One bad hand. That’s all it takes, just one hand played badly…
I started strong. It was one of my best outings ever. Within an hour I had doubled. By 90 minutes I was at 3x the starting stack. Everything was working. I connected on flops. I bluffed when I didn’t. I folded to hands that turned out to be stronger. I made out that I was even luckier than I really was. No one wanted to mess with me. I was finally playing the big stack, pushing people around and picking up cheap pots here and there. And I was doing it all without being dumb. I was following my own advice.
When we cut down to one table, I was still well above average. I continued playing well but the cards were starting to turn on me a little. And the blinds started going up.
I found myself with ~9K, average stack was 5K. The blinds were at 300-600. I was dealt 9-10 diamonds. According to Phil Laak on Poker After Dark, suited connectors will hit the straight or flush 40% of the time. This was my 3rd hand playing suited connectors that night. I limped in. It was raised to 1500. There was one caller before me. Betting 900 to get 3,600 seemed like good odds, I called. The flop was 8d, a Jack and a blank. I checked. There was a bet of 1,000 by the chip leader. The other player folded.
Here is where I got dumb. I had 3 cards to a straight and 3 cards to a flush. There were no scare cards on the board. I thought “If I get lucky I can double up easily. I’m going to take the chance.” So I chased. By the time the river came I still had nothing and had to fold with 10 high. I was down to 5K. In one stupid hand chasing I had knocked myself down to small stack.
Five people left. Top three finish in the money. Blinds have moved up to 400-800, so I have about 7 big blinds. I have just enough money left to push someone out of a pot or two. The blinds are coming around, I need to make a move. I get Q-10, that’s good enough for me! I go all-in. I’m called against A-10 and knocked out. Afterwards I find out that the top four (not three) finished in the money, which might have altered my play.
Very frustrating. I think I played extremely well except for one hand, and ended up as bubble boy.