Apr 022012

I don’t want to write a blog, I want to play poker, poker, poker! Well actually I would like to watch the new Game of Thrones episode first and then play poker but since my last blog was 3 weeks ago I can’t really postpone it any longer.

I assume most of you have read how my career as high-stakes LHE pro ended at the beginning of March. I got offered being staked for 50% in those games but I decided to really start all over again. When I made the switch last year from FR to 6-max I grinded a lot of $2/$4 and $3/$6 to get used to the game. This was also during a PokerStars Promo in which you could win daily VPP Leaderboards and the combination of these two lead me to grinding 16+ tables of $2/$4 and $3/$6 6-max for 2 days straight with not so fantastic results. I got out of it what I wanted, my first real experience in 6-max poker and I made a really tiny profit after rakeback. Since those days I moved up to play $5/$10 and a lot less tables which worked fine until I got my ass whooped last month.

Now you should of course be able to beat the lower limits if you want to win at the High Stakes and I never really doubted I could beat these limits but my PokerTracker said otherwise. After a week of no poker this seemed like the perfect challenge to get back to the tables. The idea was pretty simple: I could only play $2/$4 6-max until the numbers turned from red to green, as soon as I was up lifetime I could move up and repeat it at $3/$6. Now this is how anybody should move up stakes normally, so why not me? The hardest part of this challenge was that normally I’m okay with breaking even on the tables since in limit poker you pay a lot of rake and thus make a lot in rakeback. To get in the green I actually had to win, just like a real pro! Now to win the best idea is to play less tables and table select really well but that limits the amount of tables you can play and makes the process a lot longer. At $2/$4 I fired up all the tables I could find and it actually worked out pretty good.

I only needed 20 hours and crushed the $2/$4 by winning 1.71BB/100, a pretty decent winrate. The next challenge was however a bigger one. The $3/$6 tables have a worse fish/pro ratio and there are less tables running. Also the amount of money I lost at $3/$6 was a lot more then at the $2/$4 especially in BB/100 (-2,50BB/100). If I could win at 1BB/100 it would still take me 100.000 hands to win back the $5.835 I’m down. It’s pretty simple, if it has to be this way, it will have to go this way. I’m currently in the middle of grinding back those $5.835 and I’m not doing that bad so far.

This challenge really motivates me as I want to get over with it as soon as possible. If I’m back at the $5/$10 tables I’m already grinding mid-stakes again and from there we will see how it goes. It also shows that I’m a structural winner at the low-stakes which gave me the confidence back which I lost at the beginning of March. I’m currently really confident about my game and playing really focused almost every session. The drive to win might even be bigger than when I was playing the High Stakes, it’s the need to proof to myself I’m good enough to be a winner in this game.

I finally got a pretty graph again! As said it could take a while before I grinded those $5.835 back at the $3/$6 and my current aim is to do that before Diablo III comes out at the 15th of May. From the 15th of May till the 28th of May I can then allow myself to play Diablo III before taking off to Las Vegas!


Still I didn’t forget that March was my worst month ever. I’m happy that I found the motivation again to start over again at the $2/$4 but this is obviously a huge difference compared to grinding $100/$200. Looking at the results does give a bit of a bitter taste and I just hope that one day I can start a challenge to also convert these red numbers into green ones!

My March graphs also look really bizarre. Winning a decent 0,58 BB/100 but down almost $18k shows these big differences between my graph in BB/100 and $.


So what other things are happening in my world? Let’s stick a little longer to poker first. My PokerStars Team Online buddy Tyler (Frosty012) Frost had his Team Online video launched last week. I’m a bit jealous because I think the guys from 918Films have a really great vibe in their videos and I can only hope it’s going to be my turn one day!

I’m also really happy that he talks a lot more about girls in his latest blogs, he seems not really happy about the fact that he has to many one night stands…. I always thought that that was the goal when being single? He also did an interview on the 2+2 Podcast which are always great to listen to.

PokerStars Team Online finally got its first Australian member! Roy “GodlikeRoy” Bhasin made it to the team and I think he is a great addition. I’ve known him from his posts on 2+2 in the Supernova Elite Thread back in 2010 and have followed his blog since. His blog was already on my blogroll and I was happy to “one up” it to the Team Online blog section. There was already an announcement made earlier that George “Jorj95” Lind III is back in Team Online after moving to Canada (Vancouver) to get back into Online poker. Jorj95 is one of the legends of Online poker and I can’t wait to see him crunch during the SCOOP coming May.


In the non poker related section it’s pretty simple what I want to talk about, TV-Series! I haven’t been watching a lot of Series lately, I haven’t even finished the last season of Dexter which was always one of my favorite shows. However I did watch the finale episode of Spartacus! It was hard to get used to the new guy who played Spartacus (after Andy Whitfield tragic dead earlier) but the show was as strong as in its first season. Yesterday the 1st Episode of Game of Thrones Season 2 aired and currently I can’t wait to publish this blog so I can start watching it. I’ve already read what’s going to happen since I’m halfway the second book but that only makes me more excited! I’ve said it before but if you haven’t watched Season 1 yet, you really should clear your schedule and watch it now!

