Friday, 27 April 2012

Recovery. PLO8. Progression.

When Paul Jackson offered me the chance to stick with it at BRS, but on less demanding volume related terms, I started to give more focus to my PLO8 MTT game, and for a while this became my exclusive game of choice. I had found reasonable success on occasion in the past playing PLO8 MTTs, but probably only because I had slightly more clue than the multitude of clueless players out there. I was winning, and that was important for confidence, as well as for the recovery of my P&L.

One night, having busted a tourney from a decent position, and missed the money, I got a pretty intense email from Paul telling me just how badly I had played a hand, and how my starting hand range needed some serious review. It was at that point that I decided to try and really learn the game properly, and spent some considerable time reading strategy articles, exploring forums for hand reviews (not that many around for PLO8 though), and attending sessions with an experienced PLO8 mentor.

I know my game improved dramatically, although I still have moments of stupidity. It seems that to win regularly at PLO8 in online low stakes MTTs, one does not have to be a complete master of the game, but simply to play a tight conservative range, to play cautiously, and to just stay one step ahead of the masses of morons who frequent these tourneys. In Holdem MTTs, over a large sample, I figure I can hold my own to some extent, and am probably better than half the players out there.... however that means that the other half of players out there are better than me. In any given Holdem MTT online at the $10 type stakes, there will be a mix of morons, good players, and experts, and lately the bar seems to be rising steadily - there are still gamblers and bad players around, but the standard of play is generally increasing, and the good players getting better. In a PLO8 MTT, in my opinion, 90% of players lean more toward the moronic end of the spectrum, with less good players around, and very few experts, and that makes the game so much more beatable.

Playing PLO8 MTTs on iPoker and MicroGaming every night, tends to mean the same players show up with regularity - both good and bad players, and the fields are much smaller than Holdem MTTs, therefore it becomes much easier to build up player profiles and to stack up decent hand histories on players. Profits this year are far healthier than they've been for some time - from $3k down to $2k up. It was a pretty good feeling in March to actually get paid at the end of the month - that's not happened for a while!

I don't much like the downswing that's come in April, but on reflection and review, I know with some degree of certainty that it's come mostly from running bad rather than playing bad, and I have every faith that it will recover again.

Live exploits at the latest APAT event in Coventry were going really well, until a massive call preflop with 88 against a 30xBB shove - based on reads, and actually pinpointed his hand to 55/66/77 - went unrewarded after he showed 77 and outflopped me. Next live outing is in late May, with a trip to Cardiff for the next APAT leg. Looking forward to it already.

Big night out tonight with BCPC as we play out the live final of the BCPC Premier League III, for which I have qualified as joint chip leader. During the league format, over ten rounds, I manage to finish 2nd on five occasions - seems there is a trend with my headsup game that I need to review and attend to! That said, was chuffed to finish so high on so many occasions in a field of pretty strong players.

A couple of seats for major events picked up recently as well, having won a satellite for the Genting Tour for a £430 main event seat (the one I was supposed to play in January, but will now play Sheffield in November), a Genting seat won through BRS which will be played at the Stoke leg in August, and a £220 seat for coming fourth in the latest BCPC season - no sure where to play that yet though.

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