APPT8 Manila Day 2: Celina Lin is biding her time
As everyone knows poker is a game with a great deal of variance. There are highs, lows and lots of "middling" bits in between, adapting to the ever-changing dynamic is important. With Raymond Wu and Bryan Huang not here and Vivian Im having been eliminated on both start days, Team PokerStars Pro Celina Lin is the single representative left for PokerStars and at the moment she is patiently waiting for her spots.
"I'm sitting on about 50,000," Lin explained to me during the break, "it's just one of those days where I'm picking my spots. I'm actually not picking up any hands whatsoever. I have to pick the right player to resteal from. My stack doesn't allow too much post-flop play, I want to keep my stack so I have more fold equity when I do move all in."
I asked her that, given we were only 20 places or so from the money, whether or not she would change tactics when the bubble was closer.
"Oh no! I never look at that!" She laughed, "For me, it's more about making that final table, taking it down, you know, the top three places. Just cashing isn't really my goal."
Lin had started the day with 35,400 and managed to get an early double up with ace-nine against king-jack when the board bricked out. Later on though, she found she was having to make some of what the internet kids call "sigh-folds."
"There was a hand where UTG+1 shoved, the blinds were 1,000/2,000, and he shoved for 38,000 which was more than 50% of my stack at the time. I had pocket eights in the big blind, it's one of those very borderline hands. He'd been playing pretty tight all day and it was only his second shove two hours in. If he'd been on the button or in late position I'm happy to snap-call there but here he had to go through eight players. Tens is a call but nines would've been really tough."
After the break Lin headed straight back into the fray but unfortunately she wasn't able to last long. She pushed with ace-jack and got called by ace-ten but her opponent managed to flop a ten to eliminate Lin and it was game over. All the planning and preparation and picking of spots and constant evaluation of opponents are incredibly important but sometimes you'll still end up being a victim of those fickle poker gods.
Another well-known player who has been eliminated is Jae Kyung "Simba" Sim, who won the APPT in Cebu last year. Before his elimination, he had talked to Nicki Pickering about his hopes of going back-to-back. Just 37 players are now left in the tournament, remember you can follow all the action here.