Archive for July, 2010

Next Steps Await

Wednesday, July 21st, 2010

I’m finally winding down from the WSOP. It was certainly a frustrating Series for me, but I have to admit that following the updates for the Main Event was pretty exciting. Sure, it’s always tough when we, as poker players, are not still in the tournament, but when the November Nine gets close, it’s fun to keep up with the live reporting. And now, a final table with Michael ‘The Grinder’ Mizrachi? How great is that? I can’t wait to see how it all plays out in November! A Big Congrats to ‘The Grinder’!

I do want to take a minute to thank everyone at the WSOP for the improvements this year and making everything convenient, roomy, and smooth. (Can I just suggest that the air conditioning be turned down a bit next year? It was freezing in that Pavilion Room some days! Brrr!) And thanks to all of the reporters and photographers who told the story of poker for seven weeks and worked their butts off! Go home and get some rest, people. 😉

Chilipoker has just announced a new addition to the team. I’d liked to welcome Rohin Malhotra (former CEO of WorldPokerTour) who will be joining our Management Team starting Sept 1, 2010. He brings diverse experience across global media and gaming markets and will play a key role in helping develop Chilipoker internationally, establishing media, telecom, and casino partnerships in regulated and new markets. Glad to have him aboard.

I’ve had almost two weeks to rest up after the tournaments, and I’m starting to feel like things are back to normal again. Jace is doing great, and though he still requires medication, he’s feeling so much better and even more loving of a cat than he was before! I appreciate all of the positive thoughts and feelings sent our way this summer.

So, what do I do now? There are quite a few decisions I need to make in the coming days and weeks. I have several options of places to go. First is Vietnam, as I always find peace in the praying ceremony for my dad and doing the charity work that allows me to give back to my country and people who are suffering. (Side note: If I don’t do that now, I will arrange a trip before the end of the year.) Second, is Kenya because I’ve been wanting to go on a wild safari trip for about three years but haven’t found the time. Being adventurous and seeing a different part of the world might be great for me right now. And lastly is India because of my meditation and search for peaceful places. Spending some time in India would help my meditation techniques and give me the time to be more spiritual, where no one knows me and I can simply focus on the tranquility that I need in my life.

Let me know what you think! I have to make those travel plans in the coming days and weeks, so any input would be helpful.

For now, I’m going to hold off on setting my full tournament schedule, though my next tournaments will be the WSOP Europe, EPT London, and Chilipoker’s WPT Marrakech events. Now it’s all about relaxation and getting in a more peaceful frame of mind. I hope everyone else has settled down from the WSOP and enjoying your summers!

Cheers!

The WSOP is a Wrap

Sunday, July 11th, 2010

Well, that didn’t go as planned. 😉

My WSOP Main Event started on Wednesday with Day 1C. I bought in earlier in the week, so I entered the Rio on my starting day ready to go. I started with 30K chips and won a few small pots early, chipping up to 41K by the end of the second level. No big hands at that point.

(photo courtesy of Pokernews.com)

Before dinner, I was in a big hand with A-Q in the small blind. On a flop of A-3-5, I checked, Seat 5 bet 1100, and I called. On the J turn, Seat 5 bet again, and I check-raised to 5200, which he called. The 6 came on the river, and Seat 5 bet 9000. I check-folded, as as he was a pretty tight, solid player that didn’t play many hands or chased many flops. so it was quite obvious I was beat when he smooth called my raise on the turn. I felt good about my laydown. But by the dinner break, I had 33,500 chips and had to do something.

I had a busy but relaxing dinner break, as I went home to feed Jace, then met up with Shannon Elizabeth and some other friends for sushi. I returned to the Rio for the last levels, won a few decent sized pots, and moved into the next level with 64K. One of those pots happened when the ESPN cameras were on my table filming so the player tried to play overly aggressive against me. Which it didn’t work out too well for him as he later said, “I bullied the wrong lady!” He got that right!

