3 PM Jun 24 2012, WSOP (Rio), 11th (74 entries)

Unlike the past couple years, this year I won't be entering the seniors event at the WSOP (World Series of Poker). But I still wanted to head over there to play at least one small tournament while it's going on, so this morning I entered a so-called "mega-satellite" at 9 AM. The buy-in is small, so quite a few players enter.

Both the last two tournaments I've played I've come within a few places of the money. This time the top 8 places got paid and I took 11th. Since it's a satellite tournament, the way it works is, the first seven places all get paid equally. 8th place got paid about half the amount. So it's essentially a "forced chop" when the table gets down to seven players.

Things had gone fairly well for me through most of the tournament. By only the first break I had turned my initial stack of 3K chips into 7200 chips. A big hand that helped build that stack occurred when I was second to act and reraised with a pair of jacks. When it got folded around to the under-the-gun player (who had raised initially), he went all-in. I had him covered, so even though it was a little scary to call with just jacks, I did call, and he turned over a pair of tens. No ten fell so I knocked him out of the tournament and nearly doubled up.

I hit a dry spell between the first and second breaks. My stack dwindled to 5900 chips by the second break. But things went well enough here and there to stay in contention. Other players started dropping out real fast when the antes and blinds went way up. I managed to steal the blinds and antes just often enough to keep afloat. However, when it had gotten down to just 11 players left, with my stack being the shortest at our table (we had the one with five players) I checked to see if there were any short-stacked players at the other table. To my dismay, nobody over there was as short-stacked as me.

It was obvious I couldn't wait out the money, so when I caught

and the under-the-gun player folded in front of me, I moved all-in. Unfortunately the player to my left happened to be holding

No five flopped, but an ace did, and the last ace came on the river. But alas, there was no pair amongst the other three board cards (which would have caused a tie), so I was out in 11th place. It's always disappointing to finish so close to the money without cashing.