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Bicycle Casino in Los Angeles hosted the World Poker Tour Ladies Invitational. Six women were invited to play for a $25,000
seat at the World Poker Tour Final. The women included well-known names
Jennifer Harman and Maureen Feduniak as well
as not such well-known names Clonie Gowen and Evelyn Ng.
I went to The Bicycle Casino to see this event live and it was interesting to later see how the hands played out on TV. The
hand I remember most from seeing it in person was when Jennifer made a comment saying, "It smells like aces to me", but
called the bet anyway. Kathy was dealt pocket aces and raised the $12,000 blind the minimum to $24,000. Jennifer was in the
small blind with pocket nines and called the raise. Evelyn also called with J7
suited. The flop came 432. Jennifer bet 60,000,
Evelyn folded and Kathy moved all-in. This was where Jennifer made her comment. After Jennifer called, the turn was a deuce and
the river was a queen. I questioned this call because Jennifer is considered one of the best in the world. I would imagine that
her instincts are one of her best assets, yet she chose to ignore them in this situation and it cost her most of her chips.
Reading opponents is only part of the battle.
Having the conviction to follow up on your read needs to come next.
started the report with the previous hand because that one stood out in my mind the most. There was an interesting hand
before this situation. Annie raised on the button with Q9 offsuit to $15,000. Kathy made it $35,000 with pocket sevens.
Annie RERAISED to $120,000 and Kathy folded her hand. This was an incredible move on Annie's part. This hand proved to me
why she is considered one of the best players around.
Jennifer only had $130,000 left after her call against Kathy. She moved all-in with A5 and unfortunately for her, Evelyn had
AK and of course called. The flop was K64, the turn was a nine and Jennifer grabbed her purse knowing that there was no way the
river (which happened to be a three) could help her. She wished the other ladies good luck and exited the tournament in sixth place.
I was surprised to see a decision Kathy made on the following hand. Clonie moved all-in with AJ and Kathy immediately called
$182,000 with AT offsuit. Kathy did not seem to put as much thought into this hand as she normally does. She crippled
herself with that call and left herself with only $39,000. The next hand we were shown, Kathy moved all-in with AQ, but because
the amount was so small, Clonie called the $9,000 difference with 43. She even made the comment, "Oh, I have nothing",
but lo and behold the flop came T93, giving Clonie a pair of threes. The turn was another three and that was all for Kathy.
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eliminated in fourth place when Clonie moved all in on the small blind with K8 of clubs. It was only going to cost Maureen
$21,000 more because she was short stacked. Maureen said she wasn't even going to look. She called and turned up the 65 of
diamonds. The flop was K83 with one diamond giving Clonie top two pair. The turn was a jack of diamonds giving Maureen a
flush draw, but the river was an Ace of spades.
next hand that is shown, Annie raised to 90,000 with J6 of spades. Evelyn was in the big blind for $30,000 and moved all-in
with A9 of spades. There was about $300,000 in the pot, basically forcing Annie to call another $76,000. The flop was A76,
the turn a queen and the river a three. After the hand was over, we saw
standing in the bleachers throwing his fists in the air. I understand that he is friends with a couple of the women in the tournament,
but the display he put on was not something that I would expect from a professional poker player -- a person that should maintain his
composure when it is appropriate.
There was a hand that almost seemed cut and dry. Clonie moved all-in with pocket sixes and Evelyn called with AQ. The flop was K76 giving Clonie a
set. The turn was an eight and the river was
a ten. There was not much either player could have done differently in this situation.
was eliminated after three key hands. First Annie raised $150,000 with A9 and Clonie called this large raise with a very
questionable J7. Luckily for her, Clonie hit the flop
when the board came JT3. Annie tried to take the pot here and bet $200,000. Clonie moved all-in and Annie folded her hand, but did
lose a substantial amount of her chips. Annie then decided to raise with K6 which would put Evelyn all-in if she called. She made
the difficult decision to call with A3 and won the pot. Annie looked a little shocked at the turn of events, but still seemed composed,
similar to the demeanor of her brother, Howard Lederer. The final hand for Annie pitted her pocket tens against Clonie's AQ. The flop
was AQ3, the turn a two and the river a four. Annie was knocked out in third place.
Clonie was in a commanding chip position, but Evelyn doubled-up a few times including a hand that she held pocket aces
against Clonie's pocket fours. The tables turned and Clonie was considerably short chipped. Dallas resident Clonie, now
being called "The Texas Terminator", dodged two consecutive
bullets. The first was when her K5 beat Evelyn's KT
when she made a straight. The second was when she
split the pot with Evelyn when she had A6 against
Evelyn's pocket sevens. The board was AKQJT. In the second case though, Clonie had the best hand on the turn with a pair of aces.
Although Clonie got extremely lucky on some critical hands, she played great. I did not see her make a major mistake like I thought
Evelyn did when she moved all-in with Q8 and Clonie called with AJ. That move probably cost Evelyn the tournament. I do not
want to take anything away from Evelyn because I think she played great as well, but I know first hand that one mistake in a
hand can cost you a tournament. She gave away her big chip lead by not having a little bit more patience. Sometimes late in
a tournament a player hits "the wall", where they have a very costly lapse in judgment. Clonie won the event when Evelyn
moved all-in with K3 and Clonie called with A7. She flopped a seven and Cycalona Gowen became the winner of the first World
Poker Tour Ladies Night Invitational event.
I enjoyed watching this tournament. I have always known women are capable of being great poker players and this show proved
that. Annie even pointed out how being a woman among a large group of men is a huge advantage. But I did not like the fact
that it took a Ladies Invitational event to show the rest of the world how great a few of these women play. I am anxiously
waiting for a woman to kick the pants off a group of guys at a World Poker Tour show... I might have to do that.
Ladies Invitational 2 and