Posts Tagged ‘Isildur1

26
Sep
10

World Series of Poker Europe Main Event – Day 2

The moment the clock struck midnight to signal the close of play, Phil Ivey got up from his seat and made his way out of the media spotlight.

He raced up the stairs of the Empire Casino, stepped out into Leicester Square, and disappeared into the cold London night.

Day 2 of the World Series of Poker Europe Main Event was mixed at best for Ivey, who is looking to add to the bracelet he picked up in a $3,000 H.O.R.S.E event in Las Vegas this summer.

Phil Ivey

The eight-time bracelet winner began the day well, racing into an early chip lead as his stack shot up to the 300,000 mark. He has since slipped back a little, but still sits comfortably in the top 10.

He is joined there by Andrew Pantling and David Peters, who both final-tabled the £2,500 6-max tournament won by Phil Laak, but the man everyone is chasing at the moment is Swedish sensation Viktor Blom.

The man believed by many to be online genius/maniac/degenerate gambler (delete as applicable) Isildur1 has amassed a monster-stack of 443,200 chips, a mere 1,100 ahead of Serbian pro Bojan Gledovic but a massive 70,000 clear of the rest of the stacked field.

Free from the attention of the TV cameras (which were largely focused on Ivey and table-mate Gledovic) and surprisingly free from any patches from online cardrooms, Blom seemed at ease, sharing jokes with the rest of his table.

A couple of big pots probably helped, including a superb read to all-but knock out Heather Sue Mercer, and a set-over-set encounter which saw him get the better of Jason Gray. But unlike last year, when a huge bluff-gone-wrong saw him eliminated from the tournament, Blom has been playing impeccable big-stack poker to increase his lead.

Elsewhere, a number of big names remain in contention for the penultimate World Series bracelet of 2010.

Barry Greenstein

Barry Greenstein, Hoyt Corkins, JP Kelly and Greg Mueller are among the bracelet winners remaining, while 1996 World Champion Huck Seed will be coming back for day 3, as will Daniel Negreanu, still in the hunt for a third successive final table in this event.

They will be joined at the felt by reigning Aussie Millions champ Tyron Krost, triple-crown winner Roland de Wolfe and November Niner John Dolan in what remains an incredibly tough field.

Unfortunately some other stars of the game did not make it to midnight with their chips intact. Dolan’s November table-mate Filippo Candio fell by the wayside, as did reigning champion Barry Shulman and bracelet-holders Mike Matusow, Praz Bansi and Phil Laak.

With a field so strong, it is near-impossible to centre in on one table as the toughest of them all, but table 13 is definitely staking a claim for that particular title:

Table 13
Seat 1: John Eames (152000)
Seat 2: David Baker (207000)
Seat 3: Vincent Chahley (122400)
Seat 4: JP Kelly (84900)
Seat 5: Rudy Blondeau (166700)
Seat 6: Huck Seed (147600)
Seat 7: Barry Greenstein (175300)
Seat 8: Thomas Bichon (257700)
Seat 9: James Bord (195000)

Sports bettor Bord, cheered on by friend and event 4 third-place finisher Andrew Feldman, will have his work cut out if he wants to make his second World Series of Poker final table.

Play is set to kick off again at noon today, and it will be interesting to see who emerges at the top once the money bubble has burst. Will Blom hang onto his lead? Will Ivey still be up there? Will Negreanu keep up his phenomenal main event run? We’ll have to wait and see.

22
Jan
10

Beating the rush

This week, Full Tilt Poker made an announcement they feel will change the dynamics of the online poker world.

Rush Poker, the company’s new brainwave, will see the waiting time between hands minimised as players are moved to a different table and dealt new cards as soon as they fold.

Former world champion Chris Ferguson has described Rush Poker as ‘the greatest innovation in online poker since poker started on the internet.’

2000 World Series of Poker champion Chris 'Jesus' Ferguson

Still, putting superlative statements from Team Full Tilt members to one side, Rush Poker is definitely something to be excited about.

Original November Niner Scott Montgomery famously described himself as being part of the ‘ADD Generation’, and this new strand of the game should help to tackle issues of patience and concentration within the game.

Many players get bored playing one table at a time online, and some have resorted to multitabling to get round this issue.

And this emphasises how much of a risk Full Tilt are taking with the introduction of this new system.

With some former-multitablers trying out Rush Poker as an alternative, the site may lose rake on tournament and cash table entries.

