• July 30, 2021

Basic Strategy: Essentials of Winning

Any poker player who approaches the game without at least a basic knowledge of strategy would do better playing the lottery. While odds are that you will win from time to time, knowledge of how to play the game will result in more direct control over your destiny as a poker player.
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The goal for those who play poker is to win. Granted, you want to enjoy playing the game, but your main objective is to win. It is for this reason that you should keep being aggressive, but selective in the way you play the game. Any good player knows this, and every good poker book will emphasize this.
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Consider this: One player who calls every hand down to the bitter end unless they see that they are beaten on board. His or her opponents would soon learn that it will never pay to bluff this person. As a result, every time an opponent had the slightest edge, they’re going to bet since they know he or she will call with the worst of it. This player would soon be relieved of their bankroll. It’s clear that selectivity is a virtue in this game, so what about aggression?
The Passive Player
The passive player seldom bets until they feel like they have an unbeatable hand. Obviously, for this reason they won’t be heard from very often. It stands to reason that more often than not you will have hands where you think, but are not absolutely certain that you have a hand that you can win with. What you must consider is that there are more cards to come, so despite the fact that you might be certain that you have the best hand you will temper your enthusiasm knowing you have unknown cards in the deck. Unfortunately, this happens to players when they least expect it. Don’t lead your opponents on. If they think they have to draw to beat you, they will end up paying a high price.
Suffer the Weak Fish
It pays to understand what you are doing at poker, especially when you consider that most games are won not by your brilliance, but by the ineptitude of others. Watch for the bad player since they offer the biggest target. They do things like calling with weak hands and other such plays. They like that because they think winning poker is like throwing a Hail Mary pass in football. These folks would do better with the lottery.
You know better.
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Steve Carr

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