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The SCOOP long haul, by Vanessa Rousso

vanessa_rousso_scoop.jpgby Vanessa Rousso

Weeeeee! SCOOP is finally here!

This is a time of year that I personally love and very much look forward to. It's great to be able to play some bigger buy-in events from the comfort of my home for once! This is especially true since I have been traveling all around the world lately and actually had to miss the first SCOOP event because my flight from Europe didn't land in time.

One of the best parts about SCOOP in my opinion is that the blind structures are substantially longer than normal, and this allows for skill to play a large role in the results. SCOOP events (even the low and mid-limit events) have increased starting stacks, lengthened blind structures, or both. So, to succeed during SCOOP (or WCOOP, for that matter), you have to prepare yourself for much longer sessions than you are probably used to.

With live events, you rarely ever have to play longer than 9-10 hours in one day, but with SCOOP events, you can easily find yourself playing for 20+ hours straight without anything longer than a 15 minute break. This can be really grueling and it is something that you need to prepare for both mentally and physically. I learned this lesson back in the 2007 WCOOP main event when I came in 3rd out of 3000 players. That took about 24 hours of play (straight!)!

Some tips for dealing with these longer sessions:

1) Adjust your sleep schedule so that you are prepared to be alert late into the night (adjust this according to your time zone of course)

2) Avoid eating high carb meals (these will make you tired)

3) Listen to upbeat music to keep you awake late at night

4) Don't play in bed...that will make you tired

5) Use the breaks efficiently, get up, stretch, get snacks etc.

Finally, SCOOP (and WCOOP) events are kind of like a hybrid between live events and regular online events. You are likely to be at your table longer, with a deeper stack, so you definitely get a greater benefit by paying close attention to what your opponents are doing. This is also true (especially in the High buy-in category) because you play the same opponents over and over again during each event over the two week period. I try to isolate myself from distractions when playing in SCOOP for these reasons...and well, of course, also since there's a lot more money on the line!

I'm very excited to play in all the upcoming events and I will see you at the tables!


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