Batman and Brighton

I'm still hurting from the stag weekend just gone. It was in Brighton and it was a very good laugh. The drinking and stuff was reasonably tame for a stag weekend, especially considering the Stag is one of the hardest drinkers I know, but the weekend as a whole was tough. It was scorching hot and on day 2 we went Go-Karting all day.

I did myself proud by coming 49th out of 50 over several races and somehow my mate Andy who came 50th managed to escape ridicule but I copped for the lot. I am still sore and bruised from all the crashes, I did my ankle some damage too and one of my ears I think has got blocked up/burst or something like that - it feels funny, put it that way.

Being the apparent Gay capital of the UK, you would think it would be easy to get a group of 20 guys in a pub in Brighton, but it wasn't. We were having to be very tactical and go in in groups, claim we were from different parts of the UK and hell, maybe even camp it up a bit at times. Meanwhile small armies of women dressed up as cowgirls and pink ladies where free to roam wherever they wanted.

Moaning about running bad seemed to do the trick and I am winning again (Doh, jinxed it) - really really table selecting well at the moment which is making all the difference.

Got back home from the new Batman flick last night. I thought all the suggestions that Heath Ledger should get an Oscar were simply out of sympathy because he is dead, but I have to say....give that man an Oscar. Best film of the year without doubt and Ledger was amazing, genuinely scary and I cant wait for Batman 3.

The return of the generic running bad post

I hated the last time I moaned about my bad luck, and in fairness it was followed by 6 weeks of running better than god himself, but now Im back at the other end of things.It seems I either run awful or run amazing and nothing in between this year and Ive just had two weeks of brutality at the tables. Nothing new but the annoying thing is that all the bad beats seem to occur just as I am on the last orbit of a winning session and I always seem to flop the 2nd nuts.

The good news is that I am losing less with each losing session, lol.

Rant over, I havent lost that much in fairness, and now off for a stag weekend which shall be a welcome break from it all.

Thank gawd for rakeback.

The weigh in: Number 5

I haven't posted my weigh in results for a bit because Vegas knocked my body clock out of whack, but its all good, another 2lbs lost I am now at 15st 4lb. Not quite losing weight at the standard 2lb a week but its going the right way down and most importantly I'm still not snacking at night, which was always my downfall, so looking at it long term its all promising.

Just had an awful awful week at the tables, it started with a serious run of bad beats and ended with just some downright awful play. My Hold'em manager database is now 100% destroyed and I am pretty clueless whether I am down or up for the month (Though the smart money is on down) so time to start a new db from scratch (Which aint a bad thing when one is losing). I'm buying a new desktop today so hopefully that completely irrelevant but still does something positive change to my usual set up will make a difference.

Doing loads of writing at the moment off the back of Vegas and on my betting blog, which I am enjoying very much. My picks to win the WSOP this year are Scott Montgomery and David Rheem this year which I shall highlight in more detail on the blog.

VC Poker Summer Cash Dash

Well VC Poker have got a very interesting bunch of rake races on at the moment, basically one a week for the next 7 weeks at 4 different levels. I’m going to make a real effort next week to win one or at least make the top ten. The added value is of course whatever place I come I get to clear a monthly $250 reload bonus as well as a cashback loyalty bonus (Not allowed to say Rakeback on iPoker so I won’t). So I reckon as long as I break even I’ll make about $1000 in bonuses for the week.

Dunno which race to join as I rarely play more than 4 tables so it will be a step into the unknown for me. The $0.50/$1 to $1/$2 obviously is easier on the bankroll, easier to play and doable in terms of loading up ten tables, but I reckon the $2/$4-$3/$6 will have less multi-tabling grinders and therefore more realistic, let’s hope I don’t hit a swing.

Bit of spam now, if you are going to have a crack at one of these iPoker rake races, drop me an email on daveshoelace@gmail.com, as I might be able to get you a bit of a special deal if you play a lot of hands/tables a month plus a big sign up bonus.

Screw Pokerstars


Before I start, I will add a disclaimer that I think that Pokerstars genuinley has one of the best Customer Service departments in poker and they are second to none for their SNGs and MTTs. That said I feel like they have royally shafted me up the arse this week.

A few months ago someone managed to hack my account, fortuntaley there was nowt in it as I dont play on Stars anymore and havent for about a year. Netherless they managed to make a deposit with a stolen credit card and christ knows what thet did with the money. Pokerstars security set me up with a 2nd secure password and I thought that was it. This week I get an email saying that the credit card company that the deposit was made from made a 'chargeback' when the Stars tranasaction was deemed fraudulent.

Now stars are telling me I owe them $400, because I was responsible for the activity on my account. After many many emails arguing the toss, they simply said that it wasnt their fault and they cant take liability for everything that happens on their customers accounts. I completely agree with this in cases where someone hacks the account and chip dumps the funds, but I have to say bollocks in my case.

The fact of the matter is that Stars allowed a credit card, not in my name and not registered to my address, to deposit into my account. Even some truly archaic poker rooms like Pacific Poker dont allow this automatically so for a market leader like stars to is totally unacceptable. They have been suprisingly stubborn about this, showed little understanding and dont seem to want to retain a customer who was raking about $3000 a month back when he was an SNG donkey.

