So what is the basic strategy for being successful in single-table poker tournament play. Always remember that the goal is to win a prize. While other aspects of the game may not be as important as winning a tournament, you still need to win a prize in a game of poker.
In a Texas Holdem poker tournament the first thing you have to do is to create a tight aggressive play, or a loose aggressive play. One of the biggest mistakes made in poker tournaments by beginning poker players is playing in too many pots. Try to avoid playing in too many pots, as it will usually cost you more than your winnings.
In the early stages an intermediate poker player should stick to the strategy that worked in the early stages of the tournament until now. This means that the strategy you are using should allow you to protect your chip stack and to increase it. If you are in an early position then you have to make a decision whether to raise or just call. If you raise then you will either need to have a better hand than your opponents or else just call. If you know that your hand is going to be better than the opponents then you can call but you should be a bit careful as you don’t know what cards the opponents will have.
Once you are in the middle of the tournament play a bit more aggressively, but still keep in mind that you need to play only the best cards available. Once you reach the middle rounds and if you have developed a good chip stack then you can try to get in some more pots.
In the later stages play more hands, but keep in mind that you need to protect your blind and play only good hands. In the middle rounds play depending on your chip stack, but you should try to get in as many pots as possible.
In the first hours after starting the tournament you should steal blinds whenever possible. Blind stealing is very important as it enables you to build your chip stack in the early stages of the tournament. In the early stages play tight, preferably playing only premium hands such as Aces, Kings or Queens. In the middle rounds raise pre-flop with hands such as Aces, Kings or Queens, but be wary of re-raise as this can cost you your chip stack.
As the blinds raise you can take a more conservative approach and play just premium hands such as Aces, Kings or Queens, where you raise pre-flop. If you miss the flop you can continue betting or folding.
Once you have developed a healthy chip stack you can take a more aggressive approach in the middle rounds. Initially, you can try to steal the blinds from the button, but if they don’t fold make a large raise and try to take the blinds away from the blinds. Once you have a good hand then you can try to go all-in to steal the blinds.
Ratchet up the raise when using this strategy and try to ensure that you have a very good hand before increasing the amount you raise pre-flop.
Be willing to go all-in with some hands and be tight with others. Try to play a good hand such as a semi-bluff when your stack is low, and you can just keep betting the flop hoping that players with average hands will call.
Play with a loose aggressive strategy and steal the blinds whenever possible. Raise pre-flop with a wider range of hands and try to take down the blinds.
Cary the early rounds and bide your time before gambling with a premium hand. When you get a good hand pre-flop you should take it to the flop with a variety of other players. This will enable you to enter the pot cheaply with a lot more players than if you called a pre-flop raise when you were a bit more cautious.
Play a good hand and be willing to go all-in with it. When you have a premium hand and you are certain there will be no re-raises, go all-in.
With only a few players in the hand, you can seize the opportunity to take the blinds with a bet on the flop when no one else has bet.
The best strategy for the first few rounds of a poker tournament is to play tight and wait for a premium hand.
The idea is that you will not be able to get a good hand until the later rounds when there should be less players as the blinds have risen.
That is why you shouldn’t gamble early with a premium hand. In the earlier rounds your opponents may call your big raise with a lot of hands.
When you get a premium hand, you should bet out. Then, you can either pick up the blinds or any raises made by your opponents.