We have come to the end of an eventful month. Despite spending a lot of time on tournaments, and a lot of money on the EPT, I still came out of February with a tidy profit from cash games. Ironically, my cash game earnings exploded when I started to focus more on tournaments. Possibly part of the explanation for that is that I played fewer tables and fewer hours, but I am sure most of it can be attributed to simple luck.
While it hasn’t been a very profitable experience, playing tournaments has simply been a lot of fun, and I intend to continue for a while with those, still mixing it with Live Draw HK cash games. The worst part of tournament poker is that the bad beats you take are really devastating, both in terms of money and hours spent. The second worst thing is how you feel you are slowly bleeding to death in the periods where you don’t make that one big pay-out. On average you only make the money in roughly 15% of the tournaments you play. So on my tournament days, a typical scenario is that after 4-6 hours and playing as many as 10-12 tournaments, you are sitting with your whole investment gathered on just that one or two tables where you have gone deep. That’s when you really appreciate aces in the hole, and that’s when a suckout for your tournament life hurts the most. The value of those stacks deep in large tournaments is huge, and that is the curse and the charm of tournaments.
The main advantage of tournament poker is that you never lose more than your initial investment, so even after a completely failed tournament session, you are never down more money than you can win back with a decent cash game session. This provides some extra motivation, and takes away that special tournament pro feeling of bleeding to death.
In March, I have a bet with some guys at the office on who will play the most cash game table hours. I hope this will provide further motivation to put in a decent work effort. I am allowed to play a cash game or two table along with tournaments, so the tournament hobby should not interfere. Funny how a bet for a stake dinner provides more motivation than an expected hourly rate that is probably worth more than the dinner.