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Ovalman's Micro grind

Part time Poker Nut, Astro Nut and a lover of Glentoran FC.
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I won the PSOSOP Main Event! It's by far the longest tournament I've played on Pokerstars, 7hrs 45Mins and it was close to daybreak in the UK when the game finished.

I love deepstack tournaments and this one had 10k starting stack and a 12 minute clock. The beauty of a blind structure like this is it gives you so much more play post flop. I play a tight aggressive game but try not to be ABC. With a deepstack it gives you so much room to manouvre. You can 3 bet re-raise and fold to a 4 bet. When you're shallow you simply can't do this. It's one of the complaints I had about the monthly Big Bang Tournament, for such a prestigious event it's merely just a crap shoot.

I thought I generally played well but crucially most of my flips held up. I got really lucky in certain spots but I never risked my whole stack unless I had to.

Here's a review of key hands but I'm hoping the PSO will review the whole final table with hole cards if possible. I'd like to see if my reads were correct.


I try and play it pretty tight early on until I get a feel for players and a table and it was 18 hands before I got involved in my first hand.

Esteriomina and Str8flushin had both been pretty active and this was a good hand to see a flop with in position. You can't play hands like this in a shallow tournament because they get you into so much trouble but with a deepstack it has so much manoureability. I can easily get away from it while not lose too much if I do get into trouble. Also, it was the first hand I played and I felt any bet would get some respect I don't want to seem entirely like a rock and lose out when I do get a premium so it had great showdown value and sennt a message to my opponents that I was card dead but I didn't just wait for Aces.

Esteriomina again in this pot. He had a very high steal rateand I didn't defend much until this point. I thought I better make a stand and TBH I was going to try and play him off any dry board. As it happened, I flopped top pair and won without a showdown.

I built up to $15k before taking my first hit, XBing tighten up as the game went on but my image of him when he first sat down was of a maniac. He shoved quite a lot and it was an instant call from me.

My first double up against Estorimina. My reads on Est were he/she was pretty aggressive pre flop but with troublesome hands. He loved his KQo type hands out of position and I can pot control here. I flopped a set and gave him just enough to keep him in the pot while not getting al is chps. I think I played this hand great - if I missed and it was a wet board then I could get away easily while pot control dry boards. You can really only do things like this in a deepstack game.


Things tightened up quite a bit at the bubble stage and I suppoe I did too. Prohorse played a decent stealing game andhe buil a $12k stack up to $30k+. I didn't have a massive stack but I tried to at least keep my stack maintained. I had position over Prohorse but I didn't really want to get involved with him without a hand. I wasn't so deep at this stage.

KJs is a good enough steal when a table tightens up, nobody will get involved with you unless you have a monster. Prohorse did have me covered and while I might have been ahead of him, it's nt a strong enough hand to be going broke with. I'm never calling in this spot, it's just too much of a leak to be call folding. So my choices are shove or fold. I was still comfortable so I didn't need to risk missing out on the bubble.

I noticed Edinfreeman was the bubble boy. Ed ertainly wasn't the shortest stack so I can only assume it was an AKs v AA hand he went out on.


I was just happy to make the cash. My PSOSOP series up to so far had been a damp squib. When I made the cash my next mission is to make the final table. I don't want to gamble, I want to keep playing like I have been but the very first hand after the bubble I faced a decision against Moderator CannonLee.

I don't think I'm deep enough to flat call and AKs is a premium. I know Cannon isn't playing with rags but I think I'm at a stage here to put the question back on to him. I feel a re-shove is the right play in this spot and maybe get him to fold hand like AQs - 99 down. As it happened he took the shot and AKs won but it was the first of a few lucky flips that you have to win to win a tournament.

I've a decent stack now and I want to put it to good use but I think I made a few mistakes in this hand both by playing 88 in early position and then with CBetting to represent the A. My check gave him the edge and it didn't matter if he stone cold bluffed me in this spot, playing 88 out of position was not a good play.

Pinoy and Landoo both restricted my play but I felt both were over aggressive and wanted to control the table. I let them but I had to take a stand at some point and this hand was another lucky flip that won. I felt my image would get a fold but in the end I was happy.

I'd no other major hands until the final table. I raised/ stole when I had the chance although basically just kept in the background and let Pinoy and Landoo go to war with the table.

Part 2 to follow - final tabe

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