live tells leveling

    • azimut1983
      azimut1983
      Bronze
      Joined: 12.05.2011 Posts: 479
      I'm sorry if my language won't be fine but english is not my first language. In Italy live poker is not common (it's illegal outside the 4 governament run casinos), so I come here to ask this "live poker" related question as I saw there are many threads on this topic in the english speaking section. I don't have much experience in live games, but living close to Austria gave me the possibility to try cheap tournaments in a live poker room (only 3 experience).

      My question is: How trusty classical poker tells can be? What can be the possibility to find a player that is aware about tells and fakes them instead just not giving?

      As you can realize my experience about tells is very small, my question came as playing a live MTT with cheap buy in I spotted a huge tell by a player that appeared to be a thinking player, it was so huge that I begun to think he read the same book I read and he was acting. For this reason I ignored it and took my decision with this out of the equation. After the game I begun to think I made a mistake in leveling, because I realized that to fake a tell he must have been aware I was able to read them.
      What are your experiences about tells?


      in the spoiler I wrote the description of the hand as my question is general and not specific to that, and also because it's played badly :tongue: .


      I was playing a 30€ buy in tournamet at my table were sitting 5 gamblers (one of them was betting on football games while playing), 2 TAGs and me.

      I've been dealt AQo in CO my stack was around 50BB two limps before me and I raise up to 6BB 3folds 1call 1fold, the pot is around 15BB the flop is K 4 6 with two spades (I had no spades) oppo is one of the TAGs and it's the first time he limp calls in around 40 hands played his stack is more or less like mine, oppo checks I bet 10BB oppo calls, the pot now is 25BB the turn is Q not spades, oppo checks I check (ok that was very weak), the pot is again 25BB the river is a 9 of spades and oppo moves all in overbetting the pot.

      I had some troubles thinking what his limp/call from early position's range could possibly be as it was quite a odd move for him I'd suppose small PP, it was also odd that he pushed all in a set as the only calling hands where flushes. While I was thinking if calling or not he was just gazing upon me, he was exactly like in a picture of Mike Caro's "poker tells" with the caption: "not a threat", the tell was so huge and close to the picture I begun to think it was a false tell, now don't lough please as I told you i had no live experience so tells are something I'm just not used to trust body language.

      I decided to fold as I supposed the times he had a set or a flush where more than 35% thinking a possible preflop limp/call range from early position with the information i had. He showed 53o so my read was correct and he was looser than what I supposed.
  • 5 replies
    • JCSeerup
      JCSeerup
      Bronze
      Joined: 14.12.2010 Posts: 1,039
      I don't think too many player in cheap tournaments are aware of tells. I remeber a tournament I played, I folded, didn't pick up on the pre-flop action, but one guy kept shaking his leg, and looked very excited, and as I thought he had a set.

      But I would be careful about using tells you read about in books until you have picked up on them from the player, some player might just put their hand over their mouth as a reflex in a big pot not because they are weak.

      So my advice is to look for the tells you have read about, but only use them when you have confirmed that a player does a certain thing when he is strong or weak.
    • azimut1983
      azimut1983
      Bronze
      Joined: 12.05.2011 Posts: 479
      Thanks for sharing your experience, I hope other will join the discussion.
      I think there is also difference between body language like your examples, the shaking leg and the hand in front of the mouth, game related tells like looking the chips or double checking cards, and acting tells like the one I described in the spoiler, so one person that tries to intimidate you when week.
      In my opinion an acting tell can be or real or faked on purpose but never casual, even if you are not aware you are giving this tell, just because for many poker is a game based on deception.
      What I was thinking about is that I'm aware of tells but I don't fake them just try to hide them, because if I fake an acting tell means: I'll act weak when I'm weak in order to make my opponent think that I'm strong, now if I'm 100% sure my opponents knows about tells can be a strategy, but if my opponents is anaware of tells will percive me as weak and call. So it's dangerous and for this reason I just try to not give them.
    • JonikoP
      JonikoP
      Bronze
      Joined: 15.05.2010 Posts: 600
      Part of the skill of reading people live is working out which are the real tells, when someone doesn't think they're being watched, and faked tells...
    • pufarine
      pufarine
      Bronze
      Joined: 22.05.2010 Posts: 1,153
      Very nice post. When it comes to reading players, the first thing i do is analize him when not involved in a hand. This way, i try to realize what tipe of person he is, what he does when not playing poker, his mentality about life. Another important aspect for me, is the look ( how he dress, haircut, accesorize etc )
      After doing that it`s easier to make a connection between his actions at the table and his personality, to know if he fakes or he wants to induce you.

      Cheers !
    • azimut1983
      azimut1983
      Bronze
      Joined: 12.05.2011 Posts: 479
      Originally posted by pufarine
      Very nice post. When it comes to reading players, the first thing i do is analize him when not involved in a hand. This way, i try to realize what tipe of person he is, what he does when not playing poker, his mentality about life. Another important aspect for me, is the look ( how he dress, haircut, accesorize etc )
      After doing that it`s easier to make a connection between his actions at the table and his personality, to know if he fakes or he wants to induce you.

      Cheers !
      That's also something I thought after the game, he was quite big and well built not a body builder but someone that spends more than average time in a weight lifting, he had a leather jacket and short hair cut, and I know this are all related to an over aggressive player so it was more probable his acting strong was a way to intimidate and nt to give me a reason to call.
      Anyhow I wanted to understand how my odds for a call based on that kind of tell where.