Even though Poker is a skill game, you still need a bit of luck on your side, especially when it comes to tournaments and especially when you want to make $6K starting with zero. Your luck is a roller coaster with it's ups and downs and even a few loops. I have been having the worst "Lucky" run ever. That needs an explanation.
Just last night I was playing in two freeroll tournaments, one on Aloha and the other on Poker Pages. The Aloha pays about $28 for first place, while PP pays in "Bugsy Bonus Points" - frequent player points that can be transferred into tournament entries or cashed out for 1c a point - so the big prize was equivalent to about $4. Either win would do, all I need is a start to get going.
I was traveling well on PP, doubling my stack on the first hand with Jacks full. After an hour, I have moved from $10K to over $100K and sitting in about 3rd out of the 77 players left. I'm reading everyone like a book, playing like a champ and feeling good. Even on the few times I have called some of the short stacks when they went all in, I'm getting the great river cards to throw them out. Dealt A6o in the BB, and the action is limited but there are 3 callers. The flop comes A6x - checked all around back to me, time to top up my stack a little bit...
Mean while, over on Aloha I made a bold early move (because with low starting stacks you have to), and go from $400 to $1060 on top pair with ace kicker on the river, with no action before it. I have no idea why the followed with what they must have been holding, but hey that's not my problem. A few hands later, again on the BB I'm holding poker 4's - not a great hand, but since I'm on the big blind I can be hopeful. The flop comes and there is a 4, so I start to get a little more confident and think "I'm killing at both tables, this could be the night I get started!".
I flip back to Poker Pages to raise a thousand or so, and the player immediately to my left is trying to make the decision to call or fold.
Gee, he certainly is taking his time.
Don't they have a timer on these things?
I mean, it was only a few thousand, his stack is $60K, throw it in if you don't have it.
Where is that timer?
Oh...Hang on...Oh no...
I looked over at Aloha, and the same thing is happening - nothing. For some reason my raise on the flop is not showing. My internet connection is down. I frantically press the reconnect button but to no effect. I go all the way out then all the way back in, take the phone cord out (yes, still on dial up), restart the computer but nothing happens for 20 minutes. I even used a trace on Poker Pages, and the only sites I can connect to for the time being is in Australia. My ISP has cost me. So, for the record my ISP is Optus and I say they now owe me $28, $3 more than my monthly access fee. They won't get me to upgrade to broadband that way!
I was pissed off. I had put nearly two hours into Poker pages, and was just getting a run on Aloha. I checked this morning and I finished 27th on Aloha by folding away my $1K, and 16th on PP by folding away my $100K. 27th gets you nothing, 16th however did put me in the money! 15 Bugsy Bonus Points! That's the equivalent of 15 US cents. Sound better if I say approximately 22 Australian cents. Yes sir, one more monster like that and I can play two-up!
And what about this game the other night? In four consecutive hands I had the following either on the flop or the turn:
- Quad 7's
- Ace high straight
- Ace high flush
- Queens full of 5's
Not a bad little run for four consecutive hands. And what did I make of this bevy?
I folded each one before the flop. I had cards like this (I say like because I can't remember exact):
It only took one raise before the flop to convince me not to start with a hand like that. Four monsters in a row, all folded and all good enough for the money. I am having the best of luck and I still can't capitalize on it.