David Soede comes 5th in $100K Central Coast Poker Tournament
Written by David Soede   
Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Following my recent win in the Central Coast Championships another large tournament was held on the Central Coast last Sunday, at Halikalani (Toukley) Bowling Club which had a $100,000 prizepool for a $1,100 buy-in with 100 runners. I'm pretty sure it was the largest prizepool for a Central Coast based poker tournament. Even though I was well bankrolled for the tourney and could afford the $1,100, being held on a single day and with faster blind structures than the Central Coast Championships meant luck was more of a factor, so I took a shot at a satellite tourney – this is where you pay a small amount (in my case I qualified through a top ten leaderboard in my regular Friday night game) to enter and sometimes an “add-on” which in my case was $40 for double the chips (which I took). I was successful in winning an $1,100 ticket to the big tourney for my $40 outlay 3 weeks ago.

In the Ultimate $100K tournament I played really well again – most of the field were “soft” pub players who had also satellited in from various top ten leaderboards (but usually $5 or $10 venues whereas my $100 per game venue has a higher standard of general play) trying to earn the minimum cash prize of $2,000 for 15th+, but I wanted to win the $35K first prize, so I took some calculated risks to build a big stack, and was a chip leader on the bubble (16th place finished with no money, like 100th) and on the Final Table (again). I was travelling pretty well and staying out of the way of the table maniac who was randomly raising and jamming with no regard for his cards or the board – winning some pots and losing some, but putting many other players on tilt (they were playing badly reacting to or imitating him). We were 5-handed when I took a couple of bad beats to drop me from chip leader to 3rd (just) when a key hand went down.

I raised AK on the button for 2.5BB and the Small Blind (a loose, lucky donkey type player who didn’t understand equity, probability or poker) jammed for 18BB (instead of raising to say 5BB or 6BB or folding, or possibly calling) and I snap-called. He had AT – which was exactly what I put him on, as it was his favourite hand – and I was a 75% favourite to double up, cripple him, and take a big chip lead. This time his 25% chance came off and the board ran out QJ982 giving him a straight and knocking me out in 5th for $5,000. I was disappointed as 3rd was $10K, 2nd $18K and the win was worth $35K and I knew I had very, very strong chances of winning the tourney if my hand had held up – but that’s poker. All you can do is get your chips in good, what happens after that . . .

I also had the opportunity to play against a very good pro, Jesse McKenzie, who has amongst other successes won the prestigous Pokerstars Sunday Millions for $150K+ ($215 buyin, over 6,000 runners). He was very aggressive and played a high variance style, stealing pots and putting players to tough decisions. I think he outplayed me on one hand - on the bubble I raised preflop from the SB, he 3bet me, I 4bet, he 5bet jammed for 75% of my stack. I tanked and folded JJ, he claimed AQ - if so, that's a very aggressive way to play AQ. I basically thought I was up against a bigger pair than Jacks, and even if AK it was a flip for 3/4 of my stack on the bubble as chip leader. I might have to stop avoiding these coinflip situations, as even if I think I have a skill edge with post flop play (not against Jesse!) there are times when flips are unavoidable.

Still, I’ve had a good 4 or 5 weeks with those 2 big wins and my bankroll is pretty healthy now, so I might consider some bigger tourneys with direct buyin. Take it easy everyone, and may your Aces always hold :)

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