Another series I’m looking forward to is Season 5 of True Blood.

Now it’s time for Game of Thrones!


 Posted by at 1:43 pm
Mar 122012

I’ve just had the worst week I’ve ever had in my poker career. I’m pretty sad that my days as High Stakes LHE player are already over but I have no regrets at all. I’ve had a lot of fun again playing poker this last 1,5 month but I have to be realistic and I just can’t handle the swings money wise. I literally had a Mike McDermott (Rounders) blow-up moment, playing in games you feel you can beat but if your pockets aren’t deep enough you might not be able to play long enough to beat your opponents.

As mentioned in one of my earlier blogs I switched to 6-max somewhere last year and when I returned from the Bahamas I accidently got into a $50/$100 game. I had been pondering about jumping in these games for a long time and this was the right time. I wanted to do something else then playing 16+ tables of low/mid-stakes and playing 1-4 tables of high stakes was the solution. Normally you need at least 500BB’s but preferable 1.000BBs to be sure to handle any swings and that is only if you are a winning player. If you are a losing players your pockets can never be deep enough. I wanted to go as far as 200/250BB’s, so it was nothing more than taking a shot but there is nothing wrong with taking shots in poker. Sure it had to do with some ego as well, playing the highest games with the best in the world but during this 1,5 month my ego has never won it from my common sense. I played as high as $50/$100 as long as there was at least 1 big fish in the game. If I had a bad position at the table I often skipped the game, especially when the 4 others guys were monsters. Always when I played high stakes I quit all my other tables to have full focus on the game and I never played more than 4 tables. I could play $100/$200 as well but only if there were at least 2 fishes in the game, I would not play any higher. As soon as the fish left, I had to quit. While waiting for the high stakes games I would play $5/$10 and up and basically with the same rules as above. Only play with the fish and leave as soon as the fish leaves. The only difference was the amount of tables I would play at the same time.

I only played 4 days in January but I had a good start:

So I rolled into February and was swinging up and down. I don’t think anything really strange happened, I could have had a bit better winrate but the sample was still pretty small. I was running hot on the higher limits and it’s hard to see in the graph but I ended the month roughly $2.400 up again. The lobby hunt game went better and better since it’s pretty important to be one of the first to join the table. Often nobody wants to get up from a good table so it’s important to sit as soon as the fish sits and hopefully be able to do some seat selection as well. I spotted more fishes every day just by watching the other regulars sitting down or getting up. Nobody plays each-other at these high-stakes so when a game is running you basically always know there is a fish playing in the game. (Mike McDermott: “It’s like the nature channel… you don’t see Piranhas eating themselves, do you?”).

With a full month behind me on the high stakes I was getting pretty acquainted with the swings involved. I didn’t had any huge swings yet, both ways. I was discussing these things a lot with a buddy of mine and I knew that I would get into heavier swings at some point. I talked about it with two other guys who are playing these games as well and they warned me for the heavy swings. The question was whether the first big swing would be up or down? In the first 11 days of March I found the answer. I started with a plus $2.1k session on Saturday (3rd of March) followed by another good session on Sunday afternoon winning $2.6k. A pretty good start and Sunday evening I was chilling on the couch playing an online homegame tourney with friends on my laptop. I wanted to go to bed to lock down the profit and catch some sleep but saw a good $30/$60 game running with two fishes. One thing led to the other and a couple of hours later I was down $6.4k for a total loss of $1.7k. I was pretty pissed at that moment since all Sunday evening I was really happy being up $4.7k for the weekend and somehow lost it back trying to play one more game before going to bed. On the other hand I had done nothing stupid. I saw a fish, played him and chased him around as he moved up and down in stakes. This time I lost but that’s really part of poker.
The best about this whole thing was the fact I was really eager to play at all times. I tried to squish in small session anytime I could and that was something I hadn’t done in a long time. That’s also exactly the difference between seeing poker as work or hobby. When poker felt like work I would only play on the days I had scheduled myself to play, now that poker really felt like a hobby again I was playing all the time. That also happened on Thursday evening when I came home at 23:30. I saw a $50/$100 game just getting started and I jumped in. I pretty much one tabled $50/$100 and played 188 hands in which I won a total of 2 hands at showdown. A lot of other hands I made a pair or better and couldn’t win, resulting in putting in a lot of bets in pots which I didn’t win. Not a single pot I could have won if I had played it different, I might paid 1,2 maybe 3 bets to much in those 188 hands but even that is probably thinking to result oriented. I knew that a big swing would come one way or the other, unfortunately it was down and not up.

