SNG Beginner strategy

    • Noname81
      Noname81
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      Joined: 31.12.2013 Posts: 136
      Hi I had a question about the sng beginner strategy. I find a lot of the sng that I play end up in a push fold situation when following the chart. I have had some success with using just the chart.I am wondering if I should be loosening up a bit. Maybe stealing some more blinds or something like that. I have played about 100 games now and have noticed being short and having to push with 12 bb a lot. sometimes I win the flip other times I don't. I am fine with this as long as this is how these games are played.


      Thanks
  • 11 replies
    • RasTweet
      RasTweet
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      Joined: 26.12.2009 Posts: 4,553
      Hey Noname81

      I'm not a SnG player just so you know.

      For cash game players we also have a chart though. These charts are just guidelines for beginning players and you don't HAVE to follow them. The thing is beginners really don't know what hands to play and what hands are good and what not. If you get better you can start expanding your range. If you know that you can open a hand +EV in a certain position but it's not on the chart you can always open them!

      Just make sure you're not going to open to many hands at once. Just slowly open up your range, review the hands you opened and make sure you are doing the right thing.

      I hope that answered your question a little bit?

      Regards

      RasTweet
    • Noname81
      Noname81
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      Joined: 31.12.2013 Posts: 136
      Yes
      Thanks
    • pauln
      pauln
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      Joined: 15.03.2010 Posts: 191
      There is a lot of shoving towards the end of an SNG, this is one of the big differences from cash.

      At 12bb those charts are going to be based on the nash equilibrium. The equilibrium is manifested as the pushing and calling range for a given situation whereby neither side can improve and thus both will be break even over a large enough sample. This is an unexploitable range, note unexploitable is different from optimal.

      For example on the bubble, if I'm shoving on another stack somewhat smaller than me.. the nash pushing range may be 70% and the nash calling range may be 15%. If I shove 70% and he calls 15% neither of us are exploitable and we'd be break even over a large enough sample. If I shove 70% but my opponent calls only 5% we start to make money (as he deviates from nash).

      We could stick to shoving 70% but the exploitative response to him calling 5% would be to increase our range to shoving 100% (any two cards).

      You say that sometimes you flip sometimes you don't.. you're forgetting all the times you pick up the blinds (worth more than 10% of your stack at 12bb) the % of the time your opponent folds and you pick up the blinds is your fold equity and this is built into the correct shoving ranges.


      I understand this might be somewhat beyond the scope of the basic SNG strategy but in my opinion if you don't have a fundamental understanding of why you're shoving you will make mistakes in the long run.

      I've added you on the community tool and am happy to answer any questions you have.
    • RasTweet
      RasTweet
      Bronze
      Joined: 26.12.2009 Posts: 4,553
      Originally posted by pauln
      There is a lot of shoving towards the end of an SNG, this is one of the big differences from cash.

      At 12bb those charts are going to be based on the nash equilibrium. The equilibrium is manifested as the pushing and calling range for a given situation whereby neither side can improve and thus both will be break even over a large enough sample. This is an unexploitable range, note unexploitable is different from optimal.

      For example on the bubble, if I'm shoving on another stack somewhat smaller than me.. the nash pushing range may be 70% and the nash calling range may be 15%. If I shove 70% and he calls 15% neither of us are exploitable and we'd be break even over a large enough sample. If I shove 70% but my opponent calls only 5% we start to make money (as he deviates from nash).

      We could stick to shoving 70% but the exploitative response to him calling 5% would be to increase our range to shoving 100% (any two cards).

      You say that sometimes you flip sometimes you don't.. you're forgetting all the times you pick up the blinds (worth more than 10% of your stack at 12bb) the % of the time your opponent folds and you pick up the blinds is your fold equity and this is built into the correct shoving ranges.


      I understand this might be somewhat beyond the scope of the basic SNG strategy but in my opinion if you don't have a fundamental understanding of why you're shoving you will make mistakes in the long run.

      I've added you on the community tool and am happy to answer any questions you have.
      Waw :f_love:
    • Harrier88
      Harrier88
      Bronze
      Joined: 01.05.2012 Posts: 1,971
      Originally posted by Noname81
      I find a lot of the sng that I play end up in a push fold situation when following the chart. I have had some success with using just the chart.I am wondering if I should be loosening up a bit. Maybe stealing some more blinds or something like that. I have played about 100 games now and have noticed being short and having to push with 12 bb a lot. sometimes I win the flip other times I don't. I am fine with this as long as this is how these games are played.
      What you describe seems perfectly normal to me. The early phase of a single table SNG is all about survival, the push or fold phase is pretty much where the "real" game starts.

