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First of all welcome to WebmasterWorld!
The behaviour you mention is common. It happened on one site for me some months ago. My personal blog didn't appear for my personal name in the SERPs, but the site was there for many less obscure phrases. The ranking algorithm probably thought that using my personal name in both the domain name and on several pages was some sort of spamming :)
Actually, my site was not banned, but filtered for this keyword. You can test this, by adding the &filter=0 parameter to the Google search URL in the address bar of your browser. When I used this addition my blog returned to the position where I thought it belonged for my personal name.
One good thing, this filtering is not permanent. Since about a week the site is back in the normal SERPs without the &filter=0 parameter when searching on my name.
Food for thought :)