Aces Players Club (5,000 chips)
I played quiet and slow during the first hour. I’d picked up a couple of big pots, then lost a bunch when I chased down the top pair on the flush from the big blind. Unfortunately, the flush was 345, and a couple of major over cards showed up on the turn and river. I’d called about 1,600 in raises but when the guy to my left raised 1,000 on the river I let him take it down even though there was several thousand on the table and a call would only have cost me another 20% or so of my stack. He flipped over A6 for ace-high just to rub it in for everyone who’d contributed.
The last hand before the first break, one of the guys across from me was itching to rebuy and I picked up a respectable T♣J♣. Blinds were at 200/400 and there were several callers but the itchy guy raised to 1,200. A couple dropped out, seeing where this was going, but I matched the raise. The flop was a dreamy 8♣9♣Q♠. He bet another 1,200 and I called. The turn was the Q♣, giving me the first straight flush I can ever remember getting in live play. I was pretty sure I’d won the hand by that point, so when he went all-in it was an easy call. He was pretty flabbergasted with his Q♥9♠. After he’d rebought and returned to the table after the break we were talking about the hand and one of the other players had to point out to him that I’d had him beat from the flop; he hadn’t realized I’d made a straight to beat his two pair which turned into a full house.
Sadly, my last hand was well before the final table. I picked up A♣K♣, a couple of actors in the hand before me limped in for 600, then the player to my right went all in. The count was 6,900, leaving me with 100 behind. I called and we were heads-up. He turned over K♠K♦. There was an ace in the window on the flop. There was an A♠ on the turn. I was crushing this dude’s kings! Then the river was a spade. A fourth spade on the board, to be exact, and that gave him a flush, which beat my set of aces. The 100 went in on the next hand for a pair of nines but a pocket pair of jacks scooped that up.