Basic Poker Strategy


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A guide to Poker strategy for beginner and intermediate players

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Basic Poker Strategy

  1. 1. Basic Poker Strategy
  2. 3. Player’s Poker Style Tight aggressive is the most desirable style. However a player should be able to adjust his style to the demands of the table.
  3. 4. Poker Player Styles
  4. 5. Player Style Needs Flexibility <ul><li>When becoming short stacked a player will need to loosen up </li></ul><ul><li>Playing against very aggressive players, tighten up </li></ul><ul><li>When playing very tight players, loosen up </li></ul><ul><li>On the money bubble, providing chips allow, loosen up </li></ul>
  5. 6. The majority of poker players lose money Players who win consistently Players who lose consistently
  6. 7. Being a winner in poker is not about winning pots But making correct decisions
  7. 8. You don’t go broke folding a hand
  8. 9. Be a wolf
  9. 10. Not a sheep
  10. 11. Wolf Vs Sheep Characteristics <ul><li>Sheep </li></ul><ul><li>Plays too many hands </li></ul><ul><li>Passive when in the hand. </li></ul><ul><li>Plays hands regardless of position. </li></ul><ul><li>Calls often </li></ul><ul><li>Wolf </li></ul><ul><li>Plays fewer hands but committed </li></ul><ul><li>Aggressive when in the hand </li></ul><ul><li>Plays hands according to position. </li></ul><ul><li>Bets or raises often </li></ul>
  11. 12. Calling is passive not aggressive poker If you are making money just calling ..then you are not calling enough
  12. 13. Position <ul><li>4 Types </li></ul><ul><li>Late position (best position) </li></ul><ul><li>Blinds ( good position pre flop but terrible position after the flop) </li></ul><ul><li>Middle position (Exercise caution) </li></ul><ul><li>Early Position ( Worst position) </li></ul>
  13. 14. Position Late position Middle position Early position Blinds
  14. 15. Position Matters The later the position, the more information you have on which to base your decisions
  15. 16. In Poker as in any form of investment, the better informed you are, the better your decision making
  16. 17. Guide to Position and starting hands
  17. 19. Pot odds and outs How to calculate outs and the pot odds required
  18. 20. Outs Outs are, the number of cards left in the deck, that could improve you hand to the winning hand
  19. 21. Example 1
  20. 22. Example 2
  21. 23. Example 3
  22. 24. Pot Odds Once you have calculated your outs, you now have to determine whether you are getting the correct financial return for the risk
  23. 25. Calculating your odds The rule of Two and Four (an easy cheat that skips the complicated math)
  24. 26. Rule of Four (after the Flop) After the flop with two cards to come… Outs x 4 = percentage chance Example After the flop you have a flush draw and an open ended straight draw Outs = 9 cards for the flush and eight cards for the straight 17 x 4 = 68% You are better than 2 to 1 favourite to win
  25. 27. Rule of two (after the turn) After the turn with one card to come… Outs x 2 = percentage chance Example After the turn you still have a flush draw and an open ended straight draw, but now your chances are halved Outs = 9 cards for the flush and eight cards for the straight 17 x 2 = 34% Now you only have a 2 to 1 shot of winning
  26. 28. Calculating pot odds The higher the risk, the better the return should be for the increased exposure to risk
  27. 29. Calculating the risk vs return If you have 4 outs after the flop (rule of four) 4 x 4 =16% Your chances of winning is 1 in 6 or 5 -1 If you are going to call a bet you would need a pot that offers you a rate of return commensurate with the risk. Pot size = 50 chips + bet of 10 chips Total pot = 60 You would be getting the correct return to take the risk 10 chips to possibly win 60 (6-1 you need 5-1) However if the bet in the above example was twenty chips you would not be priced in to call
  28. 30. Money not lost buys as much… as money won Do not chase straights and draws unless you are getting the correct pot odds. Or put another way. Chasing is risky so always ensure the reward is equal or better than the risk
  29. 31. To Bluff or not to Bluff <ul><li>Good players do not bluff as often as you think </li></ul><ul><li>Bluff only if the pot is worth it </li></ul><ul><li>Bluff only when you are in position </li></ul><ul><li>Mostly bluff only if you have outs (semi Bluff) </li></ul><ul><li>Do not bluff into a multi player pot </li></ul><ul><li>Limit your bluffs to one or two a session </li></ul>
  30. 32. Rookie Mistakes <ul><li>Playing to many hands </li></ul><ul><li>Bluffing to often </li></ul><ul><li>Not knowing or not using pot odds </li></ul><ul><li>Getting “married” to a hand </li></ul><ul><li>Overvaluing Marginally good hands </li></ul><ul><li>Playing out of position </li></ul><ul><li>Overplaying an Ace with a low kicker (ace rag) </li></ul>
  31. 33. Expect to play many, many hands before you become a great player &quot;How long does it take to learn poker, Dad?&quot; &quot;All your life, son.&quot; ~Michael Pertwee
  32. 34. Presentation by Gerry Roozendaal Email :