by Hardit

Lets call this one “The incomplete Blog”

February 28, 2013 in Uncategorized

Sup guys.. long time since i have blogged.. but finally today i crawled out of under a gazillion tonne of work to write this blog..
Last couple of months have been nothing short of a pressure cooker at work and at the felt too.. Whatever little time I got I tried to spend on cash Omaha and had one of the roughest rides I could have imagined. Usual course >> bad day then bad play and then more bad day and then more bad play… net effect lot of blood in the ledger. But been able to recover a little and hopefully will be back in black.
In last couple of months I have realized some of the crude realities of poker. In any sport it’s the good player who gets the cream, but in poker the good player always gets the stink eye. “Oh god this guy ”. And the funny part is u don’t have to be good, if people think u are good that’s enough for them to put u in the “avoid” list. Everyone wants a sucker on the table. It may be more of a sport in tourney format but in cash game – stink eye dude stink eye.
Contrary to normal sport a sucker is a more valuable in poker, he is the star of the game; he is the M freackin VP. So why am I talking about all this. Well primarily to point out the obvious, that it is important to play good but it is also important to manage image in poker. The number of games that will open their gates to u directly depends on how much action u can generate and if u can’t well then u ll get the game that no one wants to play. Sometimes I wonder how it would be in more mature markets like US where the game has been there for so long that most people are aware of the deeper aspects of the game.
Another crude reality of poker is CREDIT. I guess it has its uses but I find it is mostly misused more than it being used. Of course everyone had intentions to pay back and we are all good for it, but when someone takes credit the gates are open for all, the good, the bad and the ugly to use/misuse it. Plus when the game goes on credit its mortality rate goes even lower. The hope of recovery and the ease of getting chips without paying right way usually leaves people in shit deeper than they can handle. As a result as a group we bite more than we can chew and then soon there are no games left only a bunch of people who owe each other money. I am sure u might think that I have gotten a bit carried away here, but given that I consider poker as a big part of my life I often ask myself what label do we want to put on poker and what label are we putting.
Enough about the dark and dingy aspect of poker industry, lets talk about what’s up ahead, i am excited about March, PokerGuru Tour in Goa and the 25 Lakhs guaranteed tourney at IPA here in Bangalore on 15-17 march. Hopefully there will be really good cash games too during that time. Might be able to go to Goa for PokerGuru Tour fingers crossed. I would urge people who can, to come and participate in Bangalore tourney. last one, which I could not attend L, I hear was really good.

by Hardit

Mad dog … Dog fight …live to fight another day

December 3, 2012 in Uncategorized

Ok before you jump to conclusions I would like to clarify the title is just 3 headings for 3 important highlights of the bigger 16 that I played on Sunday. I finished 77thin this one and her is my recap of the same

Mad dog “I am like a mad dog chasing cars ..won’t know what to do if I caught one” ~ Joker

Well throughout the tourney I really played like a mad dog betting 3 betting pretty wide and stacking people with crap. Now I think it is very important to do this at least at the early stages because this will do one of the two things you will either bust early (so no time wasted) or you will have a monster stack and super lag image. Thus for the later stages not only will you have good stack muscle to take on hits but also you can switch gears to play tight and still capitalize on lag image (not saying you should do that just in case if you do want to do this setting up early is better).

Dog fight: It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog. ~ Mark Twain (never heard of it before just copied from the net he he just wanted to make it interesting)

Now what do mad dogs do they get into dog fights and that is exactly what I did. There was this fish who sucked out on me when I was trying to be creative and he felt good about his play (I think). This is the hand that leads to that fight

Poker Stars $15.00+$1.50 No Limit Hold’em Tournament – t50/t100 Blinds + t10 – 9 players – [url]http://www.handconverter.com/hands/2024923[/url]
The DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

MP1: t8201 M = 34.17
MP2: t10603 M = 44.18
CO: t7612 M = 31.72
BTN: t7560 M = 31.50
Hero (SB): t12477 M = 51.99
BB: t2990 M = 12.46
UTG: t4990 M = 20.79
UTG+1: t5163 M = 21.51
UTG+2: t6545 M = 27.27

Pre Flop: (t240) Hero is SB with Qd 6c
6 folds, BTN raises to t200, Hero raises to t400, 1 fold, BTN calls t200

Flop: (t990) 8d Jh Qs (2 players)
Hero bets t500, BTN calls t500

Turn: (t1990) Js (2 players)
Hero checks, BTN bets t1300, Hero calls t1300

River: (t4590) As (2 players)
Hero checks, BTN checks

Following the hand we had a small chat and just to spice this baby up I am gonna put it here word by word:
Hardit: WTF
BoardPlay: Raising with Q6 this is what u will get. I will take rest of your money soon too. You piece of ****.
Hardit : hmm I would like to see u take my chips and I would abuse you too but as a rule I don’t abuse fishes
BoardPlay: I checked your ranking you are nowhere. Do you like losing in poker. How many times do you have to reload your account.
Hardit : well really? checking ranking and all .. you must really feel secure about ur self.

