Poker has been pretty rough for me for the past few weeks, the pro's refer to this time as a "downswing" some even say its just the "variance" kicking in I would just describe it as "doing my brains". I certainly have not have had the rub of the green (to use another analogy) but I did not play well either if I'm honest.
This has been more so online than than live, I lost all the key pots I played live which included three trips to the Macau Club in Cork two trips to the UK and one to Riga in Lativa.
At the UKIPT in Newcastle I played too many hands in the main event and bled some chips away before busting in a hand I could have folded. Then I played what I though was very well in a tough £1500 side event before busting on the exact bubble shoving KQ into pocket three's for a big pot. I was unlucky to lose the flip but the truth is it was way to big a pot to play with KQ in my hand. It was equally way to big a pot for the villain to play with pocket 3's (he called my shove like he had AA) but that's very much beside the point.
On my other trip to the UK I played a GUKPT in the fantastic casino in the Ricoh stadium in Coventry, I don't remember making too many mistakes but I bust the main in disappointing fashion before going on to lose in a very soft cash game.
In Cork I just ran bad all three trips in the tournaments, I was chip leader in the Macau Classic with 9 left and finished 9th, played a pot for a top 3 stack with Gary Clarke at the Irish Poker Tour event in Cork with 15 left - his 77 beating my KK - he went on to get a large share of the chop and at the Betfair Live game last week I lost 3 big pots where I was a strong favourite the last one to bust AJ v KQ.
Riga was probably the worst , I had a big stack all through the tournament and as we approached the money I got it in for a 100 big blind pot with AK and the guy has Kings. That was bad enough but what compounded the pain was the beating I took in the cash games. I played in omaha games all over the UK & Ireland and a few parts of Europe but I have never seen the likes of what was going on over there. I fully felt I'd been robbed if I'm honest.
Loads of strange calls were made over the course of the night one that stands out is a guy calling €3k on the river with A,2,3,4, rainbow in his hand. the board was Q234Q with three spades. The guy who bet the €3k had A,6,7,8 with the A of spades. I believe the guy buffing was repping the loan ranger (on a paired board, I know lol) but how he calls is beyond me.
Whatever was going on I cant be sure, there was three guys in the game who knew how to play - they all lost heavy. Nothing I can do about it now but I'd advise anybody playing cash in the The Royal Casino in Riga to avoid the main game.
Aside from the trips away I've played very little live but what I have played was profitable, only a drop in the ocean compared to what I've lost of the road but at least it something back.
Its not all doom and gloom as the above might read like, outside of poker everything is going very well for me. Family life has never been better - we get the odd full nights sleep these days -and we are also very near finished the new house we've been building for four years. We should be moved in by the end of next month.
There is also still time to rectify this disaster of a poker year for me, the IPO IWF & EMOP are all on in Dublin over the next few weeks. A final table in any of these events would get me close to even for the year and a top three finish would get me in front. I believe I am well capable of doing the necessary in one of those but if I bust them all on the first day I wont panic - winning the WPT in January will be good enough :)
Myself and Jason often lock horns on matters away from the table, we seem to have different opinions on things on a regular basis and are both very vocal with those opinion's. One thing I will give the guy is he is super confidant and fully seems to believe that he is a a direct path to poker super stardom and who can disagree with him?
The other thing is the Irish Poker Awards nominations, my thoughts on all the nominations can be found here.
I will be trying to update this on a regular basis again - hopefully with some good news - good luck me!