More name-dropping from me this week! Here's another hand from
PartyPoker Premier League Poker, which will be on Channel 4 in a few weeks'
time. The fact is, my starry opponents in the Premier League think I'm an
idiot. I'm happy to be the British underdog - a sort of mascot in this TV
series, really - but I am not actually a moron. So I can't resist a quiet
pleasure in seeing Phil Hellmuth (who has 11 World Series bracelets) play a
hand worse than I'd have done. I say "quiet"; let me tell you all about it.
Hellmuth raises to 6,000 with A5 off-suit,
a questionable move in early position. Andy Black calls, and Hellmuth's brave
raise is rewarded with a flop of A55. Both players check, and the turn is a 9.
Hellmuth bets 10,000 and Black calls. The river is a 6. Hellmuth checks and
Black bets 14,000. Hellmuth raises to 40,000. Black reraises another 55,000,
putting Hellmuth all-in. Hellmuth calls.
Now, a recreational poker
player with other priorities in his life is not going to pass a full house on
the river. It's a full house! But a professional player, a world champion, is
supposed to consider his opponent's cards more carefully than his own. What can
Andy Black have for this action? He doesn't shovel in 110,000 on level one with
no hand. With AK, he bets the river but passes for the 40,000. With a 5 (or 56)
he bets and calls the 40,000. But an all-in reraise of a check-raise? He can
only have AA or 99.
It's 99. Phil stomps away, and I feel sympathy
because he's a great player who got unlucky. But he knows he should have
passed, and I'm glad to know that I would have done. More poker commentary