A pretty bizarre feeling to lose $9k like that on a Thursday evening in not even 2 hours of poker. Sure I wasn’t happy but it didn’t affect me that much the next day. I normally just need a good night sleep and I’m ready again to play some poker in the morning and this time it was no different. I was down $15k from my highest point, that was pretty disappointing but nobody wins in a straight line. I still had some money left for my “shot” and at least I knew now how worse things could get. I was still as eager to play, maybe even more eager and when I came home Saturday Evening at 02:00 I saw a juicy game and jumped in again (Mike McDermott: “It’s immoral to let a sucker keep his money..”).

Sunday, always a great day for poker. I didn’t want to skip the Sunday Million 6th Anniversary but apart from that I wanted to play cashgames. The evening started with a couple of good $30/$60 games and soon two $50/$100 games started. I did pretty bad in the $30/$60 games but was doing good in the $50/$100 games. Games died as soon as the fish left but others games got started as fast. From the start I was down all the time but I was still playing in pretty good games. However around midnight I was down $3.8k. Two good $50/$100 games had just stopped and there were no good high stakes tables left to play. I was down $6.2k at one moment so I was happy I grinded some of it back but obviously I wanted to win it all back. A $200/$400 game started with a fish I had played earlier, not a lot of regulars seemed to be online but jumping into a $200/$400 game would be pretty stupid. Then two $100/$200 games started with one of the biggest fishes which I had also played earlier that evening. Argh! I wanted to play in those games especially since the other regulars were not the best regulars at those stakes. Still these players are good but normally the line-up is a lot worse. Then all of a sudden in one of the $100/$200 another fish gets a chair and I put myself on the waiting list. A couple of minutes later I somehow get a chair in the game and I’m playing a $100/$200 game with two fish on my left. Right would have been better of course but I’m still playing a lot of pots with these guys. (Mike McDermott: “I want him to think that I am pondering a call, but all I’m really thinkin about is Vegas and the fuckin’ Mirage.”)

The first hand I play:

Poker Stars $100/$200 Limit Hold’em – 6 players
DeucesCracked Poker Videos Hand History Converter
Pre Flop:
(1.5 SB) Hero is CO with A of clubs T of diamonds
2 folds, Hero raises, 2 folds, BB calls
Flop: (4.5 SB) A of diamonds J of spades T of hearts (2 players)
BB checks, Hero bets, BB calls
Turn: (3.25 BB) 4 of hearts (2 players)
BB checks, Hero bets, BB calls
River: (5.25 BB) J of clubs (2 players)
BB checks, Hero checks
Final Pot: 5.25 BB
Hero shows A of clubs T of diamonds (two pair, Aces and Jacks)
BB shows A of spades 5 of diamonds (two pair, Aces and Jacks)
BB wins 2.618 BB
Hero wins 2.618 BB
(Rake: $3.00)

Nothing really special but I rather win hands like this of course. After this hand I lose some pots where I had or flopped a pair so I have to pay some bets. Then I get AA and the hand played as followed:

Poker Stars $100/$200 Limit Hold’em – 6 players
DeucesCracked Poker Videos Hand History Converter
Pre Flop: (1.5 SB) Hero is BTN with A of hearts A of spades
3 folds, Hero raises, SB calls, BB 3-bets, Hero caps!, SB calls, BB calls
Flop: (12 SB) 2 of hearts 3 of diamonds K of clubs (3 players)
SB checks, BB checks, Hero bets, SB calls, BB calls
Turn: (7.5 BB) 4 of diamonds (3 players)
SB checks, BB checks, Hero bets, SB folds, BB calls
River: (9.5 BB) 5 of clubs (2 players)
BB bets, Hero calls
Final Pot: 11.5 BB
Hero shows A of hearts A of spades (a straight, Ace to Five)
BB shows Q of hearts A of clubs (a straight, Ace to Five)
BB wins 5.742 BB
Hero wins 5.742 BB
(Rake: $3.00)

Being in a 4-bet pot pre-flop with the two fishes is the best thing that can happen in a game like this. Not winning this $2.300 pot and splitting it again is pretty annoying. I felt like Dorothy tumbling down the rabbit hole. An orbit later I get into the following hand:

Poker Stars $100/$200 Limit Hold’em – 6 players
DeucesCracked Poker Videos Hand History Converter
Pre Flop: (1.5 SB) Hero is CO with T of spades T of hearts
2 folds, Hero raises, BTN 3-bets, SB caps!, BB calls, Hero calls, BTN calls
Flop: (16 SB) 4 of clubs 7 of hearts J of hearts (4 players)
SB bets, BB raises, Hero 3-bets, BTN calls, SB calls, BB calls
Turn: (14 BB) T of diamonds (4 players)
SB checks, BB checks, Hero bets, BTN calls, SB calls, BB raises, Hero 3-bets, BTN calls, SB calls all in, BB calls
River: (25.677 BB) K of clubs (4 players – 1 is all in)
BB checks, Hero checks, BTN checks
Final Pot: 25.677 BB
Hero mucks T of spades T of hearts
BTN mucks Q of hearts Q of clubs
SB mucks A of spades K of hearts
BB shows K of spades K of diamonds (three of a kind, Kings)
BB wins 0.968 BB
BB wins 24.695 BB
(Rake: $3.00)

