This site uses cookies to improve your browsing experience. By continuing to browse the website, you accept such cookies. For more details and to change your settings, see our Cookie Policy and Privacy Policy. Close


    • muel294
      Joined: 06.06.2009 Posts: 1,225
      Hi all (and Marc :) )

      My real name is Sam and I am 23 and live on the Wirral in the Northwest of England. I have been playing since 16 with friends but only started taking it seriously about 3 years ago. I initially started out my career with SNG's on stars but I soon realized that I didnt enjoy playing this style and it tilted me too much. I then moved to FR BSS on 888 and started to feel more comfortable with this style and strategy. I ran my roll from $150 (consolidated my initial capital and other bankrolls) up to about $1200 playing NL6 and finished at 888 on NL50 :) .

      A friend then told me about a rakeback offer with FTP. So i moved my roll and continued playing NL50 FR on there eventuallu peaking at about $1600. I was getting bored with FR so decided to watch a few videos and read a few articles and try to make the switch to 6-max. However, instead of moving down a few levels whilst I got to grips with 6-max I jumped straight in at NL50 and quickly got busted down to NL25 when I lost about $600. I then decided to quit 6-max a focus back on FR until I could hit NL100 and then maybe try again.

      BUT......BLACK FRIDAY so I have some monies stuck on there. I cant really afford to redeposit back on there to play NL25 because I am poverty stricken :( . Well that and saving for a trip to australia to see some family. Also, I found 888 to be very soft and I dont know whether that has a factor in me moving up the limits and giving me a feeling of beeing a good player when in fact my game is probably still littered with leaks. I of course understand that with poker strategy it is a continuing learning process but I feel I will benefit greatly from starting again from NL2 and working my way up again. Perhaps it will force me to improve my game.

      An additional aim for me is to get staking should the FTP fiasco go on for longer than expected and I wish to move up to limits without grinding it all the way, but thats just lazy I guess so I will try to avoid doing that.

      I wouldn't really say I am a beginner, but as I mention in my first blog post I lack a lot of motivation and discipline :(

      Hopefully this beginner school will focus my learning. My problem is whenever I have free time, all I want to when I dedicate time to poker is PLAY! Hopefully this class orientated design will focus me.

      Another problem I have with learning is the rentention of information I read. It takes many repetitions for me before I completely understand and more importantly remember the information!!! :s_mad:
  • 28 replies
    • MarcPS
      Joined: 09.11.2010 Posts: 1,077
      Welcome to the NL Beginners' Course, Muel294.

      Why don't you tell us a little more about yourself?
    • muel294
      Joined: 06.06.2009 Posts: 1,225
      Homework 22/08/11

      1) What is your motivation for playing poker

      :spade: because I love it - I never think "oh no, got to play poker again" I know making money should be number one on the list but for me I never would have got into poker in the first place if I didn't enjoy the game itself. Whoever invented the game needs a medal. Don't get me wrong though I am not a recreational player

      :heart: to make money - It is not about egos for me. I am not so proud that when I get my ass kicked by someone that I cannot just up and leave, or if I am not in the right mindset or tilting, although sometimes its hard to acknowledge that you are tilting in the first place. You may not be raging and the air may not be blue but you might be playing too passively or scared, basically just not your A-game.

      I also dont earn a lot of money so playing poker can supplement my income sometimes. If I am going to cash-out whilst building my roll I will take my profit over a set period, half it and half comes out and half stays in. Obviously, live winnings don't contribute to my BR so that always helps.

      2) What are your weaknesses when playing poker?

      :spade: not evaluating my play after sessions

      :heart: no / poor game selection

      :diamond: playing with too many distractions and often getting interrupted - namely by family, girlfriend, cats, doors, phones, internet open, watching unrelated videos, tv

      :club: I am sure I c-bet and 3bet in some bad spots

      :spade: I have trouble maxing value and am sometimes too afraid to go broke in certain spots where maybe I should, however I am playing 25 BI rule and taking shot at 20 so I dont think that is a factor. I feel that if I have a more conservative BRM I tend to subconsciously pay too loose? I guess I am worried I am being a NIT or TP

      3) What does it mean to play tight-aggressive?

