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

FL Heads-Up

    • ArturW
      Joined: 19.05.2008 Posts: 4

      I already played a lot of full-ring FL and now I'm switching to SH. Much more fun, and quite easier than FR when limits get higher.

      My new trouble is: what adjustments should be made when I'm playing HU? I couldn't find any article about it in the strategy section.

      So far I'm doing like this:
      1) raising from the button with the hands in the SB column of the ORC chart;
      2) defending the blinds with the hands that are in the last column (raise from SB) of the BB defense chart;
      3) playing a little more aggressively than I would if there were 3+ ppl in the table and it got HU only after the flop;
      4) after a few hands, I make adjustments based of the leaks of my opponent. If he folds too much, I'm willing to bet more; if he is too aggressive, I'll call with weaker hands, and so on.

      So far, I realized I can win easily from opponents with obvious leaks, but I'm having trouble beating the tougher ones. Any suggestions? Literature recommendations (books, articles) would be appreciated... :)

      Thanks a lot,
  • 9 replies
    • hova
      Joined: 09.11.2006 Posts: 3,679
      There are many approaches to FL HU, and it's totally player dependent. You have to forget charts when playing HU.
      Basically the most +ev style is defending 90% and opening 100% BU. You can choose to play a never 3bet preflop but c/r more flops style or 3bet alot of your range etc. You cannot learn FL HU from books, best is by playing shorthanded FL and more and more learn the dynamics by experience. If you dive right into HU you are going to make bad mistakes and also Rake is going to eat you alive below 5/10.
    • CoreySteel
      Joined: 25.10.2006 Posts: 3,366
      Are you talking HU on a flop?
      You have great article about this:
    • ArturW
      Joined: 19.05.2008 Posts: 4

      I'm talking about HU before the flop, i.e. only me and my opponent in the table.

      But this article is one of my favorites, and certainly is worth reading again! :)

    • ArturW
      Joined: 19.05.2008 Posts: 4
      Hi again,

      It's been a while since the last post in this thread, so I would like to thank hova and CoreySteel for replying to my post.

      I don't mean to be rude, since hova took his time to help me, but I actually don't agree very much with his view on HU play. There might be many ways to play, but only a few (probably only one) will be optimal, in the game-theoretical sense.

      In fact, HU is probably the easiest situation to develop such an optimal strategy. That's why it's so hard (even for the very best players) to beat a well-developed artificial intelligence bot (like Polaris) in HU play.

      Another example of this is using the SAGE system to play tournaments when you are HU and the blinds are high. It's simply a way to make it (almost) impossible for your opponent to increase his expectation by changing his strategy unilaterally. That means that, at worst, you and your opponent will reach a Nash Equilibrium (no one will play better than the other). At best, you will have a positive expectation.

      The problem is that saying is easy, but putting it in practice is much tougher...

      If someone still has any suggestion, it will be appreciated. I'm now thinking about purchasing Poki Poker Academy to practice HU play...

      Thanks :)
    • hova
      Joined: 09.11.2006 Posts: 3,679
      You actually might be correct. I wish someone with experience like Korn would answer in this thread, but unfortunately he is too busy.
    • Masqb
      Joined: 23.02.2008 Posts: 1,753
      HU is all about adjusting to your oppent. You can play with 70 VPIP or 95 VPIP it doesn't matter so much.
    • hova
      Joined: 09.11.2006 Posts: 3,679
      jediael: dont play other mathematicians =9
      Quaternion: heh ok
      Quaternion: i'll let you have the table then
      Quaternion: gl
      jediael: would you be interested in writing strategy content
      jediael: for
      Quaternion: nope, sorry
      Quaternion: ty for the offer though
      Quaternion: just too busy already
      Quaternion: and can't see how you could make it worth my while
      jediael: making money playing poker
      Quaternion: yeah and I still have a real job too
      jediael: what do you do?
      Quaternion: professor, i teach computer science
      jediael: thopught so
      jediael: bill chen?
      Quaternion: nope
      jediael: ah no he plays under another name
      jediael: ferguson?
      Quaternion: yeah usually "Bill Chen"
      Quaternion: heh, no
      Quaternion: but two minutes with Google
      Quaternion: would tell you everything
      Quaternion: try "Quaternion poker"
      jediael: hm apparently I suck at google =)
      Quaternion: the first six results on my screen when I search that
      Quaternion: are all about me, but don't give full info
      Quaternion: number 7 is some spurious thing
      jediael: yes
      Quaternion: number 8 gives it all away
      jediael: the blog?
      Quaternion: yes, and the profile from the blog
      jediael: ah got it
      jediael: impressive
      jediael: so you do lots of CS work relating to poker?
      Quaternion: nah, a few simulations and things
      Quaternion: but more math, solving toy games
      Quaternion: like stuff Bill & Jerrod did in "Mathematics of Poker"
      jediael: i used to believe in finding equilibria
      jediael: now i dont any more
      jediael: cause of the natural fluctuations in style
      jediael: that *every* player has
      jediael: I wish bill and jerrod had focused more on the exploitative part
      jediael: exploiting patterns in particular
      Quaternion: i'm more on the non-exploitive side
      Quaternion: i just play right, if they're messing up
      Quaternion: I'll get it eventually...
      jediael: I noticed
      jediael: that's why I dont like to play you
      jediael: ^^
      jediael: if you play like that
      jediael: i will have to play like that
      jediael: so we might just start flipping coins
      jediael: though I think if that's your focus you are better in it than I am

      jediael = Korn
    • Yoghi
      Joined: 10.09.2007 Posts: 14,387
      A german with good english :tongue:

      And to add something to this thread:

      - Play against your opponent's range, not his actual cards
      - Counting combos is good
      - Protecting your hand barely ever matters in small pots
      - Steal the blinds more from the BTN, then steal them even more
      - Make lots of big pots HU where your opponent plays fit or fold
      - Raising for showdown is usually complete nonsense
      - Semi-bluff more, then semi-bluff even more
      - Understanding how exploitative play is about strategy vs strategy in a spot, not hand vs hand
      By TheBryce
    • ArturW
      Joined: 19.05.2008 Posts: 4
      Thanks a lot, guys...
      I liked every suggestion. I really needed some guidance. It looks like only experience will make me a good HU player... there are no shortcuts.

      Now I'll read The Mathematics of Poker - I have the book, but didn't read it yet (shame). I'll also purchase Poki's Poker Academy right now and practice a lot...

      See you in the tables :)