Bear Hug’s David Docherty Makes the UKIPT 6 London Final Table

by Jamie Burland

UKIPT Season 6 kicked off in London last week with Bear Hug’s David “DD” Docherty taking the felt in the £770 buy-in main event courtesy of a £15 Pokerstars satellite. DD travelled from his home in Glasgow the day before his birthday and celebrated by negotiating his way through Day 1, ultimately bagging an above average 161,500 chips. Friday was a day off for the Day 1A survivors to accommodate the completion of Day 1B, with Day 2 play for the entire field resuming on Saturday. Happily, I took the opportunity to travel to London from my Brighton home to cheer DD’s Day 2 progress. I had won the UKIPT Season 1 Brighton stop and was keen to treat DD to lunch, and offer some pearls of wisdom and my support from the rail. I also had the opportunity to ask DD some questions, which he graciously took the time to answer:


Focused and zoned in – Bear Hug’s David Docherty

Jamie: Great job making it through Day 1 with such a healthy stack DD. How do you feel?

DD: I’m so pleased. I was so zoned in for the whole day. I can honestly say that I think that was in the Top 5 days of live poker I have ever played.

Jamie: That’s fantastic! It’s not like you have been grinding the live circuit recently either. How have you managed to slip so smoothly into the live zone from your day-to-day online grind?

DD: My confidence level was really high from Hand 1 of the tournament, so even though it had been awhile since I had played a live tournament of this size, it quickly came back to me and I didn’t feel rusty at all. I really think that the mental game training we work on every week at Bear Hug helped massively with this.

Jamie: People are going to think I asked you to say that!

DD: I know it could come across as cheesy but I honestly feel that way. I’ve spent the last 14 months with Bear Hug studying and training for spots like this. I would actually have been surprised after all that work if I hadn’t felt prepared and ready.

Jamie: That makes sense. Any interesting spots from Day 1?

DD: There was one hand in particular that stands out as the key hand of the day for me. Again, I feel strongly that the training and analysis we do in our weekly Run It Twice* sessions gave me the confidence to get this tricky spot right. I can see a world where I would have made a different decision here, but was confident enough in my read to pull the trigger. In the hand, Middle Position opened to 2000 at 400/800 and a loose, splashy fish called from late position. I peeled from the small blind with KJo – mainly to get into a pot with the fish – and the Big Blind came along too. The flop was Jx3s2s with two spades. I had the Jack of spades by the way. I checked and the Big Blind checked behind, the original raiser continuation bet 3200 and the fish called. Now something funky happened. Due to the breakdown of the chip denominations in my stack, I attempted to make life easier by putting in a 5k chip and two 100 chips intending to call the c-bet. It was my mistake, but because I put 3 chips in the pot without declaring my intention, my action was correctly deemed a min-raise. Then all hell broke loose! The Big Blind and original raiser folded and then quick as a flash the fish shoved all in for 40,000! I sat and thought for six or seven minutes, worked it out and made the call. The player tabled a flush draw which he hit on the turn, but thankfully my jack of spades was good to redraw on the river. This was a tough call but a huge pot to win at that stage of the tournament. Even though I had made a mistake in the hand, I was able to put the pieces to the puzzle together in the end and make the correct call. I’m reasonably certain I would have folded this spot to the fishy player’s jam if not for having seen and studied numerous spots similar to this one over the last year.

Jamie: Great call DD. Any plans tonight?

DD: I’ll probably just have a quiet one to be honest. It’s my birthday and there are so many friends in town, but these opportunities don’t come around very often, and I want to be at my best tomorrow.

Jamie: Good plan mate. Get some rest and I’m sure you’ll do some damage tomorrow. Good luck!

*Bear Hug players attend a weekly training session called Run It Twice where each week a different player presents a hand history to the group tailored to address a specific area of study

I then headed back to Brighton and David continued to build his chip stack over the course of Day 2. The Bear Hug Poker group chat was buzzing on Saturday as DD closed in on the final stages. As Day 2 play came to a close, DD had finished the day in fourth place with ten players remaining, all vying for the £84,100 first prize!


An impressive Day 2 haul for Bear Hug’s David Docherty

With DD in the hunt, I jumped back on the train on Sunday to travel to London and once again lend my support to my Bear Hug teammate. With DD’s rail well assembled, his valiant run ended at the final table with an 8th place finish. DD played a few spots that didn’t go his way and then ran his AA and last 10 big blinds into the QTs of Jack Salter and was left drawing dead on the turn.


UKIPT 6 London – The Final Table

The disappointment was tangible for DD and his enthusiastic group of supporters. There had been a sense that this hard working, universally liked and all round great guy, was due a big live score. Sadly, poker doesn’t care about all that mush, but we at Bear Hug are proud of DD and know that he will push on and build from this.

DD’s 8th place finish was good for a healthy £8,731 score. Not a bad ROI for a £15 satellite! Congratulations to UKIPT champion Usman Siddique who took down the trophy and £84,100.


David Docherty with Jamie Burland

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