It's been rather a long time since I posted on the blog, almost 18 months, and in truth I haven't really been active for about 3 years. I don't have an especially good reason for the absence except that I'm a fairly busy person, and the time I don't spend either playing poker or studying poker I try and spend with my wife and two children. On the other hand, half an hour here or there isn't exactly a huge commitment! Given the amount of hits the blog still gets (I surpassed one million hits earlier in the year, having hit half a milly in July 2012) it would be a shame to just let it die.
So whilst I had a couple of days spare with the PokerStars strike going down at the moment I opted to completely revamp the design of the blog. I must have had the old design for about 5 years, and a lick of fresh paint seems like a nice motivator to post a bit more often.
So my last update was my Aussie Millions report from 2014. I've managed to go on a few other poker trips since then. I went to Vegas last year, in which I got my first two WSOP event cashes, but unfortunately my 208th and 604th place finishes didn't exactly set my world ablaze.
I attended the Aussie Millions for a second consecutive year in January this year having won another satellite on PokerStars. Unfortunately I bust the Main Event pretty quickly, and I think I set a record for least time spent in Australia as I left 3 days after arriving! Yes, this meant I was in the air nearly as long as I was on the ground! This might seem kind of silly to many of you, but I was on my own, had already done a bunch of stuff the year before and wanted to get home to my kids. I'll actually be returning for a 3rd time next January, so hopefully next years exploits warrant a longer trip!
|Me on the Melbourne Star, Jan 2015|
I've also been on two poker trips this year with my old friend Dan Carter, who I actually met on a final table back in 2005, and another mate of ours JP. We went over to Marbella for a few days for the Estellas Poker Tour event there in June which was very nice.
|Dan, JP & Me, Marbella, June 2015|
Ultimately though it was our latest trip that proved to be the most successful. With Dan living in the Netherlands at the moment, the Master Classics of Poker festival in Amsterdam caught our eye, and Dan managed to win the 2nd event (€770 8-max) for a nice score. He even got a novelty cheque (helping him transport this home was a fairly comical scene, featuring a random lady on the tram asking to take his picture with the cheque because her son liked poker, lolz!).
|Dan is victorious, November 2015|
The week looked to be something of a wash out for me except for the small % I had of Dan, but in the final event (€825 NLH) we were going to play I managed to pull a 3rd place out of the bag for my biggest score since my final in the Monte Carlo tournament in which I also came 3rd nearly 2 and a half years ago. It was a somewhat disappointing result as I began the table chip leader but lost all my important showdowns. Most notably with 6 players left someone decided to make an ICM-suicide jam with AJos when I had Jacks. This was for nearly half the chips in play and would have put me in a great spot to win, but alas he got there. However I could easily have finished 6th at this point so laddering up to 3rd wasn't a bad result in the end, and of course I had run well at times earlier in the tournement to make it to the final table.
Online poker has been ticking along for me. Lately I've been reducing my table count to around the 8-9 mark which I'm finding quite enjoyable. I'm also playing a few less turbos these days. It is unquestionable that poker is gradually getting tougher, so it is imperative to stay ahead of the curve. Also PokerStars is doing its best to squeeze out as much money as it can out of the poker economy, with Spin & Go's seemingly its main focus these days. So I'm trying my best to make sure I can still earn money from this game which I've been playing professionally for about 10 years now!