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Pot control is the art of manipulating the size of the pot based on the relative strength of your hand. “Relative strength of your hand” refers to how strong your hand is in comparison to the likely range of hands of your opponent. This means that the tighter your opponent is, the stronger hand you will need to play a big pot and the looser your opponent is, the weaker your hand can be to play a big pot.
For example if you have top pair against a calling station fish, you would usually be correct to place bigger bets on the flop, turn and river. With top pair against a tight nit, it’s more of a judgment call, but you still usually want to avoid a situation where you end up with all of your chips in the middle.
Pot control is one of the most important skills for no-limit players. By keeping the pot the appropriate size, it becomes much easier to avoid mistakes. Pot control both keeps you out of trouble and gets as much value for your hand as possible.
There are two parts to pot control:
1. Factors to consider
Factors to Consider
When practicing pot control, there are several factors one must consider. The easiest is stack sizes. As a general rule the range of hands with which you’re willing to showdown with all the chips in the middle should be wider with a 50BB stack than with a 200BB stack. This means you should be much more willing to put a 50BB stack all in with top pair top kicker than you would with a 200BB stack.
The second factor to consider is the strength of your hand vs. the range of your opponent’s hand. This is more of a judgment call based on past experience, reads of the opponent, table dynamics, board texture and betting patterns. There is a lot to consider when trying to figure the strength of your hand vs. the range of the opponent. This is basically a problem of hand reading. The more you play and the better you get at hand reading, the easier this step will become.
The last factor to consider is the style of the opponent. This is closely related to the last factor but I have separated it for one reason. Two different styles of opponents can have a wide range but you want to practice pot control differently for each one. If you have top pair top kicker against a bad chaser, you will want to bet the hand aggressively and let him pay you off. If you have top pair top kicker against a tricky, aggressive player who has a wide range that you can’t read, you will want to practice pot control to keep the pot small. The aggressive player will be able to put you to difficult decisions in big pots if you don’t have a very defined range of hands for him.
Implementation is the actual method you use to manipulate the pot to the size you want it to be. Implementation can include the decisions of whether to bet or check, raise or call, and sometimes fold.
An easy example of this is the top pair top kicker vs. a calling station. If you believe the opponent is on a draw or weak hand and will call any bet, it’s a good idea to bet the full pot on the flop, turn, and sometimes the river. Occasionally, if you feel a weak opponent is on a draw that missed on the river, you can check to him on the river and call a bluff. Other times you will want to go ahead and bet the river again for value against a weaker hand.
With top pair against an aggressive, tricky opponent, it becomes a little more difficult first on analyzing the factors and second on the actual implementation. Aggressive opponents make it difficult to manipulate the pot size because they sometimes raise with strong hands and sometimes with draws, making it difficult for you to distinguish between the two. That’s why I recommend playing for small pots against good aggressive opponents. They usually aren’t going to pay 100BBs to you with a hand weaker than top pair.
Playing small pots against aggressive opponents means occasionally checking behind on the turn with your top pair and then betting again on the river. This line is very common and recognizable but it still keeps the pot small and tempts your opponents to call with weaker hands. It also means sometimes checking the flop – a common scenario for checking the flop is after 3-betting preflop with AK and then spiking a king. Against certain players, checking top pair here is a correct way to play the hand (occasionally, not every time). The logic behind this is that good, thinking players can pretty easily put you on AK, therefore making a continuation bet from you unprofitable – they will fold worse hands, and continue with strong hands.
Of course you don’t want to get into the habit of defaulting to a certain line every time you play a hand against tough players. That would be easily exploited and therefore unprofitable. The best way to protect yourself against these tough players is to mix it up yourself so that they are uncertain of your holdings and less confident in their reads of you to push you around.
There are a thousand ways to play a weak-ish hand for a small pot so I’m not going to get into them all in this article. But I hope I have at least given you something to think about the next time you hit the poker tables. Once you get into the habit of thinking like this, your results will improve dramatically.
Welcome poker fans and thanks for visiting. During the week please visit the special WPT Marrakech Live Reporting website for live tournament updates, video clips, photos and player chip counts. Furthermore, each day while we are here in the lovely city of Marrakech we will be using this space for blogging and rounding up a collection on photos to share with you all.
