The second JP Masters festival sponsored by Brucepoker was a super success the weekend past. Numbers up in all events by about 25% in these recessionary times is encouraging and a great compliment to the organisers. I played three of the four events on offer and feel pretty good about my game in the run up to the main event in Vegas.
The Main event started very well for me. With two levels to go on day one I was cruising on about 35k which was well ahead of the average, about fifteen minutes later I was out. I lost 33% of my chips when I raise A9, bet a 955 flop, bet the 9 turn and bet the river into flopped quads. My exit hand was the exact same as last year in this event, AK v KK all in pre-flop and as last year verses this opponent I consider the hand a complete cooler.
I felt I had played pretty good up until my exit. My starting table wasn't easy with Mick Stevens having direct position on me. I made one mistake early, not extracting enough river value holding 77 on a 10107 board against the chap that eventually took me out, knowing he held k10 or A10 but apart from that I was happy with how I played. The structure for this event was sick and I feel that increasing the time frame on blind levels as the tournament progresses is the way to go.
I enjoyed a few beers Friday night after my exit but was well up for the €300 game that started at six on the Saturday. This started very slowly for me and I had basically blinded down to 7700 when I decided I needed to make something happen in level four. Tom Kitt was on my right and was having more or less the same tournament as me, when he three-bet from the cut off I knew he had a fairly wide range so I shoved 4d6d. He knew I was probably at it but couldn't find the call with J9, what a nit.
Shortly after with a few short stacks on the table in shove mode I decided to limp after an UTG limp in second position with AQ, blinds 150/300-25 ante. A late position pushes 5k with A3os and I get a few more chips. I don't see a hand for the next five levels but hang in there until the last level of the night when I'm crippled KQ v KJ with about 30 of the 130 starters remaining. I exit next hand pushing five BBS with K9 into QQ. Enjoyed the game and figure I did the best I could with the shit I was dealt all night.
Sunday I decided to give the €250 PLO tournament a go for the craic. This was my first live PLO event and I've played very little of the game so didn't hold out much hope but amazingly went on to win it. Only 45 runners and just over €3k for the win but hugely enjoyable to win an event. I wont go into detail about my strategy during the game but it could be described as clueless. Paul Spillane gave some great advice during the game and I repaid him by getting the better of him heads up.
The final table was an epic grind and went on much longer then anyone expected but was good craic. I got to dog Noel BCB Hayes twice on it which was very rewarding :-), I also killed Scott Grays momentum in a very iffy played hand. Really enjoyed the game and it was great to win an event at a BrucePoker sponsored festival. This Friday sees the live tour move to Castlebar, hope to see you there.