Dara O’Kearney: London Poker Festival Trip Report

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Dara and London Poker Festival lineup

The caller London Poker Festival was a immense occurrence for Asper’s and nan Irish Poker team.

A accelerated start

As I traveled backmost location from nan London Poker Festival recently, I had a chopped consciousness of deja vu arsenic I shared a cab to Heathrow pinch my room mate, personage cook Kwangchi. The logic for this was that my past 2 trips to London were likewise profitable, and besides ended pinch sleepless each nighters earlier early greeting flights.

I ended up making my 2nd unrecorded last array of 2024

My travel sewage disconnected to a bully commencement successful my first event, nan Mystery Bounty. I person a peculiarly bully grounds successful Mystery Bounties (given I virtually wrote nan book connected nan format), and connected this juncture I ended up making my 2nd unrecorded last array of 2024, albeit connected my 2nd bullet. I play some Day 1’s, pinch very different experiences.

I made a accelerated commencement up to 3 times starting stack connected slug one, only to past spell paper dead, arsenic nan blinds roseate to nan constituent wherever location were much spots wherever personification was each successful preflop. After nan first modular 20 large unsighted get successful spot, I was nan 1 near pinch 20 bigs suddenly. A 2nd specified spot arose soon thereafter, and erstwhile my Ace-Queen grounded to get location versus Ace-King, I bust.

Into Day 2

By contrast, I made a unspeakable commencement connected nan 2nd bullet, dwindling backmost from starting stack until I recovered myself pinch conscionable 4 large blinds a mates of hours earlier nan extremity of play. I deliberation 1 of my strengths is not panicking aliases forcing it successful those spots, knowing it tin turn, arsenic it did connected this occasion. A crazy heater successful nan past convention of play saw maine container up nan spot lead going into Day 2, not acold from nan money.

I mislaid nan chiplead and 1 3rd of my stack successful nan very first manus of Day 2, but was still successful a awesome position to declare a double bounty erstwhile I recovered myself successful a 3 measurement each successful pinch Jacks connected nan bubble. A short stack shoved Ace-Jack, and aft Paul Romain reshoved for much (but good little than me) I called off. Paul’s King-Queen deed nan move and to make matters worse, he instantly pulled nan biggest disposable bounty of £10,000 ($12,611). Paul’s a bully feline though, truthful I didn’t bregrudge him.

a high-quality last array pinch not galore large mistakes

I was emotion a small little charitable erstwhile I mislaid different three-way each successful adjacent nan last array bubble, this clip my Tens holding against Sixes but losing to King-Jack, arsenic this near maine short and successful threat of not making nan last table. In nan extremity I sewage location arsenic nan 2nd shortest stack. It was a high-quality last array pinch not galore large mistakes truthful it turned into a spot of a grind.

My hopes of adding a 2nd unrecorded triumph to my Hendon mob this twelvemonth were still live pinch 5 near arsenic I navigated nan short stack, but my Ace-Ten sewage rivered by Queen-Ten to extremity that dream. However, nan bounties I drew were good supra mean truthful wide it added up to my first five-figure people of nan year. The arena was won by nan very awesome Glen Gaines who connected this juncture navigated his short stack much successfully than I did.

The Main Event

I besides fired a mates of bullets astatine nan Main Event, getting done successful nan past chance saloon (the hyper Day 1F early connected Day 2). Contrary to celebrated misconception, a higher information of hyper flights beforehand (with a little mean stack), but I was happy to container up astir mean overall. I was beautiful paper dormant successful Day 2, and scraped done nan bubble, sewage a fewer ladders, earlier yet bowing retired successful 48th.

One very welcoming characteristic of nan full travel for maine personally was nan number of locals who took nan clip to fto maine cognize they’d publication and greatly benefited from my books, including Main Event victor Jay Patel.

Jay defeated my chap countryman, nan very awesome David Costello, headsup aft a chop.

The Irish contingent

It was a very bully show wide for nan visting Irish contingent, pinch Peter Murphy taking fown nan 1K One Dayer, Irish Poker Tour ambassador Paul “Rinty” Monaghan taking 3rd successful nan aforesaid event, and IPT leaderboard victor Paul Carr taking nan lion’s stock successful a chop successful nan Omaha event.

Paul besides scraped done nan bubble of nan Main Event pinch an moreover shorter stack than mine, and we had bully craic arsenic he ran complete to maine betwixt hands for coaching connected really to play an (for him) uncharacteristically mini stack nether utmost ICM. Most of my my coaching took nan shape of a 4 missive connection opening pinch F, arsenic did astir of his feedback.

The Women’s Event

By acold nan astir nosy arena of nan full show was nan Women’s Event hosted by IPT ambassador Tanya Masters and “The Truth Detective” writer Alex O’Brien (who besides kindly hosted maine astatine nan commencement of my trip), which attracted a grounds number of entries and (I judge but I could beryllium incorrect connected this) nan largest ever prize excavation for a women’s arena successful nan UK. The complimentary prosecco and Ferraro Rocher added to nan gaeity of nan event, arsenic did nan spot prizes organized by Tanya and Alex. These included copies of my books, and I was happy to return a break from nan past broadside arena I played to airs for immoderate photos pinch nan winners.

I conjecture I don’t request to publication Dara’s book now”

The arena was won (after a 3 measurement chop that included Alex) by nan ever cheerful and cheeky Lydia Cugudda, who went from being very happy to triumph a transcript of my ICM book to quipping “I conjecture I don’t request to publication Dara’s book now” arsenic she was presented pinch nan trophy. Worst winner’s question and reply ever, Lydia!

Overall, nan arena was a monolithic occurrence for Asper’s and nan Irish Poker team, arsenic they deed a challenging guarantee successful difficult circumstances (the obstruction onslaught decidedly didn’t help, pinch my co-author Barry Carter among nan galore who didn’t make it down to London arsenic a result), and a very enjoyable 1 for maine arsenic I sewage to drawback up pinch tons of friends I hadn’t seen successful ages.

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