A pretty bizarre hand. I open, fish 3bets, the other fish caps and the BB (good player) calls. The fish that capped the pot c-bets, the BB raises and then it’s on to me. Since no A, K or Q hit the board there is no way I’m going to fold my TT here. I can cold-call two bets or 3-bet and try to get the button to fold (hopefully at least one over as well) so I get last to act on the turn. The BB doesn’t necessarily has to have a really good hand and since the board is drawy his raise doesn’t have to mean a lot. I 3-bet and everybody calls. Now on the turn the T hits (I get lucky) and I think nobody puts me on TT here. Probably most people put me on an overpair or AJ, some other hands are possible as well. I bet the turn and after two calls I get raised by the BB again. I rule out that the 2 fishes have me beat but what about the BB? JJ and 89 have me beat, I beat all other hands and I’m ahead vs the other 2 fish which are probably never ever going to fold a pot this size as long as they have one out (or maybe even already draw dead). I raise, see no cap and I know I’m ahead in a $5k pot! I don’t want to see any A,K,Q or 9 but the K already hit the board. I’m not certain that I’m beat but I check anyway. The BB shows KK and the show is over. I click on the “sit-out next big blind” button, split another put and manage to lose another $600. In these 39 hands I lost $5.7k for a total of $9,5k.

I open my PokerStars Cashier, convert 500.000 FPPs into $8k to at least still have a 5 digit bankroll and stare at my PokerTracker for a while. Is playing $100/$200 with such a roll a smart thing? Maybe not, but I do not regret it at all. The game was really good, it was part of the “shot” I took and I didn’t violate any rules I had set myself. If I don’t split those 3 pots and win this one I’m actually up for the evening, variance is a nasty factor in poker. (Mike McDermott: “You can’t lose what you don’t put in the middle. But you can’t win much either.”) I watch how Bandano (who was playing in that $100/$200 game as well) finish 3rd in the Sunday Warm-Up (grats!), see two other great high stakes game start without me. I surf to YouTube and watch the full Justice – A Cross the Universe Documentary ( I played the high stakes for 5 weeks and my bankroll was not big enough to handle the swings. The total amount of hands I played at the High Stakes ($15/$30+) was only 9.3k hands, there is a lot of variance in such a small sample. Too bad I got beaten with the wrong end of the stick or maybe I’m not good enough but to me it didn’t feel that way.

Today I woke up seeing a good $50/$100 game running. My shot is over, so I leave the open chair empty. I see a fish sitting with money, I know I can beat the game but for all these years as professional poker player it’s my mind which has made me a winning player, not my ego. Luckily I have plenty to do this day, doing something different then watching the PokerStars lobby. When I get home in the afternoon I see 3 good high stakes games running and I tell myself I just shouldn’t look at those games anymore. I never did before and I shouldn’t look at them for the coming time. I’ve been up and down stakes many times before and this time should be no different. I’ll move down and do what I’ve always done, grind it up again. However you don’t have to start grinding the next day, you probably shouldn’t. Playing $100/$200 one day and $2/$4 the next is probably not really motivating. Still my fingers itch to play, literally now another $50/$100 game starts. I’m definitely not playing tonight, I might even take a longer break so I can work on my cycling or at least shift my main focus to cycling and play some poker on the side for the coming 2/3 weeks. I wanted to go to Valencia at the end of this month but I don’t think I’m going to do that either, although it could also be good to play some live poker. What I do know for sure is that I’m going to Vegas, the World Series of Poker! (Mike McDermott: “First prize at the World Series of Poker is a million bucks. Does it have my name on it? I don’t know. But, I’m gonna find out.”)


All hands since the 1st of January (High: $11.328 Low: $14.284)
All hands at the High Stakes $15/30+ since the 1st of January (High: $13.785 Low: $11.133)




 Posted by at 6:48 pm
Mar 042012

I can’t remember when I first heard about Justice. I think a buddy of mine told me who they were after hearing ‘We are your Friends’ for the first time somewhere back in 2007/2008. By now that hit single has been remixed and played so many times that it isn’t that special anymore but when I heard it the first couple of times, I was screaming out the words at the top of my lungs and just couldn’t imagine that there was anybody in the world who didn’t like that song.

