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Adventures at 10NL

By: Ov3rsight @ 15:50 (EST) / 339 / Comment ( 0 )

So as you may know, I've been dabbling at 10NL lately. Not because I'm crushing the lower limits, but simply to achieve a goal and experiment around a bit. So far, I'm happy with it. I'm playing a more tight aggressive game, and it's not costing me any money. At this point, I'm in for 7 sessions of 5.5 hours combined and I've seen 480 hands. Not a huge sample size to work with, but one session was a loser, and so far I'm up 174 Big Blinds. A pretty decent overall win rate.

My last session was particularly nice. I slowly built up a stack to $13, winning small uncontested pots mostly, at which point I managed to take down a nice pot when I shoved all-in with pocket aces after 2 people called a 3-bet and the shorty at the table decided to stack off with Q,T offsuit. I guess the bad play is still there at 10NL.

Anyways, a little later I decided to take my profit of almost a full stack, switch tables, and proceed. 5 hands later I busted when I shoved pocket queens on a T,5,3 board and the villain turned up pocket T. Looking back, I think it was my own fault. He raised from UTG, I 3-bet, he called. On a flop with 3 hearts and 3 undercards, I bet, and he raised. I didn't put him on the flush and wanted to get him off his flushdraw and shoved. I didn't think long enough. I thought for a moment, discarded the possibility of him holding KK or AA, and went with my hand. He turned over the set and then, as they say, the fat lady sang.

So I switched tables again, and managed to grab a few small pots again. I had already checked the 'sit out next Big Blind' box, when I ended up UTG with A,J off. I was ahead $3 at this table, so despite losing a full stack I was still up for the day. I raised pre, got one caller and a K,T,8 flop. We both checked, and the river smacked me with a Q for Broadway. I bet, he called. The river paired the board, I bet again, he called again and I won another pot, and I left the table with another half stack profit. He had A,K. So my A,J was beat preflop and on the flop. I chalk that one up to bad play on his end. After I raised preflop he decided to flat behind where he might possible have been better off 3-betting me. On the flop, after my check he definitely should have bet with his top pair/top kicker, and not give me a free card after I checked. He would have won the pot as I doubt I'd have called chasing a gutshot.

Now this little winning spree of mine by no means says I'm a player capable of consistently winning at this level. I'm keeping a close look on how I do here, scrutinizing my play carefully, more even that before. After all, a few more bad moves like the QQ hand and I'm out of the game and up for a new deposit. And that is something I do want to avoid.

Looking back, I've lost 2 big pots so far. One of them was my own fault (the pocket Queens), the other was a big suckout where the money went in with me holding the nuts on the turn against the villain's set which filled up on the river. Still, looking back some more, I can't help but wonder if I'm winning so far because I have made a big change in my playing style. I've tightened up a lot, and probably moved from a very LAGgy style to a pretty solid TAG style. As I said in my last blog, maybe it's playing scared, but maybe it's just playing smart. Maybe I should remember what I learn here and transfer that to my 2NL/4NL games in order to be more profitable there. And as such, I'm going to keep playing at this level until I achieve my goal, and re-evaluate my options then. I'll keep on learning and become a better player because of that. And hand in hand with being a better player, there should be bigger profits. And in the end, that's what it all comes down to. Yes, I want to have fun, but I also want to win.

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