      I think that to be tight-aggressive means to carefully select hands to play pre-flop and then tending play them aggressively by betting and raising with them postflop if possible. Obviously this is not always possible. There are a number of variables that may dictate whether betting or raising is not the best line, i.e:

      :spade: against certain opponents
      :spade: on certain flops
      :spade: given preflop action

      The reason why this strategy is almost always the best approach is because opponents at lower limits tend to:

      :heart: play too many hands
      :heart: play them passively
      :heart: play out of position

      therefore we can exploit this by:

      :diamond: playing fewer, more carefully selected hands
      :diamond: playing them aggressively
      :diamond: playing in position

      I believe another key reason why playing TAG is the best approach is because the " aggression principle " gives us more ways to win the hand

      By checking and calling we can only win by having the best hand at showdown.

      By betting and raising we can win by:

      :club: having the best hand at showdown
      :club: better hands fold and we win uncontested
      :club: value/protection - we protect what we believe to be the best hand, get value from draws or we have the best hand and win uncontested
    • veriz
      Joined: 20.07.2008 Posts: 65,504
      Hello muel294,

      Not evaluating your post-session is actually really bad. Since how you want to become better if you don't even fix your own leaks? You really have to find a way how you can force yourself. Say always to yourself or force yourself at the beginning for example at least overview few hands like just most winning/loosing ones.

      The higher you get the more important becomes game selection. Without picking a good table you wont make a huge winrate. Since only playing against regulars ain't the best way out. Although on lower limits there is not such a problem. But still it's important to have table selection.

      Easiest way to not get distracted, just try always remind yourself. I have to close the browser(or whatever you have as distraction)! I am trying to win money here and make something for living not watching something on youtube(etc). This might work for some. And train that on every session and at some spot you will get used to that. For yourself you might even have to find other way.

      Most of the other weakness you wrote can easily be fixed with you posting hands. We will start writing feedback to your play. And usually negative feedback will put you into thinking phase and trying to fix all those leaks. It's almost the same as you loose money, you will remember it more than winning part.

      Good luck in the Course. Earned your first points.
    • muel294
      Joined: 06.06.2009 Posts: 1,225
      thanks veriz!

      as always helpful and encouraging. I will try to implement your advice.
    • muel294
      Joined: 06.06.2009 Posts: 1,225
      Question 1

      What do you think you could play differently than how it is in the BSS Starting Hands Chart, and why? (Are there any hands you would play differently? Do you have a problem or question about how a specific hand or hands are to be played?)

      Due to the fact that the SHC tends to generalise about certain situations there are many areas that could be up for discussion. It does not take into account:

      :spade: Position
      :spade: Stack size
      :spade: History
      :spade: opponent type

      or a number of other variables that could influence our preflop decision.

      Here is an example of something that might be played differently to the SHC.

      eg we have AQ on the BU and a player opens from the CO.

      the starting hand would recommend a fold here since we dont like to play passively and without the intiative especially vs an opponent that we dont have a lot of information on.

      But we might consider a call or a 3b as having a higher EV if for example the villain:

      :heart: Opens too many hands from LP - we expect to be ahead or dominate his rannge very often
      :heart: plays loose fit or fold postflop - we can often win the pot postflop because he will often not c-bet we he does not hit, which will happen fairly frequently
      :heart: He will call 3b's fairly wide and with dominated hands - eg AT/AJ (if he is really loose maybe even weaker)

      Question 2
      Post a hand for evaluation where you have a question regarding your pre-flop play.

      I have two eg's hope you don't mind:

      :spade: AJs 3b or not
      :spade: 45s PFR

      Question 3
      What is the equity of AKo against the top 5% range? 5% means: 88+, AJs+, KQs, AKo?

             Equity     Win     Tie
      UTG    53.68%  45.27%   8.41% { 88+, AJs+, KQs, AKo }
      BU     46.32%  37.91%   8.41% { AKo }
    • veriz
      Joined: 20.07.2008 Posts: 65,504
      Good job! Homework #2 Done!

      I see you already have a certain overview how you should play your hands. Also most likely ain't even using that much of the chart but rather your own game. That's very good.