I then downloaded the live album, A Cross the Universe and I don’t know how often I’ve listened to it but for sure it’s in my top5 on ITunes. It’s non-stop fast paced electro and reminded me of Daft Punk, only the pace is way faster. I bought tickets for a dance-event in the Heineken Music Hall (still talking about 2008), one of the biggest music podia in the Netherlands. The event was at a Saturday evening during summer, I wasn’t playing professional poker back then and had a different reason to be excited that Saturday since I could play one of my first Supernova freerolls on PokerStars! That was something that in 2007 still looked like an impossible achievement and a freeroll like that was something I didn’t want to miss for sure. Around 23:30 my friends left to go to the show, I was still playing in the freeroll and decided to keep playing. Around 01:00-01:30 I busted for $100 maybe $200. I was happy to win the money, especially back then but really disappointed that I had to miss Justice. I always felt that I had missed the show of a lifetime, everybody who went to see them somewhere in 2008 came back with stories about how unique and awesome Justice was live at stage. There were two other performances planned in the Netherlands in 2008 but both shows were sold out and it was impossible to get tickets. From 2008 till 2011 they didn’t release any new albums and didn’t perform in the Netherlands at all.

I kept looking if they planned any new shows or albums and finally in 2011 they released a new album, Audio, Video, Disco. It’s not a live album so you can’t really compare it to A cross the Universe but it has some good songs but as long as they are not mixed into a live performance they aren’t that special. I didn’t listen to it that often but when they planned a show in Paradiso – Amsterdam I was sure to go there, it was sold out in 10 minutes! They played Tuesday evening, not a perfect day to go nuts but I was really excited. The doors opened at 20:00 and there was already a long line of people waiting outside. The crowd was pretty young, I had expected people like me who were a fan of Justice for 3+ years but most people were probably between 19 and 24. DVNO started the warm-up which till about 21:00. The young crowd seemed to be ready for a party, I was just happy to be there.

Lights out, spots on and Justice walked to the DJ booth. They started with the intro of A cross the Universe and from there it was just one big rush. The crowd was really there to party, everybody was jumping up and down and going completely nuts. I started somewhere in the middle of the dance floor and at the end of the evening I was all the way in the back. It was extremely hot inside, everybody was soaked myself included, even my jeans were wet! Nobody seemed to care, party, party, party! The music had so much energy and everybody used that to go berserk. An incredible party, really hard to describe but unforgettable. It’s live just so much better, those “okay” songs become gems when mixed in with other awesome songs. 1,5 hour, non-stop dancing, non-stop screaming, just crazy. I tried to shoot some movies but when the whole dance floor started to bounce I had to quit filming because I didn’t want to lose my phone. Still I’ve made some good shots, check them out below. If you like this kind of music and ever have the chance to go and see them, make sure you do (and let me know so I’ll come with you)!

 Posted by at 3:21 pm

Just doing my thing

 Poker  Comments Off on Just doing my thing
Feb 282012

Normally I never have problems to write a blog but somehow today I can’t really put myself to it. I don’t really know where to start and that is in line with how I’ve been feeling the last two weeks. A bit lost, doing my thing but not really pushing myself doing one thing or the other. I’ve been living my life which is a good life so it’s no problem but I prefer to spent my days more, well I don’t even really know what I want to type here. You can’t always be the happiest man on earth and I’m still in a pretty good mood but I’m searching for something, I’ll let you know when I found out what it was exactly.

Last week I played a couple of session, things didn’t really work out the way I planned but I didn’t lose any big amounts. On Sunday I was happy to play poker and had a pretty good day, Monday afternoon I lost some money and I just didn’t feel like grinding in the evening. Since I was getting my wisdom teeth pulled on Tuesday I figured I really had to grind some more that evening. Obviously I lost (why else would I write about it) and was even more grumpy when I got into bed. When you really don’t feel like playing, don’t! A pretty obvious tip but I have to remind myself to it sometimes. On Tuesday I had to get my wisdom teeth pulled in the hospital, after getting my anesthetic the doctor needed more than 35minutes to get my bottom one out. Pretty weird that you see a man doing something to yourself which normally would be very painful but you don’t feel a thing at all. The other one didn’t even take 5 minutes and within the hour I was done. A couple of hours later I already ate lunch and apart from a swollen cheek and occasional mild pain it wasn’t that bad at all.

Last week was also the first time I took a ride on my bike this year. I went for a quick ride with 2 friends and was pretty happy we agreed that we would go under any weather conditions. When I woke up it was sunny, when I jumped on my bike it was raining and underway we even had some hail. Sunday I did another quick ride and already felt so much better than last week. I’m still pretty fit but I’m also pretty fat and I just can’t really lose the weight I’ve been trying to lose over the last couple of months. Not drinking any alcohol doesn’t really make the difference but if I hadn’t stopped I would have probably been even heavier then I am now. I know for certain that for the next couple of weeks I have to be on my bike at least two times a week to be ready to cycle 150km over pretty though hills on the 14th of April. Also I would love to play some tennis again as well but currently my tennis buddy is injured so it will have to wait, trying to exercise at least 2 but hopefully 3 times a week should really by top priority for the coming weeks.

