Black kings of death

Like a lot of people at the end of the summer, I'm taking a little break after the World Series of Poker.

The WSOP was par for me this year. I had a very, very bad start, going 0-for-12 in tournaments without cashing. But on my second trip I cashed 3 out of 5 events -- no super deep runs or anything spectacular, but it was good to end well like that. I also won a couple of seats in satellites, so I was able to salvage my series with a tiny win in the end.

Two black kings turned out to be my nightmare hand this WSOP. I lost with K♠K♣ six times -- that hand was just no good for me this summer! I think I was eliminated with kings the first four of my six no-limit hold'em events, and it was against ace-king every time.

I did have one decent shot at a bracelet this year near the end in the 10-game mixed event. I came in 23rd in that one, and my Team PokerStars Pro teammate Marcel Luske went out just after me in 19th.


It was kind of a sickening exit. We were down to the last few tables and I was second in chips. In a format like the 10-game mixed, I am always mindful not to go broke in the "big bet" games -- no-limit hold'em or pot-limit Omaha -- especially if I feel like I can outplay the other players in the other games. Most people play NLHE and PLO, but not everyone plays the other games, so I generally feel I have an edge in those games and so want to avoid big gambles in NLHE or PLO.

But I had a hand in the NLHE round where I had K♣K♠ and a guy shipped all in on me, and obviously there was no way I was folding that hand, even if it had been so bad for me all summer. He had ace-king and wouldn't you know an ace came on the river and I lost about 70% of my stack.

After that the game changed to 2-7 triple draw and a hand came up in which I made a [7][6][5][3][2] on my first draw -- a pretty monstrous hand. But the other guy made a wheel on his first draw and just like that I was out.

That's how it goes sometimes when you're running bad. The key is when you're losing to lose only a little, not a lot. When I play cash games, I'll sometimes lose several sessions in a row, but I'll only lose small... and in fact I'll be happy. It's almost like winning to lose small, because when I win I'll win much more and it won't be hard to make up for those losses.

Right now I'm setting poker aside for a little while, relaxing and taking a break from the game for about six weeks. This is the time of year I normally go on my charitable mission to Guyana, but I'm staying home this year to spend time with my children. Both are leaving for college this fall, so I decided to help myself a little instead of helping others, and enjoy these weeks with my daughter who is returning to college and my son who is about to start.

Now that September is here, I'll be getting back into playing with the WCOOP which I'm really looking forward to. I'm hoping that I can continue that good conclusion to the summer.

I'm also hoping by then that if I'm dealt two black kings again I'll be able to win!

Victor Ramdin is a member of Team PokerStars Pro

Victor Ramdin
@PokerStars in Victor Ramdin