Strategy for Poker Tournaments

posted in Poker

Most people who get into poker start out with tournaments first. The reason for this is because tournaments are the most popular form of poker since people can strike it rich with one big win. If you want to be one of these people who strike it rich one day, then you should follow this advice for each stage of a poker tournament.

Early Stages

The early stages of a poker tournament constitute the first few tables. Overall, your strategy here should be pretty conservative, and you should only get into make big raises when you have the nuts. The key thing here is to avoid busting out trying to double-up like many other players will be doing. You should let these maniac players settle things themselves while you pick your opportunities in the early going.

Middle Stages

After surviving the first few tables, you can open up your play some and start betting out more. In fact, it’s crucial that you start building your chip stack at this point so you can actually compete in the later stages because the blinds will be increasing. You may have to shove all-in a couple of times in an effort to build your stack, but you need to get every single chip in the tournament so you’re going to have to push at some point.

Late Stages

The late stages of a poker tournament begins on the bubble where some players will cash and others won’t. Since everyone wants to earn at least some money, play will tighten up around this point and people will be trying to sneak into the money. If you’ve got a healthy stack at this point, you should look for opportunities to take advantage of short stacks who are desperate for chips. If you’re the short stack, you need to take chances and try to double-up through any halfway decent cards. Once the bubble has burst, revert back to the style of play you used for the middle stages of the tournament.

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