Saturday, October 30, 2004

Overvaluing the Flush

I screwed up the registration process for the Poker Forum Challenge. I registered on the website but didn't register on the Royal Vegas software so I couldn't play in the tourney. I thought that if you registered on the website you would be registered for the tournament but apparently the website just allowed the privilege of registering for the tournament at Royal Vegas.

I was in a tournament frame of mind and I found a $5+.50 rebuy with a guaranteed $15,000 pool at UltimateBet. I used some saved up player points to join the tourney and purchase the initial rebuy so I could start with 2,000 instead of 1,000 chips. Things seemed to go well but I found myself second best a few times and automatically rebought if I fell below 1,000. Before the first break I had rebought twice and with the addon I was invested $15. The prize pool had grown to over $25,000 and first place was getting over $7,000.

With 1912 players initially joining the tournament 1042 were still in it at the break. That means 870 players were nothing more than dead money as they opted not to rebuy. Extending that thought, with the buy in at $5 the players contributed $4,350 in essence giving the tournament an overlay. That's assuming none of the 870 did any rebuys. I might have to play this one again in the future.

Anyway, back to actual play. On the first hand after the break I was dealt K9d in late position. I was able to limp into a multiway pot and the flop came JJ6 with two diamonds. It checked to the player on my immediate right and he put a pot sized bet out. I called with the flush draw expecting others to call but everyone folded around. The turn brought a K and my opponent checked. I figured my K may or may not be good since JJ was on the board and my opponent represented the J. With it checked to me I took the free card. The river brought another diamond and with my made flush thoughts of doubling up bounced in my head. My opponent placed a pot sized bet and knowing I could now beat his three Jacks I pushed all in. By going all in I was only making a slightly larger than pot sized bet so my opponent called. He showed me a KJ for the full house and I was out on the first hand after the break in 1042nd place. We could now increase the dead money count by an additional $15.

This was the second time my flush had gone down to a full house in this tournament and each time it was slowed played by my opponent. During the ring games I played after busting out I again lost with a flush against a full house. It was certainly not my night to have flushes. This makes me look harder at overvaluing the flush without taking the board into consideration. None of my opponents represented the full house when they hit it and that's what they are supposed to do. I believe I was too over anxious and never took the time to review everything before placing my bets. I think it's OK to ride the flush through the river in a ring game as your losses will be limited but I'm going to have to be much more careful in the future in the tournaments. I always here you shouldn't risk an all in unless your 99% sure you have the nuts in and in both cases the board showed that I could be dominated. In the hand I was busted out on if I would have just called the bet I would have been shortstacked but at least I'd have still been in the fight.

Learn from my mistake. Don't overvalue your hand.