APPT Cebu: Rattonsey's freefall ends with a thud

There are no friends at the poker table, it's been said, but from the media desk we can certainly sympathize with some players. Today our sympathy goes squarely to Sameer Rattonsey of India.

Sameer started the day second in chips, behind fellow Indian Amit Varma. He seemed on the edge of something truly great for Indian poker if he and Amit could hold off the rest of the table and make it to the heads-up portion of the day. But almost from the words, "Shuffle up and deal," everything seemed to go wrong for Sameer. He suffered from a run of poor cards and second-best hands and wound up playing a defensive style of poker as his chip count rapidly plummeted.

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Sameer was never happy today

Sameer was never above his starting stack at any point of the proceedings today. And now he's on the rail, sent there by Amit. They were both callers of a pre-flop raise to 55,000 by Nick Wong, Amit from the button and Sameer from the blinds. Action passed to Amit on a jack-high flop, J♣9♦2♦. He bet 125,000.

Sameer, sensing that perhaps his moment to sink or swim had come, check-raise shoved for approximately 400,000 with J♥T♠, top pair of jacks. That shove folded Nick but was insta-called by Amit, who showed a huge draw: Q♦T♦ for a combination straight-and-flush draw with an overcard. Equity-wise, Sameer's hand was once again second best, although at that particular moment it was in the lead. The lead passed to Amit when the 8♥ turn gave Amit a straight. He did not relinquish it.

The 1,043,000 pesos that Sameer receives today for finish 6th will roughly equal his largest career cash to date, a 2nd place finish in Goa in November 2011. But given the 5.9 million pesos that were up top in this one, we know that the million won't offer much consolation to Sameer. It's not that we've ever been there ourselves; just that years at the media desk have given us a strong sense of sympathy when things all fall to pieces at the final table.

Dave Behr
@PokerStars in Day 4