Change strategy in poker tournaments

To have a balance when playing poker is important. A friend of mine, a very good high school and college baseball pitcher once compared poker to throwing baseball. “You have to leave your opponent in the dark,” he would say. “If you play against him, you have to unbalance him, that makes a good player different from a fish”.

I think a good and a bad player makes more difference, but this quote fits well with the concept of changing strategies in poker. If someone changes his strategy in poker, he plays differently than he did recently, with the goal of knocking out his opponent. Let’s say you play in a No Limit Hold’em tournament and for some reason you have not played a hand for an hour. Now is the time to change strategy and suddenly play super aggressive. If you have played without resistance so far, your opponent will give you a good hand after suddenly playing every pot aggressively. Of course, this only works until someone notices your strategy change and wants to see your cards.

Strategy changes in poker are an art – not a science

There is a subtle but easy way to change your strategy at the poker table. If you feel you are playing best when playing tight, then you should play that image as you change strategy. No matter what you’re told, you can not take a break during a poker tournament. You should constantly collect chips to be successful in the end. In order to achieve this it is necessary to occasionally win a pot without having the best hand. Use the chips you gain with such hands and you will be much more successful in No Limit tournaments.

In order to successfully change your strategy, it is necessary to be able to assess the situation at the poker table well. A well-balanced game makes your strategy for the opponent unimaginable and is necessary to successfully switch between game styles. A player who comes to the table and plays aggressively can not yet know their tight style of play and have adapted his game accordingly. Therefore, the two most important terms in poker are – to be attentive.

Do not stop changing your strategy if you win

Once your players have figured out how to play, they are at an advantage. It does not matter how many chips you have, if you keep raising, sooner or later someone will want to see your cards and take you off the table. So you must always vary your game to bring your teammates out of balance.

This is especially important if you have a big stack, because then you have all options open. (small raise, big raise, call and, of course, fold) As your stack shrinks, so do your options and that will sooner or later lead to your retirement. Therefore, it is crucial not to be assessable, as long as you still have a stack, because if your opponents have only recognized how their strategy looks, they have much to lose. It is important that their opponents can not assess you at the poker table. Remember how weird you feel when you make a big call and are not sure of your decision. Transfer this feeling to your opponent through your style of play, or the game will take a turn that you will not like.

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