Its Day 1B of the WSOP Main Event and Raj is playing today.
Its 11.50am and I am seeing him off into the Amazon Room,which is a huge area that looks like it’s the size of 4 football pitches.
I must remember that he is on table 226 seat 1 so that I can spectate when they let us.
Watching all the players going into the hall is like watching cattle being herded,there are so many people!
For the next 2 hours I am waiting around the Ladbrokes Lounge, keep looking at my watch but the time is not going quickly enough.
I know, I’ll play a game of heads up with John, one of the dealers in the lounge. I need some practice.
After bluffing most of my hands, I end up beating John, LOL. I’m feeling good, I hope Raj is feeling the same in that massive hanger
of a room.
There were a lot of Laddies players knocked out yesterday, but there are still a few in with healthy chip counts to take to day 2.
Raj comes in at the break. I don’t see a big smile, just a forced one.
He tells me that he has 18K. Throughtout the 2 hours he managed to steal a few blinds but lost a couple of thousand trying to bluff a pot. He won’t be trying that again in a hurry, the play is quite loose and the lose players luck seems to be in. Back to play, see you at the next break matey.
Not a lot happens during the next 2 hours, I try to get in to see him playing, but I am fighting a losing battle. The queue of spectators is like a mile long!!
Second break comes and he comes back into the lounge together with the other Laddies troops. He is smiling this time so I assume that all is good. He has managed to win a nice 15K pot. Everyone had folded to him on the button. He raised with K 8 os. SB folds and BB calls. Flop comes K 10 K. BB puts in a big bet. Raj calls. Turn comes 8. Raj is laughing now. BB bets again and Raj raises the bet. BB calls. River comes and Ace. BB checks and Raj bets, BB calls. BB thinks his 2 pair is good as he has A 10. Raj takes the 15K pot with a full house!! Yay for Raj.
Raj has 29,500 now.
Next break is dinner. Don’t manage to speak to him too much as he is busy with everyone asking how he is getting on, what’s happened, etc. I do find out he has 36K now. I am pleased that things are going slow and steady and I will try to speak to him properly at the next break.
I have wangled a Press pass so that I can go into the Amazon Room. I really want to see the play. It’s buzzing in there and I want to feel the atmosphere. I go in and all I can hear is chips rattling, its great. I wish I was playing. Nearly every few seconds I
hear “All-in and Call” annouced by dealers and then there is a mad rush by media people to the table to see the action.
There are players going out and short stacks finding some luck for much needed double ups.
I find Raj and all is well, after stealing a few blinds here and there he has been able to increase his chips to 40K. While hovering around Raj’s table I see that Hotboy33 is playing on the next table. So I try to observe both tables. After watching for a while,
Raj is folding most of his cards but Hotboy33’s stack seems to be yoyoing.
On e pot is see is when Hotboy33 has about 30K in chips and is on the BB. There is 1 caller and SB folds. Hotboy33 raises 4 times with JJ. Player calls. Flop is Jh 5s 2c. Hotboy33 has got trips. HotBoy33 bets out 4k which is raised to 8k, this is called. Turn is 10c. Bet 4k again, player raises 8k again !! What could he have?? Hotboy33 calls. River is another club. Bet, raise, call again.
This player called all the way to the river with AcKc !! Hotboy loses a huge amount of chips.
The casino personnel are around these two tables now, it looks like they are going to split them.
Everyone is moved, so I follow Raj. He has moved to John Duthie’s table. This is when all the action begins. One Poker Million winner trying to take out another. Raj loses a massive pot an cripples himself.
Raj is in mid position and raises over 4 times the BB with pocket rockets. Everyone folds to the SB, John Duthie, who calls. BB folds. Flop is 8d 10h Kh. John checks, Raj makes it 10k which is called. Turn is Jd. John bets 12k, Raj raises all-in. Within a split second John calls the all-in. Raj is gutted that his AA has been cracked by a raise call with 7 9 off. Raj is left with 4.5k.
He is still hanging in there going all-in at calculated times and stealing dead money, he is building his stack again and is at around 16K within an hour and a half.
One hand on the table is so exciting. 4 all-ins. AA AA KK and 10 10.
The board makes a 7 high straight and it is a split pot, I find out later that if Raj had gone all-in he would have won a 50K pot holding an 8!!!!
The last 15 minutes until the end of a very long day. It is 3.30am and Raj has 16K, he will have to work fast on day 2 to catch up.
Mark Goodwin is also on the same table. He raises under the gun by 3 times. All fold to Raj who looks at his cards, takes a deep breath and pushes all his chips in. Everyone else folds. Mark thinks for a little while and calls with J 10s. Raj shows 88. Mark flops a J and its all over for Raj just 14 minutes before the end of the first days play.
I am totally gutted for him….
Oh well, there is always next year…