Tuesday, December 29, 2009

General Poker 2010 Goals

2009 was my first year as a amateur poker player. I started playing online poker at March on cash games without knowing nothing but the cards ranking value. I started to take more seriously this Summer and when I joined a training site on August I started to think more about poker. After reading and rereading 2 poker books and play a lot of hands I started to realize that poker is more than just the cards you hold on your hands. Made Silverstar on Pokerstars on August and maintained during September. October was the month where I decided to specialize in SNG and play more MTT's instead of cash games.

I figure out the 2 main factors in becoming a good poker player:
- Bankroll Management
- Tilt Control

You can learn to play good poker by reading books, watching videos, posting hands on a forum or play a lot more. But you cannot become a good poker player if you do not master bankroll management and tilt control.
By bankroll management I mean you have to play the games that suits your bankroll, you should have a strict and disciplined control over your bankroll.
By Tilt control I mean emotional control, you should put emotions outside of the table and always think logical about every decision that you make at the table.

Here are the poker goals for 2010:

1. Educational goals:
- Read 4 new poker books;
- Watch more MTT/SNG videos during the year;

2. Pokerstars goals:
- Becoming Silverstar more than once a year;
- Qualify for a live tournament;
- Increase my bankroll in 300%
- Reach a final table on a online MTT;

In general will try to play more games per month (average of 125 SNG's), specialize in one or two SNG structures and build my roll from there. Will also play some online MTT's and try to reach a final table. I will try to qualify for a live tournament on Pokerstars.

I hope I can post more here on the blog and give some profit numbers every month, will try to do that. 2010 will be a great year to play poker online, specially at Pokerstars because there will be some major positive changes to all Pokerstars members.

Happy new 2010 year!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Pokerstars, the Greatest Online Poker Room

Will play today on the World Guiness Record Tournament Poker at Pokerstars, there are already more than 140,000 players signed up. I will post here the final number with a picture.

Pokerstars made a huge improvement for the next year on they VIP club, so 2010 will be a profitable year. I can make silverstar with only 750 VPPs and there are going to be milestones cash to all players, for more information checkout: http://www.pokerstars.com/vip/2010changes/

I have been grinding some DoNs and I am very happy with my results, on the last 73 games I have a 22% ROI. I invested $73 on those games and not only I received that amount back, but I also made some more than 20% profit on them. I have $50 bonus to release until February, I am sure I will release that bonus with more profit on these DoNs games.

I am playing right now and there are 149,196 players on this MTT, Guiness World Record for Pokerstars!!

You can also look on this picture and see the numbers of total players current playing on Pokerstars (not necessary on this MTT of course):

One more thing, just started 2 more blogs, one of them is in Portuguese, you can checkout on my profile section.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

How things going?

This weekend was a very cold one outside but very warm at the poker tables. I have been playing one type of SNG where there are 10 players at the table and 5 players receive a prize and the other 5 dont. The prize is the double of the buy in (the amount you pay to play a SNG or tournament).

After 40 games of playing this type of SNG on the last 90 days, I am very happy with my results. I am having a ROI of 27% and my bankroll is building slowly but in the right direction. My perception about these type of SNG is that they are more secure to play, but the reward is not so higher like the 9s SNG type.

I wish I Merry Christmas to all the readers.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Weekend Feedback

This weekend I played 4 MTT's, I cashed in one. On the one that I cashed there were 5000 entrants and I placed 143. I ended busted with my pocket eights against the chip leader that was holding pocket aces.
I do not regret pushing with my pocket eights because I was geting shortstacked and need to double up. In overall the MTT's are going reasonable, on the others I faced some suck outs but in genereal I think my performance is ok, still need that final table and specially that top 3 place to boost my bankroll.

As SNG concerned, it was a disaster weekend, at least on Pokerstars. I played more than 10 games and I lost more than a half. Some of them were sick bad beats, like holding KK and push to a AA hand or having AA and busted for a KKK hand, some damn things like that. I played most of the time the shorthanded turbo mode $3 SNG, they are soft but the variance sucks.
On the other hand I won 2 SNG's on other rooms, one on Betclick and the other on Diamonbet, the last was a private SNG.

My strategy will change a bit for the rest of the year. To maintain my bankroll in a healthy mode, I will continue to play the MTT's on weekend because I feel I can make a final table sonner or later. On the SNG I will leave the $3 and return to the $1 but more important I will return to play some DoN's (Double or Nothing SNG, where half the field gets paid). I do not like so much the DoN's but they are safer to build bankroll.

My main goal is very soon play the steps system on Pokerstars so I can climb the steps and reach a live event package.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Bankroll Management, the 5% Rule

Hi readed today one article from professional Pokerstars player Vicky Coren. She said that one golden bankroll management rule is to invest no more than 5% of your bankroll on a buy in tournament.

