Thursday, 17 June 2010

Vegas Trip Summary

I am now back in the UK after a marathon journey from Vegas to LA then on to London Heathrow. It is a very tiring journey as I cannot sleep on planes even with my Bosch Noise Canceling headphones on. To my amazement and shock to my girlfriend, I arrived home, showered and headed back out to watch a T20 Cricket game. Let's just say she was not impressed that I was away for 2 weeks and then first day home headed out with my Uncle to watch a cricket game.

One objective I had before getting to the Rainman's was to play over 1k games which I did and if it were not for a few teething problems with PC/Internet the number could have been a lot more. Also, I actually took a day off in the 2 weeks I was there because I wanted to watch the England v USA with a few beers. Grinding is no easy task and those who think they want a poker lifestyle needs to understand this is no joke. I played everyday for 8+ hours and then spent 1-2 hours doing reviews, going over my own hands, going over a few guys hands and then the group house reviews. This is a FULL TIME job and if you do not put in the time then you will not get those rewards you are hoping for.

NestraRasta was already at the house upon my arrival and he was a fellow FTP 90 grinder. We had a little dig at eachother in that I said that before I leave the house my name will be above his in the FTP Leaderboard. At the time I said this, I immediately regretted saying it as Nesta had already put in 3 full days grinding. Uphill struggle from day 1 is not what I envisaged. There was a lot of banter between us everyday as somehow Nesta remained on top day in and day out but I was still very determined to dethrone him. I worked harder grinding then I have done in my entire life and at the end of Tuesday's grind I was a clear 130 points clear - thank you very much and left the house with a little grin. Nesta is a great player and if he applies himself will crush the games even more then he currently does - avoid him if you can.

During my time I managed around a total of 1050 90 mans - that is more then I have ever played in a single month. I hope there is sufficient time this month to push that number closer to 1800 if not 2k. We will wait and see what happens on the volume front.

I played on Pokerstars once during my 2 weeks stay. I somehow entered a $3 1R1A event with Ornopro (up and coming $2 180 crusher) and eBecks18 (already a good 180 grinder at the age of 19). We all registered the event after Nick said we should all enter but somehow never entered himself. By the time we registered we were at blinds 30/60 with a stack of 6K after the initial rebuy, but somehow eBecks must have thought the stack was too small and lost the very first hand with KK vs AA. GG sir we will review it one day - just kidding. lol. Ornopro made a run but did not cash unfortunately. Me on the other hand when on a complete tear, I managed one luckbox move when I was all in KK v AA but the poor guy did not read the script when I flopped a K and he did not improve. With regular raises taking the blind and antes, I had built a $3m chip stack, I was excited when I peaked at $1m, then more excited at $2m but when I hit $3m I felt I was in control. Nick was great telling me to keep aggressive and focused. I was extremely nervous as this was the deepest run I have made in an MTT but Nick just said relax and enjoy it. I definitely enjoyed it but the result was a little disappointing. Somehow I lost a few flips and made one questionable play, instead of shipping $1.4k for first, I came in 5th for $400. This was my best run in an MTT with over 1100 registered not bad for a part time player like myself.

There are a few people I would like to thank:

Nick - thanks for giving me the opportunity to come out and grind with you and the other coaches. The house was amazing and having a chef/cook was genius. Having not to worry about cooking lunch or dinner just allows you to focus on the grind maximizing all the time you have. Nick, gave me a few pointers and went over one HH early on in the week which allowed me to up my aggression a little which was a great benefit for the rest of my stay.

Bodeye - well he is a genius and paying for dinner twice which is always nice. Seriously though he helped review my HH files, some troublesome hands and gave me a better understanding of poker in general. I cannot say enough about him but if you get a chance to work with him then do not let him leave if you can. Did you know that he has earnt $1 million in online winnings since he started. Not bad for a 20 year old.

Aaron - he ran around setting up the house and was giving encouragement whether you were losing money or winning money. The message was always the same, focus and get the games in and do not wory about the result. One funny moment was when he was sweating me on a final table, I made a sick read and the guy was crippled to 4BB, Aaron stood up and said you should have this one and walked away. A few minutes later when Aaron re-appears I give him the bad news of how I come second!