      Also of course very nice analyze of the players. Keep going such a work!

      Hopefully you enjoy the School so far. Some more points earned.
    • muel294
      Joined: 06.06.2009 Posts: 1,225
      Thanks veriz. I am more comfortable using the advanced open raising charts for FR but I have already uncovered and hopefully fixed a leak with the help of the beginners course. I still have much to learn from the fundamentals.

      Enjoying it very much so far.
    • veriz
      Joined: 20.07.2008 Posts: 65,504
      Originally posted by muel294
      Thanks veriz. I am more comfortable using the advanced open raising charts for FR but I have already uncovered and hopefully fixed a leak with the help of the beginners course. I still have much to learn from the fundamentals.

      Enjoying it very much so far.
      Lets hope we will be able to make it even more enjoyable. :)
    • muel294
      Joined: 06.06.2009 Posts: 1,225
      Question 1

      Question 1: You are holding K :spade: Q :spade: . What is your preflop equity against an opponent who has 3 :diamond: 3 :club: ? How does the equity change on the following flop: J :spade: 5 :diamond: 3 :spade: ?


             Equity     Win     Tie
      UTG    50.78%  50.40%   0.38% { KsQs }
      UTG+1  49.22%  48.84%   0.38% { 3d3c }


      Board: J:spade: 5:diamond: 3:spade:
             Equity     Win     Tie
      UTG    26.46%  26.46%   0.00% { KsQs }
      UTG+1  73.54%  73.54%   0.00% { 3d3c }

      Question 2: What would you do in the following hand? (Remember that it is important to explain your reasons, simply posting "Fold" or "Call" is not sufficient)

      No-Limit hold'em $2 (9 handed)
      Players and stacks:
      UTG: $2.00
      UTG+1: $2.08
      MP1: $1.92
      MP2: $1.00
      MP3: $3.06
      CO: (Hero) $2.08
      BU: $2.00
      SB: $2.00
      BB: $1.24

      Preflop: Hero is CO with A :club: J :club: .
      5 folds, Hero raises to $0.08, BU calls $0.08, SB folds, BB calls $0.06.
      Flop: ($0.25) 263 (3 players)
      BB checks, Hero checks, BU checks.
      Turn: ($0.25) 5 (3 players)
      BB checks, Hero bets $0.22, BU raises to $0.44, BB folds, Hero...?

      I would call the turn raise as we are closing the action and we are getting the correct expressed odds to call with our flush draw:

      52 - 6 (flop and turn community cards and our hole cards) = 46
      46 - 9 (outs for NFD) = num of remaining cards that do not help us = 37

      37 dont help us and 9 that do = 37:9 = 4.1:1 = our chance of improving to the best hand

      Pot odds
      = .25+.22+.44 = .91/.22 = 4.1:1

      as you can see we are getting exactly the right price to call this bet to make it about break even long run. However we obviously expect to win more if we hit so we can profitably call this bet here in the long run.

      Question 3: Postflop play

      A9o NL6 FR - 2nd Barrell
    • veriz
      Joined: 20.07.2008 Posts: 65,504
      Good job! Homework #3 Done!

      About Question #3:
      There are few situations on turn:
      a) If we take just odds for the FD and we take into account that all our odds are clean. There which means:
      Total Pot = $0,91 ; We have to Call = $0,22 -> According to that it means we are getting ~4,16:1 odds. For flushdraw we would need 4:1. Which tells us that we are getting perfect odds.
      b) If we consider the opponent having sets here:
      Which means we have to discount outs, for example 6 and also 3. Which means we have 7 clean outs. Which means that we need 6:1 odds. That tells us that we need ~$0,41 on river to make it profitable. If we expect the opponent being loose enough and being able to pay us no-matter what then we can do the Call here properly.
      c) We might even have overcards as outs or even 4 as a out:
      Although this kind of situation ain't that likely. I'd rather discount that one and either pick a) or b). Most likely towards Call.

      You are doing great progress! Some more points earned.
    • muel294
      Joined: 06.06.2009 Posts: 1,225
      Question 1: Post a hand for evaluation where you have the initiative post-flop.

