I am a big fan of all the tournament series on PokerStars. WCOOP, SCOOP and TCOOP have always been big successes and I try my best to get as good results as possible.
When I first heard of MicroMillions my first thought was its another great idea but I assumed that I would probably not play as many events as the buy-ins were low and expected very big fields. Therefore the chance of making a final table and a big score in terms of money for a medium/high stakes player was much lower than in WCOOP or SCOOP.
Then I busted in the second level of EPT Madrid with TT vs A♣K♣ when the board ran out A T 6♣ and he got a runner-runner flush. I had nothing to do and decided to give it a go and play a few events in MicroMillions. I started out slow, cashing a few and not playing nightly events. I realized that the points structure was slightly revised and you get a little more points for cashing than before (10/15/20 rather than 5/10/15 depending how deep in the money you go). This, together with the total of one hundred events, created a possibility that not only players who win and get 100 points, but also players who regularly cash can have a chance in the leaderboard race.
I started playing more events, including the nightly ones, and was able to gradually catch up with the leaders. By Saturday, the second-to--last day of the series, I managed to get a five-point advantage with a shot to win if I did well on Sunday. I even had a day when I cashed six out of nine events. Unfortunately, the start of Sunday was a disaster. I busted six straight events, and with only five remaining I dropped 25 points behind the two other players.
I needed a very good run and had to count on nobody else at the top of the leaderboard scoring a bunch of points. I decided to become aggressive, and I probably set a Guinness Record in number of rebuys in 3x turbo tournament. I managed to cash it, and then I had a deep run in the three last events, including the main event. I got 55 points in total, while my opponents got only 10 and 20, It was close, but I won the trophy and the PCA package! Overall I cashed in 34 events out of 89 I played.
Of course, as you can imagine, my poker strategy had to be somewhat adjusted. A player sometimes has to give up chip value in favor of increasing his chances of cashing. This would mean choosing a very conservative style, picking spots with less variance, and even folding big pairs on the bubble. Such a strategy would not be profitable in a standard tournament, but was correct approach as the buy-ins were small compared to the leaderboard prizes (places 2-10 received SCOOP Main Event Medium tickets and places 11-100 received SCOOP Low tickets). In a way we played three satellites in a single tournament, first to get 10 points, then 15, and then 20 points. Only after that could we focus on getting to the final table.
Overall it was a much harder assignment than is seems as the tournaments run 24 hours a day and you had to manage sleep and take care of the rest of your lift. My strategy was to late register nightly events, try to quickly build a big stack and then continue or to go back to sleep. The same applied early morning and again before noon. One time I got a nice stack and then fell asleep in front of the computer only to wake up and see I had no chips anymore. Luckily by the time I was blinded away the action was so fast that I cashed.
Finally, I would like to congratulate all other players who competed in the TLB and especially "bem777ret" who narrowly missed final table three times. That's a big achievement in such a large fields. If he had made the final table once, he he would be the champion!
I hope to find the same commitment and motivation during SCOOP in May.
See you at the tables!
Follow Marcin on Twitter: @MarcinHorecki