Wednesday, May 30, 2007


To the Gran Casino in Barcelona where I was working at the World Heads Up Poker Championship. Started by Jon Shoreman seven years ago this was my second time in the OB van doing the spotting (this basically consists of telling the director who the action is on, any interesting or good hands, and specifying what stats to show).

Last year I was there for a week and managed to get loads of poker playing in, but this year we were filming three matches a day, so it was harder work and quite knackering. The highlight was an excellent semi-final match between Daniel Carter of England and Carles Llado from Spain. The likes of Mickey Wernick and Dave Colclough were raving about Dan and for once the hype was lived up to. Dan is probably one of the best poker players I've ever seen and the fact that he's only nineteen is even more impressive/sickening. His composure and reads at the table were outstanding. Shoreman and I had a blinding bet on him to win the trophy before the quarter finals at 7-1, so of course he got unlucky during the final and lost. It wasn't lost on me that when I started playing poker seriously (that is, playing in casinos against strangers) Dan was around 7 years old and is already light years ahead of me. How much there still is to learn about this infernal game!

After the final I managed to get in a decent session of2/5 blinds no limit holdem where I had the rare pleasure of flopping quads twice and getting on both times too. The second time was especially sweet as it was a three way coup with both my opponents paying me off on the river. Wow, what a game eh?

Later I sweated my old mate Robert Binelli in the final of a WPT satellite. The atmosphere was raucous to say the least with several drunk locals cheering their pals on. The staff eventually gave up trying to quieten the crowd and keep them away from the table. There is no way their behaviour would have been allowed at somewhere like the Vic or in Vegas. It was a total zoo, but it also has to be said it was all in good spirits.

One moment that said it all for me was when Robert knocked out a woman by catching a two outer on the river. She reeled away from the table in shock and basically burst into tears. I felt her pain and anguish - tournaments really can be cruel. She went off and got herself back together and came back into the room to a round of applause. The TD and several other players all gave her consoling hugs; quite touching really. Meanwhile her husband was still in the satellite getting dealt Aces, Kings and AK during the crucial late stages.

Because I was funking for him, Robert of course went out in 4th place, missing out on the WPT seat. I felt gutted for him; I know how much he wanted that seat. He was easily the best player at the final and deserved to win it. He told me that when they got down to four handed the shortstack asked for a grand each off the other three to take fourth place. Naturally the others declined. When Robert became the shorstack he asked the same player for the same deal and was met with silence. So typical.

1 comment:

lucky_scrote said...

Hey this is Dan Carter, some how found this blog. Thanks for bigging me up i appreciate it and you are obviously a cool dude.

My blog:

GL at the tables.