Since I’ve been back from holiday I’ve been taking up a new role at my job. I already decided in 2010 I was going to take this role but because I had to finish a really important project up till now I could never really do the actual work I had chosen to do. Nowadays I’m working as IT-Architect and while being a pretty practical guy myself, IT-Architecture is a really theoretic thing. I also used to work in the Human Resource department of my company but I’m now doing the IT-Architecture for Facility Management so it’s two new things at the same time. So far it has been a lot of reading (not a big fan) but the transition to this new role has been easier than I anticipated. In this new role I really hope I can be part of the strategic discussions of how to bring our company forward and I’m pretty happy I’ve been given the opportunity to take on this role, especially working part-time. It’s really good to have this balance between a real job and poker but it’s getting harder and harder to keep balancing these two things, together with trying to stay fit and live a happy social life. Luxury problems so nothing to really complain about but it has been keeping my head busy these last couple of weeks.

Last Saturday I did a twitcam session and was happy to answer twitter questions from my followers. Unfortunately I was airing at the exact moment Mickey ‘mement_mori’ Petersen was playing Pierre Neuville Heads-Up for the victory of the EPT Copenhagen. Team Online colleague Mickey Petersen eventually won the Heads-Up and took home €338.221 , winning in his own country made it even more special. You can check my twitcam session below, feel free to ask any questions in case you still have some.

Sunday I’ve been playing some tournaments since I was planning to play the Red Spade Open anyway. I don’t really like to mix MTT’s and Cashgames so figured I would fire up a couple of more tournaments. Already after an hour I noticed I was really tired so I didn’t start to many tourneys and was playing pretty bad overall. Still I had an early double up in the Red Spade Open and managed to get some more chips from people who were really trying to give away their stack as soon as possible. In the Sunday Million I was doing okay as well until I really butchered a hand to go down to only 2,5k. However within 10 minutes I double up 3 times and from there I played pretty decent poker. Pretty quick the Sunday Million was my only tournament left and I even managed to get a top50 stack when playing the bubble. After that I didn’t play a single hand for 4 orbits! Lost some, won some until my KK wasn’t good enough vs AJ on a J high board. He shoved his whole stack in the middle on the flop, I only had to call, smile and watch the J hit the river. I busted around the 400th place or something, I really hate tournaments! I try to stick to cashgames to coming weeks but already know that on the 11th of March I will be doing a MTT Sunday again since then it will be the 6Year Anniversary of the Sunday Million. $6.000.000 Guaranteed and $1.000.000 Guaranteed for the winner so it would be a good idea to save my rungood for that day! For the Dutch readers I know there is a  special promo around this tournament, you can check but probably PokerStars will be doing a lot more promo’s around this tournament so keep an eye on the website!

Also there have been a lot of talks about the introduction of ZOOM (Rush) poker at the PokerStars Client. I’ve been doing some testing myself in the closed alpha and beta but at this moment you can test the ZOOM feature yourself on the PokerStars Test Client. You can read how to sign up for the test client here: . I don’t know when the official launch will be but as soon as it’s public you will probably know it asap since I think a lot of people have been waiting for this.

Well, that’s it for today. Tonight I will be going to a concert in Amsterdam. Justice will play at Paradiso and I’m really looking forward to their show. Till next time.

 Posted by at 4:01 pm

Poker, Poker, WBCOOP, PokerStars & Poker

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Feb 172012

Ah, a blog about Poker! Or well that’s the intention 😉 I’ll just ramble away like I normally do but because the last two weeks I’ve played a lot of poker hopefully it’s poker what I’m mostly going to talk about.

I got home from my trip on Saturday and since I was pretty tired and my girlfriend was meeting up with her friends I just sat on the couch and watched some TV. I didn’t really feel like sitting behind my PC and grind but I did want to just play some poker. I grabbed my laptop and joined some random HyperTurbo MTT’s. I couldn’t really care about the buy-ins, I just wanted to have some all-ins and feel lucky. I played 2/3 tables and was doing pretty good in the $1 HyperTurbo! Some railers were asking what the hell I was doing and one guy asked if I could spare him some money because he was broke. Obviously I declined but since I was pretty chatty and was just having fun I challenged him HU4Rollz! To my surprise he accepted which also meant he wasn’t broke but I’ll forgive him for his lie 😉 I accepted him to my PokerStars Home Games and I set-up a really deep (20.000 Stack with 20minutes blind levels) $3,30 MTT just for the fun of it. At the same time I had put myself on the waiting list of a $50/$100 LHE 6-max table, why I don’t really know. While still being in the HyperTurbo and playing the beggar HU I got the pop-up to sit in at the LHE table. On my laptop I have no HUD, I had never played $50/$100 but I was still in holiday mode so I sat in and played. 36 hands later the game broke (fish left) and I was up $933 and a happy man 🙂 I was still playing the HU (for over 2 hours already at that moment) and had some trouble winning the big pots. After busting the HyperTurbo I focused on grinding the guy down and won and we actually had good fun chatting while playing, a great first day back at the tables!

