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Extensions Feb 28, 2006 / 06:00 PM

Scre Extension #1: On reoccuring demand I added a "quick post selection" combo-box to the blog today which list just all posts in descending (date) order, not just the last 10 as in the sidebar. Enjoy reading the older posts.

Extension #2: Katja did it just again; saturday we both played a live 30 player €200 NLHE tournament. While I busted out very early (about 10th) with AKd vs. AA which I could not lay down against THE rock when he re-reraised all-in Katja was successfull again; being a close second in chips they made a three way deal to split up the price money according to some key (I guess the difference was who will pay the tip to the dealers or something). Very impressive showing from Katja in the last weeks! For all who may not know it so far: Casino Schenefeld is hosting a three-day tournament series from March 9th until March 11th, featuring a €100+€100 Rebuy+€100 add-on event on 9th, a €200+€200+€200 event on 10th and a €300+€300+€300 final event on 11th. Go register, maximum 50 seats! Michael Keiner, Andreas Krause (who just got 4th in the Bregenz main-event, congrats Andy!) and Roland Specht of the german nations cup team will come, too.

Extension #3: Katja just did annother couple of interviews and a small poker gig for digital tv station. Katja appeared in the current "Max" magazine and there will be some even bigger thing coming up in near time.

Extension #4: I almost forgot them, we have another local "Casino", the Spielbank-Hamburg where I played pot-limit stud almost 15 years until they lost the battle vs. the "newcomer" Casino Schenefeld and almost all action went there. They are changing name and place this year, they will be called "Casino Esplanade" in the future and have a much nicer setting there. More important, the look to be serious about taking on poker again. They just published a schedule for the year which lists all their tournaments. There must be going on something behind the scenes also as I found this on the 'net, stating they will host a €15,000.00 buyin tournament with 300 seats late in 2006 as the final event of the showdown poker tour. I am very suspicous about that informations and can hardly believe this will taking place for real - nobody here would play a 15000eur (~20k USD) right away and satellites should be already underway if this is serious. And I just can't imagine 300 international pros coming to germany - yet. We'll see.

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Horror thread Feb 22, 2006 / 08:29 AM

For all my german speaking readers, here is a horror thread about a poor onlime gambling mother of three getting accused for participating in online casino games. I wont post there (posting in a roulette forum might blow my reputation lol) but to me the story is 100% believable. That in fact means that germany now has the first (?) case where funds (payouts here) got seized and a trial about "participating in prohibited online gaming activities" will be conducted. Here is a highlight from the very long thread:

Die Akte umfaßt 400 Seiten und die Anzeige der Flessabank erfolgte bereits im Oktober 2004. Ein volles Jahr lang wurden sämtliche Telefone im Geschäfts- und Privatbereich abgehört - und zwar bis einen Tag nach der Hausdurchsuchung. Meine Post wurde ein volles Jahr gecheckt und meine Emails wurden ebenfalls überwacht wie auch die OC-Besuche.

Staatsanwaltschaft und Kripo haben sämtliche Banken und Kreditkarteninstitute angeschrieben und Auskunft über mich eingeholt, wann, wie, wo, mit welchen Selbstauskünften ich meine Kreditkarten bzw. Dispos beantragt habe. Da ich - wie wohl fast jeder Bundesbürger auch - einen Kredit und eine Dispolinie bei einer anderen Bank geniesen darf, wurde dort angefragt, ob man mich nicht wegen Betrug anzeigen möchte, da anzunehmen ist, daß ich des öfteren Raten mit Kasino-Gewinnen finanzieren würde und nicht mit meinem "eigenen" Geld (dieser "Standardbrief" wurde an mehrere Institutionen geschickt). Die Bank hat zurückgeschrieben, daß ich meine Raten pünktlichst bezahle und kein Anlass besteht, mir Schwierigkeiten zu bereiten. Dieser Ansicht waren auch einige Kreditkarteninstitute und man konnte teilweise dem Briefstil entnehmen, daß der "Wunsch" der Kripo auf Erstaunen und Unverständnis stieß.

