Monday, January 23, 2006

Step one, get a million dollars...

So, over the weekend, I made my annual foray into the world of Bay Area tournament poker. I played at The Oaks Club in Emeryville in a No-Limit Hold'em tournament that is part of a series leading to a freeroll in June that will have as its first prize a $10k seat in the Big Dance. I've posted previously on last year's adventure.

I met my father-in-law there to guide him through his maiden voyage into the "wretched hive of scum and villany" that is Mos Eisley... err... Bay Area tournament poker. I got there a bit before noon and bought us both in to make sure last year's scheduling snafu didn't get repeated. Then we went off to lunch at a pretty good cafe within walking distance. I had the chicken & waffle, and he had the corned beef hash. Both tasty. We talked about strategy and the mechanics of the game in a cardroom, and in tournaments specifically.

We returned in time for the show, and sat down to play with 107 other hopefuls. I got one or two playable hands, and so at the end of the first three periods, had built my 1k starting stake into a whopping 1,240 (they use 20's instead of 25's at The Oaks). I rebought, and learned that F-I-L had rebought out of necessity a little bit earlier, but he had won a hand since then, and so had a bit over the 1,500 he got for the rebuy.

After the break, I got a couple hands, and in the next two rounds had built my stack up to a bit over 10k. Then I went cold. I didn't drag a pot until we got down to around 36 people left, and I was down to 2100 with 200 antes and 1000/500 blinds. Not looking good for the home team, but I woke up in middle position with QQ and it held up. Quadrupling through helped my attitude, even though I was still short stacked. From there, I built up to a peak of about 40-50k before busting out in 6th place. This gave me 5 points in the freeroll race. I figure I'm a longshot for playing again in June, but it could happen if the freeroll point distribution is heavily enough weighted towards a smaller group of regular tournament players. Of course, in the two weekly events played prior to yesterday, there were no repeaters. More news as it happens, if it happens.

F-I-L said he had a very good time, but it was exhausting. He managed to come in 25th, where 20 places were paid. An excellent showing considering that all he had was book larnin'.

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