The Final Lap: How To Win Your First Poker Tournament

June 14, 2019 12:11 am


Winning poker tournament is no cakewalk, given the sheer number of people who take part in them. These tournaments have the highest variance in the game because the money is spread across a small group of people. This is why one should always aim to make it to the very last stage rather than be content with making it in the money. Here are some tips that can help you reach the final table of a major tournament,

  • Identify the Rookies at the Table

In the starting levels of the tournaments, you will encounter a wide variety of players at the table. The first step should be to single out the rookies or non-professionals and look to exploit them in order to compile a decent stack. The bad players will play passive, lose out on too many chips, make bad bluffs or calls. Once you know who these players are, it’s time to create a game plan and make your move.  Take advantage of their naivety and build your stack, this will be helpful in the later stages.

  • Enter tournaments you can afford

The reason for this is that entering a tournament too big can affect your mindset. If the spectacle is too large, the pressure can get to you. You should instead play in events where you’ll be playing your best game and the risk-to-reward ratio is ideal. If you want to move up the ladder and participate in events that have higher buy-ins, try to qualify via satellites or get someone to stake you. This eases the pressure and allows you to focus on your strategy. Never play with fear.

  • Be inclined to change your game

When you learn how to play poker, it is important to realize that consistent research and practice are two aspects that must be maintained. Usually players stick to the same plan or strategy when playing cash games. Tournaments, on the other hand, are a whole different ball game. Different factors come into play. Considering this, you should judge the best way to move forward. This is especially true, when you approach the bubble. You might see some players drastically alter their game in this phase. Take note of your opponents’ tactics and adapt.



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