But the company must feel confident that they can attract more players from rival sites: players who (a) want to be among the first to try out this new and exclusive system, and (b) have until now seen multi-tabling as a necessary inconvenience, and believe they have something to gain from Rush Poker.

More than just a hobby

There is, however, one element of Rush Poker which I would consider to be a potential stumbling block.

Players like myself, who have something of a superiority complex at the table, value their ability to pick up on reads and patterns.

This is particularly true of players in the higher echelons of the game (myself not included, sadly), as evidence by the amount of money spent on programmes like Sharkscope which give insights into the history or playing style of opponents.

Furthermore, the recent controversy surrounding Brian Hastings and his fellow Team Cardrunners members exchanging hand histories before Hastings took on online prodigy Isildur1 demonstrates how the best players in the world like to look for ‘tells’ away from the live circuit.

Brian Hastings recently won over $4million with the help of hand histories

With the advent of Rush Poker, the ability of players to ‘do their homework’ is diminished. They will face different opponents every hand, leaving them insufficient time to pick up on their rivals habits and eccentricities at the table.

On the basis of this, it is difficult to see Rush Poker having a significant impact on the ‘nosebleed’ games, or even on mid-stakes tournaments.

One can only assume, therefore, that Full Tilt will be targeting the lower-level games, where the rake is higher and their is more money to be made. It would seem that they are confident enough of generating significant revenue to overcome the diminishing returns from multitabling.

It will be interesting to see if Rush Poker takes off. And, if it does, how will Full Tilt’s competitors respond?

15
Nov
09

Just a kid with a dream

Nothing excites young poker fans more than an unknown player emerging from nowhere to take on the big guns.

The classic example of such a player is Phil Hellmuth, who was a new name for many when he became world champion in 1989.

But the rise of internet poker has added a new dimension to the journey of the challenger – complete anonymity, save for a screen name.

The daily grind

As soon as a new name sits down at the same online table as Phil Ivey, Patrik Antonius or one of the many other high-stakes pros, speculation begins as to his or her identity.

Occasionally it will emerge that the player in question is a regular in mid-stakes cash games who has decided to ‘take a shot’ at the big time.

Of course, such a decision is a huge gamble for most players, but they could do worse than taking a leaf out of Tom Dwan’s book.

Top high-stakes pro Tom 'Durrrr' Dwan

Dwan, known online as ‘durrrr’, started out with a bankroll of $50 and played $6 tournaments to build this up to an amount which he could take to the cash tables.

He patiently decided to grind his way up the stakes, before taking on the big names only after attaining plenty of cash-game experience.

And look at him now. At just 23 years of age, durrrr is the newest member of Team Full Tilt, entitling him to a percentage of the lucrative Full Tilt Poker company and ensuring he will probably never have to worry about money again in his life.

But how much did you lose?

Dwan claims that he has never gone broke in all his time playing poker, despite reported seven-figure downswings, but who knows if the same can be said for some of the other youngsters who flirt with celebrity and poker immortality.

Within weeks of sitting down with $250,000 at a high-stakes online cash table, even a few days’ absence from the tables can lead to an online ‘superstar’ being ‘confirmed busto’ by the often-unforgiving Two Plus Two forums.

The latest to try their luck goes by the name of ‘Isildur1’, but who knows how long he (or she) will last before being replaced by another magnet for applause and abuse.

Online poker is a fickle business.

Danger is my middle name

It seems as though the gamble doesn’t pay off for a number of young pretenders, but the few who succeed are in line for huge rewards and even greater acclaim.

One prime example is Di ‘Urindanger’ Dang, who won the biggest pot in the history of online poker when his pocket aces defeated the pocket kings of none other than durrrr.

Di Dang (right) and his brother Hac (middle) are two online pros who have proven to be no flash in the pan

And many other online whizzkids have adapted their skills to the live game, with Matt Graham and Matt Hawrilenko winning bracelets at this year’s World Series of Poker and Joe Cada taking down the Main Event title.

With all these success stories, no wonder they keep coming back.

Tom Dwan signs for Team Full Tilt: http://www.fulltiltpoker.com/tom-durrrr-dwan-signs-to-team-full-tilt

Full Tilt Poker: http://www.fulltiltpoker.com/




Hi I’m Tom. I’m a freelance journalist, and I recently completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Journalism at Cardiff University. In my spare time I like to play, watch and talk about poker. I hope you enjoy reading my blog.

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