On Sunday there were some great sport events to look forward to. The day started with the final of the Australian Open, Djokovic vs Nadal then during that match the biggest soccer match of our competition, Feyenoord – Ajax started. I went over to my favorite bar where I met all my friends which are all Ajax fans, myself being the only Feyenoord fan. Ajax was the huge favorite and after being 0-1 behind Feyenoord won the match with 4-2. When Feyenoord was 3-1 ahead most of my friends didn’t really believe in it anymore, the whole bar was quiet since 99% are Ajax supporters. When Ajax scored the 3-2 after a big mistake of the Feyenoord goalie, all my friends were back at the edge of their seats again and you just saw the hope in their eyes. The best moment of this football season was when Guidetti scored the 4-2, for all my friends a soul crushing moment after just being sparked with hope and for myself the most beautiful goal of the season! Djokovic and Nadal were still playing in a great tennis match and I really watched some breathtaking rallies. During the evening I played the last TCOOP (Turbo Championship of Online Poker) events and watched Stefan Groothuis win the Sprint Speed-skate Championship. A day full of awesome sport events, another great day back home.

Since I had been away for a full month I had plenty of stuff to catch up with. Also I had a lot of time to think about 2012 and how I wanted to go about playing poker this year. I’ve been together with my girlfriend for 2,5 years now and we have planned to officially start living together as of March 1. The last couple of months she was already sleeping at my place 7 days a week so nothing really would change but I felt I had to change my schedule to make sure I wasn’t trying to hold on to a schedule which I already knew I wasn’t going to follow. Late 2011 I already made the transition to 6-max, played less tables and tried to remain focused on playing poker while not playing 24 tables (since when playing 24 tables there is no way to lose focus). I made up a lot of excuses to not play poker last year, one of my biggest excuse is that i.e. I only have 2 hours and I don’t like to put in small sessions. For 2012 I had decided to do some things completely different. Wednesday, Thursday, Friday will still be my “work-days” I play poker on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday. Where normally I would start grinding at 20:00 till late in the night, when living together a 9-5 rhythm makes a lot more sense. I wasn’t planning on doing 9-5 but that old fixed schedule just didn’t work anymore. Before 20:00 I would always tell myself I would start playing at 20:00, then around 01:00 my girlfriend would go to bed and I would join her so basically I was fooling myself. The idea for 2012 is just to play when I can, really simple. On Sunday till Tuesday I’ll just play when I see a good game or feel like playing. Maybe 1-2 hours when I wake up, do something during the day and start grinding at 16:00 again just before diner. Then after diner fire up the tables again and go to bed around 01:00. The schedule fits better with my girlfriend, fits better with my normal day-job and still doesn’t have to be a 9-5 boring grind, since I probably never wake up before 11:00 anyway. I still plan to play 20+ hours a week, grinding 1/2 hours on a Wednesday/Thursday evening is fine as well. Not having a fixed schedule can be dangerous but I think this rhythm just supports my current phase in life a lot better.

Since I was running hot on the $50/$100 that first Saturday I also decided to jump into those games more often. I’m definitely playing with the best LHE players out there at those stakes but these games never run anyway without a fish sitting. The higher LHE games really only run around fish, any table at $5/$10 and higher breaks as soon as 6 regulars are sitting. It makes sense but it’s also a problem for the poker community, something I might discuss in a future blog. For now I consider my normal grind, 8 tables of $5/$10 6-max LHE. So when I want to grind for my VPP Goals I would do it at those limits, probably on the Sunday/Monday evening. I’ll always keep lurking at the lobby to watch if I see any good $30/$60 or $50/$100 games running and if I can join any of these tables I will quit my $5/$10 tables and really try to focus on the High Stakes games. During the day less tables run so I’ll just try to table-select a lot between the $5/$10 and $50/$100. I did already play a couple of $100/$200 hands but I really want to try and avoid those stakes. I played in a game with 2 fish and since 1 regular was sitting out it was 5-handed which is really juicy but currently I just can’t afford the swings on those limits. A game like that is hard to pass, but when only 1 fish sits in I’m just not going to sit in. I’ve been following this “schedule” now for the last 2 weeks and the sample isn’t that big yet but till yesterday it was pretty successful.

