So after a long hiatus I’m back!
I’ve spent the last 6 months playing poker and traveling the world surfing, most recently to Hawaii.
Poker gives me the perfect combination of flexible schedule and portability – I can play free poker from anywhere that has an internet connection, and when the waves are up I can drop what I’m doing and go!
Hawaii was incredible! I went with my fianceé Maria, we stayed in Waikiki for 3 days, and then we stayed on the North Shore for 5 days. We were lucky to get some late-season swell on the north shore, and Maria snapped some awesome photos.
I’ll be recounting both poker adventures and surfing adventures in my posts from now on.
Poker-wise I’m continuing to play $5/10 NL, and while game conditions have changed they are still quite beatable.
I’ve seen an increase in aggression in recent months, with many players becoming more tenacious about fighting for pots, and more paranoid about being bluffed.
Here’s an example that illustrates the change in the games, and also a counter-strategy.
$5/10 w/ $1400 stacks.
I raise Q♦K♥ on the CO to $35, and an aggressive, tenacious player in the blinds 3bets to $125. I call.
A few years ago this would be a turbofold, nowadays a call is totally standard, and some argue for reraising!
Flop: K♦ 3♣ 4♥ (Pot: $260)
Villain bets $165 into $260. This is a standard-sized cbet especially on a dry board.
A year ago I might have called for pot control, and to see what develops on the turn and river. I wouldn’t want to build a big pot, because if I got the full 140bbs in my opponent would usually have AK, KK, or AA.
Today, however, I make a glorified min-raise to $400. My opponent has been aggressive with 3bets, and is paranoid about being bluffed.
He also likely assumes(here his suspicions set in) that I would 4bet him preflop if I had a hand like A-K, and that I might be inclined to slowplay 444 or 333 on such a dry flop.
He quickly reraises all-in for $1275 total, I call. He shows 77.
While this player is more aggressive than normal, it illustrates an important point – by making my hand look like I’m getting frustrated and fighting back my opponent’s over-aggression and suspicion works to my advantage.
The hardest part about this hand is hitting top pair, haha!
Good luck at the tables!
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