Die Justiz möchte, daß wenigstens einer eine Anzeige wegen Betrug gegen mich macht. Das ist doch ein Witz! Es ist doch völlig egal, mit welchen Geldmitteln ich meine Rate bzw. Monatsrechnung bestreite, solange ich niemanden umbringe oder mich illegal bereichere, oder?
and just annother one:
Man vermutete Geldwäsche, weil aufgrund einer Hochrechnung der Kripo/Staatsanwaltschaft das Online-Casino p l e i t e sein müßte, wenn jeder Zocker soviel Gewinnausschüttung gehabt hätte wie ich.
Specially this last one makes me laugh so hard it hurts me - in case you cant read any german ;) here's the thing: the 'state attorney' is sure about "money laundering" because given her win ($33,000 in about a year) he has projected that the online casino has to be broke given every player has cashouts like this and therefore she must be guilty of money laundering. LOL. I know a lot about the local police and state attorneys work and thinkstyles - this is 100% believable. Finally I'm an IT-Consulatant working for the german goverment ('working' is good lol) and sit day-in-day-out in such an agency (but no police work here, we're paying the EU agricultural grants to the local famers) so I have a first view about their thinking styles. That case is no fun.

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Back from Cardiff Feb 21, 2006 / 11:07 AM

Tired Katja is back from Cardiff with a lot of stories to tell but very tired having no sleep the last night. We still can't publish anything about how the final event went down but after hearing even more details now I am still upset and maybe even more. Turns out that some of my already bad thoughts about certain people were dead-on and that some have earned even some more while others were more straight and nice than thought possible. The usual human chemistry stuff ;) I can say that this would not have been a friendly little weekend would I have been there but Katja is (sometimes) more diplomatic than I am. Stay tuned until the show airs then I will rant a lot more.

About online qualifier Sebastian it must be said that he is very true to his showing there which I like about him very much. He wrote this himself at pokertips.org:

Vielen Dank euch allen für die Unterstützung und "good decisions" hätte ich gut gebrauchen können Xen, aber aus meinen "15 minutes of fame" wurden "15 minutes of shame"

Ich saß mit Devilfish am Tisch und meine Strategie war, am Anfang tight zu spielen, vorsichtig zu sein und zu schauen wie die anderen spielen. Das war Fehler Nummer 1. Deswegen hat ein Profi auf dem River seine dritte 4 gegen mich gezogen und Devilfish hat mich aus dem Pott raus geblufft als ich KK hatte, er KJ hatte und der Flop Axx brachte. Das war der schlimmste Moment. Ich kam mir wie ein Depp vor, als ich mein KK foldete und er sein KJ mir zeigte. Ich war mit den Nerven völlig am Ende, weil ich ich kaum geschlafen hatte, nichts richtiges essen konnte und Devilfish mich so "beleidigt" hat.

Meine 5000 Startchips verabschiedeten sich so langsam, und ich bekam keine Karten mehr. Pause. Ich war mit den Nerven am Ende und rauchte eine Zigarrete. Normalerweise rauche ich nur wenn ich drinke und dann Zigarillos, aber ich war mit den Nerven am Ende. Kameras, Scheinwerfer, der Druck "für Deutschland" zu spielen, etc. Nach der Pause bekam ich zwei mal Karten, musste all-in gehen weil mein Stack so klein war und gewann. Ich war super gelaunt und guter Stimmung. Jetzt drehe ich alles um dachte. Jetzt werde ich aggressive und lasse mir nichts mehr gefallen. Ich in BB Position. Ein Schwede, der sich auch über das Internet qualifiziert und sehr aggressiv spielte und viel bluffte bzw. Moves startete in der ersten Runde, zahlte nur den BB. Ich hatte J7. Flop kam sowas wie T76. Ich setzte einen guten bet. Er erhöhte mich und ich sah rot. Ich callte ihn.Flop kam eine zweite sechs und ich war wild wie ein Stier. Ich dachte nur noch an Devilfish und wie er mich rausbluffte aus dem Pott. Die reraises vom Schweden kannte ich bereits und dachte mir "fuck it", dem zeig ich. Ich raise. All-in. All-in. Ich bin wie der größte Online-Anfänger mit nur einem Pärchen 7er all-in gegangen. Er zeigte seine zwei Könige und ich war völlig am Ende. "What happened?" dachte ich mir. Wie konnte ich so durchdrehen? River kam....natürlich war es keine 7. Ich war raus, zwar nicht als erster, aber dafür aus Blödheit. Shame on me.

