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Anthony Gregg -- What's My Line?

Gregg Talks Us Through a PCA Hand Against Hafiz Khan

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Athony GreggWith just three tables left in the 2009 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, a battle of the blinds went down that left some observers scratching their heads and others applauding a gutsy call at a crucial time in the tournament.

The 2008 runner-up, Hafiz Khan, was making another improbable run at the title and was threatening to take control of his table with a series of raises and reraises. It took a confrontation with fellow American Anthony Gregg to stop Khan and end his quest for back-to-back final tables. Ironically, Gregg went on to finish runner-up, just as Khan did last year, losing heads up to Canadian Poorya Nazari.

The 22-year-old Gregg spoke to Card Player about the hand and went into detail about the thought process that led to an astounding call.
 

Event - Blinds/Antes PokerStars Caribbean Adventure 12,000-24,000 with a 2,000 ante.
Player Anthony Gregg Hafiz Khan
Chip Count 1,184,000 909,000
Hand K 10 5 3

Hafiz KhanThe Hand

The action folded around to Hafiz Khan in the small blind, and he raised to 62,000. Anthony Gregg called in the big blind, and the flop came K J 4.

Khan bet 85,000 and Gregg called. The turn was the Q, and Khan bet 180,000. Gregg made the call, and the river was the 6.

Khan moved all in for 580,000, and after some time in the tank, Gregg called, showing down K 10. Khan could only produce 5 3 for complete air and was eliminated in 21st place.


The Interview

Julio Rodriguez:
In a blind versus blind situation deep in a tournament, do you normally opt to take the pot preflop or see what you can do with your position in the hand?

Anthony GreggAnthony Gregg:
Well, with K-10 I’m not really looking to get it in preflop. So, even though I’m probably way ahead of an aggressive player's range, I don’t really think I need to three-bet. My hand flops so well for a top pair type of hand, and I’m in position, so I had no problem seeing a flop there.

JR:
Did you consider raising the flop since you hit your hand?

AG:
I considered it, but if I raise the flop and he decides to jam, I’m not going to be too happy about my situation, having to play that big of a pot with a marginal hand.

JR: What about on the turn?

AG: On the turn, I considered shoving, but I didn’t think I could get called by any hands worse than mine. I figured the best way to get value was just to call.

JR: What ultimately led you to call on the river?

Anthony GreggAG: On the flop and turn, he bet about half the pot. But on the river he just shoved for a full pot-sized bet. It just seemed like too convenient of a line for him to have a sick hand in that spot.

JR: What kind of hand did you put him on?

AG:
I thought he could have a hand like J-10 or a missed spade draw. I considered backdoor clubs as a possibility, but he wouldn’t have shoved with that, he would have made a smaller bet that would get called.

JR: Do you think it would have been better for him to bet a smaller amount on the river?

AG:
It’s an odd situation, because his over-shove seemed weaker than if he would’ve bet 250,000 or 300,000 on the end. But then again, I probably would’ve called those bets, as well. So, even though it seemed weak, his shove was actually his best chance to get me to fold. Since neither option would’ve worked, he should have just shut down his bluff and salvaged part of his stack.