I am a true follower of this rule, ever single game whatever it is a MTT or SNG, I never invest more than 5% of my bankroll. I played the $1.10 buy in MTT's and I could play a little more higher buy in, but I prefer this buy in level right now because MTT's are high variance games. On SNG's I started to play the $3 and it is still under 5% of my bankroll.

The $3 single tables SNG's are soft but I still did not reached ITM, I had 2 bubbles places and on 9 place where my AKs was busted against KK. The bubble is thougher on these games but I know I can make it and crush these $3 SNG's. Just need to continue to play them.

This weekend I will play my usual MTT's today and tomorrow and some $3 stt SNG's. I will try to satelite for the Sunday 1/4 million on pokerstars.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

November Review, December Goals

I dedicate the whole November to SNG of 90 players and some MTT's. Here are the main stats for November:

Type of Game: SNG - 90 players
Played: 47 games
ROI: 13%
Best rank: 3rd place.
Best cashing streak: 2 games in a row

I am current on a stretch of 10 games without cashing, my worst stretch on them until now, facing some bad beats along the way. The variance on multitable SNG's are very high. My goals for December is to play at least 50 games of single table SNG's on $3 buy in at, lets see how is it going to be.

Type of Game: MTT's
Played: 20 games
ROI: -56%
Best rank: 366 place.
Best cashing streak: 2 games in a row

On the MTT's side I will try to play at least 20 games, but I hope I can play more. Of course my main goal on MTT's is to have a positive ROI on December and try to reach a 2 digits rank. Reaching the final table is always a goal but lets see my performance on these games.

So, December will be plenty og SNG's at and MTT's, specially the 2K GTD on pokerstars (23:00 PM GMT time).

Monday, November 30, 2009

Hands Pictures

Just to show you guys some great hands and a bad beat hand from my last tournaments. I have been playing the SNG of 90 players and also some MTT's.

This is my worst bad beat of this month on the final table of the SNG 90 players:

Tripling up my stack with pocket kings:

Playing small and medium pocket pairs is a fundamental play in NL Holdem. When you hit a set and opponents hits something from the board be prepared to take down a big pot:

A flush ace high is always the nuts, the best way to take down a huge pot is when your opponent has also a strong hand like 2 top pairs but you manage to have some luck on the river and make the flush:

Well, sometimes we can face that against us. On this hand I pushed with my 2 pairs and opponent calls and hits trips of deuces on the river:

Friday, November 20, 2009

EPT Vilamoura 2009 - Portugal

European Poker Tour is on Vilamoura until Sunday 22 of November.
You can watch all the updates on http://pokerpt.com/ and/or http://www.pokerstarsblog.com

Pointing out some issues

Been playing the SNG's of 90 players. I had lost some races on some of them when I push my stack to the table. There was this hand that I pushed with pocket sevens against AKo from the opponent and the ace cames on the river. On another game I pushed with AQs against pocket teens from the big stack opponent and I lost.

I am hitting a downswing on my current results on the 90s after a good period of cashing. I think volume is the key and willing to identify some leaks and pushing ranges to improve the game are also important.

This weekend I will play 2 MTT's, one today and another tomorrow, it will be a big field with more than 4000 players and with a prize pool of more that $4000. I will play my game and lets see how is it going to work out.

Besides the MTT's I have an private invitation for the 2d time for one SNG of 9 players from Cardlovers, I will also play this one on Sunday. On the first one that I played last Sunday I made 2nd place but with some luck because I was sitting out more that 15 minutes due to internet problems.

I will grind some 90s SNG's and I hope I can post some hands on DC forum and also to watch a video from DC that explains how to play on the 180s SNG and extract some ideias and thoughts for the 90s.

My strongest enemy is the time, I had not enough time to do want I want, there is so much to do on the poker world and outside of poker world that sometimes my rest time is afected. I have to manage this better because is very important to have a healthy mind on a healthy body to play good poker and to do all the important things.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Tournament Analysis - Critical Hands 1

ITM: means In The Money
When you reach a point on the tourney that more than a 85% of the people were eliminated and you reached the money.

Last days I have been playing the $2K GTD Tournament, simply means a tournament that has a guaranteed prize pool of $2000. Obvious, there are so many entrants that the prize pool is always much, much larger than $2K, usually reach more than $5K.
This tourney is everyday at 23h (11 PM) and I played four on the last days. I reached ITM 50% and only ended really deep in one (has posted before).

On the other tourneys that I did not ended so deep I had some bad luck (I guess) and my strong hands were not so strong that I thought they were and I lost (a bad beat? Maybe in one of them).
I manage to have a decent stack on each of these hands, but ended screwing things up when I thought that I had the best hand on the board.

