… but everything turns out alright in the end. This was actually a pivotal hand for me and I ended up finishing in second place in the tournament due to my usual bad play in the final pairing, and making a profit after entry fee of a whisker under 2 million chips.
I thought the hand was interesting, because looking at it from both sides, there are so many ways I could have lost.
Had opponent reraised all-in preflop, I probably would have folded then and there, as my opener was essentially an attempt to steal the blinds. Had he shoved the flop, I probably would have folded too. But with the flush draw and two overcards, he chose to check-call the flop with (probably) 13 outs on each street, so about a 50/50 chance of hitting his hand.
One thing we never consider enough in calculations, is which outs might improve an opponents hand too. For example any 6 or 4 would improve my hand on the turn or river, so five outs on each street, and there were some straight possibilities in my favor too and any five would fill my gutshot, except the 5 of spades, which would give him a flush. So actually 8 outs on the turn that could improve my hand beyond one pair, and and 7 on the river. Also, because I held the 4 of spades, he had slightly less outs than he might have thought.
So while the 4 4 on the turn and river was unexpected, there were a lot of unknowns.
Why did I shove the flop? I though he had missed the flop with Ace something, and wanted to fully discourage him from trying to continue. Having called my raise to 3BB, he had played his part by filling the pot, and if he folded here he would still be in the game. If he had hit something on the flop, or had a pocket pair over the flop, then surely he was going to bet here and try to make me fold.
If he thought I had a good pocket pair, so much the better. Even though I only had a low pair, at least that pair would negate any advantage that Ace high had over my hand, in the unlikely event he decided to call for all his chips.
Had the positions been reversed and he raised preflop from the button with me in the BB, I would certainly have folded the hand. And would never have known that there was a full house waiting for me on the turn and river!
So my opponent on this hand possibly felt that he was busted out of the tournament by a lucky maniac, but it could have been so different.