Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Irish Classic

The Classic festival in the Macau runs all week and is Ireland's largest casino based poker festival.

I just played the PLO and Main Event this year. The Omaha was on Wednesday night and had a poor turnout with a field of only seventeen.

I finished fourth for nought at five am, which made for a depressing drive home. The tournament was won by Alex 'The Prof' Lopez, with Chris Dowling taking second after some business heads up.

A sign of changing times could be gleaned from the weekend's prize pool; in 2008 the winner's prize for the main event was €81,000, this year the 'total' prize pool was less then that figure. The Macau had decreased the buy-in as a reaction to the current economic climate and a saturated calendar of poker events; they also added a re-buy option this year. The tournament was a still a great success and with 17 players choosing to buy in twice, that seems to have worked well also.

I said in a blog recently that I was unsure about these tournaments that give players the option to re-buy, when multiple day ones are in place. It's clearly an advantage to the top players who have large bankrolls, however is it fair to increase such players edge? I still haven't made my mind up, but it's definitely a topical subject as this type of event is becoming more prevalent.

My Main Event was going well for the first half of day one and into level four I had almost trebled my starting stack. Things turned on me after this however and I had a serious of unfortunate reversals which saw me finish the day with less then what I started. I rallied early on day two but was out just before dinner in a flip against the impressive Nelius Foley.

Seven on a Saturday night isn't the worst time to get knocked out of a tournament in Cork, and a big gang of the tournament causalities including Big Al, Paul Carr and Eoghan O'Dea hit the town for a messy night's drinking.

I returned home early Sunday morning but followed what looked a cracking final table online. Two of the south's favourite poker players; Peter 'Knuckles' Higgins and Brian 'The Fox' O'Keefe had good runs but fell short of the real money finishing 9th and 7th respectively.

Limerick player Con Collins followed up his recent 4th place finish at the JP Masters by filling the same position here. Upon Con's exit, the three remaining players agreed to deal, where Pat Curran took home €19,000 and the trophy, Tony Collins and David Croke both picked up a very healthy €15,000.