The goal of this post is to show you those critical hands.

Hand #1 - Tourney ID: #209010746
Final Place/Total Players: 5643/6316

I more than doubled my stack early with pocket aces.
I played this speculative hand with 2 purposes: first to make a flush king high in a cheap way; or 2nd to make top pair, good kicker with Kings; I was not thinking at all in doing a straight.

That agression that opponent was showing was clear he has a strong hand, but I would never imagein a full house!

Hand #2 - Tourney ID: #209010747

Already ITM, I have a good stack to get deep on this tourney but my pocket aces is broken...

I should had checked on the River, He was calling all my agressive bets, was clear he has a strong hand, better than a pocket aces.
In the future I could push on preflop or bet more on Preflop.

Hand #3 - Tourney ID: #219010741

This one was yesterday, I doubled up early with AK, not so much action and my stack was decreasing a bit so I take my chances by pushing my 99 hand.
My hand was favorite on preflop but changed to a clear underdog hand on the flop.

These were the critical hands that busted my tourney. I also want to share on another post the hands that were critical to my survive on the tournaments, specially on the tournament posted before (that I hit 14th place).

Keep up on reading, I will post more interesting hands soon.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

$2k Guaranteed Tournament

This saturday I played a MTT (Multi Table Tournament) with almost 5000 players. In fact there were 4998 players on total. I placed 14th and it was my best result ever on a big field tournament, I was almost on the final table.

I did not played any MTT since 20 July, so it was great to have this outcome. I was expecting the first place but I did a stupid push in one of my last hands with a pocket nines and I faced a pocket kings hand and was underdog.
Before that hand I was having t490280 chips in 5th place and there were less than 20 players. I should have waited for a better spot to push and double (again) my stack.

Anyway it was a good performance with some good spots to push and it was a good return to MTT's games.

This is the final tournament results:

These are two pictures during the game were I have a great stack to take the 1st place reward, well better next time:

Friday, October 30, 2009

October Stats and a look at November

Tomorrow is the last day of October and I am very happy with my results on 9s SNG's.
Right now I have a 14% positive ROI on the $1.20 SNG's of 9 players (9s) at pokerstars.

Not much volume, I only played about 36 of these games, so if I increase my volume I can get much better results. My worst stretch without any cash this month on these games was 6 games in a row. My best streak on cashing was 4 games cashing.

Today I have a private tournament with some DC members, we set up this tournament so we can play all together, it will going to be fun!

I had some hands that I want to share here on the Forum, I will convert and post on a future thread. On one hand I made a full house and beat 3 opponents in the same hand. The other my pairs of KK busted 2 more players.

Next month I will exclusively dedicate to 9s SNG's at the $1.20 buy in. Probably I will take a shoot on the $3 or $5 buy in SNG. I will also play some MTT's on Saturday or Friday night so I can return to these big fields again, now that I improved my game.

I will continue to study the game, I will review the blackboard videos from Vandweller, these videos are fundamental to become a winning player. They explain ICM from scratch and the push/fold strategy at later stages on the tournament.

I am also doing some sweat session with some DC members. What is a sweat session? This is made by using Skype and Mikogo software (or TeamViewer). It is a session where someone is watching you playing, (you are sharing your desktop remotely with another guy) and you also speak with him by using Skype. I highly recomend to anyone who wants to improve the game, I have made some 3, 4 sessions and is awesome!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Last Trimester Stats

I was analysing my last trimester on top shark and I have these stats that I want to share:

Average ROI: -6%
Averagre Profit: -$9.15
Games Played: 139
ITM: 29%
Average Buy In: $1.17

On that trimester I played SNG from 9 players to 180 players. Some turbos some normal SNG formats and that all mixed resulted on those stats.
My biggest stretch without cashing was a 26 streak games (mixing a bunch of structures).
My biggest cashing streak was 3 streak games.

This trimester (October-December), I will be more stable and specializing on the 9s and 45s. This month I will only play the 9s (9 players SNG), next month I will play the 45s.
With these I want to check out were I have the biggest ROI.

On the overall data from pokerstars, my positive ROI % are from playing the 45s at normal blinds speed, with a ROI of 76%.

So I think in the future and with these trimester results, 2010 could be a 45s SNG grind.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Bubble and Heads Up Play

After 3 days without playing any SNG, I played one tonight. I made it 2nd place and I lost most of my chips on a coin flip move described on the hand posted.

