WORLD SERIES OF POKER
Everybody related to omaha poker is aware that the World Series Of Poker is the best as far as Poker championships were concerned. One should win the WSOP championship if one wishes to make history, prestige and money. The WSOP was the place to visit if he or she wished to achieve prominence in poker. The WSOP has painstakingly maintained information since 1971. Information such as, who won the most money, who won the maximum number of times, most cashes (times in the money), and the person who played at the final table the maximum number of times.
Every person who learns to play poker harbors a desire to win only one bracelet at the WSOP. Recently, the World Poker Tour has stepped up the prestige and money ladder (They have received much publicity by displaying colossal prize pools). Frank enjoys WPT and he would like to win some WPT titles too. Although the WPT might surpass the WSOP in prominence, for now the WSOP is the greatest!
CHAN VERSUS FRANK
In 1988, the first prize for the champion at the World Series of Poker was $755,000, which Johnny Chan and Frank played against each other to win. Frank was fresh and only still making a name in poker, chasing his dream of triumphing at the WSOP. Frank was only twenty-four when he defeated Johnny and became the youngest World Champion.
Johnny had won two championships in a row and he was playing to win the third time so he could create WSOP history. That would have been quite an achievement! franks experience commended Johnny for triumphing two consecutive years and ending second in the subsequent year. Actually, Johnny’s consecutive wins and coming in second in the third year was the most distinguished achievement in poker history.
Some months later in the same year, Johnny and Frank contested with each other of round four of the semifinals after they each won three matches at the Bike club. There were a huge number of spectators and the game was limit hold’em. Frank can still recollect how Johnny had very chips compared to Frank, and yet he recovered and won.
The third time Johnny and Frank contested with each other was in 1999, at the Carnival of Poker, both had beat over 300 players in a limit Hold’em event to face each other. They played for an hour and at 5 a.m. there was a tie of sorts, so they settled on sharing the prize money (they didn’t even bother to play it), because they wanted to get some shuteye before the no-limit Hold’em event on the next day.
(Frank was amazed to see Johnny had a huge amount in chips at 5 a.m. at the final table, although he didn’t get much sleep.) Once again, Frank faced Johnny Chan at the finals of the 2001 WSOP Gold Bracelet Heads-up Match Play. By then Johnny held a record for having won the most money at the WSOP, which was in excess of $3 million, while Frank held the record at third place with $2.8 million.
(T.J Cloutier held the second place with $60,000 more than Frank. Frank was in first place only one month previously.) Frank had the opportunity to win the WSOP bracelet for the eighth time and match the record holders Doyle Brunson and Johnny Moss while Johnny Chan was trying to win for the seventh time so he could share the second position in WSOP, with Frank.
Although they didn’t have loads of money, only about $40,000 chips apiece and blinds being played at $100-$200, and their records at stake, they ventured the no-limit Hold’em match. Johnny succeeded in winning the match, as everyone guessed, while 200 spectators watched, the TV coverage and all the lights.
Frank was only too happy to let Johnny set the pace while Frank waited for the time when he would have a strong hand and catch him making a big bluffing. Johnny won several small kitties but Frank trapped him to win the bigger kitties.
At one point in the game, they landed up with the same amount of money, and that’s when Carlos changed his line of attack. He started playing more conservatively.Frank, who was playing very well until now, couldn’t get a grip of the poker game.
He felt this was the result of his elimination from the WSOP main event on the previous day (third day), coupled with lack of sleep for the past four days (It was normal. The players didn’t sleep well when the main event was on, if any). Although Frank wasn’t playing his best game, Johnny was playing so brilliantly, he would have defeated Frank even if he did play a better game.
Johnny reached the finals at four separate tables at the 2001 WSOP, playing his best throughout the game. Frank, who hadn’t bluffed at any of the face-off rounds until this time, amended plans and attempted to really bluff Johnny. It had been a short time since the match had begun when Johnny had increased the $500 bet, Frank had the ten of hearts and six of hearts in the hole and he matched the bet.
The Ace of diamonds, Queen of diamonds and the seven of spades turned up at the flop. Frank checked, Johnny bet $1,000 at that point. Frank sensed (he’d been reading well after five weeks of playing poker) that Johnny didn’t have a very strong hand. Frank could beat Johnny as he sensed Johnny didn’t have an Ace.
Frank made up his mind to win this kitty, though he wasn’t in the habit of bluffing after the flop.Frank check-raised $2,000 against Johnny’s $1,000 totaling the amount to $3,000. After careful scrutiny Johnny matched the bet, A two of clubs came up at the turn, which meant the board now showed an Ace of diamonds, Queen of diamonds, seven of spades and the two of clubs.
Frank bluffed by betting $6,000 because he didn’t want to dilly-dally. Then Johnny matched Frank’s $6,000. At the fourth street an Ace of hearts was flipped open, making the board of Ace of diamonds, Queen of diamonds, seven of spades, two of clubs and an Ace of hearts. Once again Frank laid a wager (but only $4,000), that’s if Johnny had nothing (he might have had a straight draw and a flush draw, such as a ten of diamonds and a Jack of diamonds or a ten of diamonds and a King of diamonds).
