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New but in turmoil, am I awful or unlucky?

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  • New but in turmoil, am I awful or unlucky?

    Hi, I'm Dan, from the UK, only been playing for around 4 months since going to Vegas in January and reading the Little Green Book.

    I loved the first 2-3 months, I felt like I was following the rules of the Little Green Book, and learning all the time, just playing live, real life tournaments mostly, and finishing in the middle, but getting closer and closer to the last 10-20 spots.. then I had 1 week where I finished 3rd, 6th, and 4th – taking home around £650 total – great, back to even I thought, made some real progress, and all in just 3 months – the future is bright!

    Since then I have been in turmoil. I have played some cash and had my ass handed to me. I have gone on tilt a lot in tournaments... typically what will happen is I play tight for 3 hours, build my stack from 12k to 18k perhaps, then raise in position with ok cards, but get re-reaised but only double, I have to call... I put more money in during the flop and turns and lose, or I get “valued” into a hand I don't want to be in, for more money than I want to play... then suddenly I'm back down to 10k, below average stack and looking at either being able to play 1 or 2 hands before I am properly short stacked and have to just sit and wait to push... but then I'd rather push early and double up than chipping away down to 3k... but I always seem to get callers... against my low pairs, against Kjs in position... always with an ace that comes on the flop for them...

    But when I'm not on tilt :P I think I play quite well, but Id say my real weakness is overvalueing my strong cards – KK, QQ, AK, or top pair on a “nothing” board (and someone has a set / 2 pair), or relating to this then getting “blind” and just having to bet my KK or call when there is so much danger on the board... I really struggle to put good cards down...

    Here's some examples:

    1. I have KK Pockets. I raise before flop, I get called.
    flop comes down 8,q,k, all spades. I check, he bets, I call.
    turn comes A. He bets, I push him all in He calls.
    He has pocket Aces. Here I raised him as I didn't respect him, and didn't want to be bullied when I have an overpair...

    2. Pocket Kings.
    Seat 6 raises, seat 8 re-raises. I push all in.
    Seat 6 calls. So does seat 8. (I'm seat 1, in position)
    I reveal pocket KK, seat 6 has pocket AA. He wins, seat 8 slopes off into the night.
    Background - A real life cash game at £1-2. I sat down with £120 over the last 45 minute I have built up to £500 - with 2 big hands of £100 all in each, and £200 all in each coming from seat coming to me from seat 8. In this hand seat 6 was on his first hand of the table. I figure he is just announcing his arrival with a raise and playing the first hand and don't really expect him, or anyone to call me all in £450 shove.... except seat 8 - he will call me with anything it seems, and I know I have him beat... that was my logic anyway.

    3. Pocket Queens
    In on the button, one limper round to me, I raise to £10, small blind raises to £25. I "think", then call. (I have £90 remaining)
    Flop comes down 6,8,9 rainbow.
    He bets 20, I raise to 60, he pushes me all in.
    He has pocket KK.

    Under all of these circumstances I just don't know what to think of my play - am I unlucky, did I do the right thing? I probably didnt play the hands perfectly, but you should be aggressive with strong cards right? But aggression does no good when they have dominating hands right? Or did I play these terribly? Did I totally overvalue my cards (too early?)? ... maybe, but im also really sick of checking with the nuts to trap people, then finally betting on the river and having people fold...

    I hear so much about being aggressive... that aggressive poker is winning poker, that you have to be aggressive to win... but it seems that when I really am overly aggressive it dosn't work out for me... or am I picking my spots wrong?

    I have also just bought Tri Nguyen's Poker Blueprint... Ideally I would like to learn some really solid, tight play that I can take to a low limits cash game and really play 1000s of hands... free from tournament poker where the different stages of the game make play vastly different from each other...

    Grr, any input is greatly appreciated (please feel free to be as brutal as you want, I don't need / want sugarcoating if you think I'm terrible - I'd rather know.... please educate this fish... If I am a fish? ).

    Many thanks,

  • #2
    2 and 3 you just got unlucky. Almost everyone would bust in those situations.

    hand 1, you have to be very wary when 3 spades hit the flop (can be beat by a flush). I would not have pushed there unless I turn my hand into a full house.

    That's the only one of those hands I'd have gotten off of.

    6 Time Bracelet Winner


    • #3
      Hey Dan, welcome to the pso and the forum. Just a note...and I know this is your first post so don't worry about it, but I would put this in the hand analysis forum for better response. I would guess most players don't visit the new members forum very often. Maybe a mod will move this there. But if not..go ahead and post there your hands again and you should get some more feedback. Beyond that...take your time and know that poker is a never ending journey. Sounds like you're off to a good start. umbup: Let us know if you have any questions and best o' luck!


      • #4
        Sounds like your just running unlucky / bad variance. Anytime you have KK/QQ and get beat by pocket As/KK etc is just unlucky, nobody can get away from it.

        The first hand with the 3 spades I wouldnt have played so aggressively, you dont say but I assume he probably had A spades so he is always going to bet/call the nut 1 card flush with pocket As and feel comfortable. When he bet the flop I slow right down suspecting at the very least the A spades in his hand and see what develops. If he had shoved the turn I probably would reluctantly fold. Its a tough fold though.

        To get alot of experience / hands - maybe you should play some online. You can go thru 1000 hands there in a couple days with no sweat. I go thru 20-30k hands a month online. Great for building experience.



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