When I reached the bubble I was only having 6 BB stack. I was the shortest stack, then I pushed with A2o and I hit a pair of aces on the flop and a second pair of deuces on the turn and I doubled up to 1800.
On another hand I pushed again with KQo, the opponent that called my push holds a AJs, luckly I paired on the river with a king and another double up on my stack to a healthy 27 Big Blinds.
After some stealing hands and folded hands I was again with KQo on the SB and I double up again with the same opponent that I doubled up before with KQo, turning me on the chip leader, here this hand:

Poker Stars $1.00+$0.20 No Limit Hold'em Tournament - t75/t150 Blinds - 4 players - View hand 319764
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

CO: t5135 M = 22.82
BTN: t2695 M = 11.98
Hero (SB): t3675 M = 16.33
BB: t1995 M = 8.87

Pre Flop: (t225) Hero is SB with Q of hearts K of diamonds
CO calls t150, 1 fold, Hero raises to t450, BB calls t300, CO calls t300

Flop: (t1350) T of clubs K of spades 8 of diamonds (3 players)
Hero bets t3225 all in, BB folds, CO calls t3225

Turn: (t7800) 7 of diamonds (2 players - 1 is all in)

River: (t7800) T of diamonds (2 players - 1 is all in)

Final Pot: t7800

CO shows J of spades K of hearts (two pair, Kings and Tens - lower kicker)
Hero shows Q of hearts K of diamonds (two pair, Kings and Tens)
Hero wins t7800

After some hands this is how our stack sizes were on the bubble:

The heads up was working out ok but then I lose most of my stack on this hand, opponent was holding a TT.

Poker Stars $1.00+$0.20 No Limit Hold'em Tournament - t100/t200 Blinds + t25 - 2 players - View hand 319770
The Official DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

BB: t6025 M = 17.21
Hero (BTN/SB): t7475 M = 21.36

Pre Flop: (t350) Hero is BTN/SB with 9 of spades A of diamonds
Hero raises to t600, BB raises to t2000, Hero calls t1400

Flop: (t4050) 5 of hearts 8 of diamonds 3 of clubs (2 players)
BB bets t4000 all in, Hero calls t4000

Turn: (t12050) 3 of hearts (2 players - 1 is all in)

River: (t12050) K of hearts (2 players - 1 is all in)

Final Pot: t12050
BB shows T of clubs T of spades (two pair, Tens and Threes)
Hero shows 9 of spades A of diamonds (a pair of Threes)
BB wins t12050

After some hands I down to 2nd place. At least I cash some $.
See you at the tables!

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Goals for the rest of the year

September is done. Did not make it a positive ROI % but learn a lot in the process.
I stoped playing during the week, instead I begin to study the game and making some posts on DC forum.

For the final trimester I will spent studying and improving my game on SNG's. I will also play some of them on the weekend and ocasionally on weekdays.
I will report some of my sucess and failures here on the blog. I will post some hands and ocasionally some strategy thoughts.

The grinder will be on SNG's, some shorthanded, some full table and even some SNG's multitables. I must say that I am very motivated to give my best and wish to you guys to give your best at the tables and more important, out of the tables.

Just one final word for this post, I advise to every poker player (in fact to every human being), to work out. Yes, do some exercise, move your butt, it is very important to exercise our bodies in nowdays. We spent a lot seated at a desk and exercising our brains by focusing and grinding poker. Our body is also important, in fact a healthier body gives a boost to our mind and our game at the tables will reflect that change.

On Friday after a woring day at the office I went to my gym, I was not in the mood to working out but I refuse to not to work out. My mind was a little bit exausted but my body not so much.
Now the funny part, after my workout, my body was exausted but my mind was fresh! I mean, it was like pullover a weight from my brain, that I was carrying all the day!
I was tired but my mind was refreshed and ready for some action at the poker tables!

Give it a try, it works, do not create excuses to not workout. Is more important at long term, like poker players we must say that working out our bodies (and mind) is +EV !

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Some Fresh Air

After a week of some busy schedule outside poker tables, some work issues and family duties, I finally toke time to play 2 SNG this weekend, quality instead of quantity, right?

I ended a few minutes a go a $3.25 6 Max. Turbo SNG on pokerstars. I try for the first time this new buy in level and it was ok for the first game. This SNG was a kind of fresh air on my game.
Here it is the final result:

There was this hand were I was having only 7 BB on the button. The opponent at my right was also shortstacked like me, (we were only 5 players at the table this time), he goes all-in and I also pushed with my medium pair 44, he was having a conector of 56. He paired with 6 on the river and I was in last place down to 1.9BB !

On the next hand I pushed with any two cards, I pushed with a conector 78. Only the small blind folded. There were $1235 on the pot, and the flop cames with: A79.
I have a bottom pair but when the opponent to my right raises to almost half the pot I feel that he has an ace. The others players folded to his raise so it was just me against him and he shows me ATo.
The Turn brings 8, I made two pair and the opponent makes a straight draw. The river brings a 3 and I win the main pot and return alive to some more action.