My first impressions of Marrakech were absolutely amazing, everyone is so friendly and the place has class. The pink city is known for it's snake charmers, magic potions, hidden palaces. So I'm really looking forward to having a good look around and sharing the experience with you. First stop this morning was at the Aeroport Marrakech Menara to pick up the 6 Poker Club players from all around France that qualified with Chilipoker. Each lucky player besides having all expenses paid (including hotel, flights and a €4,500 buy-in to the main event) was able to bring 3 friends, so in total there was 24 people to pick up from the airport.
Unfortunately one of the players missed his flight (we won't mention any names) hope that player will have more luck at the main event. Finally the poker players came made it threw the often hectic passport control and was greeted by the Chilipoker staff Ophelie, Alex Henry and myself. We said our hello's and all jumped in to the taxis to head off to the hotel.
Everyone (including myself) seemed really excited to be here and the car every one was having a laugh on behalf of one of the players who ended up "bubble boy" at one of the recent European Poker Tour Events.
Ophelie was giving a breakdown of this weeks events, including a shopping trip to the famous Souk Market, maybe some camel rides, a tour around Marrakech on quad bikes, a Chilipoker party and some action packed poker tournaments, side games, satellites and cash games. The players were surprised to hear about the structure of the cash games here in Marrakech, as they uniquely feature a 90 minute time window before any player can leave the table with any cash that he has won. An odd but interesting cash game structure.
On the way from the airport the scene outside was really interesting. Lot's of motorbikes zooming on both sides, the highest palm trees I have ever seen, olive trees, camels, horses and carriages and much more unusual architecture. The drive from the airport to the hotel took no more then 20 minutes. We all stepped out of the car to sign the players into the hotel room that we had booked for them.
As we waited for the rooms to be ready, I had a chat with a few of the players that will be blogging on the French WPT Blog and I was rather happy to find out that a few of the players knew me from the work I do on behalf of Chilipoker on social networking sites such as Twitter andFacebook. The players were interested (I was going to say happy but I don't think its appropriate in this case) to know that there was going to be a host of professional poker players at the invitational Pro-AM event being played on Monday including, Liz Lieu, Annette Obrestad,Antonio Esfandiari, Elky, Tony G, Fabrice Soulier and our very own Alex Dreyfus.
As a matter of fact as I am writing this blog, Roger Hairabedian and another popular French Pro Poker Player (forgot his name) is playing at a table right in front me.
The players seemed keen to go check out the venue Es Saadi Resort and the Casino de Marrakech, so we got together for a group photo and headed off to the Casino. Now it's time for a lamb and couscous I will be back later with another update from The Casino in Marrakech...
For the lucky players who qualified it's big money in Marrakech or Bust, so good luck and enjoy the ride!
I googled my pokername today and found my own poker profile.
Some find this intimidating. I don't just because I know better.
It's great to be part of a strong poker community.
I have some really good friends.
Thanks guys & gals.
See you in Marrakech!
