But Day 2 started off pretty ugly. I put on a wonderful performance of how to play poker like a scared little girl, folding to 3-bets like it was my job. Which I guess it is, sorta. I just always had the bottom of the distribution, so what can you do? I was actually pretty happy to be down only to 60k by the second break. At 1k/2k/200, I made it 4500 with Ah7h from 2-off, button (very liberal 3-bettor who has been one of the beneficiaries of my frequent folding) makes it 5000 more, all three options occur to me, I call. Flop QhTd4h, k-12500-28000-shove-call, he has AQ, brick-brick.
I was not the beneficiary of the awesome table draws that other people talked about. I did see one or two ghastly plays on Day 1, but for the most part players were just mediocre/okay/good rather than awful. On Day 2, we did have two shocking bustouts right at the beginning (the latter of which caused my Belgian neighbour to exclaim "what is going on at this table?!" but by a couple levels in, everyone seemed fairly competent and I would have to think the table was much tougher than the field average.
The field size in San Remo shrank pretty dramatically, from over 1300 players last year to just under 1000 this year. The majority of the difference are going to be weaker players, of course. While there is still excellent value in this tournament, the days of hundreds and hundreds of players in big buy-in events who are just drawing stone dead are a thing of the past.
With over a week until the Madrid event, Dan and I are left to try to figure out what we're going to do until then. Playing side events here is certainly one option, but neither of us brought enough cash and we probably overestimated the ease of acquiring it. Another is to travel and hit up some other part of Europe. There are even a couple of PokerStars pros who are interested in training with me (one of them brought his MMA coach with him on the trip) here in San Remo, although there is the issue of finding some appropriate mat space.
All this could have been averted by just winning the tournament! Note to self for next time.