Statistics say that medium pairs have more values against less opponents and specially when blinds are higher.
Well I had another hand that shows this, blinds were at 75/150. I was having only 9 BB with a pocket eights on the small blind. UTG folds, CO and button limps and I decided to shove here.
The CO was playing very agressive and it was some kind of loose player, and he was the only who called my push. He has an J4s but did not improved.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Less Volume, More Study

Hi, dear readers.

After a positive ROI until the middle of the month I hit my biggest stretch of poor results at SNG. I had 21 SNG OOM (Out Of Money), then I made a second place on a 9 players SNG. I played 71 SNG's by now, mixing the field of number of players.

I stopped playing for a few days due to some personal issues, but most important, I am taking more time to study SNG strategy. That downswing stretch came with a meaning, and I guess I was receiveing some feedback from my less than optimal performance. So I decided to take a break and refresh my poker thinking process.

Monday, September 14, 2009

SNG Statistics

We are half month and i have been playing the micro stakes SNG's, so far with a positive ROI of 12%. Here are the results so far for each SNG, the data is displayed it this format:

SNG Number of players: Number of times ITM/Total Number of games
(ITM: In The Money)

90: 3/5
45: 2/4
18: 4/14
9: 7/19

This week i will play more the 45s and 90s and see what results i get. The field of 90s are being a positive suprise for me because the field is very soft.
I will start to have a shoot on 1 or 2 MTT 's on the weekend. It will be the micro buy in but I think I have an edge over the soft field that these MTT's have.

I am still analysing some poker pro sng players and i have two or three that i can say that could be a role model to me. SNG is all about volume and solid poker play.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Becoming a SNG Grinder

I am seriously thinking in becoming in a near future, a SNG grinder.
No doubt that i like to play more SNG's or MTT's than cash games, that is for sure. I want to take my SNG game to the next level.

Last month i grinded a lot of cash games, sometimes not rolled for some stakes. I did not break even, losing some buy ins. I was just chasing the silverstar status and i made it.
This month i have been really soft about the grindind, not poker, i am always committed to study and play. I am not grinding this month but i have some late nights by playing and studing Holdem.

I am still analysing the SNG's structures, wich one should i play more the turbos or the regulars? Wich players field, the 9s, the 18s, the 27s, the 45s, the 90s, the 180s? Heads up?
Still searching for answers and still analysing some professional poker SNG's grinders.

In the challenge to turn $100 in $10.000 Boku87 started playing the $1.10 turbos of 18s and 45s players.
Then after playing more than 600 of these he played the $2.20 180s and $3.25 45s SNG's turbos. Then after 120 games of these he mixed with the $3.40 18s SNG's.
Only after 340 games he started to play the $6.50 18s/45s SNG's and also the $12 45s SNG's. When playing this ones he also maintained the $2.20 180s SNG's.
After 360 games he started playing the $27 18s/45s SNG's mixing with the $12 45s and also including the $7.70 180s SNG's.

So you can see how many games he first played before moving up in stakes, usually only after 350 games. This is what i call bankroll management, only go up in stakes when properlly rolled for that level.
Besides Boku87 I am also analysing other guys and taking some conclusions, i play a lot better at SNG's than cash games, just defining my structure to play at. Btw, Boku87 plays only Turbos. The Turbos gives you a faster hourly win rate but also decreases your ROI. Posflop skills are for regular SNG's, Preflop and push or fold skills are for Turbos.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Another SNG session

I played 3 sessions of SNG's tonight, two 18 players and one of 27 players. I lost two and ended up in first place in one of them.
I must review my sessions tomorrow and check out were i made mistakes. Here is a final picture from one of the winning SNG of 18 players.

I do not know if i will play many tomorrow. I have one video to finish and sessions review to do.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

WCOOP - Event #6 NLH Video

September is a great month to play poker at pokerstars, because the WCOOP is running right now.
WCOOP is the World Championship of Online Poker and this year has $40.000.000 combined prize pool. Thw WCOOP runs 45 events (or tournaments) every day and the last event, on the 20 September, will be the main event with a prize pool of $10.000.000.

I left here a video of the event #6 NLH with a prize pool of $1.000.000.
Enjoy it!

The final Heads up hand is an amazing hand: a full house against a Quads!! A must see hand for poker players!

Monday, September 07, 2009

Week Review

This week i played 20 SNG's, most of them 9 players and today i played one 45 players.
I have placed today 2nd on the 45s so it was nice result. The 9 players i am making ITM 40% of the time. Sincerely i tought the 9 players SNG's were more softer than they are.

By now i have a positive 24% ROI and made (only) $5.80 profit this week. Still early to take conclusions let's see how is it going to be the next week.