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As every self-respecting poker degenerate knows, there are 1,326 unique starting hands in the Texas Hold'em universe. When you peek at your hole cards at the beginning of a hand, all of the 1,326 combinations are equally likely. Your chances of seeing [AhAs] are exactly the same as seeing [7d2c]. That is, the 1,326 starting hands are isometric with regard to probability: each has the same chance of occurring. So when you stare down at the opaque patterned backing of your hole cards prior to peeking at their undersides, you're not looking at a specific hand. You're looking at a probability cloud containing 1,326 possibilities, one of which will manifest when your hole cards are formally observed. We call this probability cloud a hand distribution or a hand range and far from being a recondite mathematical theory of interest only to statisticians and poker geeks, it's one of the most powerful weapons we have in the battle against incomplete information. Good players use this weapon all the time, consciously or unconsciously. Every time a player deduces a piece of information, however vague, about an opponent's hand, he's creating a hand distribution. Each of the above statements can be expressed precisely by assigning the opponent a distribution containing or more potential specific hands. For example, if the preflop action convinces you that your opponent has Aces, Kings, Queens, or Ace-King, you've assigned him a distribution—a probability cloud—containing 34 distinct possibilities, each of which is a specific two-card starting hand. A distribution can be as small or as large as necessary to countenance all the possibilities. If you know an opponent's specific hole cards (perhaps you caught a glimpse of them), that opponent has a hand distribution containing a single hand. The probability of him having that hand is 1.0 or 100%. This is a truism, but a necessary one in order to normalize the underlying logic. Everything is a distribution. If everybody folds to you on the button and you're considering whether to raise, the small blind and the big blind (since their cards are completely unknown) have a random distributioncontaining every possible 2-card holding. After you raise, of course, and the small blind re-raises, you'll have to revise his distribution to take into account the new information. But you're always working in terms of distributions. Every player's hand at the table can and should be thought of as a distribution containing one or more hands. Distributions have enormous utility because pinpointing an opponent's exact hole cards is difficult. Even when we're 95% certain our opponent has a given hand, there's always that pesky 5% chance he's splashing around with something else. And usually we won't be 95% certain; we'll be 75% certain, or 50% certain, or an unqualifiable amount of certain. And this is where one of the most common and egregious mistakes in poker is made, namely: The thought process goes something like this: There's nothing wrong with making a read and sticking to it; the problem is that the above train of thought is usually indicative of a read that is too specific—far more specific than the available information warrants. When we put all our eggs into one basket by making a very precise, possibly incorrect deduction about an opponent's cards, and when we base our betting decisions on that deduction, we front-load the difficulty of poker onto our (flawed) ability to extract (incomplete) information from a (loosely-wired) poker situation. In other words, we fall into the trap of deterministic strategy. We play as if our opponent had a specific hand. But until we actually observe an opponent's hand for ourselves, it's not a hand, it's a probablistic distribution of potential hands. Sometimes this distribution will coalesce, based on the available evidence, and we'll be able to say with confidence that the opponent is holding such-and-such a specific hand. But more often the distribution will contain a handful of possibilities. Our job is to play in such a way as to maximize our EV not against the single most-likely hand, but against the range of plausible hands an opponent could hold. And in order to maximize our EV in situations involving multiple opponents with hand distributions, we have to know how to calculate our EV in situations involving multiple opponents with hand distributions, using available tools such as PokerStove and, of course, by writing code in our language of choice. Stay tuned.
Prior to observation, a given player's hand isn't a hand; it's a probability cloud containing N distinct possibilities.
Playing in such a way as to maximize your value against the specific hand you believe your opponent has.
Okay, I'm pretty sure my opponent has such-and-such a hand here. Yes. He raised preflop, I bet into him on the flop, now he's raising...yep, he's got such-and-such. I might be wrong here, but I'm gonna go with my read. I'm all-in / I fold / etc.
Read the orginal post here...
When you peek at your hole cards at the beginning of a hand, all of the 1,326 combinations are equally likely. Your chances of seeing [AhAs] are exactly the same as seeing [7d2c]. That is, the 1,326 starting hands are isometric with regard to probability: each has the same chance of occurring. So when you stare down at the opaque patterned backing of your hole cards prior to peeking at their undersides, you're not looking at a specific hand. You're looking at a probability cloud containing 1,326 possibilities, one of which will manifest when your hole cards are formally observed.
We call this probability cloud a hand distribution or a hand range and far from being a recondite mathematical theory of interest only to statisticians and poker geeks, it's one of the most powerful weapons we have in the battle against incomplete information. Good players use this weapon all the time, consciously or unconsciously. Every time a player deduces a piece of information, however vague, about an opponent's hand, he's creating a hand distribution.
Each of the above statements can be expressed precisely by assigning the opponent a distribution containing or more potential specific hands. For example, if the preflop action convinces you that your opponent has Aces, Kings, Queens, or Ace-King, you've assigned him a distribution—a probability cloud—containing 34 distinct possibilities, each of which is a specific two-card starting hand.
