Posts Tagged ‘bellagio’

Back to Normality

Tuesday, October 14th, 2008

Has it really been two months since I posted here? Bad, bad Liz. I have to make this more of a habit. My posts at PokerListings work out pretty well, but I neglect my own site - not good at all!

A lot has happened in these last two months. I headed to Macau to play in the APT and APPT events there. I was hoping for a return to a Final Table or two but no luck. The APT was definitely the better run of the two events. They really took care of the poker players and made me feel special.

I headed to Hong Kong and had a great time with some of my friends as well as friends of Alex. Hong Kong is a real blast, and I hope I can get back there soon. I got a great new tattoo as well in Thailand. The artist used bamboo, which takes longer but I think is nicer. After my spiritual time in my homeland for my father’s ceremony, I wanted something really special. And it is.

For the last few weeks, I’ve been back in LA. And I’ve decided to spend more time back here in LA and Vegas. I just haven’t liked being so far away from friends and family, and I haven’t been a big fan of all the travel and hotels. I liked London, but I think ultimately I was just too alone there. Maybe I didn’t give it a good chance as I was hopping around all over Europe when I got there.

I’ve been spending time at the Commerce, and the cash games have been very juicy, real action games that play to my strength. Unfortunately, I’ve had a tough run last week. I’m proud of how I handled it, running away to Cabo with my girlfriends rather than getting caught up in the emotion of a big loss. All of the beautiful casinos of Las Vegas are built on that human emotion, the fear and frustration and anger of taking a big hit. I feel those same emotions, but I’ve built a thick skin that keeps me from tilting and lets me get through these sessions.

And what a great weekend it was with my girlfriends in Cabo. Cathleen, Jackie, and Tiffany have been my friends for so long. They are the ones who give me tough love through everything, through poker, through men, through tough family times. They are so close to me that they don’t fear speaking the truth as to what they see. They had planned on going with their families for awhile, and I wasn’t sure if I would make it or not. I’m very glad I did.

I spent lots of time sunning, just relaxing without thinking about too much. Saturday was a day of rough weather, so it was just a lot of lounging around plus a spa visit. I really feel rejuvenated after this trip, and I’m ready to hit the tables hard.

I’m going to be spending most of my time in cash games at Commerce when I’m in LA and at the Bellagio when I’m in Vegas. I’ll probably play the bigger tourneys, but I need to get back into grind mode for awhile.  I haven’t had the stamina to play the twenty and thirty-hour sessions, but I have felt better playing for ten or twelve hours at a time. I want to be sure I’m sharp and at my best, as I think the play has improved at the stakes I’m playing at.

I don’t want to promise that I’ll keep my blog up more here at LizLieu.net, but I promise it won’t be two months again until the next post. In fact, check back here as I hope to have a post up later this week from Vegas. Keep checking out my posts at PokerListings.com. Keep up the comments everywhere. I really love hearing from everyone.

Balancing Time During WSOP!

Friday, June 20th, 2008

Well, it’s been a great couple of weeks for me since I posted here last.  Thanks for stopping by, and I hope you’ve followed me on PokerListings as well as everywhere else you find poker news.

I’ve been mixing tournaments with cash games at the Bellagio.  I had my first WSOP cash this year (28th in the $2.5k NLHE event).  I played really well, but I would have loved to take down that bracelet (the $666,697 for first wouldn’t hurt either!).  So many pros going deep.  The bracelets are staying in the pro ranks, both the old-timers and the young studs.  There aren’t nearly as many soft spots as there have been in the past.  I guess the number of players is still as strong as last year, but the quality seems to be much deeper.  It is rare to not recognize someone at your table, unless you take a seat at a $1.5k NLHE donkament!

Cash games are going great for me.  Seven sessions:  one small loss, one break-even, and five winning sessions.  That is the plan, to win big and minimize the losing sessions.  The games have finally started to get a bit bigger at the Bellagio.  I played two sessions of $400/800, one with a $100 ante at Nick Shulman’s suggestion.  It included Hansu, Greg Mueller, Van Diesel, Jenifer Harman, Eddie Ting, and Minh Ly.  That group will definitely keep you on your toes, and it was nice to rack up more chips than I sat down with at a table like that.

I also got away from poker a bit.  I did some shopping at the Caesar’s stores (I miss, miss, miss shopping!).  They still remember me there, even though I’ve been gone basically for a year.  I had Zach, my PA, and one of his friends Alvin in town.  I think they had a great time—good food, seeing a show.  Vegas done right!  He and Alvin are sweethearts, and it was great to spend some time with them.

I also had my girlfriends in town from LA.  Seven hotties out on the town, taking the night by storm!  It was a crazy night, one big girls party.  I kept drinking Red Bull while they drank whatever they had that looked pretty similar to Red Bull (but with a different kick).  One of my girlfriends picked up the tab (we never ever let boys pay for things—GIRL POWER!).  Anyways, the girls chose to party at The Bank, one of the hot night clubs at Bellagio in Vegas, and the bill for the seven of us came out to $8600.  So my girlfriend asked what we tip. I told her it’s up to her, and she left $800 for the waitress and $400 was tipped to the busboys earlier in the night already.