On the Vpp's and Fpp's i made very few points. This is the bad side of not playing cash games.
September Vpp's: 35.94 (!!)
September Fpp's: 2359.54

On the education side, i saw more 2 episodes of the serie: Real Life of a Micro SNG Grinder.
Great Video series!

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

September Goals

For surprise to some, not so surprising to others, i will not grind all the month to maintain silver.
You read it right. Silverstar should come naturally and not forced. I grinded a lot last month and i lost some money on that process.

I did not burned out, in fact there were nights that i was capable of grinding more but i was having the good sense to go to bed and sleep.

I will concentrate this month in 2 poker fields: Sit aNd Go tournaments (SNG's) and poker education. I could play some cash games during the month to keep up the pace, but i will not grind to make FPP's like crazy.
Here are the goals for September:

1. Play minimum 75 SNG's this month (i played 44 last month). Could be 9/18/27/45/90/180 players. (I will try to play more than 100).
2. Positive ROI and positive profit on SNG's.
3. Increase my bankroll in 25% (at least and deposits do not count).
4. Reach 2500 Fpp's ( i have 1.5 Fpp for each fpp base and that is only more 200).
5. Watch / Study the video series: "Last standing man" and "The + evolution of a poker player"

This month will be more educational and tournament directed. Hope to be very positive on the end. The SNG's stakes that i will play will be $1.20.

Monday, August 31, 2009

August Review

August was my best month at poker tables, no doubt about it.
I touched in some poker variables at the same time: volume play by griding a lot at in consequence i reached silverstar; poker education, by reading a poker book and watching educational movies,; SNG and Cash games, i played few SNG but played profitable.

Let's go to the goals review:
- Reading the little green book from Phil Gordon: OK.
I started and ended, i studied the book. I will make a posterior restudy on the book.

- Sign up with a training site: OK.
I signed up with one of the top 5 worldwide poker training site: deucescracked.

- Break Even: Nok.
Not exacly, due to the griding on cash tables, i did not B/E.

- Do at least 600 VPP's: OK+.
I even doubled up that amount. I made more than 1200 VPP's this month on pokerstars turning me on silverstar for September.

Here are the stats for Multitable Tournaments August 2009:
OPR Stats:
ROI: 90%
Prizes: $14
ABI (Average Buy In): $0.82
AFS (Average Field Size): 185
ITM (In The Money): 1/9 (11%)

Here are the Stats for the SNG's and Multitable SNG's August 2009:

The point is, i still have to play many more SNG's at this buy-in level ($1.20) before going up. But, i am playing much better. Right now, i am confidente enough that i can play the $3.20 in a profitable way.

The main achievement in August (besides my birthday !!) was the silverstar vip status and my overall better performance as a poker player.

Will post September goals this week.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Silverstar VIP Status

I made it!
I achieve it today, i was multitabling LHEM 0.25/0.50 and one table of 0.50/1. Then it pops-up the message from stars.

This means i will be silverstar until 30 September.
It was hard work to achieve this level. I only play at part-time and most of the time at night, so it was never an easy task.

On the next post i will explain some advantages that silverstar brings to the player.
I will post on Monday the total FPP's made this month and the September goals.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

SNG: Two 1st Places in a Row

You read it right. I won 2 SNG's, one with 9 players and another one with 45 players.
Regular SNG's (non turbo) with 1500 starting chips.

On this SNG i had some great spots like having KAo twice and AQ/AQs in other times. On HU my J8o broke the AKo from the villan when the 8 came on the flop and hold it.

The hand before the HU, my pocket eights win the shove from the villan, this is the picture from the beginning of the HU:

When we were 3 at the table this is one of my shoves with pocket jackets:

Before this SNG, or better, i was multitabling this SNG with a 9 player SNG that i also win. They were all micro stakes SNG's, so the 1st place rewarding was not much but i am a begginner on the SNG play.

August has been a cash game grinding month but i like more to play SNG. Hope in the future to play more SNG and make the climb on VIP status by mixing SNG with cash games.
This is my overall performance on the last 7 days on SNG's, (I did not play that much).

Btw, i am almost Silverstar.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Poker Education

Studing poker is the stone to improve the game. I am not saying that is the most important variable in becoming a better player, but definetly very important.

You see, when you learn the basics, how to play (for example) Holdem poker, you are going to improve by griding a lot and learning with your own and the opponents mistakes. But that learning process will only take you to a point, and perpaphs will be a slowly learning and hard process.

To speed up the process and become a very good player you have to put some study on poker. Books are one of the tools, and great tools if you are willing to get inside the author mind and practice what they write, but there is another way.

I am not saying that books are not important, they are and they must be present on your poker education. But we have also the trainig sites with forums and videos, and with videos from very good poker players we learn a lot. This is the stage were i am entering now.

