Saturday, June 26, 2010

Angle Shooting

$2000 + $200 Championship Event
$500,000 Guaranteed Prize Pool (Day 1B)

Angle-Shooting in poker has been around as long as 6-shooters in the Wild West. Fortunately this is 2010, not 1810, and Borgata's long arm of the law is running a clean and honorable casino.

In the back of the room (near where the player piano and spittoon would be) we hear cries of, "I never said, 'I fold,'" and the rest of the table erupts in disagreement.

To set up the action, the board is J 9 A 8 and Michael Melkerson (New Market, VA) leads out for 2500. Ahmed Fahmy reraises to 10k and Melkerson quickly moves all-in, putting Fahmy in the tank.

This is where the angle-shooting,* as the table calls it, takes place and how the details are explained to Sheriff and Tournament Director Tab Duchateau.

While Fahmy's in the tank, he presses Melkerson by asking, "If I fold will you show me?" Melkerson doesn't reply and Fahmy says, "nice hand," and lays his cards on the bet line. The dealer pushes the pot to Melkerson and once it's received, Melkerson pushes his cards into the muck.

That's when Fahmy blurts out, "I never said, 'I fold'," and pulls back his cards. After making sure he understands the sequence of events, Duchateau rules, "it's a fold," and we never see either player's hole cards.

When one person asks Fahmy, "why are you angle shooting?," he replies, "why not? It's poker, it was worth a try."

The players now have itchy trigger fingers and are on high alert, as they keeping one eye on the swinging saloon doors.

*Angle-Shooting Definition (Source:

A poker player who uses various underhanded, unfair methods to take advantage of inexperienced opponents. The difference between an angle shooter and a cheat is only a matter of degree. What a cheat or thief does is patently against the rules; what an angle shooter does may be marginally legal, but it's neither ethical nor gentlemanly. Nor is it in the spirit of the game. Unfortunately, poker is not a gentleman's game. In addition to learning how to protect yourself against cheating players, you must learn to watch out for the angle shooters.

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