Sunday, September 12, 2004

Dr. Pauly, $11, and the the Australian Poker Championships
"I must create a system, or be enslaved by another man's." - William Blake
Earlier in the week, I won a special $10 SNG... it was a Sub-Qualifier to the Crown Casino Aussie Million Dollar Satellite B. The winner got a seat (or a freeroll) into the actual $70 + $7 Qualifier...and yep, that was me. Party Poker has been running various tourneys 24 hours a day (check underneath the Single-Table Tournament tab, look for Special). I just played in the $70 single table Qualifier where the winner got a seat in the $600 Aussie Million Satellite B scheduled for next Wednesday. And yep, I was that winner. The $600 free roll might be the largest single prize I've netted on Party Poker. $11 and a dream right?
$10 + $1 Sub-Qualifier >
$70 Qualifier >
$600 Satellite >
Crown Casino Aussie Million
I'm just one multi table tournament win away from snagging an all expenses paid trip to Australia in January 2005. I never been there before. I'm always looking for excuses to travel to exotic lands and get obliterated in dive bars while hitting on the local soused female population. But hey, let's not shoot my entire load before I even get the condom on...

I'll start from the beginning. The Crown Casino in Melbourne hosts the Australian Poker Championships. (Here's the schedule.) Yesterday, I played in a Sub-Qualifier. It's basically a $10 SNG with the winner getting a seat in the Qualifier. Within the first three levels, six people got knocked out. It was a loose table, I played tight and folded everything. I was the shortstack. I doubled up with AK against 44. I river'd him when a majestic King saved me. After that successful coin flip battle, I never looked back. I took the chip lead when I took down a good sized pot with three remaining players. I had KQ and the board read: AQ63. Everyone limped and everyone checked on the flop. On the turn, I took a stab and moved all-in to steal the pot... with was probably the best hand. The shortstack called with a straight draw and I knocked him out. It was heads up and I like my chances heads up against a weak-tight player. I took down a small pot with AK and my A8s was bad beated by Q7. I got some solace when I knocked him out with Q9 vs. his K10s. I won... but at that time, I was confused because I didn't know exactly what I won. I eventually figured out that I had a free roll into any $70 + 7 Aussie B Qualifier.

Then on Saturday night, I decided to play my Qualifier. I waited for over an hour for people to sign up. I guess some people also won sub-Qualifiers and got to use the freeroll, but a few bought in directly from their Party Poker bankroll. It's basically a $70 SNG. The winner got a seat in the $600 Aussie Million Satellite.

Party Poker, 11:34pm EST... $70 + $7 Qualifier to Aussie Satellite B

Level 1: On the fifth hand, I limped in on the button with A10s. The flop: A37. One guy bet the pot. I raised and he called. A rag fell on the turn and he checked. I moved all in and he called with.... 38s... and no flush draw, just bottom pair. I doubled up and that win set me up for the rest of the tournament. And I play my best with a chip lead... the bigger my stack, the more I'm intoxicated with a fearless attitude. Alas, I still had that little angel sitting over my shoulder, who encouraged me to lay down AJ and 77 in LP.

Level 4: With two people gone, I had A10s again in the BB. I limped and caught a nut flush draw on the flop with top pair. I checked and K9s (without any draws) moved all in. I quickly called and caught my flush on the turn. It didn't matter. I had the guy beat the entire way and knocked out my second guy. I was the chip leader with T3600+. I lost a pot with A8s to AJ, but still held the lead with T2575.

Level 5: In consecutive hands, I caught pocket aces and the Hilton Sisters, getting no action for either.

Level 7: Four players left and I'm still in front. I caught a flurry of aces. AJ, A5s, AQ, A5... raised every pot and took them each down uncontested. Picking up all those blinds helped add to my ever growing stack of T4500+. The devil on my left was telling me, "Keep on speeding... full throttle!" and the angel was whispering, "Slow down. Patience and discipline."

Level 8: You have to win your coin flip situations. Your pocket pairs have to stand up against inferior hands. And you have to totally smack someone around with a river bad beat if you want to win a tournament. With four players left, the button pushed all in. I had A3s and called. I put him on a bluff-button-raise-steal. I was wrong. He had AJ. I was fucked when he flopped a set. I was saved when running spades completed the board and he left the table pretty pissed off. My brother and Daddy from Snail Trax were sweating me and that fired me up to stay focused and not fuck up my chance. One guy was knocked out and it was heads up. I had 4 to 1 chip advantage. And you know I love my chances heads up.

Level 9: It was quick and easy. Within ten hands heads up, I took him out. I raised with Q10 and he moved all-in with 86s. I flopped a full boat and Derek and Daddy sent their congrats in the chat before the hand was even over. I was pumped, thrilled, and of course had no clue when I'd be playing next. I checked the schedule and I'm the only one signed up for the $600 + $45 Aussie Million B Satellite due to start at 11:15pm EST on Wednesday Sept. 15th. Feel free to watch. I expect more players to sign up and win seats in Qualifiers.

Here's what I have a shot at winning on Wednesday:
1. Entry to the AUD $1,600 World Speed Poker Championship (USD $1,150 approx.)
2. Entry to the AUD $10,300 NL Hold'em Tournament (USD $7,400 approx.)
3. Hotel accommodation and USD $2,500 cash to cover my airfare.
In case you were wondering, USD = US Dollars and AUD = Australian Dollars. If I win, I get to play in two different events!

It was a good night. I caught cards and my table was filled with loose players who knocked each other out. That allowed me to sit and wait for good hands. Although, I'm playing some of my best in a long time. I had been on a roll all week at the tables on Party Poker. I won a $30 SNG, won my first Omaha SNG in a very long time, and won the Sub-Qualifier and Qualifier. I wouldn't gush about my play. I still have plenty of room for improvement, especially in tournaments. Let's see if I can catch enough cards and bluff my way to Australia.

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