I do not have many poker books reading hours, by now i have only read one poker book. I will read more, that is for sure. But the point is, i have signed up with a training site and i am very satisfied. I still did not put the time to view the videos (only saw 3 videos) but i am sure i will check the great videos they have.
Poker education sites are a tool to the arsenal of great poker player.

Week Review: tough week

This has been a tough week for me at poker tables. I have been taking a shoot at low stakes tables. When i mean "taking a shoot", i am assuming that i am playing at a table that i am not rolled for. But also, been willing to get back to Micro stakes if a loose X Big Blinds.

I am playing almost exclusive Fixed Limit Cash Games. I was taking a shoot at $1/$2, but i do not have skill (right now) to crush that level. I was playing very tight almost never bluff but it was very tough, my pocket medium and premium pairs (except AA and KK) lost on every flop i enter (opponent made top pair, two pairs or a set). The only good thing is that i made a lot of FPP's.

Then i returned to my usually grinding table games, the shorthanded (6 Max.) Fixed Limit $0.25/$0.50. Here i have a slight edge to the overall field, but even here i have to much to learn.
Why did i not lowered to FL $0.50/$1? Because i did not want to screw up here too. I am still in the micro/lower stakes learning process.

I am currently with 820.97 Vpp's for this month, my best Vpp's record in a month, so i have to get more 379.08 Vpp's to reach Silverstar by the end of the Month, that it is about 42 Vpp's per day, i think i probably will make it, i am making at least that number per day.

The toughness of this week was grinding a lot, i have nights were i was late until 1AM / 2AM and on the next morning i was waking up at 7AM to go to work. So you can see the toughness of the week, and mix that with some bad beats and you have the perfect milkshake for hard work at the tables :-)

I even manage to get a feet on the gym! I am adept of the old phrase: "The one who likes to run a lot, does not get tired" (something like that in english).

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Silverstar on track

Hi, i haven't posted latelly, been busy grinding some fpp's for my reload bonuses on stars and studing the game, specially reviewing my hands.
Review the sessions is a great study to identify some leaks on your game.

On my yesterday sessions i lose some BB, my pocket pairs did not workout (were not top pair or losed to a set from the opponent). I had AQo three times and i lost on those hands, i did not connect with the flop and turn. My AKo did not connect with the board either. My AJo lost to a set of queens from the opponent. You can see how hard the game was!

I have made lots of Fpp's this week and i almost sure that i will reach silverstar this month. Last week i wasn't gridding so much, so i have to put on volume this week.

I will come back with uptaded news this weekend.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Four of a Kind with Aces - The Nuts

I have not been playing too much this week, i traded playing game with learning the game for a couple of hours this week.
Anyway i played some SNG's and very few hands on cash games, in one of those hands at FLH50, i hit the nuts with a four of kind of aces.
On preflop i am holding AJo and i make a bet.
On the flop i hit three of a kind and raise the opponent bet.
On the Turn another Ace comes and everybody checks to me (i have position) and i also check.
On the River one opponent bet and i make a raise.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Early Preflop Shoves

Yesterday i played 2 SNG NLH 9 players, one i ended up in 5th place, on the other i ended up in 2nd place.
In one of the SNG's i had this hand, i was holding pocket aces. The blinds were in the first level, early stage. I was in middle position just behind the highjack. I raised 4 times the big blind, the highjack raised 11 times the big blind. Everybody folded except the big blind who goes all in, I instant call all-in and the opponent at my left did exacly the same thing!

Big hands, big pots!

The big blind had a pocket queens and the highjack a pocket jackets. On the flop i hit the nuts when an ace comes on board, the turn a 5 and on the river a jacket putting the opponent at my left with a set either.
I was, after that hand, in a rare situation of having 227 big blinds on level 1.,(the blinds were 10-20).

I ended up the SNG on 2nd place.
On heads-up the blinds were 100/200. I had 26 big blinds and the opponent had about 40 big blinds.
The opponent did not practice ICM (Push or fold) strategy, neither do I.

After 43 hands the blinds were the same, I had 30 big blinds and the opponent with 35 big blinds. We were now on the final hand shoving to each other. My pocket jackets loose to a full house, five full of deuces, made by him. He hits the set of fives on the flop, and the second deuce came on the turn. Anyway it was a great heads-up play.

The other SNG, i ended in 5th place, ironically i loose with AKo on two hands. One of them the blinds were 30/15, i had 40 big blinds, i get AKo in middle position (UTG+2), i raised 3 times the big blind. The highjack raised 5 times the big blind, i instant called and the button called. The flop was rainbow, i had nothing on the flop.

