Sunday Funday on Grosvenor
Sunday didn’t start very well for me. I woke up early to play a live tournament and eventually busted after losing a flip for all the marbles. I rushed home feeling somewhat tilted and managed to get online 5 minutes before late registration ended for Grosvenor’s Vegas satellite. The satellite has a £110 buy in with the option for a single rebuy, plus an add-on. There were three Vegas packages to be won, each worth £3,000.
After firing in both the rebuy and the add-on I found myself with a healthy stack despite my late entry. Satellite tournaments play near identically to regular tournaments in the early levels so I simply focussed on trying to chip up like I would in any other tournament. Although we don’t need to win all of the chips in play in satellite tournaments, we do want to win quite a lot of chips. If we shift into a nitty ‘lockdown’ mode with 10 players still remaining then we will just stagnate and get blinded out. With this in mind I played an aggressive and high variance tournament game with the intention of running it up.
Final Table Strategy
This strategy worked fairly well and I reached the final table with an above average stack. So far so good. Unfortunately I lost a huge pot with QQ against AK early on at the final table which left me nursing a short stack. An orbit later I doubled up with AK vs QQ which got me back in the game. I coasted along for a while until we were down to 4 players, with the stacks fairly even at around 15 blinds each. This is quite a sick situation, as three of the four of us were going to win a Vegas package and one of us would bubble and win nothing. I also had to contend with Jamie Nixon (aka jamnix90), a professional poker player and streamer who was livestreaming the game. You can check out Jamie’s stream here: https://www.twitch.tv/jamnix90.
Now I will be the first to admit that I am not an expert on satellite strategy. However, I know that there is a very basic principle that applies on the bubble. Quite simply, we can move all in with a very wide range of hands but we can only call a shove with an extremely strong hand. With this in mind, I started to play incredibly aggressively and was shoving almost every hand preflop. This sounds kind of wild, but the other players were extremely reluctant to call a shove and put themselves at risk of bubbling. The other three players were clearly hoping to just wait until I knocked someone else out, allowing them to coast into the money without having to do any of the hard work. This stretch was probably the most tense I have ever been playing online poker. Any hand could potentially end the tournament if someone busted, and I knew when I was shoving hands like Q2s that I would be in awful shape should someone call.
Fortunately, for many orbits nobody elected to call and as the blinds rose I found myself with 30 blinds of roughly 40 in play. I pick up 83 of diamonds in the CO. This is not a premium hand, but it is at least suited. More importantly, there are two players with about 4 blinds each and Jamie Nixon is sitting on just 2 blinds (or 1.5 after he posts the small blind). The players on 4 blinds are going to be loathe to call it off when Jamie is so short, and even if Jamie calls it off he only has 2 blinds so he can’t do me much damage. I ship it and Jamie calls with A7o. The board runs out K2326. I scoop the pot, poor Jamie is the bubble boy and I win a trip to Vegas (Click here to see the clip from Jamie’s stream).
So what have we won? Grosvenor’s Vegas package is worth £3,000 and includes includes flights to Vegas, seven nights at the LINQ hotel, entry into the $500 ‘Big 50’ WSOP event, spending money and a party with the other Vegas qualifiers. I’m pretty excited, I have never been to America before and it should be a blast. A trip report will undoubtedly follow.
Full details of the Vegas satellite schedule and the package can be found here Step satellites start from £0.25 and the final £110 satellites take place on Sunday evenings, this weekend sees the last 3 package satellite, so don’t miss out on this opportunity!
Best of luck at the tables, I hope to see you in Vegas!