      QQ NL6 c-bet

      Question 2: AJo NL2 member hand evaluation

      Question 3: You are on the flop with K :spade: Q :diamond: . The board cards are J :spade: , 9 :club: , 8 :heart: , and your opponent holds 7 :club: 7 :heart: . What is your equity in this spot?

      Board: J:spade: 9:club: 8:heart:
             Equity     Win     Tie
      UTG    41.41%  41.41%   0.00% { KsQd }
      UTG+1  58.59%  58.59%   0.00% { 7h7c }
    • veriz
      Joined: 20.07.2008 Posts: 65,504
      Good job! Homework #4 Done!

      This weeks homework was a bit easier. But the idea of that is to help you go through last weeks stuff if you didn't go through everything. Or either way maybe even read some more articles, watch some videos and of course attend in the coaching. What will also help for your game is the evaluation part of other members hands and of course posting your own hands.

      Hopefully this wasn't too easy homework for you. Some more points earned.
    • muel294
      Joined: 06.06.2009 Posts: 1,225
      Sorry about the recent hiatus from these lessons, I will be back on track now and I am committed to catching up before the final exam. Anwyay here's lesson 5's homework:

      Question 1: Hand where I have based my decision on opponent stats:
      AQs vs BB 3b

      this hand has already been evaluated but I thought it woulld still be suitable as I have based my decision on opponents' 3b% stats


      NL5 FD


      :spade: First of all I would categorize SB as a TAG and BB as LP.

      :spade: On the turn I dont think the SB always has to have a made flush here. He could easily have JX or some :diamond: draw. Also with the LP player just calling I wouldn't put him on a made hand like a flush, as even LP players would start to get aggressive here IMO, more likely he has some TX JX or :diamond: draw himself.

      :spade: Therefore I would play raise/broke on the turn and make it $4 to go, with the intention of going broke against a 3bet. This way I would expect value from ,an unlikely 3X, FD's and TP. I think we would miss a lot of value by playing this made hand passively.

      :spade: In case of a call my plan would be to get all in on a safe river or get to showdown cheaply / check fold depending on the action if the river come J, T, 3 or :diamond:


      :spade: Firstly I would categorize BU as being LAG given his stats. However, we do not know his 3b% therefore you cannot be sure how loosely he 3b's compared to how loosley he limps or raise preflop.

      Just becuase he has a higher VPIP and PFR does not necessarily mean he will 3b our open lighter.

      However, I will assume he will 3b it lighter than normal since we called a 3b OOP. :s_confused:

      So I think we have 2 plausible options here b/f, or c/c:

      :heart: if we bet/fold, check/fold turn unimproved we would protect our hand against any overcards that he might have 3b us with and it will allow us to play the hand more easily. If he raises we are beat, even a player with these stats is hardly ever bluff raising us in a 3b pot

      :heart: check/call would allow him to c-bet dry board, which he will do often on this board texture. We are either way ahead of AX that 3b us or way behind overpairs. Against an aggressive opponent on a dry board this is a good opportunity to play this way but if A/K/Q shows up on the turn then the hand will be too difficult to play OOP in a big 3b pot vs continued aggression. Therefore we would have to check/fold the turn in this instance.

      I think c/c flop, reevaluate turn would be my line here.
    • veriz
      Joined: 20.07.2008 Posts: 65,504
      What about homework #5 3&4 questions? :)
    • muel294
      Joined: 06.06.2009 Posts: 1,225
      They are on the way i just tried to finish lesson 5 questions before going to work but couldnt complete them in time.

      Stay tuned :p
    • veriz
      Joined: 20.07.2008 Posts: 65,504
      Good Job! Homework #5 Done!

      About Task #3
      It's a very close decision: does protection or pot control weigh heavier here? Do you want to protect against hands like 3x or A:dx and K:dx? Or do you want to control the pot size and try to induce a bluff on the river in case there is no T, no J and no additional ?

      Raise/fold is out of question - with the given pot size and the good made hand you have, it can't even be considered.

