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John Tabatabai alias "Kankuwap"

Created on: 3. July 2008
Last update on: 19. August 2013
Entry from 3. July 2008    

WSOP Update

The last few weeks have been mentally tough. I thought it was going to be simple, fly to vegas, have fun, play some tournaments and some cash games . Collect a 6 figure cheque and fly back to UK. Things never work out that simple!

The hardest thing is being mentally prepared and able to deal with whatever this world throws at you, and poker is the perfect training ground for bettering yourself as a person. Its my first time ever attempting the whole 6 week series and I have made many mistakes. The majority of which I will have learnt from and will rectify for next years trip. The most important lesson being learnt was what many of my wiser (older) friends told me, its not about winning the first tournament you play or winning a huge amount from cash games the first day, it's a 6 week marathon!! Slow down, you don't need to play everyday. Trying to chase back losses or potential earnings missed in live games work out even worse than when you chase / tilt online.

During this unfortunate negative period, a friend of mine had just landed from the UK and was fresh blood. He had just reread "The Secret" for the 40th time upon my recommendation and was full of the optimism that I had shown only a few weeks ago, non stop talking about cosmic ordering, karma, "the secret" etc. Funnily enough, the first tournament he played, a $330 in Caesars, he ended up chopping for $18,000. He then placed a few small bets on roulette, all of which came in and he followed it with hitting a straight flush in 3 card poker!! Though a very good player, a run of luck doesn't usually appear out of nowhere or for no reason. His persistent optimism and reasoning for bad news not only pays but also keeps you in a positive mindset. Staying positive is crucial. If you slip, or slide into negative thoughts it can really damage yourself, especially in such a tough, highly competitive industry. You need to keep a fine balance between being confident but not arrogant and also positive whilst not unrealistic, thus placing too much pressure on yourself. I took some of my friends attributes and decided not to play for a few days. Have some fun, relax and enjoy what Vegas has to offer. The days off has certainly helped, feeling a lot calmer than before and now ready to take on the main event. Deep stack poker is definitely my strongest game, being able to apply huge pressure on opponents' marginal hands and being able to identify well which ones will let their weaker hands go by the river and which ones are too stubborn to fold will ensure that all the bad luck this trip will culminate into a great run in the main event. I've also changed my starting day to day 1D for a couple of reasons. Firstly, the betfair party is on tonight and I didn't think it would be prudent of me to play the following day in such an important tournament. I want to be fresh, sleep well and be in the perfect frame of mind. Not with a hangover. The other reason was that last year was the first year I played the WSOP ME and I started on day 1D and had a great table. I finished the day around 8th in chips and am hoping to repeat last years first day success. Can't wait !!!

The betfair lounge will open tomorrow I believe, I can't wait for this year. We are the only lounge that has a crazy golf course, although only 1 hole, there are 2 routes you can go, both with obstacles, windmills, corners etc. Similar to the final scene of Happy Gilmore, but not as complicated! The massage chairs from WSOPE are also in the lounge and I promise you, they are the best massage chairs EVER !!! I think there are also the usual board games, chess, backgammon etc as well as a computerised HU table and some Wii sports fun. Fun times ahead!

Good luck,


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