I am happy, and more than a little relieved, to have done well in March. If you recall, I tilted in February. Since then, I have been focusing on the basics and getting back on track. The only negative issue with March was that I didn’t get to play as much Zoom as I had hoped. There were several promotions running early in the month stealing my cash tabling time, and then Easter break. Sun and fun in the mountains snowboarding with the family was fantastic. Although it did result in an all-expenses-paid, five day vacation in the hospital. Lying there with a morphine infused brain allowed for some deep, meditative reflection. Among other things, I learned that I missed poker and PSO more than smoking! I haven’t had a cig in over a week Not to mention, my son was quite happy to inherit my snowboard gear. Enough about that, let’s get back to poker and the details from March.



WBCOOP and MicroMillions were fun, but I didn’t get rich in any of those. Congratulations once again to EvokeNZ! Read my previous posts if you want the WBCOOP details.

Omaha tourneys. If you haven’t taken the PSO Omaha Quiz, I strongly suggest you do so. The free tickets are great. The game is fun. And most importantly, the competition is soft, especially in the new variants such as Courchevel!

I took 2nd in the very first Courchevel tourney I played. It was 48 man turbo. I also played a handful of Rush tourneys on FullTilt. I cashed in several and took 2nd in one. No big scores, but ok for the ROI.

Cash Tables
I tried to win a Milestone hand while that promo was running at the start of the month, but no love. I did play one session of 20 tables at 10NL and 16NL! That was fun and I actually ended up making about two bucks. However, this level of multitabling is not something that I would like to do every day. I didn’t play any hands at higher stakes this month.

I played 13K hands of 25NL Full Ring Zoom. I made some good plays and bad plays, but the month as a whole went great. Once again, I didn’t quite reach my $500 monthly profit goal, but I was way ahead of my daily average for the days I played.  A few have asked about my stats. So, here are some numbers for March.


Most of my improvement this month has been small tweaks and incremental adjustments. The better I become at postflop play, the wider an opening range I am using preflop. When I first started Zooming I was a Rock. I slowly opened my range becoming ABC. Now, I am slowly gravitating from being an ABC player and a TAG. Regardless, I still stick to my same basic principles though.

Roland's Zoom approach

I look for spots that offer a clear line, rather than simply a theoretical +ev spot.


For example, let’s say I’m in the big blind. It folds around to a reg who raises from the btn and a weaker player calls from the sb. I will fold a hand such as A9o. I may well have the best hand preflop, but I find A9o very difficult to play post flop with such a weak kicker. Rather than getting involved in an unclear situation, I just fold.

If I had a hand such as A5s, I would call in this spot and treat it as a speculative hand. The straight and flush possibilities make this much hand much easier for me to play than the A9o hand, even though the A9 hand is actually “stronger”. If I get a good draw great, I’ll play aggressively. If I flop a pair I might bet, but I won’t risk too much of my stack with “just a pair”, whether it be the A or the 5 that has hit.

If I have a hand such as A10s or AJs+, I am now more apt to 3-bet preflop. (Note 3-betting or flatting is a bit villain dependant.) This usually wins the hand, but again, I get very careful postflop if I get called. The advantage of 3-betting is that it usually gets at least one opponent to fold. Playing post flop in a read based situation is much easier against one opponent than against multiple.

I take the same approach in hands that I open. Let’s say I’m in the CO and it folds around to me. I fold hands such as A9o because I find them difficult to play post flop. Whereas, I would open with a hand such as 67s. This is a good example of where my opening range is widening. A few months ago I would have wanted 10Js to open from the CO. As I improve my postflop play, primarily through my ranging abilities, I can confidently play a wider range of hands from this position.

In other words, I try to play hands that have the potential for more than just top pair, or high card. I want to play spots where I can hit a set, a straight or a flush because these are the spots where I can confidently play for stacks. Hitting a pair, but no draws, as would always be the case with A9o, still gives me a plan B to fall back on, but it is not my main line. I focus on pot control when this happens.

This is a general description of my overall approach to cash tables (and all Omaha games..) However, I found I needed to add in two extra elements before it became successful: opponent stack sizes and stats.

I try to avoid playing against short stacks. They tend to get all in too quickly. This leads to too many all in spots than I am comfortable. Again, I sacrifice, potentially +ev spots by doing this. Yet, I don’t care for all the variance inherent in these 60/40 spots. I prefer to take a safer route. On the other hand, I will gladly call a preflop UTG raise from a deep stacked Rock if I’m holding a speculative hand, because the implied odds are so good if I hit.

Secondly, opponent stats can have a big impact on the hands I play AND how I choose to play them. For example,  I will fold my 67s mentioned above if one of the blinds has a highl 3-bet%. On the other hand, I will steal from the sb with ATC against an tight bb.

All in all this approach seems to be working for me. Yet, if I get overly aggressive, I can still lose a stack or two quite fast. I need to constantly work on improving my game (allowing me to play more hands) while staying on the sweet spot I seem to have found. This has not been very easy, but it has been very fun!

Goals for April
* I want to get in at least 20K hands of 25NL Zoom. Hopefully I can have a big month both volume-wize and profit-wize...

* Keep watching videos and posting hands for analysis. Hand analysis is my favorite. I continue to learn so much from feedback on my own thoughts, as well as, reading how others (esp. Dave and Gareth) approach Zoom hands.

* Keep improving my Zoom game! Rather than getting complacent, the more I learn, the more I see the complexity of the game, and how much I don’t know. This entices me to work even harder at improving.

Good luck in April!

Roland GTX