Wednesday, December 24, 2008

4-handed Christmas special

Between a sudden freezing rain and the holiday, only 4 people showed up for the cash game last night. We played 4 handed with one big blind, and I ended up down around $30.

One big hand I lost - I limped on the button with A8, and the flop came AT3. The first limper bet and I raised, using my new aggro-flop-position strategy. The blind called my raise, triggering my alarm, but then the original raiser repopped it to $16.

Thinking time. This is a limped pot, so one can't necessarily be put on an Ace. This particular player would have raised with tens, so my first guess is a pair of threes, or a sneaky limp with aces or perhaps Ace King. There are no draws to play for except a gutshot. On top of this, I've got a player behind me. This all added up to a fold. The blind folded behind me and the re-raiser took the pot.

I still think there's a chance I've got the best hand there, but I don't want to stack off with top pair/crummy kicker.

A few hands later a similar situation comes up - I limp with another weak ace, A7o, on the button. It's only me and the blind and we see a flop of something like A84, with two spades. He leads into my top pair. I think about raising it up, but, remembering what just happened to me before, I call.

The turn brings a red jack - no draws have come in yet. He leads into me again. This is a tricky player who could have a decent ace (not raised before the flop) - he has also bet into me on the come before and then got paid when the draw comes in. I still think I'm ahead, though, so I call again.

The river is a red deuce - no draws on the board (except 3-5, unlikely) - and he bets once again, this time the same size as the turn bet. Now I'm pretty sure I have him - should I raise the pot for some more value? Nah, I don't think he's calling me with anything worse than this, so I just call. He says "if you've got an ace, it's yours" and I show him the Ace. He had middle pair and had put me on a flush draw.

So, in this case, I abandoned my aggro-donk-position strategy and played top pair weakly, and got a really good handreader to misread my hand. Need to remember that one...

Another medium loss was playing AJ on an AA974 board. I lost the hand to pocket nines, but I feel like I lost a pretty small amount considering I had trip aces. A well-played loss.

One small win I was pretty proud of - I raised up pocket queens and I got a caller - the often mentioned Mr. Pietzak. The flop came with an Ace and a King - quickly making my queens look like dogmeat. On top of this, I was out of position and had to act first. I knew that if I checked here,
Mr. Pietzak would bet this board no matter what his cards were. Nope, I had to bet myself. I did so and got a fold. I showed him my queens and told him that it was a tough board to c-bet on.

Overall, my cards weren't terrific, and I certainly didn't flop any huge hands that I could get paid with. I speculated a bit more than usual considering we were just 4 handed, but none of this speculation paid off for me - it only served as a steady trickle off my chip stack.

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