Phil Ivey Is The Master Of Poker -When it comes to high stakes cash games the fans are usually talking about Phil Ivey, Patrik Antonius or Tom Dwan (also known as “durrrr”). Phil Ivey is a much-feared player because of his extremely aggressive style and his great hand reading skills.The following example comes from the 2009 WSOP where Phil Ivey was paid out at the end only because of his reputation.The blinds are $2 000/$4 000 with a $500 ante and 9 players. Everyone folds to Ivey who is on the button and has 8d7s. Ivey decides to take a stab at the pot and raises to $11 000. A typical play by Ivey, he would do it with any two cards so his raise does not tell anything about the strength of his hand. The small blind folds but Perner in the big blind makes a reasonable call with 2h2d. Although Perner’s call is reasonable, I suppose a reraise would have been the right play. When he called he already knew that he would be in a tough situation with a pair of deuces every time except when the deuces hit. Based on this statement a reraise can end up with more success because he could win the pot right there, before the flop. Such small pocket pairs are extremely difficult to play out of position. In this case Perner decided to only call. The pot is $28 500 and the two players see the flop.
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The flop is 7cJh7h giving Ivey trip sevens. A paired flop is usually good for a pocket pair because it makes it more probable that the other player missed the flop. Perner thinks also like this and he bets about 75% of the pot, $22 000. Perner had the preflop advantage 52%-48% against Ivey but the tides have Dewapoker turned in favor of Ivey: 89%-11%. He thinks a bit how he could maximize his win and makes a flat call. At this time it is not clear if Perner only bluffs or if he has a pair of Jacks. Ivey hopes it is the 2nd case scenario. The pot is $72 500.
The turn card is the 8h. This is a dangerous card for Perner. He knows that Ivey can have any two cards in his hand and this turn card completes a flush draw, a straight draw and of course it is possible that Ivey has a pair of eights as well. Perner checks, he wants to see what Ivey does. Ivey bets a little over half of the pot, $40 000. Ivey wants to build a pot and does not want to slow play his hand until the end. Perner calls quickly and sends a message to Ivey that he also hit the board. I am convinced that Perner made a mistake at this point and he should have quit with his hand. The pot is $152 500.The river card is the 7d, giving Ivey quads and Perner a full house. Perner checks and Ivey starts thinking what the maximum amount is that he could get from Perner. Ivey decides to bet $120 000, about 80% of the pot, a big bet which indicates a bluff. Actually the river card is unlucky for Perner. In case Ivey had a straight or a flush Perner would be ahead now. There are also three sevens on the board so it is very unlikely that Ivey has a seven. Perner beats many of Ivey’s possible hands, he is only losing against a Jack, an eight or pocket pairs. Perner does not even think long and makes the call. Ivey wins the $392 500 pot with his quads.