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JHDSS Main Event

The Joe Hachem Deep Stack Series Main Event is one of my favourite events of the year.  For a $550 buy-in you get a 3 day event, a decent enough structure, a pretty soft field and a pretty good prize pool.  I’ve played it twice for a 25th and a bubble, so I was pretty keen to get an opportunity to play again this time around.

I played Day 1b, with the mindset that I had a second shell to fire with the repechage on Saturday should I feel like playing again.

I arrived at my table to find Mat Hawker on my left and had to chuckle when I saw Nobbi Tanaka sit down to my right.  After some fun times against Nobbi in the 6-handed event, it would be nice to have position on him today.  I didn’t know anyone else at the table but there were a couple of faces that I’d seen before.

There was one Asian guy who decided he wanted to be table captain as he lagged it up pretty early.  I made a nice call down against him with ace-queen on a scary board, pretty early when he triple barrelled.  A few minutes later I gave some back when I called with KT on an AKx22 board.  It was a limped pot and I was in the small blind. The flop was checked, I check-called turn and river.  I knew he wouldn’t bluff me twice in a row, so I should’ve folded the river.  But I paid him off and he showed 2T – the only way he could win was with running deuces.  Sigh.

Nobbi was continually iso’ing the limptards, so I was trying to find a good spot to punish him for it.  When the cutoff limped, and Nobbi raised the button, I decided I was going to three-bet the small blind with any two cards.  I looked down at Kd7d which seemed reasonable enough.  It was 100/200 and he iso’d to 700.  I made it 2,100 but he came back over the top to 5,100.  My instinct was that he’s so full of shit, so often, that the right play would be to basically shove on him here with my entire range.  But I decided it was early enough to let it go.  It’s disappointing as my instincts were right, but I was just outplayed as Nobbi later told me he had Q7.

I lose a chunk of chips with pocket deuces on a baby board when I fold river, and next hand I find AQ under the gun and raise it up.  Mat Hawker is next to act and he three bets me.  I respect Mat’s game and he had been pretty solid up until this point.  I haven’t played with him before, and I know he grinds solidly online, but I guess I assumed his style was probably similar to my own.  I don’t often raise a full ring table light from UTG, so I wouldn’t normally 3-bet myself pretty light.  I didn’t want to call and play OOP, so I let it go.  He later told me he had As7s.  Owned again.  Sigh.

I didn’t find too many spots over the next few levels with my opens getting three-bet and my c-bets getting check-raised.  It was just one of those days where nothing stuck.  I was down to around 15BBs when Nobbi opened the cutoff and I shoved KdQd from the button.  He called with Ah8d and I spiked a queen on the flop, only for an ace to crush me on the river.

I was pretty frustrated but the next day, decided that it was worth raising some funds to take another shot.  Day 1c was the complete opposite to Day 1b.  I had a super-soft table full of nits, with Julian Cohen the only solid player on the table.  I had a Scandi on my left who was pretty bad, Michael Haddad who was good fun as usual but donked his chips off, and the rest were fish.

I called the Scandi down with ace-high in a blind versus blind and he showed queen-high, and I made a couple of other nice reads/calls to chip up a bit in the early stages.  With the blinds at 100/200, I opened to 525 with pocket kings and the Scandi called before Haddad moved all in (without looking at his cards) for around 5,000.  A nit in the big blind then moved all in for about 13k.  I wasn’t thrilled but I was never folding.  Scandi folded, Haddad showed Q4 and the nit had TT.  40k pot and of course the fkn ten hits the flop.  I was back down to 13k but kept chipping away.  I got a lot of good raising hands like QJ and KT in late position, and they just kept letting me steal their blinds.  Unfortunately the antes hadn’t yet kicked in, but I was happy to chip up and keep the table guessing.

Three times I raised with small pocket pairs, hit baby flops, and got called by fish with nothing but overcards.  Twice they hit their six outer, and the other, I called a guy down who had king-queen-high.  However everytime I’d chip up, I’d have something go wrong and get knocked back down.  I rivered two pair in a pot against a fish who already had a bigger two pair.  I thought for a moment about donk value-betting the river but I checked and for some reason he checked behind to thankfully save me some chips.  I then had pocket queens and had to fold on the river to heavy action on an ace-high board.

A failed bluff attempt against a super-nit put me back down to around 8,000 when I picked up AA in the big blind.  Two limps at 200/400/50 and I made it 1,200.  They both called and the flop was 678.  I bet, got check-raised, shoved and he snapped with 9T.  Game over.

I learnt a lot on Day 1b on a tough table, while there was nothing I could do on Day 1c after having AA, KK and QQ all cracked.  It’s been a tough few months poker wise, so I’ll be taking a little break with a few events coming up that I’ll be working at.  Hopefully a little run-good is around the corner.

However the week wasn’t a lost cause as I was able to rail Josh “procession” Bell onto 3rd place in the Main Event.  Well done mate!

Next stop Perth!

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