Live poker in home environment!
Last night the "Open Poker Championship" took place for the first time. I was invited by Erik and Adriano, who both work for Pokercasinoguide.com. Since I started this blog both of them have been quite cocky telling me that they would "whip my ass" etc. etc. The story of what happened during the night, the result and an interesting hand follows...
Twenty people got together in a house to play a tournament of Texas Holdem no limit at around five in the afternoon. The hosts had put a big effort into stating the rules to avoid discussions and they also collected $15 from each player for beers, hotdogs, coffee etc. I think that it is very important to have clear rules when playing home games so that everyone feels comfortable and that the game can run smoothly without any irritable disscusions and no answers.
The main structure of this tourney was set up like this:
- Twenty people were randomly divided to play at four tables
- You had to win your table (with five players) to reach the final table (with four players)
- Everyone at the final table started out with the same amount of chips
The structure is quite different from WPT and other tourneys you can see on TV where there are 10 players at a table all the time and you keep your chips to the final table.
At first I thought the structure was a bit boring since it would be hard for beginners and benefit players used to playing short-handed. But, then again, I play a lot of short-handed SNG's so I thought the structure would benefit me.
The lottery gave me the pleasure of starting at the same table as Adriano, one of the Pokercasinoguide guys, two players that had not played that much and one player I felt was quite a big threat (he was also one of the organizers). After two periods of twenty minutes there was a break. I was the chip leader with more than 50 percent of the chips, the two beginners had almost no chips, the organizer was also short-stacked with approximately 75 percent of his starting amount of chips and Adriano had a slightly more than he started off with.
After the break, the blinds were quite high for everyone except me and my strategy was that I shouldn't double anyone up. That strategy fell apart amost immediately when me and the organizer ended up all-in pre flop, he with K5 unsuited and me with K9 suited. Of course he flopped 55 and doubled up. After another hour I was heads up with Adriano, the agressive Italian with more balls than brain from Pokercasionoguide. After losing a monster pot we had approximately an equal share of the chips. Here comes the hand of the day:
Big blind was 64 and we had 250 chips each. Adriano is big blind and I get 33. I think for a while and then I put him all-in pre flop. Adriano calls and shows A7 unsuited. My pockets hold and I´m in the final.
So why did I put him all in?
I thought that the hand was fairly strong and could hold if he called, but what was most important for the decision was the fold equity i.e. my extra value of the chance of him folding. Adriano is also known for being very agressive and, with the very high blinds, I saw this as a good situation to either take his blind or have an all-in situation with fairly good odds.
Please comment and discuss.
The game at the final table was quite strange. After only four hands two players were out as my opponent (another of the organizers, called Jakob) heads up had kicked them both out. He had a great stack more than three times as big as mine. He played solid poker and beat me after another one and a half hours of play. Congrats Jakob, you were the best player that evening, without a doubt.
The other fellow from Pokercasinoguide, known as "Tight-Erik" didn't reach the final and I think that I showed them who whipped who...
After the tournament a rather wild cash game took place. All the beers seemed to have affected some of the guys and it was all-in with rags all the time. It really looked like a smorgasbord and I played really tight but just couldn´t hit anything and was outdrawn a couple of times.
I won approximately $130 during the night.
All-in all, a great night together with a fun bunch of people!
Many thanks to the lads who managed the tournament!