Our final outing for team "Trotter" was the GBPT at Bristol, very fitting....a hometown swansong for Matt.
Poker players never cease to amaze me and as news of my imminent departure from the team became public Matt was inundated by offers from all and sundry as possible replacements. Famous names (Well in their minds anyway) and train loads of also rans befriended pokers most eligible bachelor in a vain bid to grab a bit of the golden boy's loot. Potential winners, TV presenters and players who couldn`t win a tournament if.... no one else turned up! All clamouring to wear the hallowed Poker.co.uk shirt...even a down and out that had wandered in by mistake ...he was actually looking for the salvation army soup kitchen...lined up all hoping to be blessed by the golden boys approval.
Alas....at least for the time being, it was not to be, our hero chose wisely bestowing his assistance on potential winners from the ranks of Poker.co.uk's online community including Rodbuck [edit by Matt: unfortunately, Rod wasn't sponsored into any of the GCBPT Bristol events], Padster, Diceman and many more who`s names escape me at the moment ...totally disproving the age old saying that..... fools and their money are easily parted! Pre-event photo courtesy of...Hmmm... whoever could use a camera?.. and then we were off for our first shot at glory... the ?100 F/O. 140 entrants, 139 of which were Poker.Co. team members, or at least it seemed that way! Plus 12 reserves waiting in the wings rendered a prize pool of ?15,200...not bad at all.
The winner ...eventually! after consuming copious amounts of beer and, upsetting some very large Geordie visitors...gulp (Apologies next day sorted matters) was Poker.co.uk sponsored player Rod-buck with Diceman and my goodself also making the final table and cashing, Dice in 8th and me in 7th. The format was pretty good to start but rapidly escalating blinds made itinto a crapshoot late on.
Getting all-in with JJ against QK and losing the majority of my stack set the tone for my exit which came a few hands later when I pushed all-in from the small blind with Js-Qs got called by the big blind holding 9-10 and my race was run.
Event two was the ?200 F/O, 140 runners plus 14 reserves raising around ?26,000 and....... I lasted two levels when my QQ got busted on the river by AK in what can only be described as poor play by my opponent pushing all in on a flop of 8-8-5 having called my re-raise pre flop and putting 4,000 plus chips into an 1,800 pot, and the conclusion?....I definatly need to be more lucky.
Storming off to the bar I really don`t know who won and more to the point...I don`t care! Selfish I know, but there is only so much pain one man can take and several glasses`s of red wine later I had no pain and no care`s....sweet.
The main event..
Led by our team leader the "Donk" himself, Rod, Padster (I think) and myself made up team "trotter" for the final event. My own strategy was to be tight aggressive with a main aim of making the final...with chips! Well, to be honest I was a bit too brave for my own good, getting hugely lucky on one occasion pushing all-in with 9-9 against two aggressive players who I correctly judged were stealing lots of pots with overly aggressive play...my judgement was spot on... they both called one holding Q-Q the other K-K!!
But, golden bollocks here spiked a nine on the river to acquire a healthy stack.
Now my play took on an even more aggressive look and an air of invincibility...unfortunately. This new found state of invincibility lasted down to the last two tables when trying to bully Jamie Reeves (Reevio) off a pot pre-flop with AKs only to find Q-Q and no lay down. Crippled by this move my end was nigh. Disappointing, but if I win that race, I would have been well set up for the final...Ce la vie. Funny really, playing a far more aggressive during tournaments this year I have got lucky on a couple of occasions needing divine intervention from the poker gods, but for the best part of the year I have pushed late on with hands that are either even money shots or better sometimes being 1/4 on and in these crucial spots, lost nearly 80% of the races!.... Oh well it will all change ....eventually. Matt incidentally did make the money [edit by Matt: unfortunately, I just missed it.. 2 off the bubble or thereabouts :( ] but then playing a far more conservative and surprisingly sober game....he would.
Two points that did come to my attention on this tour compared to others are... the party like atmosphere... at least for the most part, and the amount of drink consumed by the competitors, which fortunately also extends into the potentially very lucrative side cash games - and on this occasion that was again to my benefit with nice wins in the Omaha.
So that`s it, for now at least "Team Trotter" is.. for the time being..
anyway officially no more. I will be representing Poker In Europe as their sponsored pro from August 1st and hoping to re-generate that once mighty poker site (iPoker) I will of course still be part of the Poker.co.uk community and can still be found playing on this site and contributing ...on occasions.. to the forum.
Parting with Matt on good terms was always a priority and we have both agreed that whilst this new opportunity is one I cannot afford to pass up... we may well hook up again sometime in the future. I have really enjoyed my time here with Poker.co.uk and have made many new friends and perhaps... the odd enemy (LoL) but, all in all I think my time has been well spent publicising the site and hopefully, along with the odd win, I`ve managed to add some cash back into Matt`s coffers and also helped to generate interest in the brand name. Surprisingly so many people now associate me with this site that it will be quite hard initially to re-brand myself... I just hope the money I`m being paid makes up for all the extra effort I will have to put in!
Finally... A big thanks to Matt and James for all their help in furthering my tournament career, thanks to all of you guys on the forum for your support and good luck to Dan and the rest of the Poker.co.uk team when we meet again across the green baize.... this time as adversaries!