Wednesday, March 17, 2010

razor's edge - which side am I on this time?

Not much time tonight, just enough for an hour of Rush Poker. I'm playing well and I'm up $9.50 or so.

My internal clock tells me it's time for bed. Couple more hands. I am highly motivated to post a win tonight for self-confidence sake. I feel like I'm playing ok but on the wrong side of luck lately, Any amount in the green for the night will feel good.

Pocket queens in the big blind. Hoo-boy, here we go. Late position raiser. My first instinct is to 3bet, blow him out of the hand, but I've been working on what my coach told me. Don't be afraid to call from the blinds. Don't use your big hands as a bluff. Why would you want to fold out A5 here, or other hands you're crushing? Don't be afraid to play postflop.

Truth be told, I am afraid to play postflop, at least out of position I am. My pokertracker database says I suck at it, too, so my fear is based in reality. But I'm not gonna learn without practicing. I call with pocket queens out of the blind.

A nice safe flop, 2 4 9, bottom two are hearts. It's Rush poker and I don't have a single hand of stats on how this guy plays, so I check with the intention of checkraising. He bets exactly the pot, and I make it three times that, figuring the hand will be over. He calls. Ok, he likes the hearts, or he hit the nine and isn't folding top pair. He could have an overpair to the nines, too - half of which I'm ahead of, the other half I'm behind.

The turn pairs the four, and brings a second club. Now there are 2 flush draws for him to get his money in, and I'm a 4-1 favorite on most of them. If he raised from late position with garbage that includes a four, well then I'm officially the unluckiest bastard this month, aren't I? If he's had kings or aces the whole time, well that's some more crap luck for me, but just a delay of getting it in postflop instead of preflop, like two big broadway overpairs often do.

Time to work on getting it in. It doesn't follow my original plan to play safe and book a small win on the night, but it's the correct poker play. My hand is way under-repped because of my call on the flop - the intention of which is to keep worse hands in. I am crushing his range, my hand strength is very hidden, and therefore the correct play is to get maximum value.

I bet 6.25 into $10. He follows the script and shoves his chips in. I figure I'll be dodging 9 outs on the river... until he flips over pocket eights. Whew. I done good.

An eight on the river would make this a standard bad-beat story - but it didn't come. A king of clubs gives me a 130 big blind win.

The script worked! I kept a dominated hand in the game and stacked him.

I decide that's my last hand of the night.

No comments: