Interesting hands of the ANC – 4/5

Quads Baby, Yeah

You don’t hit quads often, and it seems that when you do, it is best to be playing against Mongolia. Ace-seven is a raggedy old hand to see a flop with, but it paid off big time for Japan and Singapore in this hand.Four teams also managed modest wins with the pocket deuces in seat 1. This hand is a prime example of why Match Poker is scored via a points system and not by total chip count. It does not seem right that teams should suffer huge consequences for making legitimate plays (i.e. the folding of A7 pre-flop here). The missed opportunity costs them a few points in this one hand only, instead of making the event one of the key moments of the tournament. It is consistency and the ability to maximise situations throughout all 240 hands that wins the day.


Kicker Trouble

Well into the tournament now, the varying team strategies are beginning to show. Trailing teams Japan and Mongolia are ‘going for broke’ and prepared to get it all-in fairly regularly.  Everyone else must adapt and pick their spots wisely. With a solid performance in Day One, Singapore are clearly playing far more cautiously to maintain their qualification spot. They escape with-out too much damage with their AQ in seat 1 yet are also the only team not to win with AK in seat 3. India are unlucky not to score more here (the only other team to correctly figuring out their kicker trouble in seat 1). Who would’ve thought that CPG could treble-up with their AK and China even double-up with the seemingly trouble holding of AQ?


Interesting hands of the ANC – 3/5

When monsters meet

While we have already seen total team chip scores ranging by over 30000 chips in a single hand, here is an example of a range of just 400.  Since players are completely isolated from their team mates and play at other tables, it is impossible to know by how much their own decisions will affect the team overall. The moral is that “every chip counts” and this hand scores just as heavily as any other.  Not a single team managed to escape the confrontation of their QQ against KK, but the real story is in the detail. Australia, India and Mongolia lost out in the hand by simply getting involved in the seat 2 position. CPG, Israel and Japan were joint winners as they eked out marginally bigger wins with their kings. Play in seats 1,4,5 and 6 was almost identical across the board.


Unexpected fireworks

Suited connectors and pocket pairs are pretty, but it is still surprising that this hand played out anything other than just the classic QQ v AK in seats 4 and 5. Could it be that teams were trying to finish Day One with a flourish? Was there some exploration going on strategy-wise, with an opportunity shortly forthcoming to review play overnight? Were some teams reacting to the in-running scoreboard and panicking? Is it simply human nature to want to push chips into the middle of the table, knowing that in Match Poker you get them back again in the next hand regardless? Three of the top scoring four teams in this hand didn’t get too carried away with their AK in seat 5. The losing teams once again got embroiled in big pots in multiple positions.


Interesting hands of the ANC – 2/5

Everyone loves a flush draw

In an unusual situation here where seats 2, 3 and 4 all flop a diamond flush draw (seat 2 also with top pair), we see five of the eight teams getting it all-in bad. Sometimes a flush draw, especially a nut flush draw as in seat 3, is just too hard to let go. This is another example of China’s dominance, trebling up with their QT and not committing more than 150 chips elsewhere. In contrast, Singapore and India were two of the teams unsuccessfully chasing draws and also not capitalising from their one strong holding. Looking across the rows it is also interesting to compare how teams played their rag hands. Every team folded pre-flop with their 95 off-suit in seat 6, yet there is quite a range of play seen with the J3 suited in seat 5.


Kings busted

In regular poker events getting a big hand cracked can seriously dent a player’s prospects or even result in their elimination from the tournament. In Match Poker, however, such scenarios impact only single hands, and more importantly, are dealt equally to all teams. The KK in seat 4 here is destined to walk into either the flopped flush in seat 5 or two-pair in seat 6. India and Mongolia outmaneuver everybody by winning the hand in both these spots. India also managed to get away lightly with their kings, while Mongolia (and CPG) even managed a sizable win in this spot as well. One of the biggest single pots won in Hand 50 was by Japan’s Tsuneaki Takeda (11325 chips) yet the team scored below average due to action elsewhere.


Interesting hands of the ANC – 1/5

Can anyone stop Bold Uundai?

The 2013 ANC wouldn’t have been the same without Mongolia. Their uber-aggressive style eventually got found out, destroying their chances as a team, but such volatility helped them to pick up a few of the individual player awards. An example here is Mongolian captain Bold Uundai making a straight against Japan’s AK in seat 5. No other seat 3 player got beyond the flop with their 54 of hearts, but Bold managed a double-up, putting him way out ahead in the individual standings. Of note is that he did the same thing again in the next hand, spiking a river king for a full house against China, to record back-to-back double-ups that no other seat 3 player achieved. On paper Hand 4 looked like a classic AKvTT scenario. Think again when Mongolia is in the house!


The art of pot-limit

In another ‘action hand’ we see four spots showing particular interest. There are the pocket pairs of 7s and 9s, plus the QJ and K3 that connect well with the flop. The QJ in particular is key here, as despite half the teams folding this pre-flop, it turned out to be the overall winner. The K3 on the other hand flops a nice flush draw, turns top pair, but misses on the river. With Match Poker’s pot-limit pre-flop structure, a lot of flops are seen. Teams must figure out how to maximise their winning spots and minimise their losses. China won this hand by extracting the most chips with the 9s in seat 2 and losing little elsewhere.  Despite CPG and Israel being the only two teams to double through their QJ in seat 5, it is the result across the whole team that counts.


A look back at the Asian Nations Cup

One week on from China’s historic win at the very first IFP Asian Nations Cup, here are a few overall stats from the tournament.

Overall scoreboard

Team Chips Points
China 188725 1152.5
CPG 51496 1114
Singapore 87365 1111.5
Australia 49530 1104.5
Israel 5242 1079
India -25013 1045.5
Japan 9132 1026
Mongolia -366482 1002.5

China consistently scored highly throughout each of the 8 sessions to finish almost 40 points clear of the runners-up.  Show team CPG made a late charge to pinch the silver medal position from Singapore, with Australia and Israel picking up the final two qualification spots at the IFP Nations Cup Finals.

The individual player awards were given to the players who gained the most chips in a session/overall, relative to the average of all other players playing the same cards.

Individual standings

Session Player (Nation)
Session 1 Bold Uundai (Mongolia)
Session 2 Wu Sai (CPG)
Session 3 Sangeeth Mohan (India)
Session 4 Queenie Kwan Yee Yim (Australia)
Session 5 Mudit Agarwal (India)
Session 6 Kinichi Nakata (Japan)
Session 7 Temuulen Dashbat (Mongolia) – Player of the Tournament
Session 8 Garth Kay (Australia)

Of note also is that Zang Shu Nu of China won the most chips overall (55750).

After each session teams were handed Stats Sheets from the play of each set of 30 hands.  Here are some final numbers from all 240 hands combined:

Best Strike Rate China 4.80 points per hand
Worst Strike Rate Mongolia 4.18 points per hand
Most Hands Won Mongolia 58
Most Hands Lost Mongolia 70
Most Pots Won Mongolia 405
Least Pots Won China 175
Largest Average Win China 3760 chips
Smallest Average Win Singapore 2352 chips
Smallest Average Loss Singapore -252 chips
Largest Average Loss Mongolia -1370 chips