A distribution can be as small or as large as necessary to countenance all the possibilities. If you know an opponent's specific hole cards (perhaps you caught a glimpse of them), that opponent has a hand distribution containing a single hand. The probability of him having that hand is 1.0 or 100%. This is a truism, but a necessary one in order to normalize the underlying logic. Everything is a distribution. If everybody folds to you on the button and you're considering whether to raise, the small blind and the big blind (since their cards are completely unknown) have a random distributioncontaining every possible 2-card holding. After you raise, of course, and the small blind re-raises, you'll have to revise his distribution to take into account the new information. But you're always working in terms of distributions. Every player's hand at the table can and should be thought of as a distribution containing one or more hands.
Distributions have enormous utility because pinpointing an opponent's exact hole cards is difficult. Even when we're 95% certain our opponent has a given hand, there's always that pesky 5% chance he's splashing around with something else. And usually we won't be 95% certain; we'll be 75% certain, or 50% certain, or an unqualifiable amount of certain. And this is where one of the most common and egregious mistakes in poker is made, namely:
The thought process goes something like this:
There's nothing wrong with making a read and sticking to it; the problem is that the above train of thought is usually indicative of a read that is too specific—far more specific than the available information warrants. When we put all our eggs into one basket by making a very precise, possibly incorrect deduction about an opponent's cards, and when we base our betting decisions on that deduction, we front-load the difficulty of poker onto our (flawed) ability to extract (incomplete) information from a (loosely-wired) poker situation.
In other words, we fall into the trap of deterministic strategy. We play as if our opponent had a specific hand.
But until we actually observe an opponent's hand for ourselves, it's not a hand, it's a probablistic distribution of potential hands. Sometimes this distribution will coalesce, based on the available evidence, and we'll be able to say with confidence that the opponent is holding such-and-such a specific hand. But more often the distribution will contain a handful of possibilities. Our job is to play in such a way as to maximize our EV not against the single most-likely hand, but against the range of plausible hands an opponent could hold.
And in order to maximize our EV in situations involving multiple opponents with hand distributions, we have to know how to calculate our EV in situations involving multiple opponents with hand distributions, using available tools such as PokerStove and, of course, by writing code in our language of choice. Stay tuned.
We have seen them on TV. We have seen the grim focus of the sprinter preparing for a race; we have seen Barry Bonds step up to the plate just knowing that the ball is going out of the park. We have seen their winning expression, the look that just screams that they are going to win and nothing is going to stand in their way. They embody the winner mentality.
Their attitude is actually quite simple. They will succeed. And they know it.
It is a similar attitude a poker player should adept, especially when playing tournament poker. It is this mentality that the best players have. When the tournament starts and the first cards are dealt, at that very moment they know that they are going to win. All their focus and energy is on one thing and one thing only - winning.
Often it is impossible. The cards are against you, or you lose that critical coin flip, or bluff in the wrong spot. Afterwards, the disappointment sets in. And it is just natural that you get disappointed since you were so sure of winning.
But that is not a bad thing! It is out of this disappointment that the motivation to play even better, to excel to the next level, is born.
Poker is a game played by utilising those grey cells commonly referred to as "the brain". It is your brain that analyzes the available information about the opponents and their play; it is your brain that makes the decision. The brain calls the shots.
If your brain is convinced that you are a winner from the get-go, your chances increase dramatically. There is only one goal and it is to win.
The losses will be many and tough. But the best players analyze their losses, the situations that came up and hands they played, all in order to be even better prepared for the next tournament and have an even greater chance of winning.
This is the mentality of top athletes in all sports, so why would you as a poker player not try to embrace it?
Suited connectors are hands that often win big pots. As the name implies, a suited connector is a suited and connected hand, for example; JT, T9 and 65 of the same suit. These hands are often easy to play, because they are easy to fold the times we miss the flop.
So, when should we play suited connectors?
The answer is - almost always! When playing a full ring game, sometimes it is best just to call in early positions, but when first in from mid-to-late position, it is a raising hand. When playing shorthanded, we should always raise suited connectors first in. This is to balance our raising hand distribution; it gives good deception value and allows us to steal the pot on the flop, even if we miss it completely.
If someone has raised before us, in most cases it is correct to call the raise, especially if we have position on the raiser. A good rule of thumb is that it is correct to call up to 10% of our stack preflop, since it is about that often we will hit two pair or better. Preflop, our cards are not worth much. It is after the flop that things can become interesting.