      In case you decide to go broke, you can't really be blamed either. It's not a sign of weakness that the rather tight small blind decides to bet into two people here, though. I would say a call is to be slightly favored, while the many outs against you are annoying. The big blind who calls rather loosely speaks in favor of a raise/broke again. Both options are finally considered equal, which shows - all things considered - how close and full of variance these spots really are.

      About Task #4
      You've called pre-flop and then hit a good board. You basically have two choices now: either you assume that your opponent will go broke loosely or puts you on a bluff often and you thus check/raise - or you play check/call in the spirit of way ahead / way behind. The problem with the latter is that there are a lot of cards you don't want to see in the later course of the hand. All in all, it depends on your balancing as both lines make sense under certain circumstances.

      A check/fold would be really pointless, of course. It's hard to say whether you should donk-bet here; donk/fold can be discarded as that would turn your hand into a pure bluff and your opponent would interpret this as weakness and start raising you out of flops with hands like AK/AQ/air. So, if you want to donk-bet, it has to be a donk/3-bet.

      Good luck on tables and with the School. Some more points earned.
    • muel294
      Joined: 06.06.2009 Posts: 1,225
      Hi all,

      I have a question about the content of lesson 6, article 1 : After the flop, No-one has the initiative

      On page 3, under the heading How do you play after the flop? it says the following

      "The only exception to this rule is made when the SB bets. If he doesn't and you have a made hand, you have two choices: Bet or fold."

      if the SB doesn't bet and the action is on us surely our options are check/bet?

      or does it mean to say w/ the SB DOES bet we can either call/fold?

      surely this is a mistake?

      or does it mean to say bet or check/fold?
    • veriz
      Joined: 20.07.2008 Posts: 65,504
      Most likely it means. If you don't have a made hand then Fold it(if there is some action to you), if you have a made hand then Bet it yourself.
    • muel294
      Joined: 06.06.2009 Posts: 1,225
      Question 1: Post a hand for evaluation where you have either a) freeplay, b) slowplay, or c) multi-way pot situation. (Post your hand in the Hand evaluation board, and provide a link to your hand in your private thread.)

      C) MWP - NL10 FR JTo

      Question 2: Evaluate one of the hands submitted by other members. (Choose a hand from the Hand evaluation board and post your own evaluation in the thread. Post a link to the hand you have evaluated in your private thread. You can evaluate as many hands as you want, but try to choose hands not yet evaluated by other users first.)

      Desertstingray - NL2 22 set, call on the river?

      Question 3: Consider the following situation:
      $25 NL Hold'em (10 handed)

      Stacks & Stats
      UTG ($25)
      UTG+1 ($25) rock
      UTG+2 ($25)
      MP1 ($25)
      MP2 ($25) LAG
      MP3 ($25) maniac
      CO ($25)
      Hero BU ($25)
      SB ($25)
      BB ($25) calling station

      Preflop: Hero is BU with Q :heart: , J :heart:
      5 folds, MP3 raises $1.00, CO calls $1.00, Hero calls $1.00, 1 fold, BB calls $1.00

      Flop: ($4.10) 3 :heart: , J :club: , A :diamond: (4 players)
      BB checks, MP3 checks, CO checks, Hero checks

      Turn: ($4.10) Q :club: (4 players)
      BB bets $2.05, 2 folds, Hero...?

      What action would you take, and why?

      I think a fold is out of the question. We are IP we a fairly strong made hand although its relative strength is a little diminished due to the board texture and it being a multiway pot. So its either call turn, call river up to 1/2 pot or check behind if he checks or raise/fold turn . I also dont think a call st or LP player would bet/3b with a worse hand here so I'm also ruling out raise/call as an option.

      I think I would just call turn and call a up to 1/2 pot bet on any non 9,T, K or :club: . Obviously the BB can have a very wide range here anything from TP, random 2pr's sets , straights, gutshots, FD's and combo draws. Whilst raising the turn may get worse hands to call I think it would mostly fold out worse and isolate us against better. It would also inflate the pot on the river obliging us to make a tough river call with a marginal hand for a big pot. There are also many horrible river cards for us.

      All in all I think our primary concern is pot control. Therefore I would call turn call up to 1/2 pot on any safe river.
    • 1
    • 2