Monday, May 15, 2006

Busting Veneno

I got home late this past Saturday after a night of partying, and I was, let's say, feeling good. And like many people who come home wasted after a night on the town, I had only one thing on my mind:

Bring On Veneno.

Now, my readers will note that earlier this year, Veneno and I played three heads-up nlh matches. Veneno won all three matchups, each one in recockulous fashion. As I posted about multiple times in this blog, V managed either to hit a huge pocket pair against my huge but smaller pocket pair, or just flat out suck out on me ridiculously -- I'm talking runner-runner inside straights, I'm talking rivered trips, whatever it took for me to have no chance against her. After the third beating, which included a series of three of the dumbest beats I've ever seen in a heads-up match, I officially conceded my lifetime record to Veneno, and swore off ever playing her again. I don't like to lose, and I felt as if I was given no chance in those matches, to the point that I almost believe V has some crazy mojo going on when it comes to heads-up, something which I never planned to experience again.

Nonetheless, what can I say, I came home on Saturday, and I wanted one more shot at Veneno. I knew I had been totally screwed in three out of three matches with her, and frankly I can't stand logging into V's blog every day and seeing 0-3 next to my name in her heads-up records, posted on the homepage for everyone to see. In any event, Veneno was as always more than happy to oblige my request on Saturday night.

As we sat down to play heads-up, I had a sense that something major was going to happen. I didn't know what, but ever since I had typed "Veneno are you there?" into the girlie chat thing, I just had a feeling. Something was gonna go down that night. And I felt good because my last beating at V's hands, the one with by far the most ludicrous suckoutingness I've ever seen consistently in a heads-up match, occurred on Ultimate Bet. If you read my blog then you know that I fucking hate UB. I think the interface sucks, I think the software sucks, I think the cards suck. I hate UB. But Veneno likes it and has gotten me to play her on UB in the past, to horrendous results as you know. But on Saturday, we would meet on Full Tilt, as close to my home court as you're gonna get with Veneno. So I felt good, and there was some definite foreboding in the air, but beyond that I didn't know what I was about to get into.

And then the carnage began.

On the first hand, I hit top-pair-worst-kicker, typically still a monster in heads-up. I checked the flop after Veneno's 2x preflop raise, and V bet out again at the flop, which I just smooth called. Then on the turn I bet big, and managed to squeeze 360 chips total out of V before she wisely folded to my leading hand:

Thus I took the lead on Hand #1 against Veneno. And things just kinda took off from there. I won Hand #2 for a small pot when I made middle pair on the flop. On Hand #5 I hit second pair and an OESD on the flop, which I won with this pot-sized bet on the turn:

On the very next hand, I picked up third pair (3s) on a flop of QJ3, in a pot that had been raised by V preflop and which I called. On that flop, I bet the pot (240 chips) in a risky move given the texture of the flop, but you really can't focus too much on that in a heads-up pot like you would if, say, five other monkeys were playing a pot with you in nlh. My pot bet took down the 240 chips, and I increased my lead in the match:

On the next hand, I stayed in with nothing through the turn and a preflop raise by Veneno, and when I hit bottom pair on the turn, I took down another small pot, bringing the chip counts to 1765 for me and 1235 for Veneno, easily the biggest deficit she has ever had to me in heads-up play:

Then Veneno, clearly frustrated, picked this hand to try to get cute with:

I lead out with a bet of half the pot, after I have just hit my Ace, a hand which I have to figure for a winner heads-up. I'm hoping a half-pot bet will induce Veneno to make a move where I can take her down. Veneno obliges:

and when I reraise her allin, she quickly folds, leaving herself with just 885 chips to my 2115, about a 2.5 to 1 chip lead for yours truly:

Another five or ten hands later, I call a 2x preflop raise from V with Q3o, and I hit top and bottom pair on the flop, which I quickly check in the hopes that this can be the hand where I finally take Veneno down. She bets the pot at 120 chips, which I pause for effect and then just smooth call, smelling blood:

After inducing and calling another decent sized bet on the turn, I make my move on the river, making my signature bet of all but one of Veneno's chips, but she didn't take the bait, folding with her stack down to 705 chips at that point:

Here is me about 4 hands later making one of my patented lead-bet-when-a-pair-flops™ bets, which also took down another pot and kept Veneno severely short-stacked against me:

Two hands later, I had an inside straight flush draw and took down another pot with a pot-sized bet on the flop:

I took another pot off Veneno a few hands later with more aggressive betting on the flop when I hit top pair queen kicker:

and suddenly Veneno was down to just 530 chips, outchipped nearly 5 to 1 by me and staring her first defeat by my hand squarely in the kisser. I knew I had to move in for the kill before the suckout queen got her second wind. Two hands later I got my chance. I raised preflop with KJo, and Veneno fairly quickly reraised allin for her last 490 chips. Heads-up, I simply had to call this bet, knowing full well I was going to see an Ace in V's hand. She flipped her cards:

Shockingly, I was dominating her, and for once the hand held up:

And that was all she wrote. The streak has been broken. I beat Veneno heads-up for the first time in four tries:

For what it's worth, this was the first time V and I have played where no one sucked out on the other and no one got set up by being dealt cards that the other simply had to call with and lose. And I didn't just win against Veneno. I beat her like a rented mule. I took the lead in the first hand, and never looked back, consistently increasing my lead until V had to make a move with not a strong hand, and I took it down. And it was a good thing too, because other than the heads-up match with Veneno, I did nothing but lose last night at any other tournaments I played in. Yet, despite losing probably over $50 on the evening in tournament buyins overall, somehow this match with Veneno was the only thing that really mattered.

Now the question is, do I test my luck against the Poison again? Or do I leave things like this, having broken the curse, and leave Veneno to ponder what could have been....How many times could she have beaten me without a defeat? Could I have been the next Fluxer and lost like 15 straight to her? For now I feel like I've made my point, I've erased that fugly Zero from the win column against her, and I'm not feeling the itch anymore to prove anything to anybody, including myself. But who knows, the next time I come home from a night drinking, you never know when I'll be looking for that late-night booty call....


Blogger smokkee said...

"rented mule"...ouch

7:46 AM  
Blogger Guin said...

The mule comment reminds me of the penguins announcer talking about a goal by Mario!

I would say that you have to take her on again since you are still losing overall... what is your IM name so I can add you on yahoo.

8:41 PM  

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