That put me above average, and I ended the day with 70,050 chips. I felt good, but physically I was struggling. I was already dealing with a head cold that made me sound rather stuffy, but the Pavilion room where I sat on Day 1 was absolutely freezing! I had to buy a WSOP hoodie jacket at one point and I felt like I was playing poker in Alaska. 😉

(photo courtesy of WSOP.com)

I came back for Day 2A on Friday with that solid 70,050 stack, but I couldn’t get anything going. I was also still sick from the day before but didn’t want cold medicine to get in the way of my concentration. But I had troubles with the cards themselves. The first big pot I lost was with pocket sevens UTG on a 2-5-6 flop, but my opponent in the big blind with 2-6 offsuit moved all-in for 21K on the flop after my raise. I mucked. The next big hand was with A-J. My opponent in Seat 3 had A-Q, and the board was A-4-6-7-K. I lost 19K on that pot and was down to 44K.

(photo courtesy of Pokernews.com)

Then the last hand happened. It was in the middle of Level 5 when I looked down at A-Q. I limp called under the gun, two other players called, and the button raised 4600. I pushed all-in with my last 30K, most players got out of the way, and the button called with A-K. The board came A-A-J-6-blank, and that was the end of my Main Event. Overall a very frustrating day!

I left the Rio thinking about how bad I ran on Day 2, getting no hands, dealing with a cold that was getting worse by the hour, and finding out that the official reporting of my bustout hand was wrong. Of course, I arrived home to the loving purring of Jace, and he listened to all of my poker hands. He really does like bad beat stories. LOL!

I try to stay positive as much as I can, but this was a frustrating WSOP! I played quite a few events and only came close to cashing once. In all the tournaments I entered I felt I played well, but I just couldn’t get a rush going and lady luck simply wasn’t on my side. There were many other poker pros who had the same kind of WSOP, and it just isn’t any fun. 🙁

Now it’s time for a break. I have to settle some things non poker related that have been weighing heavily on my mind for weeks. And I need to get healthy again, rest up, and eventually take a look at the tournament schedule for the rest of the year. The WPT is announcing some things today, I would like to go back to my home in London and play the WSOP Europe and EPT London events, and there are many more things on the agenda. But for now, I can’t think about poker for a few days…maybe a few weeks. I understand the ups and downs of poker as well as anyone because I’ve been playing for so many years, but sometimes a break is the best thing to get in the right mindset.

For my friends still in the WSOP Main Event, I wish them the best of luck! I’ll be watching it play out while I get some much needed rest.

Cheers!

Fun Away From the Tables, Readying for the Main Event

Saturday, July 3rd, 2010

It’s been awhile since I blogged, but it’s also been a pretty rough WSOP for me. There’s not much to talk about when I bust out of a tournament on Day 1, which happened more than I wanted. I had very high hopes coming into the Series this year, and despite my efforts and how many events I played, I had trouble getting anything going. I had rough luck with cards, and things just didn’t go my way.

(photo courtesy of Hugues ‘Def’ Fournaise)

The good news? The Main Event is almost here! I’m planning on playing Day 1C on Wednesday, and I’m very ready for it. I’ve been working on the meditation, and I’ve tried to let go of the bad beats and discouraging tournaments that already happened. Those are in the past. Things happen in poker, and they don’t always go my way. I know this better than many pros because of my many years in the business. And the Main Event is a new tournament, a new opportunity, and I’m ready!

I do want to thank everyone who has asked through Facebook and Twitter about Jace, my sweet boy. He’s been feeling better and finally taking to the medicines. We’re still visiting the vet to make sure he’s on the right track, but he’s a strong little guy and continues to lift my spirits and give me so much joy. 🙂

And in the midst of the WSOP madness over the past few weeks, I did take the time to do something super fun! My girl Shannon Elizabeth and I decided we needed a release from the poker stress, so we went on a secret mission to a gun range and shot all kinds of guns! From pistols to machine guns, we did it all with the help of the great staff there. So much fun! And the PokerListings crew came along to film it and put together this great video of our fun experience:

I’m very excited for the Main Event, and I can’t wait to get started and see how many thousands of people show up. I hope it’s a great year for it, and I’m glad to be a part of it. Good luck to everyone playing, and I’ll see you at the WSOP tables this week!

Have a great holiday weekend everyone!

Cheers!