Poker Coverage: Poker Tournaments Casino News Sports Betting Poker Strategy


My iSeries Live and The Irish Open

by Eoghan O'Dea |  Published: Apr 16, '12


So I haven’t played a huge amount of poker in the last six weeks (internet not working great for the last 3 weeks hasn’t helped). On the Thursday before the Irish Open main event I played in the iSeries Live which was a 10k buy in, one table tournament with some top players including Negreanu and Hellmuth and I really enjoyed it.

Partly because of the fact that I got to sit beside the Devilfish. He can be funny and on this occassion he was very good entertainment. Everybody seemed to be enjoying themselves apart from Daniel Negreanu, perhaps as Devilfish was giving him a fair amout of slagging throughout it. Daniel got him back a little after though in the commentary box.

I thought I played reasonably well. When I was short and with five players left I opened with K-10 and A-4 when I probably should have just pushed both hands but decided to min raise and then had to fold both the hands preflop.

I was up against 10s and A-A in both of them so was happy I didnt push. I picked up 5-5s suited a little while later with 86,000 I decided to min it again to 16k. Again probably best moving in preflop in general here but the min raising was working well (getting shoved on every time I did it). So I minned it again and Devilfish pretty quickly made it like 30k to go.

I really felt I was in awfull shape. I thought he had been playing a little strange and there was a small chance he had air, and could possibly fold even though I only had 86k total. With it being fivehanded, having a pair, only one prize, hadn’t planned on folding it pre, I decided to just to put it. He turned over A-As which I wasn’t too surprised at. I hit a 5 on flop and Devilfish was handing me the chips when his A hit the river.

My dad has ran really well against Devilfish over the years. “hes some lucky f##### c###” Dave has told me a few times before. I was a bit annoyed at myself for calling off when I really felt he had a strong hand but I think there’s too many factors to fold the hand.

Congrats to James Dempsey for winning the event and hard luck to the Fish for his second place finish.

So the Irish Open was the next day and I felt the iSeries was a nice warm up tourney for me (apart from parting with 10k of my money). I felt I was so card dead during the Irish Open. I mean I hate when I hear people saying you wanna see the crap I’ve gotten all day.

A famous Irish player who likes to tell you how bad he runs a lot was telling me about day one of WSOP a few years ago where he had picked up 7-2 offsuit 84 times in a row!!

It wasnt that bad for me but the day was rather quiet. My first tweet was 20k(starting stack), then 18,200 at dinner and then I finished at 18,150 at the end of Day 1.

There was one hand that saved my day which could have busted me. Maybe I had learned from the previous night. I opened under-the-gun with the good old 5-5 again. I made it 1,400 playing 21/22k ish. I got two callers and the small blind, who is a quality Irish player, makes it 4,200.

Hmmm I’ve got two guys behind me that I’m pretty sure will call if I call too but I really need to flop a 5 here. I think for a little bit and decide with my stack I can find a better spot than this. Just the button called and it came A-K-5. The quality Irish player from the blind continuation bets and the button puts in a deep reach (overbets it) like he’s got 5-5 (ive got 5-5 though). The raiser puts the rest of his chips in quickly but doesnt seem that happy.

The button quickly folds for not that much more. It was a really bad play from the button who cant rep anything here apart from pocket fives(he’s actually a very famous sports individual who generally plays pretty good). He can’t have A-A, K-K, A-K, K-5, and A-5 would seem a bit odd. Also he raised too much apart from everything else. When this hand ended I was tilting. Defo felt I was winning a nice pot here. Call one time Eoghan!!

I met the Irish pro at the bar later and he told me he had A-A so I actually dodged a big bullet and got the chance to head back to day 2 with some stack. Just thinking there about those 5-5′s. In both cases I was utg, up against A-A, and both of us hit sets on the board. Little rigged? Maybe time to stop raising with small pairs utg!

I came back to Day 2 and saw 7-2o 86 times in a row!! I eventually got my money in with 7-5 v’s two jacks. The player that had opened seemed pretty tight but maybe I can get him to fold some ok hands here. He was a Sole Survivor too. I was down to 15 big blinds before the hand by the way, so I felt it was a fine spot. I let his Sole Survivior run at picking up that 100k continue as I couldnt find a way to crack his J-J my with a pair, flush draw and straight draw on the turn. It was time to visit the bar properly!

A lot of the strong Irish players bombed out pretty early this year. We havent seen too many of us go deep in past the few years. Next year will be the year, Anyway, there was great craic at the bar as usual. You’ll never see such an atmostphere like there is at the Irish Open at any other tournament in the world. If you bust at least you ‘ll know you will have a fun weekend anyways.

There was one last tournament that I was goin to play and it was the beer pong tournament on the Sunday. Observing some of the first round matches I felt we had a pretty strong chance but I hadnt observed how poor we were ourselves. We exited in the second round.

Paddy Power do such a great job at running the Irish Open, on and off the tables. It’s always that one tournament that everybody looks forward to in there schedule every year.

Top English player Surinder Sunar says “Its as big as the WSOP main event for me”. I feel the same way as he does.

You can play with me every Tuesday at 8pm on at my table. Its just 25-50 cent hold’em and if you bust me you get $55 dollar token to iPOPS. Also I’d like to give a shout out to Donal O’ Connor aka The Doc, Julian Gardner and Andy Black with there deep runs in the IO. WP guys!!

Eoghan O’Dea was a member of the 2011 November Nine. He came sixth in the main event winning $1.7 milllion. He plays poker online and writes at

Any views or opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the ownership or management of
Newsletterbanner Twitterbanner Fbbanner

Most Viewed Blogs

1 Parkinson: Back To The Future