Monday, January 12, 2004

Posted by Dr Fro 1:00 PM
From Junell:
Here is my recap of Saturday's Charity Food Bank Tournament. I finished in
14th place (6 spots out of the prize pool), and am very happy with my
performance considering there were 216 entrants

All in all, I had a blast at the tournament. Although there was a great
deal of confusion at the beginning (see Dr. Fro's post below), once the
tournament got going, it went fairly smooth for me and my table.

I was seated with some pretty good players. Two guys I immediately
recognized as regulars from the Top Hat, and one played in last years WSOP
(although I believe he bought his way in). The only person I knew at my
table was Jeff Zinn, a good friend of mine. I played very tight at the
beginning, and folded every single hand for an hour and a half. At this
time, the blinds were small and there weren't any antes, so my chip count
didn't decrease much.

My first significant pot was at about 4pm (3 hours into the tournament). I
drew an AT, raised from the big blind. 3 people called, including a tough
looking New York Italian that appeared to be Sal Ferruzzo Sr.'s identical
twin. The flop gave me a 2nd ace, and the rest were rags. I was first to
act, and bet $500 (which was only a medium size bet at that point). The
Italian called, and the other two players folded. Turn was a 3. No flush
or straight possibilities. I bet $2000. He called. I was worried that he
might have made two pair on the flop, but he had been reckless all day, and
made several glaring mistakes. River was a 9h. Again I bet $2000, and he
called. He turned over a pair of 4's. I was surprised he went that far
with 4 overcards on the board, but delighted that I had incresed my chip
count to about 8,000.

Later at the same table, I drew AA twice in 4 hands. The first time, I got
plenty of action and eliminated a player. The second time everyone folded
pre-flop except one guy who I could tell didn't like his hand. Trying to
keep him in, I bet $500 (small at that time), and he folded. Although I
didn't get any action, I ended up pulling in a pot of about $2,500 (with
the blinds and antes).

At 6:30pm I had about $25,000 in chips and was consolidated to a new table.
While I wasn't the chip leader at the table, I was still in a respectable
position. 30-45 minutes later, I drew AA in late position. An older man
two spots in front of me raised with KK, and I went all in. There was
another caller who went all in for less. I drew a 3rd A on the flop, and
nearly tripled my stack.

At 7pm I had approx. $130,000, and was either the chip leader, or close to
it. The tables consolidated again. I missed a hand or two, and got
chipped away by the huge blinds and antes ($2000 ante and $10,000 big
blind). At 8:15pm I held $74,000 in chips and was in 2nd to act before the
flop. I drew a QJo and had to call $20,000 to see the flop. I raised,
making it $60,000 to go, hoping to steal the blinds and antes (which were
approx $40,000). A new player (and also the chip leader) had just been
seated immediately to my left. He went all-in. One other person called
for less. The new guy turned over AA. I hit my second Q on the river, but
couldn't beat his pair of Aces. I was out.

Afterwards, some of my friends thought I should've just called with my QJo,
but I still think I made the right play. It was late in the tournament,
and the cost to play was so high that one mistake would destroy you. If I
had called, I still would've been faced with an all-in to my left. I
probably would've called his all-in, but even if I had laid it down, I
would've been left with only $50,000 in chips, with the $20,000 big blind
only two hands away. Therefore, I reasoned that I either play with my QJ
or risk it all on whatever hand I was going to be dealt in the big blind.
One way or the other, my tournament was going to be decided in the next 3
hands. It was now or never, and I might not see a hand better than that

Although I was a little upset about not finishing "in the money," I am very
happy with my performance. I limited my mistakes and was able to
capitalize on a few big hands. More importantly however, my good friend,
Michael Pinion finished 3rd overall and won a trip to Vegas with a $1000
entry fee into a WSOP 10-man satellite. I'm only sorry I won't be there
with him...

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Random thoughts from a lawyer, an accountant, a commodities trader, an ex-Marine and a WSOP Main Event money finisher that don't know as much as they wish they did...



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