Shirley Rosario
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$10,000 Omaha Hi-Lo Championship

2008 World Series of Poker

by Shirley Rosario

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WSOP Omaha High Low Championship$10,000 Omaha High Low
I was looking forward to the 10k buy-in Omaha Hi-Low tournament more than any other because of the structure of the event. There was a lot of play which means that there is a lot more room for errors. In last years 5k Championship event, there were plenty of bad players mixed in with the good players and the better structure gave me plenty of time to exploit their weaknesses. Unfortunately the 10k field was a lot more difficult than the 5k field. Most of the players were good players. Omaha might not necessarily be their best game, but they are strong poker players in general and don’t make the bozo mistakes that other players do.

My first table was at the far end of the room which meant that we were not going to be breaking on the first day. It was unfortunate because I had solid Omaha players sitting with me and on top of it; there were a lot of nit players which meant the chips weren’t getting thrown around very much. Frankie O'dell was on one of the players at my table and even he was playing his A-game. He wasn’t getting very many hands and the flops weren’t helping him any, so he was one of the players who lost some of his chips early on. I crippled him on one hand where I had AA28 of hearts and on the turn, I had nut low, pair of aces and the nut flush draw. I was able to get a check raise in on him and when a 3 hit on the river, I made a wheel and scooped.

The first part of the day was kind of boring especially because I had Allen Kessler on my left which is always a drag. He is such a whiner that I had to keep my head phones on just so I didn’t have to hear him cry. The day livened up a bit when Phil Hellmuth joined my table. He played a hand with the player next to him and on the river, Phil bet and was called. Phil turned over two of his four cards and showed the guy the set of fives. I guess he didn’t have a low because he didn’t show any other cards. Then after a pause the guy showed him two queens and showed a set of queens. Phil bitched and complained about the guy slowrolling him. The guy definitely took a long time to show his hand, but I think he was waiting for Phil to show the other two cards. Phil went into one of his rants about the guy being a newbie and how he shouldn’t slowroll and the guy finally told him to back the fuck off. That did it for Phil. He started telling anybody that would listen that this newbie at the table slowrolled him and then cussed at him and the least he should do is apologize. It was all pretty humorous actually and I think the guy did end up apologizing.

Just a short time later, there was a hand that was taking place in the 8 and 9 seat. I was in the one seat with Allen Kessler in the two seat. On the river, the guy in the 9 seat accidentally threw in the wrong color chips which should technically be a raise even if it was a mistake. Allen quickly pointed it out and called the floor over to make the guy put in a raise. The player in seat 8 (Chris Reslock) scooped a huge pot and even managed to get an extra bet because Allen made that other guy put the chips in. Allen then whispered to the guy next to him about “the fact that I have known Chris for 20 years helped” and I sat there thinking “What an asshole. He called that rule because he knew Chris and not because he thought it was the right thing to do.” I didn’t say anything to him because I wasn’t sure if that is exactly what I heard. But then the dork yells across the table, “It was probably because I have known you for 20 years, that I called that” and then Hellmuth goes off again. “That is a really shitty thing to say” and Chris said, “Yeah, I wish you wouldn’t have just said that.” Most of the players had something to say and I even commented to him and said “If you want to call a rule, then call a rule, but don’t call it because a player is your friend.” Phil kept telling him that he should apologize. I guess Phil is really big on apologies. It took Allen forever to apologize because he was just making excuses in the beginning, but he finally did so after hearing shit from everyone at the table.

Allen ended up busting and so did Phil before the night ended. I was a little surprised to see Phil’s final hand especially since he gave a little speech, “I never give up!” just a few minutes prior to his last hand being 2277. He was in the blind, but he had 3x the BB and it should have been an easy fold. Steve joked that he played it because it totaled 99.

Shirley Rosario David ChiuI ended the day with a little better than average chips and we got new seating assignments for day two. I ended up getting put at a table with David Chiu which is never good and I also had Greg Raymer and Carlos Mortensen at my starting table. The other players were very good and I knew it wasn’t going to be easy. The worst part was that when good players were getting eliminated, better ones would fill the empty seat. Doyle Brunson joined our table and so did Tony Ma and I struggled for hands and opportunities. I was able to pick up two pots on semi-bluffs, but for the most part I had to play straight up.

After dinner break, I had a smaller than average stack and I lost a hand immediately. Just a short time later, I lost another hand against Tony Ma when I flopped the nut flush draw and really really weak low draw. The turn was a low card that didn’t make my flush, but there was so many chips in the middle that I felt I had to call to see the river. Half of the pot was worth going after because it was multi-way preflop for three bets. The river was another low non-spade card and I missed everything. I had an A8 low, but any live ace beat me and I only had AK high, so I had to fold. I desperately needed to build up my chips and I managed to do so quickly. On one hand, I took A4QK of diamonds against AA3x on a flop of 26J with two diamonds. All of our chips got in on the turn (remember I was really short) and I was in bad shape. The turn was a blank and the river was a perfect 3 of diamonds. I think the guy was pretty pissed that I scooped, especially because I took another pot off him earlier when I thought I had the best hand the whole way, but actually sucked out on him in the end. After winning a few more chips, I was finally eliminated in 44th place. They only paid 27, so I was sick about outlasting so many players, but not making it into the money.

David Benyamine ended up winning the event and his first WSOP bracelet.

More 2008 World Series of Poker reports, plus the $2000 Omaha event