Our goal is to flop two pair, three of a kind or a strong draw. Suited connectors are especially good for stacking over pairs, but they are playable in most situations. If we miss the flop, we simply fold, unless we have raised preflop. If we are the preflop aggressor and the pot is heads-up to the flop, we should continuation bet even if we miss in order to give us a chance to pick up the pot. If we have called preflop, we only continue playing if we flop at least a good draw.
The times we hit the flop hard our play depends entirely on the opponent, table image, table game play, stack size and position. To give a general advice for each situation that could arise would require an essay worthy of a Master's degree, so the only recommendation I really can give is to play the same way you usually play your good hands. The standard play, therefore, should be to play aggressive when hitting the flop hard.
Raise first in. In early position in a full ring game it is not wrong to limp, however I do think that most high suited connectors (that is JT+) are raise-worthy, but it is a matter of taste. Shorthanded, always raise first in. If someone else has raised - call for up to 10% of effective stack size.
If you flop well - play hardball! When having raised first in and only one player has called, you should always continuation bet to try to pick up the pot. Otherwise, just use your common sense and skill and watch the money roll in!
Part of the charm of poker is the delicate and tough decisions we face when playing. We have a feeling that our top pair with a bad kicker is the best hand, but we are not sure. We think that our opponent might be bluffing, but how do we know? This insecurity gnawing at us when playing adds to the depth of the game and puts us on the edge of our seats when playing online poker.
A good rule of thumb is, when we are unsure, to either raise or fold. Let us assume that we called a preflop raise from a tight player with JTs after a caller in-between. The flop comes T73 rainbow. The early position raiser bets out, the player between us folds. What should we do?
First of all, we need to realize that our holding is very marginal. Sure, we have top pair, but our kicker is bad and we are facing a tight player. It is not exactly a hand to write home about (unless we have our mom on MSN and want some good parental advice).
In this situation, our options are to raise or fold. There is nothing wrong in folding. A bit on the tight side, sure, but if we put the tight player on a good hand there is no reason to continue playing. We can, however, test the tight player by raising. If the opponent re-raises we just fold, if he calls we do not put another cent in the pot unless we improve to two pair or three of a kind. Playing like this has its advantages: we avoid to pay off our opponents' good hands (for example, over pairs or sets), but we win most of the times he is continuation-betting with a hand like AK or 88.
The same is true for a hand like 87 on a flop like T76 - a very marginal holding indeed. Middle pair and a gutshot straight draw is not really a hand we like to get deeply involved with, but if we feel the opponent might be bluffing it is not wrong to test him with a raise. Folding is correct, but often, so is raising.
The common denominator for both hands is our action on the flop. Raise or fold. No calling! This allows us to avoid trouble later in the hand, on more expensive streets. If we face resistance, we are probably beat. If we are lucky, we draw out on the turn and get paid off, but otherwise we just toss our hand in the muck without losing too much money.
Should we just call the flop with a marginal hand, there is a risk of us trying to bluff should the opponent check the turn, or maybe it will be too alluring to call on the river just to see him turn over a better hand. It all boils down to avoiding trouble on later streets by acting on the flop. It both saves money and makes money, and is therefore a good play.
Four common beginner errors in No Limit Texas
Since we, unfortunately, are not born perfect, flawless and all-knowing, we are bound to make a lot of mistakes each and every time we try something new. We go through a learning curve where we identify the errors we commit and try to correct these to the best of our abilities.
This is also true for online poker. In this article, I will point out four common and costly beginner errors.
1) Playing too many starting hands
This is probably the most common, and one of the most costly, mistakes a new poker player makes. Most new players are so eager to just play that they fail to realize the value of sound starting hand selection. There are certain hands that should rarely be played and there are loads of hands that should never be played. Good starting hand selection is the foundation of solid play.
2) Betting too small
Another common mistake is betting too small. It is not at all uncommon to see people making tiny bets, even in large pots. This is almost always wrong. When you bet too little, people will not fold the times you bluff, and will have good odds to outdraw you when you have a good hand. A good rule of thumb is to always bet ½ - ¾ of the pot size.
