Mandy Card’s poker diary: guest blog

As much as I love the excitement of a live game, I regularly find myself playing online poker.  I have never really taken this seriously, although I have won a pleasing amount of cash playing online, so I decided to see how quickly I could turn a small stake into a substantial bankroll.  Whenever I have played online in the past, it has usually been whilst curled up on the sofa, with the TV or music on in the background, and a bowl of popcorn or a glass of wine to hand.  I decided I was going to have to take a more serious approach if I wanted to achieve great success – no horizontal gambling, and certainly no wine!

I know Chris Ferguson successfully turned a zero balance into $10,000 over a 7 month period, and by no means am I in the same league, but I was intrigued to see how well I would fare with that as a benchmark. I have given myself until 31st December to boost my bankroll but, being an impatient woman, I will not be starting with the freerolls but crediting my account with $20 to get me started.  I hadn’t set myself a strict list of rules, like C.F. did, but decided to play whichever tourneys/sit n go’s/cash games that I liked. 

So there I was Wednesday evening with a whopping $20 burning a hole in my virtual pocket, and made the mistake of going straight to the scheduled tourneys. I immediately spotted the $15 Freezeout $4,000 GP which was minutes away from starting.  This would take the majority of my bankroll, but once I have seen something I want, I go after it.  In a field of 240+ players, I was hanging around the top 20% for the entire tournament, until we have lost half the players and some idiot pushed all-in to my set of Kings with bottom pair, only to hit runner-runner for a flush. GGRRRRRRR. I am now left with a couple of hundred chips when the average was 10k.  A couple of double-ups with premium hands later and I’m back in the game.  The top 30 get paid and we are down to 36 players, and my table sees some very tight play.  I take this opportunity to steal the blinds every chance I get.  Down to 34 and it takes what seems like hours to lose the last 4, but I make it to the cash.  Normal play resumes, and players are dropping like flies.  I find myself one of the short stacks on the final table, but then I’m running hot – AKs, AQs and large pocket pairs are rife.  Even with mediocre hands I was all over the flop.  Heads up at last.  My opponent is pushing all-in every single hand. (I had come up against him in the earlier stages and saw him pushing all-in for 2k+ to take down a pot of 100!!!).  He has $269k to my $78 and I am folding everything, whilst he continues to push every single hand. 

Perhaps I shouldn’t have let him irritate me but I found myself calling his all-in with my K10c. He shows A7d.  Rainbow flop, giving us each a back door fl. dr. Turn is a blank, leaving me pleading with my laptop to give me a K or 10 on the river, but a 7 hits instead.  I was slightly annoyed at going out on the first hand I played heads-up, BUT I had just secured a $620 win! 

Mandy Card

(Mandy recently competed in the English Poker Open, after winning a seat via RakeTheRake)

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