      Playing aggressively and trying accumulate chips early on can be a good strategy for MTTs and some MTSNGs. In single table SNGs, however, you're supposed to play tight early on and avoid marginal situations. A chip lost is worth more than a chip won.

      Then again, I have started to learn how to play SNGs years ago and haven't really played them a lot recently, so maybe my ideas are a little outdated by now. Just correct me if I'm wrong.
    • ferrye
      ferrye
      Bronze
      Joined: 15.10.2008 Posts: 40
      What I have noticed is that about 80-90% players are extremely tight in the early phase which I personally think this is exploitable.

      What I do is to wait a few hands and see if there is any fish in there and try to isolate him to play against me and double up that way.
      Avoid playing big pots with tight players, don't bluff loose players and really try to narrow down your opponents range. Do not play trash!
      This kind of play takes some skill which comes over time. After 1000 Sit n Goes you know what I'm trying to say :)

      Sometimes (usually) there is no fish at all, every player has a VP of 5-15% and just waiting to get short stacked and then go all-in and hope for double up. I don't like this strategy at all, since you are facing too many coin flips if you wish to fight for victory.
    • pauln
      pauln
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      Joined: 15.03.2010 Posts: 191
      Originally posted by ferrye
      What I have noticed is that about 80-90% players are extremely tight in the early phase which I personally think this is exploitable.

      What I do is to wait a few hands and see if there is any fish in there and try to isolate him to play against me and double up that way.
      Avoid playing big pots with tight players, don't bluff loose players and really try to narrow down your opponents range. Do not play trash!
      This kind of play takes some skill which comes over time. After 1000 Sit n Goes you know what I'm trying to say :)

      Sometimes (usually) there is no fish at all, every player has a VP of 5-15% and just waiting to get short stacked and then go all-in and hope for double up. I don't like this strategy at all, since you are facing too many coin flips if you wish to fight for victory.
      This is pretty much spot on.

      I'd add that in the mid stages you want to be stealing blinds quite aggressively from the button/cutoff even the hijack depending on the 2 players to your right.

      This is also a way to counter the problem super tight tables. In addition good table selection should allow you to avoid tables full of tight regs. Tight recreational players are perhaps easier to exploit than loose ones.
    • Noname81
      Noname81
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      Joined: 31.12.2013 Posts: 136
      I am beginning to see that ranges are very important. I had a question in regards to ranges. I am running poker track and can see the stats VPIP and PFL. What I cant see is the shoving ranges which is an important to know when calling a shove according to the ICM. How do I construct these ranges based on the stats I can get from poker tracker. For example A players stats are 40/20. He shoved and I now need to make a decision to call or not call based on his shoving ranges and ICM. How do I figure out his shoving range.

      Thanks
    • pauln
      pauln
      Bronze
      Joined: 15.03.2010 Posts: 191
      Originally posted by Noname81
      I am beginning to see that ranges are very important. I had a question in regards to ranges. I am running poker track and can see the stats VPIP and PFL. What I cant see is the shoving ranges which is an important to know when calling a shove according to the ICM. How do I construct these ranges based on the stats I can get from poker tracker. For example A players stats are 40/20. He shoved and I now need to make a decision to call or not call based on his shoving ranges and ICM. How do I figure out his shoving range.

      Thanks
      This is an excellent question but not one with a straight forward answer.

      In holdem manager at least, there is an all in % stat but this isn't much use. Shoving ranges aren't static (as you're aware) and so we tend to look at an opponent as wider of nash or tight of nash, this is more pragmatic way of looking at it. You then adjust slightly to the opposite side of nash (if they call wide, you tighten up) in order to exploit, or just call nash if you don't know (you're unexploitable this way).

      There are two ways to learn nash, through gaining a fundamental understanding of ICM and bubble dynamics or through the use of software like ICM trainer or SNG Wizard which provide interactive quizzes.

      ICM Trainer is free (available here) and provides quizzes for nash only this means you won't learn how to adjust to your opponents but I highly recommend it as the starting point.

      SNG Wizard costs $99 but can give you quizzes based on opponents ranges (it can't quiz for nash). It's really good software but you need an intermediate level of understanding of likely ranges otherwise it's pointless.

      I recommend you get ICM trainer and make it a major part of your study time. Aim for 95% accuracy as a long term goal.
    • RasTweet
      RasTweet
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      Joined: 26.12.2009 Posts: 4,553
      Thanks Pauln :f_love:
    • UPAY4DINNER
      UPAY4DINNER
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      Joined: 27.09.2009 Posts: 21,921
      Originally posted by RasTweet
      Thanks Pauln :f_love:

      +1