Post Vegas and a change of scenery

Aug. 26, 2011

Well vegas this year was decent, I played 5 events, cashed in 2, and made a final in a 1k Sunday to finish 5th. Ontop of that I had my first ever successful stake and had nice live cash sessions. Sadly I find vegas incredibly draining (getting too old for this partying malarkey :P) and elected not to play the main because it would have been a pretty bad waste of $10k. I feel it really takes experience to know how to perform well in the series, mainly just looking after yourself and getting into decent shape before the start. Im not talking about carving a Jarred Solomon bod, but I think getting your cardio in good nick and eating well during the events is crucial, along with plenty of sleep and not much alcohol. Basically being a life nit is probably sensible for the one month of the year when you can play in the softest big buyin games in the world. Huge congratulations to Jake, Matt, Jarred (ul, sick effort) and heartfelt commiserations to John who is a really nice bloke and has a way of thinking about hands that is quite refreshing (hes still a life nit though).

Post Vegas I decided to get the grinding boots on, merge 1knl games were still fairly juicy but close to 100k of runbad later I was playing poorly and with low confidence. Running badly for me tends to be its own catalyst for playing poorly and some of the spew and downright fancy play syndrome made me feel quite embarrassed when I reviewed the hands with fellow farmers. A new approach felt like a good idea.

I have been thinking for a long time about going back to ipoker, mainly because although the games are markedly tougher at 200/400/600, there is always consistent action and you can put in huge volume if you want. I wanted to play 50k hands at 200nl to get a feel for the regs and in short, the games are quite tough. There are still a decent number of over-aggro regs, but the fish to reg ratio is probably somewhere around the 15:1 mark in terms of seats. I wanted to experiment with a number of different styles, from a 24/20/10 to a 35/30/13 but (lol nit) I think I have finally concluded that playing a large number of tables and basically plodding playing 18/14/5 will workout best for my mindset and bottom-line. The basic crux is that with the huge rake back deals on the network, most of the regulars play a relatively tight, straightforward game, where big bb/100 win rates (apart from degen) are very rare. The time zones for action seem to be a little earlier than im used to, with 5pm-8pm seeming to have the best action, with the odd lunchtime frenzy. This weekend will be the first I have grinded so hoping to see a marked change in table quality.

I have a new team, some of which I am working closely with. Some are very good lag's (if annsi can cut out his legendary spew he could be the next isildur) and a few others who look sharky (better word for solid nit imo) (wp iluvgrindcore btw on a great month/quarter). Hopefully bouncing ideas about with the ones who are keen can only help improve everyones game. We will soon be putting a video from annsi with some post-session commentary and also a great piece on 4bet bluffing btn v blinds against depolarised ranges by a certain Patrick Leonard; its really good stuff.

In the short-term I plan on putting in some insane volume in the coming months, I am kinda figuring out what works and doesn't on the old ipokes, every network has lines that regs seem to use which are different (on ipoker they seem to like flatting a primary draw on flop Kjs on QT7s, then raise calling off a brick turn 3- despite getting a fairly horrible price) and some are better than others. As Elliot mentioned in a previous blog, taking the best pieces out of others games is one of the keys to developing an adaptable winning strategy, some of the regs in particular baffle me, having no positional awareness and ptr grapsh you could stick a ruler next to. At the start of next year a few of us are planning on moving somewhere hot, possibly cape town, maybe Thailand. Im really looking forward to that and the wsope in Cannes this year (although looking at the hotel prices I might just bring a tent and crash on the beach- E400 a night, seriously? ) as due to the location I expect their to be much softer fields than London.

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