I'll probably end up paying it at some point, its only $400, but thankfully the cash games are really good on VC Poker at the moment and the HU games on Full Tilt too. Plus they both give rakeback/loyalty bonuses, so thanks Mr Pokerstars but screw you.

Elsewhere, this made me laugh a little bit too hard. All you poker pros and journos will get what I mean:

Vegas Part One and the Weigh In

I’ve just woken up from a post-vegas 15 hour sleep, if anyone thinks that sleeping for that length of time is pleasant, even after a long period without it, think again, my hands are shaking and I have no idea what day it is. I’d love to claim I needed the sleep after a week ofrock’n’roll decadence, but it was a pretty tame but very enjoyable journey to the WSOP for me.

I met up with most of the Ladbrokes crew that were kind enough to send me as a reporter at Gatwick airport but we were all scattered around the plane so it wasn’t until the landing that I actually got to chat with them. I got a Limo to Caesars with Sam from Ladbrokes, a journalist from the Star called Carl Eldrige and a girl called Abi whom I assumed worked with Ladbrokes. It was only after an hour of my usual teasing of a complete stranger that I realised it was actually Abi Titmuss. Then all of a sudden I had gone from treating her like any other girl to sneakily texting every bloke I know the text:

“I’m in a muthafucking Limo with Abi Titmuss Dawg!”(Which is how I speak in everyday situations)

My first night was spent on the lash, mainly at the Phil Ivey Karaoke party which I am pretty certain Phil Ivey never went to. I bumped into Chris ‘Noflopshomer’ Hall and spent most of the night falling asleep on my feet. I also met another Ladbrokes ‘stunna’ – Page 3 girl Leilani, but I was too tired to text the lads at this point.

Karaoke in the States is just like Karaoke anywhere else, the tragic terrible singer is followed by the tragic good-but-never-made-it singer and then the I’m-pissed-look-at-me singer. However, one variable in USA Karaoke is the fella who nipped on stage and sang the American national anthem. The crowd went nuts and I decided there and then that if I ever got attacked while out in Vegas, rather than run or fight I will just sing the American National Anthem and make my move when the culprit is completely immersed in the final verse.

On my second day I played in one of the deepstack events at Caesars Palace and was chip leader after hand number one, when my pocket aces became aces full of sevens against kings. The tournament went tremendously when, for the next 4 hours, every hand I raised I won, usually by flopping the nuts. It wasn’t until the bubble when I had a monster stack did I lose any money – four times in a row against a Scandie with a short stack who by the 3rd double up had enough money to crack my aces with King-jack and send me out of the tournament on the bubble. Sigh...

We spent a lot of time with Steve Davis in the Ladbrokes Lounge and he really is exactly how you expect him to be. Humble, funny, nice and really addicted to poker, it was fun and insightful to interview him and his very refreshing views on the game (Besides being rich enough to play in the big game he plays 0.50/1 PLO and gets as excited about small wins of$200 playing online as he does a £40,000 win playing snooker). He also put on a master class at the pool table and cleared it in under 40 seconds. I don’t do interviews that much but Steve was great as was the voice of poker, Jesse May.

Meeting Steve Davis was an honour, but he was just a normal bloke and I treated him as such, just like I do any other poker player. However, it’s rare that you get to meet two of your heroes from stage and screen which led me to shame myself by asking for the following photos:

I had a very enjoyable PLO game at the Mirage one night with Lee Jones from Pokerstars/Cardrunners. A very fun, very friendly guy at the table and a brilliant help to all the dealers as he really knew his stuff......not that good a PLO player though. As soon as I sat down, I got instant respect at the table and everyone was telling me I must be an amazing PLO player because I was from Europe. Every bet I made got respect and my rare bluffs tended to work out. I also got some sick hands. I flopped the nuts with a nut flush redraw with ac-4c-as-js on a ah-6c-9c board and managed to get it paid. I also lost a 22 out straight and flush draw against a mere set of sevens and won a four way all-in (admittedly it was a chop) with a wrap and flush draw against a nut flush draw, top two and a set and wrap. I cant begin to recount the flop and hands but the wrap got there and the dealer had a lot of counting to do. The standard was pretty good at the table, but still good value as Europeans get too much respect.

Ladbrokes put on a heads-up lecture/tournament with Jeff Kimber which I managed to win too, beating Paul Jackson in round number one. Generally I played exactly how Jeff said he would have played while analysing my play apart from one call which was best explained as a cash game call, so I guess that makes me as good as Jeff Kimber lol (Of course a joke, my mate claimed he was almost as good as Ryan Giggs because he could do every trick from his soccer skills video).

I’ll report more on Vegas when I have a clearer head, at the moment I’m really hazy and knackered. One pleasant surprise is that I lost a pound of weight out there, now down to 15st 6lb, mainly due to not eating much at all out there. Why I have no idea but lets not look that gift horse in the mouth.
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