Now at the moment u can imagine we had a thing going and based on the last hand and the chat i figured he is a fish putting me for a fish (i may be wrong just saying what i thought then). Now I started flatting him more than I normally would because I was sure if I hit a good hand against him I will stack him. And then this hand happened

Poker Stars $15.00+$1.50 No Limit Hold’em Tournament – t75/t150 Blinds + t20 – 9 players – [url]http://www.handconverter.com/hands/2024929[/url]
The DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

UTG+1: t4030 M = 9.95
UTG+2: t6466 M = 15.97
MP1: t5335 M = 13.17
MP2: t14450 M = 35.68
Hero (CO): t12935 M = 31.94
BTN: t3021 M = 7.46
SB: t7010 M = 17.31
BB: t2775 M = 6.85
UTG: t5376 M = 13.27

Pre Flop: (t405) Hero is CO with 5h Th
4 folds, MP2 raises to t355, Hero calls t355, 3 folds

Flop: (t1115) 4s 9d Ts (2 players)
MP2 bets t750, Hero calls t750

Turn: (t2615) Tc (2 players)
MP2 bets t1500, Hero raises to t3000, MP2 calls t1500

River: (t8615) 3d (2 players)
MP2 checks, Hero bets t8810 all in, MP2 calls t8810

In the end all I said was “ha ha nice play man”.

live to fight another day: Genius always gives its best at first; prudence, at last. ~Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Now towards the end i started getting in to flip situations and I lost all of them ..frustrating..but the muscle created earlier allowed me to survive longer than i should have survived. Now at the third flip and with 77 people remaining i lost another flip but this time i didn’t survive. But I parted with a learning. First let’s look at this hand.

Poker Stars $15.00+$1.50 No Limit Hold’em Tournament – t1000/t2000 Blinds + t250 – 8 players – [url]http://www.handconverter.com/hands/2024930[/url]
The DeucesCracked.com Hand History Converter

CO: t25126 M = 5.03
BTN: t107882 M = 21.58
SB: t147692 M = 29.54
BB: t185786 M = 37.16
Hero (UTG): t79384 M = 15.88
UTG+1: t95381 M = 19.08
MP1: t55714 M = 11.14
MP2: t31462 M = 6.29

Pre Flop: (t5000) Hero is UTG with Ac Kd
Hero raises to t4000, 5 folds, SB calls t3000, 1 fold

Flop: (t12000) 6c 2c Td (2 players)
SB checks, Hero bets t6000, SB raises to t24885, Hero raises to t75134 all in, SB calls t50249

Turn: (t162268) 9d (2 players – 1 is all in)

River: (t162268) 8d (2 players – 1 is all in)

Now here I could have check folded the flop or may be even folded to the flop raise but I went for the more aggressive line and got it in on the flop. We were flipping with the situation marginally in my favor. This would have been ok in the earlier/mid stages where I am trying to build a stack but now that I think back on the hand I absolutely disregarded my survival in the tourney by shoving here. You may say that the spot in itself isn’t great for me but I would like to takeaway more than that from this hand. The situation is pretty simple I think I needed to choose either keep going the same way I would have done in the earlier stages or I can change some gears and give some respect to survival and live to fight another day. I think next time i am gonna think of this before making any move and try and balance value and survival.

So this was my recap on the latest deep run I had. Share your opinion on the last thought or anything else you may have found interesting in this blog.

by Hardit

Rant 2

January 14, 2013 in Uncategorized

Hi all…. i was travelling last week and had a super fun week at my hometown with frns and family but couldn’t be active on pgmp and poker in general..

Only poker i played was on my onward journey to Bhopal and it turned out to be a massively expensive journey and i mean it when i say massive.. last blog i updated you guys that i after running bad for a long time i finally hit profit playing cash online.. well as it turn out that was an exception to the overall bad run i have been having.. i played only twice last week and literally got raped… no matter what i hit not what i do i just kept losing. one time i freaking shoved on top set got called by a flush and straight draw and lost both times we ran.. the funny part is one time i had hit quads on the turn and the opponent sucked out on me with a straight flush on the river.. it took me a while to understand what had happened :confused:.

But i have decided to keep going despite all the bad run.. the way i look at it this is my stress test.. I think this is the most vital experience in poker that i need to have if i ever want to make any long term decisions related to poker. i have been playing for about 5-6 year now but i never stuck around for a major bad run.. So this time i am planning to see this trough and hopefully not perish in the process..

