I could and should have won big at the WSOP
PokerStars pro JP Kelly, who cashed in three events at the 2010 World Series of Poker, writes exclusively for Poker Jolt
|by JP Kelly||August, 6th 2010||
Above: JP Kelly left the 2010 World Series of Poker disappointed
The WSOP is over for another year and part of me is very relieved. It was a hard series.
I played a vast number of events chasing a bracelet but other than the Main Event I can't really consider it a success. I'm disappointed to have let the opportunity to win big pass me by.
I was in Vegas for just under two months and stayed in an apartment with a group of about 10 other players. We all tried to keep each other focussed and hungry to win.
But Vegas can be a lonely place at times and you're surrounded by vices like gambling, drinking and women - so it can be quite hard to maintain your sanity and health.
I tried to play lots of golf, do some exercise and do normal things like having BBQs every now and then to keep a sense of realism and prevent burn out.
I finished 40th, winning $7,610, in the six-handed No Limit event - that was definitely a missed opportunity. I had a big stack the whole way and was dominating all my tables in a quiet way (ie, not raising every hand but winning most hands and forcing people to make tough decisions).
I played a big pot with J,10 where I opted to just call on the button when I'd been playing a three bet or fold style for the most part which had been working well.
The big blind made a tiny squeeze which I felt was a sign of weakness and I also felt like I was priced in.
I flopped top pair and the turn was the A♠ giving me a flush draw. He pushed and I decided to call on a board of 10,9,4,A. I felt, at best, he had a pair giving me nine spades and any J or 10 for the win.
I really felt like he could be the one semi-bluffing and might even be virtually dead with a hand like 5♠,6♠ or 7♠,6♠. He might also have two Broadway cards and figure that he can blast me off my hand by representing the ace.
He turned out to have A,Q, which I'd let get there and failed to improve.
That pot would've put me as one of the chip leaders if not the actual chip leader with only 40 players left so I was very disappointed.
In hindsight I wish I'd three bet myself or just folded when he squeezed as we weren't really deep enough for me to be speculating with suited connectors.
I also cashed in the $1,500 No Limit Hold'em, finishing 22nd for $5,120. That was a tale of two days...
I was the early chip leader after getting six bet all-in holding K,K by 2,2 to give me 45k when the average was about 7k. I decided to multi table this tournament with the 5k Pot Limit Omaha which, in hindsight, was a big mistake.
I was swayed by the fact that PLO is probably my strongest game but I have no experience multi tabling and also I had one of the biggest stacks in the $1,500 so it was pretty ridiculous to waste time and effort in the other tournament.
I busted pretty early in that and went back to the $1,500 where I finished above average, but if I'd not multi-tabled maybe I could have finished as one of the chip leaders.
Day 2 started well but my table was weak and I tried to run it over and kept getting looked up. I also felt a little on edge for some reason and busted soon after the money bubble with 9,7 offsuit pushing from the small blind into the big blind, who had A9♠.
One of my biggest strength's is changing gears and reading the flow of a tournament and knowing how I am perceived by the other players.
But not this time: I was a bit tilty and blew any chances I had of progressing in the tournament.
NEXT TIME: Read how JP outlasted 7,200 players at the WSOP Main Event...
* JP Kelly plays at PokerStars.com