As I said last week I have been trying to read poker books and learning as much about strategy and how to properly play the hands I am getting. When I play tournament poker my first goal is to get to the final table. When you get to that elusive final 10 seats anything can happen. You start to play more hands in position and of course you have to start playing more hands because the blinds are so high at this point. You start looking at the short stacks and either work on taking them out or trying to play heads up with them with the best hand.
I find it very hard to sit through a tournament and then try to write about the hands that I received and how I played them. Sometimes it is better for me to write about the evening and some of my thoughts on how I did. How did I attack the table, so to speak. I didn't mention it last week but when I sat down at the table I was uneasy. I almost felt scared to be there. Was I not learning anything and should I give it up. I was almost afraid to play the hands dealt to me.
This week I went in with a different attitude. I felt better. I wanted to be there. There were about 30 people signed up for this tournament. I did draw the #1 seat at my table. I have never liked sitting next to the dealer. I can't see the players on the other side and I can't tell when to play my hand. I am forced to pay more attention when I am in this seat. Maybe that isn't a bad idea as well. I started winning hands tonight as well. I did raise a few times and I even got the chip leader to sort of lecture me on how I am supposed to play my hands and how I am supposed to raise the pot. A few times tonight he would look at me and tell me he couldn't call me because he couldn't figure out what I had. He didn't want to take the chance.
Well, I did make it to the final table tonight. I even made it with a good share of chips. I had enough I could wait on a few good hands and wait for position. At the final table tonight I came in 5th place. Out of 30 people that made me feel a whole lot better about how I was playing. When I was out of the tournament one of the players looked over at me and told me that I played well tonight and that I am one of the scariest people to play against. They couldn't figure out what I was playing. Again I had the chip leader at the table second guessing himself. He would not play against me even though he was chip leader.
I must say that I am a conservative player but when I do play a hand I will play it through if I get the cards I need on the flop. I did throw away pocket pairs tonight. I even laid down AK when it just didn't look good. I played Pocket Q's and won with them. I was able to get a flush tonight. I laid down hands that would have given me straights if I would have played them. Again, I tried to keep the table guessing at what I might have. What would I play. I have learned I never show my hand unless I have to.
Well, back to the books for the week. How do I play post flop? I do need to improve on that skill. Just like golf when you think you might have it you got to keep practicing. Maybe even start doing a little bit more online play to see more hands. I know it is different but seeing the hands could help a little bit on strategy.
Back to having fun.