3) Slowplaying too much
The rush of flopping a great hand, like three of a kind or a straight, is exhilarating. So exhilarating that many new players forget to bet their great hands! When you flop a great hand, the best way to get paid usually is to just bet it. Sure, there will be these annoying times when everybody folds, but those will be outweighed by the times when someone calls (or even raises!) your bet. By betting your great hands you give yourself the chance to win a huge pot instead of just picking up a small one.
4) Calling too much
The fourth mistake is calling too much. Beginners tend to never let go of a straight draw or a flush draw, regardless of the cost. The curiosity of seeing the other players hand is overwhelming on the river, so many beginners call in spots where all logic screams that they are beat, just ”to see their hand”. Calling too much is a very costly mistake. The next time you just feel that urge to call on the river just to see the other players’ hand – think it over once again and think of the money you will save by just folding.
Adjusting The Pot Size to the strength of your hand.
Sometimes, we just feel this irresistible urge to play a big pot. Unless we are drunk or tilted, this urge is usually when we flop a great hand. On other occasions, we like to play medium-sized pots, and this is usually when we have a good but not great hand. Sometimes, we want to play a small pot and get to showdown cheap, this is when we have a mediocre but probably-best holding.
This is why it is so important to try to adjust the pot size to match the strength of your hand. Let us assume that we raised 99 from late position and got called by both blinds. The flop is a dream for us - J93. This is one of those situations where our highest wish is to just get the money in the middle - and this is why it is so important to start building the pot right away!
If the blinds check to us, we should bet - about 2/3 to 3/4 of the pot is a good bet. Sometimes our opponents will have missed the flop completely and fold, but if they have hit a piece of it they will call - or even raise! - And the pot gets nicely bloated already on the flop, increasing our chances of stacking the opponent. By betting, we give ourselves the chance to win a huge pot whereas if we check behind, we will have trouble winning a big pot.
Building pots on early streets with good holdings is an essential part of good play.
Then what about the medium-sized pots? Well, let's say that we raised AQ preflop and again the blinds called. The flop comes QT3. If both check to us, we should bet for value, but at the same time a certain measure of care is necessary. If we don't have a good read, we probably do not want to play for stacks - the opponent could have two pair or a set. We are betting to extract money from a straight draw or a top pair with a worse kicker.
The standard turn play is to check behind if the opponent checks, with the intention of calling most rivers if bet into and value-betting most rivers if checked to.
With mediocre holdings, our wish is to keep the pot small. Let us assume that we, in an online poker game, limped A4 suited from late position after a few limpers (to try to flop a straight, flush or good draw). The flop comes AT8, giving us top pair with a lousy kicker.
In this case, it is in our interests to keep the pot small. If checked to, we should check and see a turn card (if we bet, we are likely only getting called by hands that beat us). If another player bets, we can call on the flop and re-evaluate on the turn (or just fold if it is a tight player doing the betting). If there is a bet and a call in front of us, we just muck this hand. We have no interest to play a medium-sized or big pot.
Adjusting the pot size to the strength of your holding is an important part of poker. Of course, sometimes it is necessary to mix up our play a bit to not make us too predictable, but the above lines are long-term winning standard plays.
I turned on my laptop first thing this morning and the Internet Connection was virtually dead. My ISP quickly gave me the standard excuse, the pipeline between Malta and Rome was "broken" again.
I watched a video on Tedtalks about Bernoulli's equation. Perfect for people who play poker. I am on a line of thought. Humans take risks and that is why we have grown to be the dominant specie, we are always calculating what we will gain and how much effort is involved. Always comparing the past and thinking of the future.
Now it's Friday evening and I want to play poker online, I know it's broken, the connection is so slow that a heads up game that usually takes 15 to 20 minutes is takening over an hour. I have treated that last few months as a learning curve but this is different. I decide to try something different tonight. Very very interesting. Here is my notes:
- With 3 breaks the game lasted over 3 hours
- Heads up play
- Some how the blind levels did not increase
- Trying to maximize pots
- Found a tight player
- I decide to raise all my medium hands
- I also decide to not raise my good hands, then trap
- I bet on a paired board, straight draws and flush draws
- I go all in at the right moments
- I sence weakness and then make a nice bet
- I take alot out of the experince but its slow, painful and fun
Im not the same person when the internet is so bad.
Cashgame, Omaha pot limit full table.