So the waitress comes back with a response it’s not enough, that we needed to leave at least 10-20%.  I really have never had anyone come back with a tip and say it wasn’t enough. I thought it was outrageous. We ended up just laughing it off and leaving her $1000.

I missed being out with my girlfriends, just laughing and not thinking about anything.  This past year has been a year away from that, twelve months of being alone for the most part.  I’m not used to it, and I really loved being there with all my friends.

I’ll be playing a few more events before the Main Event, so keep checking here or PokerListings to see how I’m doing. I’m physically feeling great, so my sickness is behind me.  That and my friends are keeping me at my best, and I hope I can get even further at my next WSOP Event.  Ciao!

WSOP Begins…Game On!

Tuesday, June 3rd, 2008

I have neglected my own site.  I admit it. And I am sorry

Thanks so much to everyone who has been so kind during my illness.  It was over forty days that I was sick, sicker, flown to the US, had an operation, then sat in bed recovering.  I’ve gone through every feeling imaginable:  discomfort, pain, anxiousness, fear, misery, sadness, anger, stubbornness, fatigue, graciousness, humility, thankfulness, and anticipation.  Now, I’m feeling great, ready to get all of the bad feelings (and bad beats!) behind me.

I wasn’t sure when I would start playing in the World Series of Poker until I received a call from Fabrice Soulier, my Chilipoker teammate.  He’s made a five-figure bet with a team from Winamax (a French company).  He’s betting that he and I can win more cash this WSOP than the Winamax team.  Here’s who we’re up against:

The Chilipoker Team:
Liz Lieu
Fabrice Soulier

The Winamax Team:
Michel Abecassis
Manuel Bevand
Guillaume De La Gorce
Vikash Dhorasso
Davidi Kitai
Eric Koskas
Ludovic Lacay
Antony Lellouche
Nicolas Levi
Arnaud Mattern
Alexia Portal
Anthony Roux
Almira Skripchenko

Game On!!  At least he got me fired up and ready to go, so I headed to the Bellagio to play a quick cash game Friday night, just to be sure I would feel up to playing cards.  There were no high stakes games going on at the Bellagio, so I played $100/200 LHE for a few hours.  I got a bit bored, but I remembered that a flush beat a straight, so I was ready to head to the Rio for my first event.

I played Sunday in the second Day 1 of Event #2, a $1.5k NLHE event.  These weekend events are going to have huge fields, and I’d recommend anyone who wants to take their shot at a bracelet to try one of these events first.  Sure, it takes a bit of luck, but Theo Tran is leading the event as they’re down to 18 players, so you have to be able to play to go deep.  I won’t bore you with how I went out (aces cracked again!!!!), you can read all about it on my PokerListings blog.

You might be able to see my photo there (hair color:  red!), but I had a friend tell me about a new policy that Harrah’s has this year.  Photos can only stay up 72 hours online then have to come down.  I’m not sure I understand why this is the case, but that’s the way it is.

Besides that, Harrah’s has made some nice improvements to the WSOP.  More food (Pizza Hut and Krispy Kreme kiosks!!), not so cold, color-coded table signs.  It all seems a little better than the last few years, and I haven’t had any problem with the long lines that plagued last year’s Series.

I’m hoping to play as many hold-em events as possible this year.  I promise I’ll write more here as well as on PokerListings, so check both of these sites out every day.  Thanks again for all of the love.  I’ve really felt it the last few weeks, and I hope I can return the favor with a big score this summer.

Call Off the Search Party!

Sunday, April 27th, 2008

Don’t send the search party! Liz Lieu is in Vegas and doing fine. If you haven’t heard, I’ve been sidetracked by some bad fish! I’ve had a number of people checking up on me after looking at the live tournament updates wondering where I was. I was sick in bed, in of all places Monaco!! I had such high hopes for the EPT Grand Finale in Monaco last week and for the Five Star World Poker Classic in Vegas this week. These are my two favorite tournaments of the entire year. The only other tournaments that compare are the Five Diamond in December and the WSOP Main Event. I was really looking forward to competing and was really disappointed to get so sick

Ironically, I did everything in my control to be prepared for the EPT Grand Finale. I flew into Monte Carlo a day early to get adjusted and properly rested from the travel. I even passed on a great party thrown for the poker players, the evening before Day 1A to make sure I had enough sleep. Then I decided to order a salmon dish before going to bed and woke up the next day feeling very ill. The Hotel is 5 Star in one of the wealthiest countries in the world. I never even considered getting bad room service!!

When I woke up the next day, I was feeling dizzy, feint and just awful. Luckily, Alex was able to move my Day 1A start to Day 1B and I went back to bed hoping I could sleep it off. Unfortunately I just felt worse the next day. I had sharp stomach pains and asked my Sponsor Alex to try and get me a refund on my buy-in. Thankfully, they agreed on giving us a full refund and I didn’t have to suck it up and play it out. As bad as I felt, there was no way I could’ve played close to my “A” game.

