on 14:06

20th September (Sunday)
After the early morning wake up call from the foghorn (fun run marshals) outside my bed room window and having only 3 hours sleep this was very reminiscent to my Nottingham win two years ago where the night before the final days play I had very little sleep due to looking for a hotel early in the morning and they were all booked up, forcing me to sleep in the car in the car park below the casino – I was half wishing I had done that last night as I might have got more sleep and I was also hoping that this was a lucky omen for me.

I met up with the Teesiders for breakfast upsetting Brett Angel by telling him I thought Boro’s season was already over.

These Teeside lads make the tour a pleasure to play and I have formed quite a few friendships with most of them in the last two years, The turnout for Liverpool is low and would have been a lot lower but for these lads who are all very good poker players as well, time after time they keep making final table and again they have 5 players left in the mix of the last 18 remaining, I know if I can make final table there will also be a couple of these lads there with me.

Day 2 kicks off just after 3pm and I sit and observe for the first 30 minutes or so not really playing any hands, looking around my table I’ve clocked at least two of the runners looking at the prize breakdown when they been put to a decision and have promoted these two lads to the top of my “pick on” list

Zak Ford on the other table has his AK flattened by pocket 8’s by Mark James (Mark and Zak, Greg and Mick Fletcher were the players who I considered to be the threats to me taking this event down so was pleased to see Mick depart in the first ten minutes and Zak follow not far behind)

My first slice of action today came in the blinds when I got tangled up with Richard Buck (bb)
When I limp to his bb 800/1600 and he makes it 5400 so I flat call with Q9o flop comes down Qh 5s 9h so I check to Richard who makes it 4800 I repop to 10200, Richard tanks for a minute before shipping the rest of his 18k across the line, I snap call and he shows 7h5h, for a set and flush draw, Q on the turn gives me the house while a heart on the river gave Richard his flush. I’m up to the 85k mark with the ave at 56k and just 13 players left.

Greg then went out with AQ v AK to Mark James who was becoming a monster at this stage of the comp with around 1/3rd of the chips in play.

The Tee-side champion Mark Trett was next to go after running his K2 into KK a/I pre flop and we’re down to 11 players left.

I do a two-double up to Frank Kenny A6 v 99 and 99 v QQ and I’m now the shortstack. We then lose John Angus and now down to 10

After doing a saver it’s agreed that we can now play a ten handed final table.

I go for a Boatman walk in the break (Barny Boatman once told me that it’s so important to get out of the casino in the break sessions and get some fresh air and clear your mind and he practices this in every competition he plays in) and decide that I’m going to avoid the three short stacks under me unless I have to play against them and I am going to target the two William’s on the table, Folwoll because he’s young, got a lot of moves in his game but has shown a couple of weaknesses and Willie Leckie because he’s so aggressive and capable of making moves but will stuggle against me given my position on the table.

I pick up pocket Kings against a raise from Mark 1000/2000 who made it 8k, I raised it to 20k and Mark calls, flop comes K 5 8, Mark checks to me so check behind, I figure AQ/AJ the turn brings an ace and again Mark checks so I lead for 10k and Mark flats me, the river brings the 4c and I figure if he’s got a big ace he’ll call my all in shove, he passes showing Jacks – now I’m back up to ave of 90k

I then call a raise to 7k with a caller behind me, I’m on the button and I’ve got A2 suited sb and bb both call so five of us to the AQA flop, checks round to me so I bet out for 9k and scoop the pot uncontested.

I’m on the BB with JQ suited when Mark James raises utg to 7k three callers round to me so I peel the flop for the extra 5k, flop comes KQT I got the up/down draw, middle pair and first to act, I dwell for a short while and decide to push, if I run into a straight then I’m just unlucky but that’s about the only hand that can call my over the top bet, everyone folds and I scoop another 35k here

I then limp utg for 3k (1500/3000) and William Folwall raises the button for another 15k, I got KT clubs suited and I got the chips to play back so peel off a flop, Ac Kh Ts and I know that Will is going to bet at the pot regardless and decide to check raise here thinking that he’ll fold to a move like that, I check and will leads out for 25000 I reraised all in having him covered by 10k or so although he’s still got around 65k behind him, he says I have to call and I think “oh shit” but he then flips AJ, the nine of clubs on the turn gives me the nut flush draw as well and takes some of will’s out’s away from him, the river blanks for will and I’m now sitting with around 260k

7 left and I get involved in a pot with Willie Leckie in the blinds, Willie sb makes it 11k (2000/4000) so I call the extra 7k with Q9 suited. Flop comes 985 and will bets out 18k, I’m crediting him with pocket 7s here although he could have complete air, I re-raise to 50k and Willie tanks for a while and then 3 bets me to 82k so I flat call, 10 on the turn giving me a gut shot as well as second pair and Willie moves all in for his remaining 65k at this point I’m sitting with around 85k behind me but decide to stick with my instincts and call, Willie flips J4o but misses his outs on the river this puts me up to around 375k

I then take out John Bousefield who shipped it all in utg and it folds round to me on the bb with AQ suited, john turns over AT but no ten sends him out.

