Experience, baby, yah!

During this past Labor Day weekend I began to resemble Dagwood Bumstead.  I stole every chance to layWcoop_2005 on the couch, sit in the hammock, and generally not do anything.  I even got hungry at midnight on Saturday and wandered into the kitchen to make myself a midnight sandwich.  I also played a lot of poker.

I had wanted to qualify for some events in the World Championship of Online Poker.  There are 15 events, all with prize pools that are pretty juicy.  While I know I’m an underdog, if I get a little lucky I could do well.  However with entries to the lowest level tournaments starting at $215, that seemed a little steep.

So decided to invest $250 into satellites and started trying to qualify.  At $29 a pop, I figured, the worst that can happen is that I lose every one and I’ve played a lot of poker.  On Monday, it finally happened.  After coming in third, fourth, etc, I finally won one and qualified for event #5.  I admit, I got lucky with my QJ v AT against my final opponent, but I did win.  When I counted up the damage afterwards, I had spent $236 to win a $215 entry.  This tournament will be doubly challenging because it’s a "re-buy" tournament, which means that lots of people will play carelessly in the early stages trying to build chip stacks since they can pay another $215 and rebuy.  Since I don’t plan on rebuying, I will have to tread carefully during this time.

I think the strategy to surviving a rebuy tournament without rebuy funds is to simply lay low, avoiding getting into a pot with too many people before the flop.  You’re either going to flop a really big, hard-to-crack hand, or you’re going to let it go.  In a rare case when you push in before the flop, you better have Aces.  Top pair isn’t going to make it to the river with 3 or 4 other players seeing every river.

The experience was excellent.  I honestly feel that it is much more satisfying to play 8-10 hours of poker for that $236 than to just pay the $215.  After all, if I get knocked out in the first hour I won’t feel like it’s been a waste.  For me, the tournament started 8-10 hours ago.