March 27th, 2014
'Fixing Flaws in your Game"

I wish I was a better poker player.

I played in 2 local poker tournaments and I found a few flaws in my game that I am not sure I can fix. I will save you the horror stories, but will look at the jest of both hands.

Tournament #1: 6 handed with 11 players left, blinds 1500-3000 with 200 ante. Players 3,4,5 fold to me on the button. With AA I make it 10k to go, the going rate, hoping to look like a button steal and the big blind calls. My read on her is that she is a solid player, does not bluff much, and I have never seen her be the aggressor. Flop comes 5-8-10 and being first to act she goes all in and we are about equal in chips. Now, I know she has a set. I just know it, but wait. She could have JJ or QQ and figure me for AK or an out right steal. But wait, I have never seen her be the aggressor and she is a very solid player. She has to have a set, right? No, she has a bigger pair than the board and figured me for AK. That has to be the answer, right? I call and she has a set of 5's. I say nice hand, good playing with you all and good luck. I suck!

Tournament #2: 7 handed with 22 players left, blinds at 400-800. Player 4 (loose, aggressive, and 2nd in chips at the table) raises to 2,600. I call from the cut off (3rd in chips) with AJ suited and the small bind (aggressive, ATC loose, and 1st in chips) calls. 6-8-10 all hearts. I flop the 2nd nuts, small blind shoves, and #4 snap calls. WHAT!?!?!?!?!?!?! Holly $#!^. Now, I know at least 1 of them has a set. Truthfully, they could be anywhere...a set, 2 pair, straight, smaller flush. Not to mention the 7, 9 of hearts for a straight flush. I cant let it go. I know in my heart that my flush is not going to survive, but I cant let it go. I call and #1 has a set of 6's, #4 has a set of 10's. Yeah!! I got it in good. Now, 8 on the turn, 6 on the river. Nice hands guys, good playing with you all and good luck. Sound familiar??

Looking back ,I should have folded the A's. I knew she had me beat and my diligent study of her past behavior told me so. But my starry eyes could not let the hand go. Now, the flush I just dont know. I mean really?? I felt like I was going to get beat and I guess that has to count for something. But if you are not going to get your chips in with the best hand what is the point of playing, right? Listen, we all have leaks and as far as leaks go these are not bad. But still, both times I KNEW I was beat and got my chips in and my tournament life ended none the less. So somehow, some way, I have to fix this. Right?

Lucky flops and safe rivers my friends.
R. Scott Dinsmore

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