The entire Day 1B was spent in bed and trying to convince room service to deliver me some soup. The only soup the Hotel had was Minestrone and they only gave me this after much struggle. Apparently the poker players were only allowed to order from the poker menu. Soup wasn’t on the menu but it was the only food I could keep down and after Alex made a phone call to room service they agreed to send a tiny bowl up.

The adventure didn’t stop in Monte Carlo. I spent a few more days in my hotel room recovering and then back to Vegas on my scheduled flight to the States. I still felt ill but hoped I could sleep through most of the flight. On the first leg of the flight, I was able to get some sleep but I awoke in a feverish sweat. I felt a little light headed and dizzy as well. The flight attendant noticed I wasn’t feeling quite right and made sure I was taken care of on my connecting flight. I was even provided a wheel chair to transport me around on my connection and arrival. I was whisked thru these long security lines and somebody even grabbed my luggage for me. It was actually quite nice! I didn’t realize how quickly you could navigate thru an airport when you are in a wheel chair.

That was my Monte Carlo experience!! I’m back in Vegas and still not well enough to play in the Five Diamond Event at the Bellagio but it did give me a chance to catch up on some blogging. I immediately went to the doctor after getting back home and I have all kinds of stuff wrong with me!! Low blood pressure, fever, food poisoning. The doctor tells me I’m too stressed out and along with the food poisoning and travelling I just need to chill out for awhile. I know many of you have been emailing me when you noticed I didn’t play either of the last two major events and rest assured; besides being quite ill right now from some bad salmon everything is okay.

And as soon as I get my strength back, I will probably play some cash games exclusively until the WSOP.

Cheers!

Circling Europe

Tuesday, April 15th, 2008

Hello from beautiful Monte Carlo, although I hardly feel beautiful today. It’s been a crazy few weeks, including my time in Malta with the Chilipoker team, a cash at the EPT San Remo, and a lot of expectations heading into the EPT Grand Final in Monte Carlo. I was so looking forward to getting off to a great start, but I unfortunately I never got out of bed.

I spent a lot of time working with the Chilipoker team in Malta. Alex has put together some terrific people, and we’re working on many great things for the rest of this year. I’m so glad I chose Chilipoker and Alex as partners, because that’s what they are: true partners in every sense of the word.

From there, I headed to Italy and EPT San Remo. San Remo is near France and not too easy to reach, as I flew into Milano then rode in a car for almost three hours. It is a beautiful, ancient place, but I had no time to see the sights. It was a great tournament for me, and not due to the fact that I cashed (although that is always welcome). No, it was great because I played great, made good decisions, and made no real mistakes. I was near the chip lead on Day 2 and would have been strong for a deep run had it not been for this tough hand.

The blinds were 800/1600 with a 200 ante, and I picked up pocket 4’s. I raised to 5k and both blinds called. The rainbow flop came 9-8-6, and I checked behind both blinds. When I saw 4(d) come from the dealer on the turn, I caught my nice bottom set. I bet 9500 after both blinds checked, then one of the guys moved all-in for 49,200. I quickly called and saw him turn over J-10o. If I could avoid a queen or 7, I’d have a great stack. It was one of the queens that spiked on the river, and it crippled me.

I went out in 53rd place with 8,000 euro (a little over $12,600). I felt I’d played poorly in Poland, and here I played really well. I even had a little luck, with my dreaded pocket aces holding up five times in a row!

After heading back to Malta for a bit, I flew to Monte Carlo for the final event of the EPT season, the EPT Grand Final. I arrived early so I could be really relaxed and prepared for this big event. I even skipped the PokerStars party the evening before Day 1A. I ordered salmon for room service and headed to bed early. When I woke up, I felt horrible. Major headache and drowsiness. I called Alex at Chilipoker to see if he could reschedule me for Day 1B (he could), and I went back to bed after taking some medication from the concierge.

The next morning, it was worse. I reached back out to Alex to see if he could get a refund, and I felt relieved when he told me he could. I was able to have a doctor see me, and I didn’t really feel better for a couple days. I missed playing in the tournament, but I’d rather not play then not play my best. I owe it to Alex and Chilipoker to only put my best foot forward, and Alex has been great throughout the EPT season.

And now, I’ll be heading back to the US and Las Vegas. I can’t wait to get out of the hotels and back home again. I play in the $25k WPT Championship at the Bellagio this weekend, and I’m hoping I’ll feel 100% by then. I’ll be staying in Vegas throughout the summer at the World Series, and I have high hopes to have a great few months.

Join me at Chilipoker when you have a chance. And if you’re somewhere in Asia, you can find me on the cover of Asian Poker Times as well (one of my nicer photos, too!). Keep up all the encouraging comments and thoughts. They really, really help me a lot!