by Tom McEvoy
Mental attitude is everything. There’s an old saying: “Quitters never win, and winners never quit.” Where poker tournaments are concerned, this is especially true. I will give you an example of a quitter.
I am playing on Day 2 of the $10,000 buy-in main event of the 2012 World Series of Poker. The player who was in the nine seat had just lost a big pot. He had about $3200 left and had to post the $300 small blind. A player under the guy raised to $2,100. The player on the button called, and it was now up to the small blind to act. He re-raised the rest of his chips. He was certainly going to get called by the original raiser and the player on the button. The big blind might also decide to play. The big blind did fold, but as expected the other two players in the hand both called. What did our hero have to re-raise in this situation knowing he was getting called by at least two players? He turned over 6,2 offsuit, and was eliminated from the tournament. That is what I call giving up, and having no heart. He could have folded the small blind, then he had the button and a full round to find a better hand to play. Bear in mind, this is for the World Poker Championship. I would never have given up like that, and would have fought to the last chip.
I will give you another example of a player that wouldn’t quit. Same tournament -- the main event at this year’s World Series of Poker. This player lost some tough hands, and got knocked down to about $2,000 in chips. The big difference with him was he kept fighting and ran his stack up to $70,000 by the end of the day. Did he get a little lucky along the way—of course he did, but he fought hard to survive, and did. The main difference between these two players was mental attitude. One gave up, and one refused to give in. Who do you think will come out ahead in the long run?
The World Series main event is now down to the final 9 players who will play off for the world championship in October instead of November. The reason for this is to avoid a conflict with the presidential election. Next year it is expected to once again become the November 9. Just missing the final nine were two ladies, Gaelle Baumann of France in 10th place, and the 2nd Day chip leader, Elisabeth Hille of Norway in 11th. That is the best finish yet for the ladies in the main event. Barbara Enright still holds the record for the ladies with a 5th place finish. Barbara is the first woman to be inducted in the World Series of Poker Hall of Fame.
I would like to mention two of my favorite people, one of whom not only won his first bracelet, but donated the prize money to a special charity to help people in Africa. Larry Wright, from McQueeney, Texas, won the $1500 no limit Deuce to Seven event against an all-star lineup. The other person I would like to acknowledge is Daniel Striker, who has been both a friend and student for a long time. I recently did a seminar with David “the maven” Chicotsky, sponsored by this magazine, at the Golden Nugget. Danielle worked many hours providing slides for me and was of immense help.
Tom McEvoy is the head pro for Faceup Gaming. It is a legal subscription website for only $24.95 per month. Go check it out and use “Tom” for your bonus code.