Das einzige was ich zu diesem blöden Verhalten sagen kann ist, dass viele Faktoren dazu beigetragen haben. Müdigkeit, Erschöpfung, Wut auf Devilfish, und das ich nach den zwei all-ins "leicht" getiltet bin. Sorry Jungs, hätte euch gerne stolz gemacht, aber das ist irgendwie voll in die Hose gegangen! Ich freu mich schon drauf, mein schlechtestes Spiel und schlimmstes Erlebniss wird im TV ausgestrahlt. SUPER

Genug aber von mir. Mein Team ist wirklich super, es sind alles richtige Profis, die sich vom Kameras, Scheinwerfern und anderen Profis nicht beeinflussen lassen. Die anderen drei von unserem Team haben alle sehr gut gespielt, aber deine hat halt mehr Glück gehabt als der andere. Zur Zeit haben wir 20 Punkte, was uns 12000 Chips für das Finale bringt. Wir liegen damit gleich auf mit USA. Vor uns liegt Dänemark und Schweden mit 25 und 23 Punkten. Heute sind aber noch zwei Turniere in denen noch einiges passieren kann. Das Finale am Sonntag wird auf alle Fälle sehr spannend. Ich werde heute Abend noch mal denn Chip-Stand berichten, mit denen die Teams ins Finale gehen.

Here is a pic of Sebastian and Katja (doing her usual sexual stimulation thing ;) along with a news article about his qualification:


Sebastian Zentgraf (28) ist zwar heuer noch Student der Betriebswirtschaftslehre. Aber in seiner Freizeit, auf einem anderen Gebiet, fast schon Meister. Stichwort: Pokerspiel. Der freundliche, sehr munter parlierende Bursche ist dabei selbst dann ein Ass, wenn er gerade mal kein Ass auf der Hand hat. Via Computer (Online-Pokerturnier 888.com) stieg Zentgraf in eine Liga auf, die ihm seit Donnerstag eine Live-Wettkampfbegegnung mit den Größten dieser Sparte beschert. Vier Tage lang, bis einschließlich Sonntag (19.), darf der Darmstädter in der walisischen Hauptstadt Cardiff um den „Poker Nations Cup“ ringen. Mit jeweils Sechs-Mann-Teams aus Amerika, Großbritannien, Irland, Dänemark, Schweden und Deutschland.

Kurzfristig erfuhr „wer wann was“ davon am Mittwoch. Und konnte am Telefon schon erleben, mit welcher Bierruhe der junge Mann das nervenaufreibende Karten-Marathon ansteuert: „Entschuldigung, aber mein Flugzeug geht in einer halben Stunde. Doch ich kann sie ja heute Abend aus meinem Hotel in Wales anrufen.“

Spaßiges Gespräch. Denn Sebastian ist Sohn des angesehenen Darmstädter Alt-Pfarrers Hartmut Zentgraf (78). „Datterich“ hatte das Kartenspiel „zwei un dreißigblättriges Gebetbuch“ genannt. Das war Skat. Beim Poker sind’s 52 Blätter. Ob Filius Zentgraf mit diesen Karten in Cardiff in den Himmel kommt? Bericht folgt.

Partypoker.com seized $180,000 from a player playing two accounts!

I just found this page through my friends Matt's blog, The Poker Chronicles. The lucky bastard (or his horse to be exact) got a add-on payment of $18,000 as I understand it as they distributed the seized price money for first place between the other in-the-money finishers (nice hit Matt, what a hell of a wake-up message). Bold decision by party. This comes at a time where I more and more doubt the overall honesty of partypoker. So many people I do trust keep on telling me horror stories that it is just a little to much to ignore. I certainly won't stop playing there anytime soon but you got to look out. Having a non-poker math-programmer friend researching the card distribution for over 80 brand-new play-money accounts and saying "distribution is not random" does not really help... On the other side I already received money "out of of nowhere" from partypoker twice after they detected collusion on tables I played on. Not much and it could also very well be the ultimate marketing trick so it does not prove that much. Anyway, I found the decision straight and taff to make.

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Cardiff updates Feb 16, 2006 / 09:21 PM

Sorry, no information

I am sorry but we are not allowed to publish any informations about the final event on our blog here. I could write quite a lot as I am upset. As soon as I have any publishable informations as airing dates or such I will post them here; all I can say is that Katja gave me no reason to be upset, in fact I am very proud of her. Sorry for being short on infos folks.