Live cash games here in Bangalore seemed to have dried up .. there hasn’t been a good game in a long time now.. i am hoping that was just coz of the party season and the action kicks back soon..

well there is nothing much to say so adieu till the next blog.. best of luck to all of you who like me are trying to deal with variance..

by Hardit


January 2, 2013 in Uncategorized

Sup guys.. wish you all a very happy new year.. may all ur pots be monster wins.. well nothing much to tell from last couple of weeks.. party season has put all the Poker players off the felt i guess..

at the new years party i realized that a new year party is so much like mtts.. u rarely get the perfect party .. early hrs of the party are just as boring as the pre ante game and when things speed up then also u are not sure if u are gonna end well.. But when it does end well it really is amazing…

I have been playing a lot online … mostly Omaha cash though.. i leaned in to the pain i spoke of in my last blog.. and what did i find.. well more pain i kept going and then i found some more pain.. i found myself standing at the bad end of the variance for a larger part of the previous month.. but the at the end things turned around and i came though with a profit ..

During this ordeal i often wondered that as a poker player bad run cannot be avoided, but can it be manipulated? something like playing lower stakes and tighter when u are running bad and then moving up to bigger stakes when things turn around. I did do it this time played 25c-50c when i was running bad played a couple of days and then the day i was not getting sucked out at i shifted straight to $1-$2. Turned out well this time. I guess doing some hit and trial i will find my mechanism of defense for the variance. The underlying importance thing remains keep making positive ev plays. So adieu till the next one share your defense mechanism against the variance in comments. cheers…

by Hardit

Boxing is an unnatural art.. well i say so is poker

December 11, 2012 in Uncategorized

Lot of frustration on blogs I see. About variance and bad runs, hmm well this is the fork in the road isn’t it?

Boxing is an unnatural act, ’cause everything in it is backwards. You wanna move to the left, you don’t step left. You push on the right toe. To move right, you use your left toe. Instead of running from the pain, like a sane person would do, you step into it. ~ Million Dollar Baby narration

Here we need to choose how to deal with this. I think lets first think about what is frustrating us. Just losing or losing continuously or is it about losing money. I think it is the latter two. Well it is more about losing continuously but I am sure if we were making money we won’t be frustrated about losing continuously so in a way it is about both.

Now I guess we can slow down we can chose to play something else OR we can lean in to the pain and do something extra. The way I look at it we need to diversify here. We need to add another stream of cash within the poker universe. This can mean playing cash, other kind of tourneys etc etc. One of my friends feels really confident playing heads-up tourneys and had a good win rate at them; it may not make him $10000 in one shot but if it can lead to small amount of regular cash i think he ll play MTTs with peace of mind even when he is continuously losing.

So am I talking coz I am not frustrated on losing or am I am running well at the moment. Well no I am not running great and I am also losing in tourneys but what I am trying to do currently is to play an Omaha cash table alongside the tourney I am playing. Even if I make enough money to cover for the buy in I don’t think I would be as frustrated as I will be by losing continuously on tourneys.

I am sure some of you will argue that we could lose more quickly, well I did lose more quickly initially, but that was coz I was playing bad (guilty). Moreover I see value in it in long term to pursue it. Both cash and tourney are different animals but they can be tamed. And in cash game probability can be found in its truest form. Theoretically in tourneys probability can be right and u still can lose for a long long time. What I mean to say is that obviously we will have to make + EV decisions in both but in cash + EV decisions will yield instant results. In tourney if a + EV decision goes otherwise towards deeper stages a lot of effort and time goes to waste. But the value of a decision in cash is same at all stages. There is no c$ t$ in cash and to lose u either need to be playing bad or need to run into black swan. Obviously we can’t do much about the blackie but as long as u don’t play bad u should be fine. And if we are play bad then we need to address more issues before getting frustrated.

So i say find your extra stream of cash time and if that not enough but it will certainly allow you to keep playing ur A game at the MTTs without much frustration.

by Hardit

pocket 44 shove preflop UTG (10bb)