-only play good starting hands
-play the lower starting hands only in position
-put most of your focus on your hand and on the flop rather than on the other players
-if a few players are in, only chase the nut flush or the nut straight
-don’t risk all your chips with bottom set
-don’t chase flush or straight if board is paired
-if someone is raising your bet when you hold nut straight after flop, be careful, especially if there is two of same suit out. Most likely he has same straight as you and maybe also a set or a flush draw to go with it.
-if you have a big drawing hand, for example you have 4589 with two spades and board is 672 with two spades, bet big to get muppets out. Bottom set, top two pair and nut flush draws might give you the pot if your bet is big enough. If you are first in, you should consider check raising since a pot-bet here is not big enough to get muppets out, for example when the pot is 60. If you bet 60, maybe you get some callers since it’s cheap to call with top-two pair, nut flush draw or whatever. If u check and someone is betting pot and get 2 callers u can now put in 300 instead of 60 and u will make it expensive for bottom set, two-pair or a higher flush draw to stay in the pot. They might all fold. If you get only one caller, you should be the favourite. It’s good to be heads up with this hand. If the bigger flush draw and the 8910 folds here and only the 67(top-2) calls, you now have more than 50 per cent chance of winning instead of less then 20 per cent if they were all in the pot.
-if you flop top set and there are many draws out, get as many chips in the pot straight away. If you hit a full house on the turn, then it is too late. They will leave you hanging with your fish lip alone in the no more chips for you.
-always have a lot of chips so u can make a pot bet on turn when u hit your flushes or straights.U want a muppet that holds a set pay to see that river.
-always be aware on how many chips your opponents have before u make a play.
-AA with nothing else is not a good hand...
Before you begin playing poker, you need to find out what your goals are when playing the game. Are you playing to have fun, to make money, to become a better player or just to meet interesting people?
A good friend of mine is one of the best online players in the world, but still he has lost around 10 million SEK during the last couple of months. This happened only because he persisted in playing on the highest levels only where the best players hang out. Probably he was still a favourite compared to the average player there, but he was only slightly better. When he ran into a cold period of time, he started taking bigger risks than earlier and suddenly he didn’t have an edge anymore. Now he was the fish at this level and the other players took advantage of his recklessness. I still think he is one of the best players online and he is also incredibly precise in his analysis when it comes to live games. He plays some really good live poker as well, but still he manages to lose his entire bank roll. How is it possible?
In this case there is an explanation. To become a better player, he really wants to play with the best opponents because he wants to be one of the best players in the world.
What’s your goal when you play poker? Some people play only for fun, but many play to win money. If you want to win money playing poker, ALWAYS TRY TO PLAY AT TABLES WHERE YOU ARE THE BEST PLAYER. Even if you are ranked at number 10,000 in the world, you will win if you find players that are ranked around 50,000 in the world. Probably they won’t play at the highest levels, but sometimes they play at a higher level than they should, and that is where you can make really good money. If you run into a player that plays poorly, write down his username and try to play against him as often as possible if you feel comfortable with the stakes.
You don’t even have to keep track of your opponent’s games. Today there are several computer programs that help you when it comes to your own and other players statistics. Online poker is great!
I’ve been playing poker for more than 15 years and there is one aspect that I have learned to really take care of – sleep. Don’t ever play poker when you are too tired. Not only because you can make the most horrible decisions when you are tired, you also lose your ingenuity and your variation of play that is one of the most important parameters for a good poker player. When you have been playing for 24 hours, you start to play like a robot and other players that recognize this will take full advantage of your lack of good play. If you play live you will throw your cards in the muck all the time and suddenly when you get a hand, you will wake up and play. Do you think anyone will pay you in that hand?
When you start to get tired, go to bed. Don’t play poker. And remember - When you play, do it against weaker opponents. If you follow these pieces of advice you will for sure increase your chances of making more money playing poker.