The highjack goes all in, the button calls and i fold my AKo. The button has K8s on a rainbow flop and cold call the shove of the highjack, what weak play by the button! The highjack got an AQs, the turn and river did not hit anything for both and the highjack with top pair and top kicker takes the pot that i could win if i did not folded to his bluff.

On the last hand, we were only 5 players, the blinds were at level 3 with 25-50, i had about 23 bb on the UTG+2 seat with AKo. The UTG folds, UTG+1 limps, I shoved, the big blind calls and the UTG+1 goes all-in either.

Well, the UTG+1 had a pocket nines, the big blind had the same hand than mine AKo, and the board was rainbow with no ace and no king.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Gut-shot straight draw

Sometimes we have the odds in our side, sometimes we not. Sometimes we are shoving to our opponent and we find out that we are underdog unless we make it the nuts on the river. Well, that was exacly what happened on this hand, i hit a gut-shot straight draw on the flop. We both shove on the turn and my hand was dominated until the river, when the gut-shot straight draw makes a straight draw.

Check it out the all hand.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Full House in a row

I was on a SNG 45 Players and i was busted in 10th place by doing slow play with a set of Aces! Can you imagine the frustration to see the opponent hitting his flush on the river? Well i learn a value lesson to (almost) never slow play your nuts. I usually never ever slow play but i did this time and it work out wrong.

On my grinding at cash games FL100 i have a positive session this morning were two hands were the key on my session, on the first hand i had a full house, queens full of kings and on the next hand i had another full house, aces full of queens. It does not happen often a full house but two full houses on the same session i do not remember having.

First hand showdown:

August Goals

Before the goals let me show you one hand in multipot that i played and hit the flush on ther river, but i was not the only one with the flush, guess who has the higher card? See the whole action here.
August Goals:

1. Sign-up with one of this trainings site: stoxpoker, deucescracked, cardrunners or leggopoker.
2. Start reading the Phil Gordon little green book.
3. Reach the 600 Vpps.
4. Break Even.
5. Play 2000 hands.

The goal 1 and 2 are educational goals, so i can improve my game. I am almost decided wich site will be and i publish my decision soon. The book i already ordered and the post mail already have so i will start to read this week.

The last 3 goals are more pratical goals. I am willing to reach (at least) 600 Vpps this month on stars. The hands played is a goal to grind on the tables and play more hands.

That's all for now!

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Suited Connector & Pairs

Sometimes suited connectors pays off like this hand. I was in late positions and i played 78s and i hit the flush on the river.

I win a pot of $16, not too bad because i was playing very tight and folding many hands.
Click here for the complet hand history.

On the same session i have a pocket nines and i raised preflop, i have middle pair on the flop, there was an Ace but i bet again and the others folded, another pot for me.

Finnaly i had pocket tens on my hand and another guy had pocket nines, well i milk them chips to me, so i won another pot.

I will post August goals this week, see you!

Saturday, August 01, 2009

July Perfomance

Ok, July ended for me.

I must say that it was better than June but i was expecting more. I play very few SNG and MTT's and i play a lot of cash games, some days i was grinding. I did not read the book Harrington on Holdem. I improved my overall activity in some poker foruns (twoplustwo and ti) by reading and posting.

Let's check it out the numbers.
1. Overall profit: i made $35.15 from cash games FL100.

This graphic is related to the last week of June where i played FL100. I started well and i was hot on 28 and 29 of July but after that i ended up losing some money.

I remember being in a good shape at NL10 on the second week of July but then i had a downswing and i was not generating too much points so i switched to FL100.

More stats on FL100:

Total played time: 14 h 53 m
Earnings per hour: $2.36
Earnings per hour incl. bonuses: $2.36
Total played sessions: 15
Total sessions won: 10
Total sessions lost: 5
Best winning streak: 6
Worst losing streak: 3
Best session: 21.15
Worst session: -19.90

Total hands played at FL100: 913

2. VIP Points and Frequent Player Points on Pokerstars
1086.76 - FPP's (+159 )
458.76 - VPP's July

458.76 is my best record on VPPs /Month, i made more 54 vpps than June.
I played more this week and i also played on FL100, so i made more 159 points this week.

Well i had a better perfomance this month at cash tables and i did not play much of tournaments. In the overall maybe i can make it on FL100 but i must work harder and i must reviews my last 2 session were i lost.

Maybe i will post some critical hands from my revision on the last 2 sessions, so you can see how i lost money. Review the hands played is very important to become a better poker player. Study is also important i will put Harrington on Hold, i have 2 books on the horizon that just could make the difference, one is for Limit play the other for no limit.

I will subscribe to the deucescraked trial next week so i can download some videos and learn with the pros. I am also thinking in joining the stoxkpoker learning site very soon.

Ok, right now that is all, i will post the goals for August soon.

Good luck and skill i am all in!