2008 World Series: Running good, running bad. Time for some luck.

The French press say that ElkY has been “running well”. That’s true in general, only not so at the World Series this year.

Since the Series in 2007, in which ElkY cashed three times and made a final table in the $2,500 No Limit Hold’em, the Team PokerStars Pro has gone on to a final table finish at the APPT Macau, has won the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, and made final tables at the Wynn Classic and the €10,000 Rendez Vous a Paris in May. But so far this Series... nothing.

“I played well in most of the events beside maybe one or two." he said. "Really I was tired and I try to go for the win every time I play - so I don’t cash very often but when I do I go far. So that’s my goal for today.”

Today there’s something of the gothic about him, draped as he is in a black top with swirling gold patterns on; a hood hides his face, sunglasses shade his eyes.


I’d stopped by to watch a few hands and he had 25k in front of him. But a short time later he'd lost ten grand in a mixed bag of hands, each accompanied by a laugh, a fold and a shake of the head. But still, he appeared to be trying all sorts to re-ignite his spark in this event, it was just a case of getting the cylinders to fire at once.

So why not try changing a few things? First he shuffled his chair closer to the table, adjusting his view. Then he shifted further down his chair which, after a round of hands, meant only his head and shoulders were visible above the table.

Down to 15k.

He also seemed willing to see which chips were best for riffling, trying greens first, then blues, then back to greens. Then this hand...

A mid-position raise of 875 from ElkY pre-flop, folded to the small blind who bumped it up to 2,700. Back to ElkY who moved all-in, neatly piling his chips colour coded on the felt before the small blind called with little fanfare. Had ElkY been able to script this part of the story I doubt he would have had this in mind. He showed his meagre 8-4, only to find himself up against A-K.

But fortune sometimes favours the crazy-brave and ElkY caught a four, his opponent missing completely. There had been method to this madness – the same player had been re-raising ElkY all day, prompting the Frenchman to make a stand. “I got lucky in that pot” he told me later.

Up to 30k.

So a little luck can give you the boost you need - never mind if it looked rough, and that was the change he needed. More profitable hands would follow, the start of an impressive upswing.

In another pot... “The big stack raised with jacks, I called with sixes in the big blind. I’d been check-raising a lot of flops so he didn’t believe me so much. I hit a six on the flop. I check raised hoping he had a pair and would push and he moved in with jacks. That was more than 30k.”

30K added to a stack now measuring over 70k, more so after another hand with A-J taken from table newbie and EPT San Remo winner Jason Mercier. Going deep is the plan and he just gave himself the ammunition to get there.