Writing a poker tip is not an easy thing. Whatever you write some players will disagree. The main concern I had when asked to write this column was to make sure the tip would be something all players could benefit from, maybe even something I could benefit from. What has been one of the problems I have faced, but feel I have gotten a better understanding of as I have matured as a poker player? Bankroll. Managing my bankroll is something that I have picked up along the way. When I started playing poker for a living, the idea of managing my bankroll was not something I put much thought into. I felt that if I just played my game and kept improving so would my bankroll. I was very successful and everything went great. I moved up in limits and kept improving until one day I had nearly lost my entire bankroll and could not really afford to play the limit I had been playing. How could this happen?
Most poker players are gamblers by nature. They get on a mental high when they are playing. They become action junkies and like any other form of junkie, they have a constant need of getting their fix, playing poker. Once you have gotten used to the dose of the fix, in this case a certain table limit, the fix you used to get high on no longer gets you that high. You need more action, bigger stakes. Sometimes players will risk too much of their bankroll in order to get their fix. This is where bankroll management becomes very important. In my case, a friend of mine helped me understand the importance of bankroll management.
If you want to play poker for a living, meaning for the rest of your life, it is important to find other places/things in life that will get you your fix. Here, I DO NOT mean drugs, but some other non-hazardous way of making you happy (Golf, movies, travel or even shopping LOL). Poker is your job, and even though you have fun playing poker, you must look at it like a job. I know poker is not like any other profession, but you almost have to treat it like it is.
I see a lot of very good poker players having trouble managing their bankroll. There are players out there that have won millions of dollars playing poker and yet they find themselves broke. Obviously this is not because they are bad players, but because they did not understand to manage their bankroll. When you decide to play poker as a profession you must be aware that you have the rest of your life to build up your bankroll, and as with any other profession, you do not need to make all your money in one day. A successful lawyer will not make his entire fortune on one case, but will build his “bankroll” day by day. This should be the same thought process for a poker player. Many younger and some older players take too many shots. ‘Taking a shot’ means trying to play at limits too high for their bankroll. Even though they might be better than most of the players at this level, they do not have the bankroll to play enough so that their superior skill will even out the luck factor. We have all had bad runs, but if we play long enough, we can make up for the fact that there is some luck involved in poker. I am not saying a player should never take a shot, but if you do take a shot and you loose the percentage of your bankroll you decided to risk, Stop. Do not chase. Make sure you leave yourself enough money to play at a lower limit and still be able to make a decent living.
In regard to how big your bankroll should be to play at a certain level, I will refer to other articles discussing this subject, as I feel that this is personal and varies from player to player
Most of the afternoon, I had my computer tuned in to the Live EPT Prague Coverage on Pokerstars.TV live. Coincidentally, my other browser window was uploading videos to Chilipoker.TV
First 4 out of 4 Chilipoker players made it to the second day of EPT Prague. Later on, Nasr El Nasr of Team Chilipoker was in the last 12. His rockets did NOT hold up on a 1.2 million pot, when the flop showed another king!!!
Nasr El Nasr did'nt give in, played some good hands and managed to make it to the final table with a about 300k in chips.
** Update: Nasr El Nasr Eliminated in Seventh Place (€99,500)
Hey all, I am back again from my holidays in Barca, Spain. Lovely. My Patrik & Maya Antonius lens at Squidoo.com has been doing well. I am looking for people to help me boost its ranking. Simply, visit the lens and give it some comments, stars or feedback. You can even join the Chilipoker fan club...
Here is the link...
Thanks a million!!
When I get something into my head, I find it really hard to think about anything else. Ask yourself can you really multi-task all day long? There are times where I find it hard to concentrate and it's effecting my life and game play.
The beauty of poker is that no matter how greedy people get, though, it still maintains its artistic and psychological values. It’s a beautiful game and you have to use your memory. Your soul comes into play and you have to live well away from the table. If you have no empathy and are shrouded in darkness, then you’ll never win.
- Did you notice the straight on the turn?
- The flush on the river?
- The high pocket pair pre flop?
- Do you know how to receive, calculate and transmit information during game play?
Every card in life counts, so play your card well. As I play more and more Omaha games I find new skills that will surely help my game. I can not get over the fact that I am always discovering new ways to improve my life/game.
I ask myself how to be more creative in life, something that comes natural to my dear brother, my lovely sister and me. I ask can you imagine shapes and colors without them actually being there? Or do you have to see to believe.
Life is a masterpiece and it's poker I play.