On Monday I did the same as any other day and a lot of good tables were running. I try not to look at my results nowadays when playing but I really needed to take a piss for over 2 hours already. When I eventually took a small break I saw that I was down $3.7k at one moment but had grinded it back to -$600, pretty promising and I rushed back to keep the good run going. I again didn’t look at my results but after hitting a really good streak of hands ($2k in a couple of hands) I knew my graph would skyrocket so I wanted to see how I was doing. It was exactly 00:00 at the moment, a perfect time to go to bed. I just needed to win $600 more and go to bed, unfortunately I lost a $1.300 pot and obviously never even considered any more to go to bed 🙂 Later on the $50/$100 and $30/$60 tables broke and I probably wasn’t playing my best game anymore on the $15/$30 proven by a hand in which I managed to put in 11,5 Big Blinds (The max you can put in yourself in a LHE pot is 12 Big Blinds) with A5s on a 789sss board. It was against a regular which I hadn’t played a lot of hands with and he was playing really aggressive. Capping the flop and turn was fine (considering how the action went) but 3-betting the river, which resulted in him capping with a Straight Flush was just a small moment of tilt. I really didn’t tilt in any other part of the session and since the big games were gone I decided this was a really good moment to go to bed. Down $4k, not happy but not uncommon on those limits.

Still these swings are pretty normal and I really shouldn’t worry about it. I should just try to focus on BB’s and not $ lost and actually I’m not worried about these kind of losses at all. However If you think about these amounts outside of poker it’s pretty hard to explain to people that these swings are pretty standard. TPirahna mentioned in his recent blog a $40k downswing, that’s something I’m definitely trying to avoid 😉 Because of Mondays session I decided not to play any poker on Tuesday and wrote two blogs (The previous one and this one). Obviously the same two fish as to whom I lost my money on Monday are currently playing as I’m writing this blog but it’s also Valentine’s day today, so after I’m done writing I’m going to give my girlfriend some quality time!

I’m trying to stay away from tournaments but PokerStars is not really helping with all the promotions they have (like last Sunday’s Double Vision). I did play the $215 weekly LHE tournament on Saturday because I was playing the $1.000.000 SuperNova+ freeroll and I final tabled the LHE tournament finishing 5th for $880. Since I was already all-in in the first hour (pretty hard to do in a LHE tournament) I felt pretty happy about it and PokerStars had just introduced a new table theme for people who manage to get to the final table so at least I saw that one as well 🙂 Also from the 23rd of February till the 4th of March PokerStars is holding the WBCOOP (World  Blogger Championship of Online Poker) again. After blogging about the WBCOOP and submitting your link you can earn a lot of tickets to SCOOP events in 30 separate freerolls and even $5.000 cash in case you are awarded to be the Best Blogger or $1.000 for the best Live Tweeter. For busting any of the Team Pro’s you also receive $11, so I wish you good luck in busting me. I would suggest to read the rest of the information at the PokerStars Website.

I’ve also been busy planning my WSOP 2012 schedule! The schedule came out a week ago and I really can’t wait to go to Vegas again. I really want to be back home before the 1st match of the Dutch soccer team in the European Championship at the 9th of June but the schedule in exactly that week is just so awesome. On the 8th there is the Razz event, the next day a LHE, the 10th the 2-7 Triple Lowball and the 12th another LHE event. The 4 events which I really wanted to play all in one week! I’ve been thinking about it a lot but also because I’m not alone in this decision we decided to go to Vegas from the 28th of May till the 8th of June. On the 5th of June I will be playing the $1.500 LHE WSOP event so I can at least play one LHE event this year again. We are going with a pretty big group this year (8 people) and I’m really excited because it will be the first time for one of my best buddies. We’ve been talking about bringing him to Vegas for several years now and this year it’s finally going to happen. Showing him all the places which I always talk about is just so great. It’s been 8 years ago since the last time he joined us on holiday, unfortunately one of my other good friends can’t make it this year but for sure we are going to have a lot of fun again!

PokerStars has been busy as well and the guys from did an interview with me when I returned from my holiday. Also they just announced that PokerStars have now launched their mobile app in the UK market for both IOS and Android after already a successful launch in Italy. I think a lot of people are waiting for being able to play on their IPad so we just have to be patient for PokerStars to launch it in the rest of the world. Probably PokerStars wants this as bad as the players, so I expect that they will do anything to launch it as soon as possible (probably also depends on licensing in each of the countries). Luckily PokerStars hasn’t sit still on that either so for Swedish and Finnish players they have now opened, hopefully more/all countries will follow soon so we finally can leave all the ridiculous tax related differences in the European Union behind us. Again you can read more at

One last thing to add is that on the 25th of February I will be doing a “Twitcam” session. It’s actually just past midnight on the 26th but just to get things clear, it’s Saturday-evening/Sunday-morning! From 00:00 till 01:00 I will be answering questions on webcam, people can ask questions via twitter. You can follow @RTL_Poker on twitter or use the #rtlpoker or #askrichard hashtag to ask questions so feel free to start brainstorming 😉

Well, I think that’s it for now. Three blogs in one week is a lot but I really needed to catch up. Hopefully I can show some good results on the High/Mid Stakes LHE tables next blog, only time will tell!

 Posted by at 7:02 pm