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Katja's leaving Feb 15, 2006 / 04:48 PM

Katja's leaving to Cardiff right now.


"The Poker Nations Cup is coming to Wales this week, pitting country against country in a battle of wits. The competition further pushes poker into the realm of traditional sports, which have international competitions of their own, such as the World Cup and the Davis Cup for soccer and tennis, respectively. While the $100,000 prize pool may pale to that of other international poker competitions like the WSOP, it affords the winning team bragging rights for its entire country. And that is priceless.

In the running for the Poker Nations Cup are Denmark, England, Germany, Ireland, Sweden, and naturally, the US of A. Each country's team will be comprised of six players. Each player will play in one of six sit-and go tournaments, and each team's starting final table chip stack will be determined by the cumulative performance of all team members in these tournaments. At the final table, the poker competition will adopt a sort of relay race format, with team captains having the options of switching team members at the table.

Each team will consist of five pros and one online qualifier sent by online poker room Pacific Poker. Some of the poker stars joining in the competition are Robert Williamson, Julian Gardner, David "Devilfish'' Ulliott, Hendon "Mobster" Ram Vaswani, Jan Sorenson, and Noel Furlong. The German team will consist of the five poker pros Katja Thate, Andreas Krause, Christoph Haller, Roland Specht, and the online qualifier Sebastian Zentgraf. The Poker Nations Cup kicks off on February 16th and runs through the 19th."

In her last preparation for the trip she won just annother 26 player 200€ buyin tournament (top two splitted pricemoney) so she is in good shape. Bankroll is loaded to the max for all the various sidebets, ahem, sidegames that will go on there.

The german online qualifier, Sebastian, contacted me yesterday about some details. He seems to be a nice guy, he even writes a blog himself, www.badbeatbasti.com (english). Futhermore, he seems to know at least enough of the game to write regulary on www.pokertips.org (also available in german). So, the team is set, it could be mixed up much worse I guess ;)

That leaves me here. Sitting on my desk in boring Stuttgart, doing a job I dont like (I get forced to do so by the ridiculous amounts of money they pay me). Makes one feel left over, especially a dedicated poker player compulsive gambler like me. Honestly, I would love to go there and meet friends, make new ones, win or lose some money and have a good time, alive-and-kicking. Better than burried-and-dead like here. But, thats true in my case for almost each and every tournament and high-limit cash game around so I am used to that. And having Katja going there is almost like going myself, is is really as close as it possible can be. I wish her the absolute best, fantastic time and a sharp game. I will gladly spend the money she makes, like always ;)

Whenever I will hear something about the event I will post updates here, so stay tuned.

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Cardiff? Feb 12, 2006 / 09:42 AM

Just a short update: I managed to qualify myself for the final qualifier today. Just beat 79 others and I am going to Cardiff too! At least one of my buddies, Steffen, made it also, I haven't checked all the qualifiers.

Yesterday we went to play a live two table €200+10 tournament. This time Katja went out in the very first hand holding AA vs. long-time foe "Chappi", who flopped a flush holding KQd. I played no hand for the first 30 minutes when I got real lucky - I was in the SB, all fold and the BB is our friend Frank K. who is know for his loose-aggressive game. I had JQd and raised 4x the BB, he went all-in. Now he is quite capable of making a play at me so I shrugged my shoulders and called. He showed AKo, outch. Anyway I got lucky and rivered both a flush and a straight with A and K on board. After that I got on a small rush, getting KK, JJ, AQs, AKs, 66 etc. etc. in just a few hands and busting 3-4 people. Going into the final table I had 3-4 times average chips and was able to defend it until we got into the money. With 3 players left we made a deal.

Afterwards I played the potlimit holdem cash game for an hour before getting to tired and quit a winning session.

Online, back in the 10/20 6max, got a brutal beating again. I am either way outmatched there, real unlucky or still not adjusted to the swings of that game but something definitly "feels" not right. I would not be the player I am would I not take that as an motiviation to carry just some more money to those tables...

