Friday, June 28, 2019

At least the pot was only a small one

Only one hand to report from a recent session but it's one that I'll remember for quite a while.

There's one very loose player to my right and he's going mad. He's opening over half the time and continuing if he's hit any part of the flop. I've seen him get a buy in on the table having flopped bottom pair and he's throwing money around. Unfortunately none to me as I'm completely card dead and I'm nearly 2 hours into the session - I've got $300ish in front of me but I'm down around $150 as I've topped off. $20 or so has gone to the waitress who is doing a sterling job at keeping me hydrated so I'm in no mood to leave if there's a sniff of getting a double up if only I can pick up a decent hand. The plan is to get it all in preflop against the loon if possible and hope for the best.

And then I look down at 2 queens and the loon has already raised from UTG+1. So I raise to $45. It folds round to the button who thinks for a bit then raises to $105. Fuck. Any other player does this and I'm shoving but this is an OMC (or old man coffee if you've never heard the expression before).

Before I can even start to think about things our crazy loon on my right announces all in. I'm not worried about the loon - he's previously got it all in preflop holding 8-2 so his range is infinitely wide. But what about OMC? He'd probably 3 bet AK against the loon but I really can't see him 4 betting that against my 3 bet. It's got to be aces or kings. But most probably aces. It's always aces when OMCs do this. Or is it? Is he using his image as an OMC to make me think he has them? So he could be doing this with a lower pocket pair, suited ace or AK to A-10?

So the action is on me and I'm taking my time. "How much is it?" I ask the dealer. He tells me it's $200 and change. Fuck. If only our loon had less than a min raise then I could flat without fearing that OMC is going to shove on me.

So I fold. It pains me to fold but I know I'm behind. OMC snap calls but no one shows. There's a queen on the flop. Fuck fuck fuckity fuck.

"I have a pair of jacks" our loon says when the river is dealt. There's a jack on the flop. He turns over Jack 4 off. What the actual fuck happened there? Bet then 5 bet shove with Jack 4 off? Has someone had something very heavy dropped on their head recently? Evidently so.

OMC turns over his aces. What a surprise. He then asks me what I had. I tell him and say that I would have flopped a set of queens, but that I knew he had aces and it was correct to fold at the time. I then continue with "I've been card dead so long I was excited to pick up a hand and finally win some money, but at least the pot was only a small one".

I go back to being card dead and loon goes back to being a loon - I think he's burned his way through $1,500 or so over the course of a few hours. But at least the waitress is coming round regularly and she did much better out of me tips wise than the dealer did that night.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Cry me a river

I only really have one "poker friend" - a couple of friends play the game occasionally but there's only one who plays anywhere near as much as I do. We have a very odd way of greeting each other as well - no matter where we meet we always greet each other with "Do you want to hear a bad beat story?"

We probably sound a bit odd in any normal context but on the rare occasion that we meet at a poker table it's pretty funny as we can literally hear the other players' eyes roll as they think we're going to bore them with tales of woe that literally every poker player will have encountered.

I played a session with this friend recently and we greeted each other at the table with our usual opening - we then proceeded to chat without actually ever discussing bad beats. But there were some during the session that we promised we'd never bore each other with again - but I didn't promise not to bore readers of my blog with.

What wasn't unusual was that there were bad beats - every player will have encountered these but what was unusual was that they all involved the same 2 people. And yours truly was on the receiving end of every single one of them.

I'm holding A-10 on a board of 10-10-x. There's an early position raise, I call as there's no flush draw. Turn is a blank and the other player (a lady for what it's worth and I'll refer to her later as this) shoves her last $30 or so and I call. River is a 9 and she turns over 10-9 for a rivered 3 outer.

I've got top set on a 8-2-3 rainbow board and lead out. Lady raises me and I shove (more than got her covered and she has maybe $100 left). She calls. Not sure what the turn was but the river is a 5. She turns over A-4 off.

I flop top 2 on a Kx-Jc-6c board. Random other player bets, lady calls, I raise (enough to put lady all in but the random has me covered). Random folds and lady calls. Turn and river are both clubs and lady turns over Ac-6s. (I thought her odds were much worse than 24.3% until I ran the numbers through an equity calculator but who in god's name calls their entire stack with bottom pair and a backdoor draw?)

Then I've got a straight on a 10-J-2-9 board with 2 clubs. We again get it all in on the turn and the river is another club. She shows 8-4 of clubs.

In each of these hands she probably only started the hand with a maximum of $150 - as you've seen she was a bit of a calling station and she lost quite a few against other players by drawing and not hitting - just wasn't my lucky day avoiding her outs.

So now to the maths - on the first hand she's got 3 outs with 1 card to come (3/46 or 6.5% to win), on the second 4 outs to the straight with 2 to come (12.8%), on the 3rd 24.3% and on the 4th 18.2% (I had a club so she has fewer outs). So her chances of winning all of these hands in a row are an astonishing 0.037%. Not 3.7%, she's winning all those hands 3.7 times if we run these hands 10,000 times.

So I've lost over a buy in to such ridiculous odds and I'm fed up. Luckily there's beer to cheer me up and I'm having a laugh describing my previous session with my friend and I promise I'm not going to bore him with bad beat stories but I tell him that I'm definitely changing our usual greeting. He asks what to and I reply "After today I think that's pretty obvious mate. Cry me a fucking river".