Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Malta Trip Report

After my trip to the Bahamas in January I was back in Scotland for all of two weeks before I had enough of that crap and decided to GTFO. The very best thing that you can do during the winter in Scotland is hibernate, and that gets boring pretty fast.

Malta is somewhere that I'd been planning to visit for over a year but I just never got round to it. During the winter it's one of the warmest countries in Europe and Ryanair have started doing direct 4-hour flights from Edinburgh. So I just booked a cheap flight for the next morning and off I went.

Saturday, 22 February 2014

Bahamas / PokerStars Caribbean Adventure - Trip Report.

After freezing my bollocks off for the whole of December in Prague and Edinburgh, what better way to kick off 2014 than a vacation to the Bahamas? Well, it was kind of a vacation. PokerStars flew me over there for a couple of days of meetings and PR / Social Media training but I planned to spend the rest of the trip outside in the glorious sunshine thawing out those aforementioned frozen testicles.

I hadn't even reached the Bahamas yet before I'd met up with some of my PokerStars Team Online mates. Alex 'Kanu7' Millar was sitting right behind me on the London to Miami flight. Despite us hanging out for a couple of days on the Isle of Man just two months previous he didn't recognize me, even as he stood less than arm's length away directly facing me. Surely I'm not that easily forgettable? His girlfriend told me not to worry about it "he's even walked right past me in the street before." Probably too busy thinking about high level poker strategy to be concerned much with what's happening in the real world.

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Prague Trip Report

Over the first three weeks of December there were two major poker festivals in Prague, Czech Republic. It's an inexpensive place for flights and accommodation so I settled down there for a few weeks with the intention of playing loads of side-events to gain some more live / MTT experience.

I had visited Prague before. When I started travelling 3 years ago it was my first stop, to celebrate the new year in style. Check out my trip report here. Back then I was a less experienced traveller and I took taxis everywhere, stayed in 5 star hotels and just generally pissed money away. What a noob!

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

UKIPT Nottingham 6-Max Trip Report

Just a few weeks after returning from the Isle of Man I was packing my bags for yet another poker trip. I made my first ever visit to Nottingham to play the final UKIPT event of 2013.

Considering that Notts is the home of the largest card room in Europe, Dusk Till Dawn, it's crazy that I hadn't been there until now. I'd heard nothing but good things about the club from fellow poker players so my expectations were high.

Friday, 8 November 2013

UKIPT Isle of Man - Trip Report

PokerStars recently hosted their first official home game on the small Island in the Irish Sea that they call home - the Isle of Man. The week long festival was the newest addition to the UK and Ireland Poker Tour.

There was a lot of excitement in the run up to UKIPT IOM. I'd heard from the people I know at PokerStars that they were pulling out all the stops to make it a very special event. For the first time ever PokerStars staff had been given permission to play in a PokerStars tour main event and Team PokerStars players from all over the world were flying in to attend.

I believe that I had the longest journey out of everyone. I wanted to be there so much that in one day I travelled for 22 hours over 3 flights all the way from Thailand.

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Happy Days

As August came to an end it started to get very cold and miserable again in Scotland. That'll be the winter setting in, obv. So I did the sensible thing by stuffing a suitcase full of clothes and Irn Bru and flying back to Thailand at the start of September.

I found myself a sick condo in Bangkok to rent short term with nice facilities such as gym and swimming pool. For the past 6 weeks I've been happily living there, wearing shorts and t-shirt every day and consuming a copious amount of coconut water.

Thankfully I have a very stable internet connection and have had only one power cut so far so it's been easy to continue the online poker grind. That's if you can call it a grind. I'm just opening up my laptop and blasting out a few hundred hands of Zoom PLO at several times throughout the day when I'm not out doing stuff.

The only negative thing about the trip is that I missed out on playing UKIPT London recently but that's OK because I'm going to make up for it by winning the next one, in Isle of Man.

Thursday, 12 September 2013

10 Tips: Crushing Multi-Table SNGs

WPT Magazine asked me to write an article with 10 tips for playing MTT SNGs. It was published in this month's magazine (September 2013).

For those who wanted to read it but were unable to get a copy of the magazine I'm publishing it here on my blog too. The article is aimed at advanced-beginner to intermediate players, so it may not be for everyone, but I hope you find some information that's helpful to your game.

Monday, 26 August 2013

UKIPT Galway Trip Report

After my summer trip around Europe I had a few days rest back home in Scotland before I found myself on yet another aeroplane. I was headed to Galway, Ireland to play the UK and Ireland Poker Tour.

It used to be so easy to travel to Galway. It was less than an hour direct flight and then 5 minutes by taxi into the city centre. That was before some eejits made the eejit decision of closing down the airport a couple of years ago. The best alternative was to fly to Knock airport then wait around, then take a 90 minute bus. Pretty much trebling the usual journey time.

Monday, 19 August 2013

EuroTrip Report part 4/4 - Eureka Poker Tour: Bulgaria

After a couple of weeks pissing around in Europe it was time to get back to work. That is if you can call "travelling to a seaside resort on the Black Sea coast of Bulgaria to play in a poker tournament" work.

To get there required us to take a 5am flight, the only direct option from Budapest to Varna. I guess most people would consider that to be absurdly early, but given that we were going to sleep at 6am every "night" we considered it to be absurdly late.

The flight was full of other poker players, as I quickly realised while standing in the check-in line. Less than a minute went by before I heard people talking about hand ranges and suchlike. Hardly the time or place for poker discussions in my opinion but some people just never know when to stop. All I was thinking about at that point was what the food would be like in the departure lounge and if I'd be able to get a wee nap before or during the flight. (Food + sleep) > poker.

Wednesday, 7 August 2013

EuroTrip Report part 3/4 - Budapest

Before travelling to Bulgaria for the Eureka Poker Tour we stopped off in Budapest for a few days. It was just a few hours train ride from Bratislava and we decided to be "ballas" and travel in the first class cabin.... at a cost of €20. Europe is great for moving between cities and countries quickly and cheaply. There's no passport and immigration control between the 26 countries in the "Schengen Area" so there's no hassle.

Again, I found an apartment on Airbnb. This time we rented a newly renovated and cleverly designed place in an old building with 80cm wide brick walls in the city centre. Again, this was so much better than us sharing a hotel room as we had separate rooms and fibre optic internet all to ourselves. My room had a large bathtub in it for relaxing.