My friend Norman taking a ride ;)

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Freeroll into nations cup team! Feb 08, 2006 / 05:06 PM

Hot news: german poker team is giving away one seat to an online qualifier! This is available to german players only so I will post the details in german:

Hallo Leute,

Katja hat mich gerade informiert wie das FREEROLL für die Teilnahme am deutschen Team für den Nation's Cup in Cardiff ablaufen soll. Beim Nation's Cup müssen sich alle Spieler normalerweise mit $2,000 einkaufen, der glückliche Online-Qualifikant bekommt diese Summe zusammen mit seinen Reisekosten VOLL ÜBERNOMMEN! Und was gibt's dafür? Nun, es wird eine Reihe von single-table-turnieren geben (jeweils 6 Spieler, einer aus jeder Nation) und der Gewinner bekommt 100%, also 12000 USD ! Das aber noch nicht alles; 888.com sponsort die Veranstaltung mit 100.000 USD, die man als Mannschaft in einem separtem Turnier gewinnen kann. Die Mannschaft teilt dann dieses Geld unter sich auf - besser gehts also garnicht. Besonders interessant für den Online-Qualifikanten: das deutsche Team ist echt stark, alles Profis die ich auch persönlich kenne. Nun gut, die anderen Teams schicken auch nicht gerade Schrott-Spieler, ich höre von Chris "Jesus" Fergusen, Annie Duke (nagut, DIE spielt Schrott), Devilfish, Dan 'Action Dan' Harrington und vielen anderen Promis aber was soll's? Ihr habt ja Katja dabei, das macht jeden evtl. Vorteil der anderen Teams wett :)

Nochmal die Eckdaten: Poker Nations Cup in Cardiff, Wales, vom 15. - 19. Februar, alle Reisekosten werden übernommen, Event wird gefilmt und soll wohl sogar auf DSF und RTL II ausgestrahlt werden (neben UK- und USA-Austrahlung, natürlich)

Ok, wie mitmachen? Ganz einfach: gehe zu Pacificpoker (Achtung: die Seite von denen hat 'nen Fehler, vorm Download "Englisch" auswählen), richte einen Account ein und registriere dich für das Freeroll, heisst "Team Germany" (Tisch 8267650 unter "Multitables"). Es ist kein Geld erforderlich, keine Kreditkarte oder sowas (aber deutscher Pass).

Es gibt insgesamt vier dieser Freerolls ab heute (Mittwoch) bis Samstag, jeweils 20:30h. Die jeweils 20 Besten, also 80 Teilnehmer, spielen dann am Sonntag um die Teilnahme in Cardiff.

Ich mache natürlich auch mit (sonst muss ich Katja alleine fahren lassen und dieser Devilfish ist sowas von scharf auf sie...).
See you there!

Ok folks, sorry for posting in german.

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Now that I call excercing Feb 08, 2006 / 04:15 PM

The Nations Cup in Cardiff, Wales in just one week ahead and Katja started sharpening her single-table-skills again about 3 weeks ago after playing almost only cash games since a few months. She is playing sit-and-goes online all the time and went also to our local cardroom last saturday and yesterday. There is two-table NL holdem tournament, €200+10 buyin with max 22 seats. Saturday she won the thing (but splitting the money 3ways) and yesterday she got 3rd, being in the cheap lead most of the time but finally getting three nice hands cracked in a row (about 30 seconds after I inquired about how she is doing, you know the drill...). She is also *very* successfull in the online sng's with a ROI of about 30% (a good run right on time).

Remember Scott Fishman saying he practices for big tournaments playing small-buyin event online right before winning a WSOP-bracelet? :-)

00002172 My own play is not worth many words these days - I play live once a week, win or lose a little, I went out of the "kiddiepool" 5/10 back to the 10/20. There I felt like that little pig just that the players are much more aggressive over there ;) - I got hammered for 125 big bets right in the very first session, again in the most flesh-ripping heart-sinking way. Otherwise not much - I don't play any online tournaments these days, I just don't have enough time for them right now (things will change soon).

Can't resist on that one: last week George W. Bush stated about Iran that "nobody can accept a clerical driven goverment that surpresses his citizens, having nuclear power". Huhh? In poker he would be one of those guys always telling you how to play and insiting to be a "life-long" winner, ignoring all facts (or maybe blaming the cashier's for not paying him what he should have won). Anyway, you US folks: you may have a wonderfull country and some great people within but your current administration is doing an bad job. Just my 2cent. Got to pimp Paul Phillips here, ex-poker, now scrabble master, he wrote some wonderfull lines about result-oriented people voting for torture "if victim is guilty". Wow.

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