Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Virgin Sacrifices


So I just finished up the aforementioned $5 Omaha tournament I was playing in at Paradise. Finished pretty well, when it was all said and done. 2nd, even. To the tune of $642.70. Not bad for a $5 investment.

That's by far the best I've done at a MTT. Which is funny, considering it came in Omaha. Granted, I'm getting pretty decent at Omaha, but I never would have guessed I'd break my top 3 in a MTT tournament cherry at Omaha.

Pretty proud of the way I played, especially as far as being patient at the final table. Also pretty proud of the fact that I didn't have to use a single re-buy or add-on. I managed to triple up pretty quickly and then just played solidly. I was at T 14,000 when the first break came around (and when add-ons closed), and decided to just play my stack instead of adding on. That's probably dumb, but I normally don't go for the add-on if I've got a decent stack at the break. Especially in Omaha, where you need to get lucky and rake in some monster hands here and there, with litle heads-up play where a slight chip advantage is useful. (I know there are all sorts of contradictions there; just explaining my own personal gut feeling on adding-on at the break in Omaha).

Played pretty solidly, then caught a nut flush for a monster hand right before we went to the final table. I was the chip leader briefly, but took a huge hit when my full house received a beat down from a larger full house.

I went into limp mode, as I was 6th or so out of 10, with the top two stacks way, way ahead of everyone else. Kept hanging around, catching a pot here and there. Kept avoiding confrontations, playing enough to keep my chips above 2 BB but nothing more. A few people finally started dropping, until we were down to 6. The two chip leaders went to war and one guy ended up with T 1.2 million. Suddenly I was second with a wee T 120,000. Everyone else dropped quickly and the big stack ground me down pretty quickly.

Omaha's been a good learning experience, especially as far as timing. I'm seeing more and more the importance of shifting gears in tournaments, and doing it with force, given the situation. Sklansky touches on it briefly in TPFAP, focusing on smallest stack and next-to-smallest stack play, but it definitely extends farther. I feel like I'm developing better radar, picking my spots where I have to take a shot and walking away from the risks that just aren't necessary. Omaha brings that into sharp focus, given how quickly the nature and strength of hands can change, pre and post flop, and I think it's helping my NLHE game a good bit.

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