I think it was Dan Harrington that said, “Many people think poker is a card game. They are wrong - it is a betting game.” If that is truly the case then the final three played poker at a very high level tonight.
From hand #73, when Hemi Henry was eliminated in fourth place, until hand #104 when Woody13 knocked out Tai Pan for the victory, only two other hands went to showdown. And one of those was when ADM busted out in 3rd place. This kind of action may be a little boring to watch from the rail but it is like a pitcher’s duel in baseball, the game was being played very well.
Thirty-six entries went at it in this week’s Holdem Affair. As usual, the competition was heavy. This event just gets better and better each week. It was one hour and forty-eight minutes into this go round when the final table was seated. Your final table looked like this:
- woody13 = 14055
- ADM = 10475
- Tai Pan = 6330
- Sengar = 6160
- Hemi Henry = 5000
- winforlife = 3685
- Dime04 = 2770
- Txmom22 = 1600
- d o double d = 1485
- marti = 955
It was hand 17 before the first victim fell. The antes were 25 and the blinds 150/300 when winforlife opened UTG for 600. Hemi Henry was in the big blind and the only one to call. The flop came Ad Ac 4h, Henry checked and winforlife bet 300. Henry check-raised to 600 and winforlife reraised back to 3400. Henry chose to just call. The turn brought the 7c. Hemi Henry pushed in his last 875 and had winforlife covered. Winforlife made the call and had to feel good that his trap had worked – he was holding Ah Kh. He had flopped trips with the top kicker. But wait – Hemi Henry just turned over pocket fours. He had flopped a full house. That was it for winforlife this week.
For the next 20 hands Marti was nursing her short stack, trying to get back into the game or at least survive. Three times she survived all-in and doubled up but the antes and blinds just wore her down again. Finally on hand 38 she started with only 345 chips. The 50 ante and the 300 big blind took her all-in before the flop holding a Negraneau type 5 3o hand. Sengar made the call from the small blind holding Js 6d. The board missed them both and Marti was out this week in 9th place.
Hand 44 and it is time for Sengar to claim a pot holding As Qc. Antes 50, blinds 200/400 and he opened for 2100. Woody, with the chip lead, re-raised taking Sengar all-in if he called. Sengar was happy with his holding and made the call. Oh, chit, Woody just turned over pocket queens. Sengar has only three outs. The flop came low, 4c 3s 2c, and actually gave Sengar more outs with the gut shot straight and the backdoor flush draws. But it wasn’t going to happen this week. No miracle card on the river and Sengar was gone in 8th place.
Just two hands later Dime04 was feeling short with only 1010 and in the big blind. He held Js Qh, not a bad hand to make a stand. Woody raised to 1750 UTG and it was folded around to Dime. Push it in and take your chances man. And it was the right play. Woody showed Ah 6s. Only a slight favorite. But it was just enough, the board missed Dime entirely and the river brought the 6h to make it official, Dime04 was sent to the rail in 7th place.
The very next hand it was Txmom22 that was desperate. Wow, I don’t have to report that very often. Marsha is usually one of the people pushing things around at the table. Rarely is she the short stack making a desperation play. I’m guessing we had a case of “dead cards” this week. All-in before the flop holding Kh Jh and it should have been a great play. ADM was in the big blind holding a very weak 7 3o. But the poker gods laughed at Txmom this week and sent the 3d on the flop to bust up the play.
And we were down to the money table, nearly two and a half hours into the Affair.
- Woody13 = 19415
- Tai Pan = 12960
- Hemi Henry = 8935
- ADM = 7220
- d o double d = 3985
What followed was true poker. For the next twenty hands it was jab and parry, thrust and block. And it wasn’t just Woody bullying the table. They all participated in this sword fight. Not a single hand was shown down until hand 64 when d o double d pushed it all-in pre-flop and was called by ADM. Good plays by both. D o double d showed 6s 7s, a good push given the table texture. ADM held Kh Kc and it was an easy call for him. The kings held up and that was it for d o double d.
Hand 73 and Hemi Henry is down to his last 835 before he posts the ante and big blind. That took him all-in and Th 2s was his ammunition. Not good enough to go up against Woody13 holding Jd Qd. To add insult, Woody hit his straight on the turn. Henry was gone in fourth place.
The betting wars continued and the psychological battle was intense. By hand 90 ADM had taken over the chip lead. He and Woody battled hard for the next few hands with ADM getting a little bit of the better of it. But hand 94 was decisive. ADM raised pre-flop to 2000 and Woody smooth called from the big blind. The flop came Ac Kh 6d. Woody check raised and ADM answered by pushing his dominant stack into the middle. Woody made the call holding Ad Tc and ADM showed As 8h. The Tc held up and that gave Woody13 more than 75% of the chips at the table.
ADM and Tai Pan battled hard, but they just weren’t going to overcome that stack. ADM went out in third when his Ad 9s was out drawn by Woody with Kd Td. The Th on the flop was all it took. The last hand was some of the same. Tai Pan was all-in holding Kc Qh but in true Doyle Brunson fashion, Woody won with Qc 3c when the 3h fell on the flop.
This was great poker – real poker. Thanks to all at the final table. I’m glad I got home in time to watch it. This week I hope to be in the middle of that action.