Monday, October 11, 2004

Random Vic festival thoughts...

First dibs must go to John Shipley for winning the big event. He is that very rare beast, a very, very good player and a really good bloke. He took a ridiculous amount of flak after making the final table of the WSOP a couple of years ago, almost all of it from poker players who could never have made the final and were jealous. And the hand he got most abuse about anyway was probably only a marginal mistake anyway. He was up against a complete idiot, who had already several times gone allin with very weak holdings and John could easily have the dominating hand when he called Robert Varkonyi's bet with AJ.

Who cares anyway now? John has got the lot and I'm chuffed for him.

There is a monster row going on right now on the Mob forum about the length of the levels in the big event. Personally I would have preferred hour levels, but 45 minutes should have been ok.

I say "should" have been ok because a worrying trend seemed to be establishing itself during the event. Players were dwelling up to a ridiculous extent seemingly on every hand.

One hand particularly springs to mind. With about 6 tables left and blinds of 500-1000 I limped under the gun. Paul Zimbler with about 25,000 made it 5,000 to play. Noah Boeken called (He had about 70,000). Passed back to me and I reraised 10,000 (leaving myself another 10,000). Now we had the think-a-thons. I never know what people think about for ages, when raised with a preflop raise. Surely you know within 5 seconds what you are going to do. Paul must have thought for about 4 minutes. Which is ok in itself I suppose, but after he passed Noah then spent 5 more minutes dwelling up. Now come on! Surely while Paul was thinking Noah could have decided what he was going to do afterwards. Paul passing was hardly a surprise. All in all I guess about 15% of the complete level was pent on that hand. Ridiculous.

Noah is clearly going to be some player. He is very young and is already a fearsome opponent. But, he is going to get up alot of people's noses with his behaviour unless he tones it down. When he is in a big pot he reacts very noisily and ungeltlemanly to his fortune whether good or bad. I hope he grows up soon.

The tournament itself was a case of "so near so far" for me. I felt like I played ok. I had a very nice starting table including a journo from Time Out, and at least four very soft spots and two total rocks. I got moved to a couple of much more testing tables but fared ok. I reached over 50 grand with 4 tables left, but made a couple of bad plays on the blinds with a Norwegian guy and then lost a huge pot with QQ v KK. Still, it was pleasing to play at something approaching my best for such a long time.


Blogger Harry Demetriou said...

Having only played a couple of times with John Shipley in single table satelittes in Vegas can't say that I know him that well.

However what struck me about him was that he was very good at focusing on the task at hand and there could be little or no doubt that he was/is a more than decent player. As such I have no doubt that he deserved his victory and is a worthy champion.

As for his knockers at the WSOP for a play a couple of years ago all decent poker players know that just because you find yourself behind from time to time doesn't make you a bad player.

Nobody plays perfectly but as I have said many times in the past you have to be prepared to back your judgement regardless of the subsequent outcome.

The day you lack confidence to back that judgement is the day you revert to the level of novice as No Limit Poker is all about backing your judgement.

As for The Vic 45 min clock...I wasn't there and cannot comment...but feel that it should in theory have been OK. Perhaps you've hit the nail on the head in that the style of play has now changed with regard to time taken to reach a decision. Personally I take my time over every decision but cannot imagine for one moment that it would ever take me more than 1 minute at any stage of a tournament but there will always be the once in a blue moon decision that may require longer.

2:18 AM  
Blogger Andy_Ward said...

At a completely different level, this was something I noticed in the smaller comps ($50 and $100 in Binions) last time I was in the US. People were taking far too long over their decisions. There were quite a few people who took 10-15 seconds to do ANYTHING, including fold pre-flop. And how you can sit and think for a minute and then call a pre-flop raise for 1/3 of your chips with Q3 .... I mean how long does it take to think "I'm a fish and I've got a Queen" ?

Monkey see monkey do I'm afraid. Television and lack of consideration for other people makes a powerful combination.


10:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Whilst I haven't played with Noah live I have played with and talked to him a lot online and he's a very nice guy. I doubt Marcel would have much time for a classless individual. As for reactions at the table, perhaps its simply a cultural thing. What flies in Vegas might appear extremely rude in London. What is acceptable behaviour on the continent is perceived as insulting and outrageous over here. If no ill will is intended then I find it hard to take offence (and yes, I have been on the receiving end of similar outbursts). In which case, I guess the principle to follow is "When in Rome..." But British people have never been the best at adhering to this standard, have they?
Frankly, I find the people who win their pots with no show of emotion and then critique the play of their opponents either in a stage whisper to their neighbour or even to their beaten foe far more obnoxious than some guy flexing his muscles or yelling to celebrate and relieve the buildup of nervous tension.


3:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I am the Norwegian mentioned towards the end of this entry, and I wouldn't say you played the hands badly.

One one of them, in particular, you tried a move, and that time it didn't work as planned. That happens sometimes, and if it had worked, you would have felt (and rightly so) very good about the play.

I guess my point is, that the end result isn't always a good indicator of how good a decision at the table is.

Keep blogging, as I told you in London, I enjoy it very much.



5:53 AM  
Blogger The Camel said...

Hi Baard,

Glad you enjoy the blog.

The second hand in particular was the one which annoyed me. You had already shown your unwillingness to give way if you felt someone was on a steal, and I had no business trying to make a move on someone who had me outchipped about 3 to 1..

Oh well, live and learn...

Congratulations on an excellent result.

See you soon,


10:59 AM  

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