I then double frank up with Ad4d v AT on a 7d Jd 7h flop money fly’s in, 7 on the turn and a Td on the river to give him a boat. Next hand I double Mark James up with 88 v 99

I then min raise the short stacks (Ray Bone) bb with J8 suited to which he calls me, flop comes down 2 8 7 checks to me so I bet 11k and ray goes all in after a bit of table chat when he tells me that “he’s hit some of that” I call the extra 20k , ray has K7 and misses his outs.

I then knock out Brian Littlewood in 4th place calling him blind on my bb for an extra 4k

The two remaining lads Frank and Mark then ask if I’m interested in any business to which I was happy to say yes provided that I got the seat, Guaranteed at least 2nd place prize money with the other two getting much the same I took the deal knowing how easily things can turn in this game with a flip of a card.

Had a great weekend up in Liverpool, the Tee side lads are such good company along with the lads from AWOP and the gala dealers are all great as well.

I had loads of text messages and messages of good luck coming through awop and just wanted to thank everyone for their messages and their support. “Thank you all very much”


NoCash said...

Nice one Steve nad good luck in the Sponsorship play off.

Newy said...

Well done steve. Mission accomplished. Really pleased u won and u get ur shot at the sponsorship. Nice 1

Dom said...

Nice result mate. Pleased for ya.

JonnyBCash said...


Mr Origami said...

Nice result Steve!

rubbish said...

Well played. Congrats.

rubbish said...

Well played. Congrats.

Kevin Stevens said...

Nice job Steve, hope you take down the play off.

AlexB said...

great news Steve wd wp and gl in the final!

Amatay said...

well done Steve, great result

ant66 said...

Nice one steve,nice deal at the end to get the play off seat too.

JamboJames said...

Well played m8

Steve H. said...

ty ty ty ty ty

Most of you will know what a shit time I was going through and how I just had to get away - that week away in scotland during the Nottingham leg and given with the fact that I'm now playing less and less "on-line" stuff has given me a new impetus.

It would be so nice now to take the sponsor table down and bag that £10k sponsorship deal for next year - but I also recognise that there will be some very good talent on that table with me.

Whatever happens thank you everyone for your nice comments.

badcallthat said...

how the tables have turned! well played mate, you kept at it when at all time low and now hopefully now you will reap all rewards

manchester_boy099 said...

Well done steve.Good luck in the sponsorship.
great result.
egginu(simon wallsall)(biggob).

reevio said...

Nice result Steve.

Confused about the Forwell hand though. Surely you don't really want him to pass holding 2 pair on that flop??

Steve H. said...

Hi Jamie and thanks.
I would have been quite happy picking up what was in the pot at that point once he flips his AJ and I see that he's got 9 outs to hit it's still an anxious moment.

Ciaran Corbett said...

Super result Steve, really glad for you!

reevio said...

Rereading it he didn't have a huge amount anyway so i guess any bet from him pretty much commits him regardless.

Always gotta survive a few sweats like that to win i suppose!

They'll be naming the Tour after you next year at this rate..

Steve H. said...

Thanks Jamie..

Just tryed to access your site mate but cant get on it - you gone all shy>?

voiceofjoe said...

Nice One Steve

Ukgatsby said...

Very nice result
Thats nailed the "Online Poker Gatsby Award" for September

Check the blog at beginning of next month :)

Highstack said...

Excellent stuff, deserved result.

ROSSI said...

Nice result Steve, well played m8

Internet Whizzkid said...

seriously, can u please tell us all how limpin with K10 UTG, then flat calling a 6x raise OOP is a winnin +ev play???

congrats on the result, dont get me wrong, but come on???

Steve H. said...

Like I said internetwhizzkid or should I say William? I had the chips to play back and also that I thought he was good enough to lay the hand down once I check raised the flop back to him x