Friday, January 26, 2007


Local Rocks

There were 3 or 4 players at the first table who were clearly locals who had won their ticket in satellites. Most of them were total rocks for the first few levels. Basically, I reckon they had told all their buddies how they were in the main event, but they did not want to have to tell them how they busted out in level 2. Some of them were capable of being stubborn with one pair if it wasn't for too much of their stack, so you couldn't push them around too much. Basically they were just wasting a seat for the most part, at least to start with. After a few levels though, they would split into two camps. Some would stay as rocks, presumably throughout the whole thing. There was one guy next to me on day one and day two after the redraw who pretty much doubled up early on (with the nut straight against the under-straight) and never played another hand. Of course he raised a few pots but no one would call him, and he didn't raise enough pots to maintain his stack, so he just drained them slowly away. I dare say a few of these guys will sneak into the money if they win enough all-ins once the blinds catch them up, or find like Aces v Kings a couple of times, and maybe one of them might limp into the final just because there are so many of them in the field, but effectively they have no chance of making the real top 3 money. If you must play like this in a big event then for goodness' sake at least take advantage of your image when the blinds rise.

Those in the other camp would either lose patience, take a bad beat and go on tilt, or reach some point where they felt that honour had been satisfied and they could loosen up. I made it to Day 2, or so and so was on my table but I outlasted him, something like that. It's important to realise when this happens because it can happen in an instant. The guy who knocked me off Aces had been banging on and on about how he wasn't going to commit all his chips without a big hand this early, blah blah blah. If it was an act then it was a very good one, nh wp, but I don't think it was. He was doing stuff like overbetting the pot and showing a set when everyone passed. Then he raised and a nutter reraised him all in for about 6K. He thought and thought, showed an Ace and passed. The dealer grabbed his hand and exposed the other card (as they are now instructed to do), a Jack. The nutter then showed an Ace too. Either this was a cunning ploy or he was a complete fucking idiot because obv the dealer grabbed his hand too and exposed the 4. The very next hand, hero raised pre-flop, was called in the blind, and pushed for 12K into a 2K pot on the Ace high flop. Tilt. Sheer and utter tilt. The blind (who was still in rock mode) showed AK and passed, the dork. Hero claimed AQ and I believed him. Do watch these guys carefully to see when they crack ; once they do, they will often pay you off all the way with a moderate hand, or make some strange pre-flop move that their hand doesn't merit.

So these guys aren't giving you a problem but while they're playing like a rock you just can't stack them without a big hand, and they need a big hand too. Then again there's only a small window in which you can bluff them for any decent sized pot because if they're even in a pot they have a good hand. And if you can't reasonably get more than a portion of their stack in they're still liable to call you down. Just don't pay them off early on and hope they're still around when the blinds rise because if they're still playing tight at that point, that's great. If they're on your right you'll get more shots to make the first raise, and if they're on your left they won't play back at you without a hand. Just be careful reraising them, because they won't steal too much from late position. I suspect that the guy I busted to might have been a rock ; I just hadn't been at the table long enough to be sure. In addition, be a bit warier about calling them down when they move in with a short stack. Many of them (especially the older players) will allow themselves to be blinded off indefinitely, and you can't put them on the same range that you or I would have with a short stack. Often they will drop their normal standards just a notch or two, so they'll still only have AJ/88+.

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