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The Tale of Two Day Twos

1226 hands. 7.02 hours. -$18.45.

Before 10pm I played 442 hands over 2.57 hours and won $646.

After 10pm I played 516 hands over 4.45 hours and lost $664.

My natural tendency is loose-aggressive play, but I find I am much more profitable when I play tight. Really tight. Ridiculously tight. Tighter than you think can possibly be reasonable. Six-handed I tend to drift towards a VP$IP of over 25%. I’ve done very well when bringing it down to 16% and I think it should be even lower.

The first half of yesterday I managed 13.8%. The second half was 14.5%. That’s a huge improvement over day one where it was 20%.

My goal was to play 600 hands. After 200 I didn’t think I’d make it, but right about then everything started to come up roses. Suddenly, the cards were always in my favor and the other players seemed eager to give me their money. For a brief period poker was fun.

After 400 hands I broke for dinner, anticipating the last 200 hands would be a breeze.

After a couple of hours I was tired. But each of my two tables had a ridiculously loose player on it. One had a pretty standard pre-flop raising range, but would call over 50% of the time. The other practically never raised and called pre-flop around 60% of the time. Even better, he would often call multiple bets with an ace or other high cards, and call all the way to the river with any pair.

On top of all that, both players had large stacks, around $600. I could not walk away from this.

Things did not work out as well planned.

With a calling station in the hand I should value bet a lot more often. But I never felt comfortable with the thin value bets that I thought were the best way to exploit him. Similarly, I felt I should open up my range to include hands that can win a lot of small and medium sized pots.

I never felt like I knew when to value bet, when to check, or when to fold. On top of that, my calling station kept folding at the most inopportune times. Maybe exhaustion left me not as sharp as I should have been. Maybe I overcompensating. For whatever reason I was never able to win much.

Constantly losing money in such favorable circumstances kept me on tilt. Bad beats made it worse. I don’t know which caused me to lose more. We’ll look at the biggest losses later on and see what they say.