Nesta - man he made made me grind harder then before with our little bet even though no money was involved. He drove me around Vegas to see all the big casinos and the strip in general. Without his contribution I would not have been able to go to a Las Vegas show which was awesome (Thanks Nick).

The two week trip was awesome and if you get a chance then I suggest doing it. One piece of advice is if you cannot follow the details below then it is not for you:
1) Wake up and be ready by 9ish
2) Grind till you have put in 100 FTP or 200 Stars games (normally 8+ hours) in as much silence as possible
3) Review for 1-2 hours
4) Repeat the next day

Seems a simple set of instructions but trust me it will wear you down so be prepared. I have a few pictures that I will add later but suspect Aaron will have them on in the future.

Good luck with the grind!!!

Monday, 7 June 2010

Constructive Criticism

I have played poker for the last 4 days straight putting in some decent volume. It's all about the volume at the RainmanPoker house.

Friday - 67 games
Saturday - 72 games
Sunday - 113 games
Monday - 82 games

So in the last 5 days I have played 400 games which is nearly 75% of my normal monthly volume. I have decided to play all my games in a single session but for those who feel daunted by a 9 hour session then breaking it up in 2 mini sessions is acceptable.

I am absolutely loving it here, my schedule is wake up, get showered and clothed, eat breakfast, review a few hands then get grinding, eat dinner after the grind and chill out in the evening. Repeat! It seems like a military regime but I have been set a target of 500 games in a single week so getting into a schedule will only help me to achieve that.

This morning started out in the same manner except that I went over a HH with Nick. It was clear that I was missing great opportunities to accumulate chips and to be aggressive. It was also an area where I "thought" was one of my better parts of my game. Shows what I know about poker... yeah that's right very little. After being called a pussy and a girl and being told to get some balls more times then the actual number of hands we reviewed, it was clear... I need to stop playing like a pussy scared girl with no balls. SIMPLE - why didn't I think of that.

So it comes to no surprise (to me anyway) that with Nick's words constantly ringing in my head as I am played my 82 game session that it was my most profitable day ever. I hit my first ever 4 figure day which is nice but since I usually earn just over $2 a game on average you could say I ran over expectation for the day. In fact WAY OVER expectation... must be nice.

That's all for now so good luck at the tables.

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Day 1 @ the Rainmans

Before I start talking about my first full day let us look back on how I actually got to Vegas in the first place. Everyone knows that online check in the new airport thing. The say.. it will make life easier and quicker... really?!!! I go to Heathrow having spent the time to check in online and STILL had to wait 50 minutes to get seen. Life tilt starts!!!

On handing my bags to the check in clerk he hands me two forms. These forms have to be filled out before landing and getting seen bu the US customs people. My only problem with this is that I have ALREADY entered these details electronically on two different systems. Now I have to repeat the SAME information on two separate forms that ask EXACTLY the same questions! WTF are we filling in paper forms what happened to a paperless (eco friendly) system. Life tilt continues!!!

I nearly forgot to mention the flight from Heathrow to LA, the stewardess managed to splash me with hot tea. Apart from that it was a good flight.

Upon arriving to LA there is a queue bigger then that of Day 1D of the WSOP main event 2009. Un-f**king real. One guy tilted me the most when he decided he was a lazy piece of s**t and left his desk, gave a little whinge, a moan to the supervisor and then reluctantly DISAPPEARS for 30 minutes before starting. I was stuck in the stupid queue for over an hour. So I get to the customs desk and every person who was before me were checked and through within 2 minutes.. oh not me.. I think he looked at me, then at my passport about 10 times, he probably checked every little detail I wrote and spent ages clicking on his keyboard... the fact I am a British Asian has nothing to do with it right? Life tilt even more!

So I get through US customs and my bag is waiting for me which was nice. I then took a small work into terminal 2 to catch my Southwest flight to Vegas. The only problem with this flight was that it was LATE. OMG why on earth does my flight need to be delayed.

On arriving to Vegas the life tilting experiences had worn off. Had a fantastic dinner with Nick, Bodeye and Aaron. The food was great and there was a lot of it! Thanks Bodeye for picking up the bill.

After being up for more then 24 hours, I manged to sleep for only 7 hours which was not great but I will live. Got ready and had breakfast before starting the grind. Fitted in approximately 65 games which was tough going as tiredness started to kick in near the end but tomorrow will be 100 games or more... I hope.

Good luck y'all