2008 World Series: John Duthie planning Vegas return

Most every poker player has had those months. Fewer people are willing to talk about it, and even fewer will take any blame for it. John Duthie is a different breed, though. The first half of his World Series was not one he necessarily cared to remember. The second half...well, that remains to be seen.

duthie_thn_v2.jpgby John Duthie

Ok, so it didn't quite work out as planned.

I arrived in an unusually cool Vegas two days before the Pot-Limit Hold'em 10K event and hung around the pool at The Wynn letting the jetlag filter out of my system slowly over the next 48Hrs. I felt pretty fresh when the first tournament started, but there was still a lingering self-doubt hanging over me from a couple of months of bad form and bad play.

It's not the frame of mind you want to be in when sitting down with some of the best players in the world. Questioning hands is one thing, questioning your own ability is something altogether different and meant that I started on the back foot and never really got going. This negative frame of mind resulted in me playing about eight events and only managing to make the second day in one of them; the 7-card stud world championship event.

When you start to dread sitting down at a poker table it's time for a major rethink and you have to draw yourself away and begin to rebuild. I had always planned on coming back to London on 10th June because I needed to do some work on the EPT, but it was with a huge sigh of relief that I boarded that return flight, leaving the neon-filled streets and the broken dreams, to shrink away into the desert as we turned and climbed into a beckoning sky.

I have had a week to regroup and meditate on my game and feel stronger now than I did before, but just need to rid myself of the faintest remaining trace of negative thought before I return to battle. My coin-flips will hold up this time and the two-outers will hopefully stop killing my lock hands. My own will has to be stronger than ever before and more than anything I need that hunger back.

Watch this space.

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in World Series of Poker