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Poker advice and news from Dave Colcough of Bet365 Poker

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Poker Diary with Dave Colclough at 2004 WSOP - continued

Written by: Dave Colclough (2004-05-21 19:25:18)

Day 18- 9/5/04 – Omaha Hi-Lo Split
Yet again I managed to run close to the money, but just missed.
974 runners on the board for the big one! We are still on target for 2000.

Day 19- 10/5/04 – Pot Limit Hold'em
Just to compound the fact I was running a little bad, I decided to start playing bad. Having not seen any semblance of a hand, or an opportunity in the first two hours of play, I somehow manage to get myself involved with K10 suited, and an exit hand of Q6 (on my big blind).

There's a new game in town. The Bellagio is now spreading 1,2 limit Hold'em. That is, $100,000 / $200,000. Minimum sit down 10 million dollars! A Texan banker has flown into town and is playing the worlds best in a heads up match.

Just to try and have things a little his way, he insists that each days play starts at 6am. A dozen or so of the top professionals have clubbed together so they have a bankroll that is big enough to take him on.

Day 20- 11/5/04 – $5,000 Omaha Hi-Lo Split
I feel I played today's tournament a lot better. The best way to play most limit tournaments is to play very tight and to select only the premium starting hands. I survived a long time before eventually hitting a sequence where I lost with Aces twice. I then missed, after flopping 6,7,K two clubs to match my A,2,3 nut flush and unbreakable low draw. I don't get anything out of this pot and I'm out again.

Devilfish was on the same starting table and struck a last longer bet with Mike “I'm the best Omaha split player in the world” Mattusow. Both convinced that they will make the final. They reported to the rail first and second out within three hours play. If ever the Poker Gods get an opportunity to cut us down to size, they don't usually miss it.

Day 21- 12/5/04 – $1500 No Limit Hold'em
Having flopped three Jacks over Ross Boatman's three 6's, I got off to another good start. Over 800 runners again. I managed to get down to the last 100 within sight of the money when it happened again. Did I say I only get Kings v Aces four or five times a year? Bushey reckons it happens to him every week. Anyway, Brad Dougharty's Aces stand up and my Kings send me to the super satellite, where of course I pick up Kings v Aces again. But this time I flopped a King. To no avail though, as I went out about 12th short of the money. I have a horrible feeling I may be eating these words later. If my exit hand from the main event is Kings v Aces, I will never write a diary again!

Day 22- 13/5/04 - $5000 7 Card Stud
The slump continues. I make a slight profit during the first two levels but overplay and lose with Aces and then Kings during the next two levels. I didn't even make the second break, which of course meant I was in time for the Super Satellite.

Super Satellites are fun. I enjoy them more than any other form of poker. I don't know why, but they keep throwing up great situations and great stories. And this one certainly brought a smile back to my face. To add to the ambience, Gazza 'The Whacker' Bush was heckling me throughout from the nearby rail, bemoaning the fact that I seem to have 5 times as much luck as him. 'Blessed, you are Colclough' is his favourite quote. Anyway, it transpires that we agree if I win another $10,000 in tournament entry chips, I will enter him in tomorrows Pot Limit Hold'em comp.

So eventually we are down to the last 7 players. They are giving away 6 seats. There are 5 huge stacks (my friend Robin Keston having the biggest of them all) and here are 2 tiny stacks. Me and seat 7. One of us two will miss out. When my big blind gets raised yet again, I calculate I can just about throw this hand away and the next two, and seat 7 will then run out of chips in his blinds. Seat 7 passes each hand expecting me to make a mistake, but I don't. And eventually he is all-in on his small blind. I have only 3 chips left and would be all-in next hand. Each of the big stacks calls to gang up on poor old seat 7. Excellent, 5 v 1. I like it… Then my good friend Robin from London, looks down and finds two Kings. And of course he does the stupid thing, and raises. The other players are screaming blue murder at him, while I am crying on the floor. You don't get anything extra for being the biggest stack. All 6 survivors get the same. So of course, it makes sense to gang up on one gu all the time… But Robin wanted the glory of course… Fortunately, this Kings story has a happy ending. They stood up. Seat 7 was eliminated, and I won another $10,000 with only 3 chips left. And of course with Robin's 103,000 chips, he also won a $10,000 seat.

So I enter myself, and 'The Whacker' in the Pot Limit Hold'em competition.

Day 23- 14/5/04 - $3000 Pot Limit Hold'em
At last I hit a few flops, start like a train, and probably produce my best game for a week or so. I mixed it up well and was probably chip leader after four levels, having turned my 3000 staring chips into 36,000.

Unfortunately, the dinner break also signified a break in my luck. I managed to lose a third of my stack in a blinds skirmish (Jacks v Queens). Eventually we were down to 37 players and I was sitting on an average stack of 25,000. We were playing hand for hand, one out of the money, when I picked up AK under the gun. I smooth called, looking for a re-raise opportunity, but was outplayed. The flop came A67, which was a lot more help to the button's pocket 6s than my big slick. I somehow managed to play badly enough to lose my whole stack, and exit one of the money. Disgusted with myself I left and went straight to bed without the obligatory Budweiser or two.

Day 24- 15/5/04
I chose not to play the Razz and got up late… with a very nice surprise waiting for me. The Whacker had made the final of 3000 PLH. I spent the rest of the day with The Camel and a dozen or so other football hooligans on the benches next to the final table. Unfortunately Ram was out early, the Mexican wave was pathetic, the crowd was too busy drinking to roar… but Gary 'The Whacker' Bush was at his best, finishing a very honourable second. Err, landing the pair of us a hefty $120,000 to boot. Yabba dabba doo!

Day 26- 17/5/04 - $5,000 Limit Hold'em
My personal playing slump continues as I exit the event on the fourth level. Ted Forrest was on fire beating me up in 6 pots out of 6. Financially it has been a very rewarding trip, but I really would like to make one more final table to be happy.

Generally, all the Europeans are now in town. The board now reads 1100 registered entrants for the main event, and don't go betting under 1800 if you like money.

Day 27- 18/5/04 - $3,000 NoLimit Hold'em
It happened again! Level 2, 70 minutes in, I pick up my first big hand : Kings. I don't think I need to spell any more out. My, how the poker gods laughed as my opponent turned over the two aces. It looks like Bushey is right! Kings v Aces four times in a fortnight. Ho, hum. At least it happened early. I didn't get any opportunity to build false expectations.

This tournament turned out to be unique. Almost 650 players with 3000 chips produced too many chips to enable a result in 2 days. For the first time in WSOP history, the final three couldn't force a result, and quit at 3.45 am after 2 days hard labour. Unfortunately, the break worked against the two remaining brits, Ram Vaswani and John Kabbaj, who had to settle for third and second respectively.

As there are now over 1400 signed up entrants for the big one, I wonder if we may have to endure similar long gruelling days. There is a common thought around Binions that this years winner may have to be young and fit just to have enough stamina to last the distance. Who would have ever thought fitness would come into play at a poker table?

Day 28- 19/5/04 - $5,000 Pot Limit Omaha
This was undoubtedly my biggest disappointment of the trip. A first prize of half a million dollars, in an Omaha competition. I got started built up to 35,000 chips quite quickly but watched helplessly as I lost three times after setting my opponent when I had the best of it. But that's Omaha. In fact, that's Poker. It's important to remember that 65% favourites lose almost a third of the time.

So here I am winging away. I have $50,000 more than I arrived with. And all I am worried about, is the fact I didn't get close to a girlie's bracelet. What a strange breed we are.



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