Daniel - Poker Journal
Through Day 1 of the WSOP Europe Main Event28 Sep 2008
It helps when you make a ton of hands, and I definitely did that. In fact, throughout the day I didn't make ANY big bluffs, not a one, and never lost a pot with 10,000 in it. Not one.
To start off the day, in the first hour I got dealt QQ KK and KK and all three times I was re-raised pre-flop. That's usually not a good thing, but I quickly realized that the players at my table had a tendency to overplay hands as each time I started with the best hand and ended with it. In all three cases I played very cautiously.
There was only one guy at my table that was a bit of a pain to play with, an overly aggressive player two to my left that re-raised a ton of hands before the flop. The first key hand I played went like this:
A tight player raised under the gun to 300 and the aggressive player called in the next seat. I called form the big blind with 6-7. The flop came 8-5-3 rainbow and I checked. The aggressive player bet 600 and we saw the turn heads up. Turn was an Ace, and I check called 1100. The river was a 6 and I checked. Again, the aggressive player bet 2800 and something did not seem right. The bet was too big, he was unlikely to call a raise from the tight player with Ax making it difficult to put him on two pair, and I didn't think he'd bet a pair of 99 or 10-10, especially not that much. He was going to have to show me a set, or I was convinced he had a hand like K-Q. I called... he showed K-Q.
I played my hand like such an obvious draw so I figured he was certainly capable of firing the three barrel bluff.
Hand #2 of interest: I raised to 600 with blinds at 150-300 with Kc Jc and got two calls from late position. The flop came Ks Qs 3h and it got checked around. The turn was the Qh and I checked again. The first guy bets 1100, the second guy makes it 2600. I don't buy it. I didn't think the first guy had anything and I put the next guy on a hand like 99 hoping to represent a Queen while hoping he had the best hand. The first guy folded and the river blanked. It went check-check and my hand was good.
After a break I did an interview for ESPN and they asked me about my strategy. I said, "There is a guy two to my left who re-raises like crazy and I've been letting him run me over a little bit but I'm going to let him fall into a trap and get those chips."
10 minutes after the break a solid young internet player raises from the cut off position to 800 and I call from the button with JJ- bait for the aggressive big blind. He re-raised 2000 more and we took the flop heads up. The flop came 8s-3s-2c and he fired 3500 at it. I called, half slow playing half playing careful. I wasn't folding my hand and wanted to let him bluff off his money. Unless the turn came an Ace or something like that, there was no way I was going to give this guy credit for QQ, KK, or AA. As it turned out, that no longer mattered- the turn was a Jack.
To my surprise, the guy ships like 20,000 towards the center and I obviously call... he showed 10-3 off suit! LOL, gotta love it when a plan comes together.
Anyway, it was a day with absolutely no adversity for me, as I chipped up after every two hour level.
Round 1: 20,000 to 54,000
Round 2: 54,000 to 60,000
Round 3: 54,000 to 109,000
Round 4: 109,000 to 128,000
Round 5: 128,000 to 154,000
That's pretty steady and it wasn't very difficult as I really didn't get coolered, flopped some sets, got dealt some big pairs... hit lots of flops.
Tomorrow I hope to have as good a table as I did today, but I'd bet the don't on that one. Anyway, time for bed, I'm pretty beat.