I finally won a seat to the Main Event freeroll in the ITH league. I had been close a number of times and I have won two freeroll events, which don’t come with an automatic seat. On Sunday, I managed to win the VIP event. In my mind that is the best event on the schedule, so I’m particularly pleased to win my way in with that one. I didn’t even play nearly as well as I have in some other events, but I got the right lucky breaks at the right time. I got very lucky with three players left, when I put DTheater on a pure bluff. I came over the top of him on the turn, expecting he would fold. Unfortunately, he called, so I knew he had a piece of the board. I think he would have pushed with a big hand, so I figured he had top pair and kicker problems or middle pair that he thought was good. I rivered the Ace, knew I was good and put him all-in on the river. He had to call getting a jillion to one and I took a massive chip lead heads-up. I got evv98 all-in right away as a favorite, but he hit a hand. I still had him outchipped by a ton, so I put him in again with middle pair a few hands later. This time he had an oesd, an overcard to my pair and maybe a flush draw too. However, he didn’t improve and I finally won a seat. w00t!
I also hit my 10,000th post on ITH which was pretty cool. It has been a real ego boost to read all the congratulations and nice words that people have written back. I told Cybrarian I was thinking about dropping out of ITH once I hit 10,000, which seems like it would be cool to me for some odd reason. I don’t think he thought I was serious, but I was. In the end, I don’t think I would be willing to do it, but it still seems cool to me.
I also played in a WSOP Double Shootout on Stars, which I think is probably one of the best routes (if not the best) for me to win a seat. I got pretty unlucky at my first table, though. On the very first hand, I folded Ax UTG. Then five people limped, which seemed pretty typical of a first hand low blind set-up. The SB then raised large, something like 400 chips. To my great suprise, three other people called him. There was a big pot brewing on the first hand! The flop came down T98r. The SB pushed his remaining 1,100 chips to the middle. In about two seconds, the action went call – call – fold. This is a $160 buy-in event and I didn’t expect to see this kind of action on the first hand. The BB flips over KK, which is aggressive, but understandable. He didn’t want anyone to draw to a straight with AQ or the like. The first insta-caller called with TT for top set, so yeah — he should have called. The second insta-caller called with QJo (yeah, I’m not sure how he got into that spot with QJ, but whatever) so obviously calling with the nuts wasn’t a difficult choice either. The turn was a rag, so the TT needed the board to pair on the river, but instead it brought a King to taunt the SB. Boom, one guy at the table has 5,000 chips and we’re short-handed. Not exactly the way I’d like to see things go. He then hits a set a short while later and busts out another player. Now he’s over 6,000 and has half the chips at the table. I fold a lot, miss a few flops and drift down to about 1,200 chips. Finally , I find AA in EP and raise it up. Mega-stack calls me (he’s been calling and pushing a lot of hands, now that he has chips to burn) and one or two others. The flop comes down 466. I fire out half the pot and he calls. I figure he could have a pair, a four, a six or a straight draw or even overcards. The turn is a Ten and I push. He calls and shows 64o for the flopped boat. I might as well have lit the money on fire. Oh well.
I’ve also started to think that it might be possible to catch Ohjay for the big prize in the ITH league. I think people are starting to adjust a bit to his play and he has started to have some bad luck and has made a few small mistakes. I’ve gained a lot of points on him the last two weeks. However, his dominance was so complete in the early stages that it may simply not be possible to catch him.