Johny matched the bet. Frank simply said, ‘you win’, and Johnny showed a pair of Kings. Frank had read Johnny correctly, as it turned out, he didn’t have a strong hand. Johnny had no Aces, and yet he called Frank. Both had read each other correctly. Frank didn’t remember the basic rule of poker about not bluffing the great players. One can’t get players like Johnny Chan to quit only because one is right about his feeling that his opponent’s hand isn’t too strong.
(Erik Seidel was also good at sniffing out a weak hand). Johnny told Frank that he felt Frank might have a pair of sevens and a flush draw. Frank commented he sensed Johnny might have had a ten of diamonds and a Jack of diamonds. Where was the King – so they could end this matter?) Frank believed a part of bluffing was to tell lies about the hand he had, though he always told the truth outside Poker. There was no reason to let an opponent get a ‘free read’ on one’s play.
Frank wasn’t overly concerned though he was left with $28,000 after that hand. He felt he still had a chance of winning. He realized it was pointless to bluff Johnny in future, and yet he waited to get a good hand because he figured Johnny owed him $100,000 at the very least.
It was because of Frank’s bluff that Johnny felt encouraged to make the call even though he had a strong hand. Every time this happened to Frank he would wind up recovering his money afterwards. The opponents were probably thinking of that one bluffing.
Now Johnny played a more cautious game, his cautiousness needed testing. Frank decided to change his game, and he started to frequently increase the bets. (Frank didn’t adopt this method of playing in a face-off round, but he could sense what cards Johnny’s had in his hands. Frank chose to play mind games with Johnny for a while so Johnny would start calling big bets even with weak hands pre and post flop.)
Frank got a jack and a nine in the next round, he bet $700; Johnny matched the bet and increased it by another $1,500. Frank matched it in order to confuse him. As it happened, that was a deadly error. Frank wanted to confuse Johnny for a while though he didn’t usually play such hands. A King, a Jack and a nine unsuited turned up at the flop (this meant there were no flush draws) and Johnny bet $2,000.
Then Frank pondered over his choices. Frank detected Johnny might have either of the following combinations of read the cards A King and Queen, A King and ten, An Ace and King, A pair of Aces or a pair of Queens therefore Johnny would play all-in. Frank scrutinized Johnny, who was silent and motionless (no reading). Frank wondered whether he should match Johnny’s $2,00 or increased the bet at this point. What approach to use?
Frank was sure Johnny wouldn’t increase Frank’s bet again if he had a King and Jack or a Queen and ten. Frank sensed he would nail Johnny unless he had a trio. Eventually, Frank increased the bet by $6,000 so it totaled $8,000. Frank saw ‘the nut’ in Johnny’s eyes when Johnny looked at him, it was as apparent as it had been when he’d seen Humberto Brenes’s eyes, that time when he had a pair of Aces pre-flop in New Jersey Frank had a pair of sixes, Humberto increased the bet.
Frank had even seen it in Steve ‘Country’ Riehle’s eyes at the Taj Mahal Casino Riehle had a pair of Kings and Frank had bet with a pair of ten’s before the flop.Johnny won the round, which was the end of the match, as he had a pair of Kings. The moment Johnny said he was all-in Frank made an error.
Frank could’ve saved his last $18,000 so he could continue playing, had he waited a little and played according to his study of Johnny. One could say he’d already decided to play out this hand when he increased the bet by $6,000. As it is, it wasn’t easy to quit that hand as he would need to really guess what Johnny had before he’d even consider quitting.
Frank could’ve figured what Johnny had on the fourth street and saved his chips if he’d only matched Johnny’s bet of $2,000. But Frank couldn’t possibly quit at the river, when a five had been flipped, but he might have quit after the second five was flipped since he couldn’t even beat a pair of Queens by that time.
When Johnny had a pair of Kings, would one say it was Frank’s bad luck that he had a pair of two’s? Of course, most certainly! Then again, Frank could’ve quit before the flop, when the bet had been increased, or he could have just matched the bet at the flop and the fourth street. (Although it would have been very sad to quit at that point.)
The two nastiest days of the year 2001 came consecutively for Frank when he lost with an Ace of hearts and King of hearts hand to an opponent who had a Queen of clubs and ten of clubs and bet all-in pre-flop for $220,000 at the WSOP, and now his Jack and nine lost out to Johnny’s pair of Kings when the King, the Jack and the nine turned up at the flop.
Frank shaved his head on Friday on ESPN and that was more enjoyable compared to his loss in the WSOP on Wednesday and losing to Johnny Chan on Thursday. One could get in a mess if one played with a hand of Jack and nine for an increased bet. A person could be in hot soup even if one gets the card one is seeking at the flop like frank's wsop poker hand did. (Frank was looking forward to the face off between Johnny Chan and himself in round five.)
|@Copyright 2005-06 All Rights Reserved www.poker.tj|