I lost the $50 tournament. I came in something like 15th of 22.
I’m really happy I did it. I played really well (a bad beat sent me out: straight beat by a full house). I was bluffing agressively and getting my way most of the time. But better, I had the greatest improvement in my game since learning to fold pre-flop. I’m getting reads. Lots of ’em. Not the reads that I used to get (“he’s thinking something”), but important ones like “he likes his hand.”
It all comes from a little word of advice Eric Shapiro gave me. Don’t look at your cards until it’s your turn to act. He’d told me this before, but I figured that I wasn’t missing much by taking that split-second to see my cards. And in fact I wasn’t. But I was missing all the reads because I was busy thinking about what I was going to do. Now I can figure whether someone is just limping with crap (or raising with crap), and if so, I can steal it out without even seeing my cards. I did that a few times in the tournament, and was very proud of myself.
We played a little mini-tournament tonight, and I was sent out by ignoring one of my reads, thus proving how powerful they are. Paul limps in with me after a long stare at his chips. This is his tell, and I knew he had something very nice right then. The flop comes, Q high, and I have a pair of 7s. I had gotten so little action, and I figured he didn’t have the queen, so I pushed in. He called without a wink, and showed down not one, but two queens. And I knew it. Even if he didn’t have trips, I knew he had a big pocket pair, better than my 7s. Grr, stupid Luke.
I’m overall very happy with the direction my game is heading. Now I need to get a job to fund the game.