November 15, 2012 in Uncategorized

In light of the current topic going on in PGMP I am revisiting a hand that I faced at PGT which I briefly discussed with my friend Jagdeep who at time had mentioned that may be a shove pre flop from UTG with pocket 44s will be +EV but we didn’t go into detail discussion at that time. Last session of PGMP I was reminded of this hand so we again discussed and here is our analysis of the same.
Now I had Pocket 44s UTG in the 7k bounty tourney and I had c. 10bb with me :confused:. I folded then but on analyzing that situation I came to realize that it would have been a + EV shove. Jaggi was right.:cool:
The pot is aproxx 2.5bb as the antes had kicked in. So, what range will call me there? Well we took 66+, ATs+, AJ+, KQs as the calling range for this analysis which are a total of 110 hand combinations consisting of 54 combination of pairs 66+, 16 of Ats+, 36 of AJ+and 4 combinations of KQss.
This is top 8.3% of total combinations possible. This means approx. 91.7% of the times people are going to fold. So my overall fold equity there is 91.7%^8 (considering 9 handed table) = 50%. Rest of the times I will have equity of 36% (courtesy pokerstove) and 36% of the times when I get called I will win 12.5 bb and I will lose 10bb rest of the 64% times.
All in all it will be a .32 bb +EV shove. Calculated as 50%*2.5+32%*(-10)+18% *12.5. You will find a detailed calculation in the excel attached.

Moreover apart from the fact that it is +EV shove we should also shove there coz we are UTG and next hand we are going to be left with 9bb and then 8.5bb which may hamper our fold equity by a great deal. The calling range will keep expanding as we keep on getting blinded out. like at 8.5bb may be all pairs will call and KJ will also contemplate etc. So by shoving here we are not only making a +EV move but we are also protecting our future fold equity.

Next point we should consider is does antes make a difference? and what stack sizes we should shove with? Following table show shows our EV at different scenarios and the answer to both questions is clear:


This was an eye opener for me and I hope to open a few more eyes. I would like to thank Jagdeep to spare some time and take me through the analysis. Thanks a tonne mate. Needless to say PGMP rocks.

PS no one here is advocating a 30bb shove with 44s just shown for the purpose of explanation.

by Hardit

Job vs poker

November 14, 2012 in Uncategorized

We are done with 3 sessions of PGMP which had been kick ass. I mostly played turbo sngs for the last weeks or so as i find them really good value for the time one need to put into them. While juggling job , live cash games, PGMP and online game i find them to fit my need at the moment. tried most of the stuff i learned and was surprised to see all that in practice. Had a couple of deep runs too but nothing that i can brag about he he. I am trying to focus more on extracting value from my good hands these days. Previously i used to be more protect my hand kind of player. I guess i will have to wait and watch the result of this change over a long term but so far it has been decent.

Lately i have been thinking more on Job vs Poker than i used to, coz well its hard to fit both together and one is opportunity cost for the other. After a lot of thinking i have reached to a conclusion which i would like to post here using a poker situation. We all have been in one of those situations where we have a 15 outer and ideally we can call anything in that situation .. but if we face a bet which we cannot call every time we face similar spot then its no longer a 60-40 situation.. if we call just this once we dont know if this time its going to be 60 or 40 this time.. so job vs poker is the same situation for me where poker is my 15 outer but the bet i am facing to give it my complete focus is bigger than i can handle at the moment. so the conclusion is obvious i am going to play as much as i can and get my roll to a place where no bet seems too big to call.

by Hardit

Know urself.

November 10, 2012 in Uncategorized

Hi all. This is my first blog . Well we all got danda from Adi today so u may see a lot of such “my first blog” entries today. So I am gonna take this opportunity and post a blog that I have been thinking and kind of working on for a couple of days. So here are a few words that I threw in a bucket whipped em up and now I am going to spill them on this blog hoping that a painting appears.
Everyone will tell u that it is important to know your opponent. What kind of player he/she is and what his/her tendencies etc are. But I think people don’t talk often enough about knowing ourselves. After all we are opening ourselves up at the poker table every hand.
In the stock trading business it is often said the weakest link in a trading strategy is the trader himself and this could not be more right in a poker strategy. The reason behind this is quite obvious; player is the only component of the strategy which has a personality, emotions, traits, tendencies and habits.
In poker there are so many right plays in a single spot and yet we always wonder what the right play is. So let me suggest a new variable here, maybe we should wonder what the right play is for me. Obviously the basic principles of game don’t change and most cases these principles will help us in white and black areas. But poker is game of lot of grey areas and we may be able to use the knowledge better in those areas if we are not kidding ourselves. What I mean is we should be conscious of what we did and why we did it. And in any case if we don’t know ourselves we won’t ever be able to go to 2nd level of thinking which means limited growth in poker.
And this also helps up in not feeding a mistake. Someone who understands the game a lot better than I do once told me we all have urges to gamble every once in a while. It is not bad to follow them what is bad is to think we made a good play when we win in such situations.
We all can be doing the same thing but we can always do it in our own ways. I am going to steal a quote from a movie lucky you here “a man should play the cards the way he leads his life and should lead his life the way he plays his cards.” So I am going to leave this as a food for thought for people who read this blog. Feel free to post your comments on what you think on this subject.

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