,
25/50 blinds go up every 1 hour. There’s a break in 2 hours so I will get
an update from him then. While I am waiting I decide to join a table in
the Ladbrokes Lounge with Paul “Action Jack” Jackson. He is giving some
journalists a beginners tutorial and tips on how to play texas holdem
poker. He is giving invaluable information I am finding this really useful
as a semi beginner.
We all start a game. The journos seem to be really enjoying themselves.
Its quite drawn out because, as total beginners, they are just calling or
putting in minimum raises. I think to myself, this should be ok. Ill just
wait for a hand and then strike : )
It works out well and my tight play pays off, I win that tournie, woo hoo.
Raj breaks at the end of level 2 and I see him strolling back from the
hall, can’t really figure out if he is having a good day or not.
Apparently, it started off good and then got bad. He had managed to
accumulate 6000 chips with hands like AK, AQ, flopped a straight, but then
it all went bad. I get the feeling he doesn’t want to talk about it. He
has 1800 in chips now. Never mind, he can always build his stack up again.
Surprisingly though, he is a really good mood, then I find out why. He
takes out his camera phone and shows me a picture. Its him and a girl !!!
At closer inspection I see that its Isabella Mercier, the poker girl that
he has a crush on : )
Oh well, I think to myself, I know she is gorgeous and I suppose he is
allowed too have his little fantasies LOL
Break is over, back to work for Raj and the rest of Team Ladbrokes.
While Raj is away this time, Ladbrokes have put on a free roll for the
ladies. It is for a place on the final table to win a gold bracelet and
There are only 5 entries, so my chances are looking good, until I see that
Katherine Hartree is sitting in seat one!! Do I really have a chance
anymore ?? Well, I suppose we will see. The game commences. I win the
first pot which is cool, I’m off to a good start. There are a couple of
beginners on the table and I really don’t want to play them. I remember
when I was a beginner and I would call with anything. Looking at a King
high flop,or should I say, not thinking about it, I would still always
think that my pair of 2s were good LOL. Chips exchange hands and I am up
and down until I have pocket rockets on the small blind. Everyone calls
for 200, so I call too, thinking, this is going to be a nice pot if things
work out slow playing these aces. Katherine, however, has other ideas and
raises to 600. The 3 ladies all fold to me and I re-raise to 1200. I am
thinking, Ok, its only me and Katherine, thats good. All-in Katherine
announces. I think about it, even though I don’t need to, I don’t want to
take Katherine out and there is no way I am folding my aces. I call and I
see that she has pocket 9s. The cards don’t help Katherine and I double
up. I haven’t taken her out, she’s still in with a 100 Chips. Well, to cut
a long story short, I have won a place on the final table!!! My first ever
final table, I’m so excited.
Katherine only having 100 chips left went out first, but will play another
free roll tomorrow. I’m sure that she will be at the final table and we
will both battle it out again. We are such good buddies that even if she
wins it will be ok, but it would be better if I do LOL
Not one hour into level 3 and Raj is back. I got the story from Raj, poker
players love to tell there bad beat stories and I have learnt to listen
and not interrupt.
Player has raised and Raj re-raises with AA. The original raiser calls
with 8-10 off!!! I can’t believe the hands people play with, but I can’t
say that, it would mean that I would have to interrupt Raj’s story : )
The guy flops a straight and in the end all the chips end up in the pot.
Raj comes away thinking my aces always get cracked, forgetting all the
times that he cracked someone else’s aces or his aces won him massive pots
– such is the mentality of the poker player – I think we are all the same.