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# Starting hand ranges with less players

• Bronze
Joined: 09.10.2014
Why is it that you can be more aggressive in a heads up than if you are the small blind in a full ring and have been folded to? Is it because 7 folds make it more likely your opponent has something good or does it has to do with paying blinds more often?

Also, any maths covering this?
• 11 replies
• Bronze
Joined: 15.01.2011
One consideration in HU is that if you are raising from the SB, you will be raising from the button too. This means that you will be in position post flop and the remainder of the hand.

Many players will be aware of loosening up their range on the SB if the BB is tight (full ring), however, one disadvantage of being too loose is that you play the rest of the hand out of position, this issue is not apparent in a HU game as the SB.

I think your point about the blind structure is appropriate, the only knowledge I can impart (not being a HU player myself) is that you can't insta-fold 80% of your hands pre-flop as you might do in a full ring game.
• Basic
Joined: 20.05.2013
The reason is position
• Bronze
Joined: 09.10.2014
Good point lynius.

So let's say I am on the button in a 3max, is it exactly the same thing as being folded to when on the button in a 9max? If not, how big is the difference and is it only due to the previous folds giving some information about the hand strengths of the blinds?
• Bronze
Joined: 26.02.2014
awsome...
• Bronze
Joined: 22.03.2011
less players=wider your preflop ranges, mostly because the blinds come more often. to answer your question, you shouldn't be openning the same range on the bu playing 3 handed, you should open wider.
• Bronze
Joined: 09.10.2014
booomm: If it works to have wider preflop ranges with three players, then why wouldn't they work with 9 players when 6 have folded and you are on the button? As far as the current situation is concerned, it is exactly the same situation except that 6 players have folded meaning the two remaining opponents unseen hands have a greater probability of having kings/aces, since there are more good/acceptable hands with kings and aces.

The question is how much information the six folded hands give about the two remaining opponents unseen hands? Enough to change to much wider preflop ranges or not enough to change the ranges at all? Or have I missed some other factor in place?
• Super Moderator
Super Moderator
Joined: 02.09.2010
Originally posted by Aydayum
booomm: If it works to have wider preflop ranges with three players, then why wouldn't they work with 9 players when 6 have folded and you are on the button? As far as the current situation is concerned, it is exactly the same situation except that 6 players have folded meaning the two remaining opponents unseen hands have a greater probability of having kings/aces, since there are more good/acceptable hands with kings and aces.

The question is how much information the six folded hands give about the two remaining opponents unseen hands? Enough to change to much wider preflop ranges or not enough to change the ranges at all? Or have I missed some other factor in place?
Random thought...

If you are in the BU and 6 players have folded to you then the "concentration" of Aces, Kings and possibly Queens is likely higher. AQ+ KQ+ are going to bet before you.

Unless you have blockers to those cards, expect some to be in SB BB.

Just sayin'
--VS
• Bronze
Joined: 09.10.2014
Originally posted by VorpalF2F
Originally posted by Aydayum
booomm: If it works to have wider preflop ranges with three players, then why wouldn't they work with 9 players when 6 have folded and you are on the button? As far as the current situation is concerned, it is exactly the same situation except that 6 players have folded meaning the two remaining opponents unseen hands have a greater probability of having kings/aces, since there are more good/acceptable hands with kings and aces.

The question is how much information the six folded hands give about the two remaining opponents unseen hands? Enough to change to much wider preflop ranges or not enough to change the ranges at all? Or have I missed some other factor in place?
Random thought...

If you are in the BU and 6 players have folded to you then the "concentration" of Aces, Kings and possibly Queens is likely higher. AQ+ KQ+ are going to bet before you.

Unless you have blockers to those cards, expect some to be in SB BB.

Just sayin'
--VS
I just made a script confirming this (100 000 tries). The script gives each player (9 players) two random cards and uses the pokerstrategy.com beginners preflop hand chart to decide whether to join the pot or fold. If 6 players fold and you don't take the dealers hand into consideration the stats are:

Script results
Probability that blinds have at least one ace or king when folded to: 50.301155787075 %
Probability that blinds have at least one ace or king when at least one opponent joined pot: 49.266269121079 %

Independent probability that blinds together have at least one ace or king
This situation would apply to when there are only three people at the table.

There are 4 kings and 4 aces. 4+4=8.
The probability of a card being ace or king is 8/52 = 0.1538
The probability of a card not being ace or king = 1-0.1538 = 0.8462
The probability of a hand not having at least one ace or king = 0.8462 * 0.8462 = 0,7159
The probability of two hands not having at least one ace or king = 0,7159*0,7159 = 0.5126
The probability of two hands having at least one ace or king = 1 - 0.5126 = 0.4874 = 48,74 %

There is a difference but it is not big. What I see is that some people change their preflop ranges dramatically depending on how many people are playing. Are these changes logical considering the probability of aces and kings is almost exactly the same regardless of amount of players at table and how many players fold or not.
• Bronze
Joined: 15.01.2011
Originally posted by Aydayum
I just made a script confirming this (100 000 tries). The script gives each player (9 players) two random cards and uses the pokerstrategy.com beginners preflop hand chart to decide whether to join the pot or fold. If 6 players fold and you don't take the dealers hand into consideration the stats are:

Script results
Probability that blinds have at least one ace when folded to: 50.301155787075 %
Probability that blinds have at least one ace when at least one opponent joined pot: 49.266269121079 %
Very interesting.

What language/program did you use?

Would it be possible to try the evaluation with a wider range? Average Pre Flop Ranges - Tag
• Bronze
Joined: 09.10.2014
lynius: I had a small typo in my last post. I meant "Probability that blinds have at least one ace OR KING when folded to" rather than just ace.

I use PHP. Here are the results using "Average Pre Flop ranges - Tag". They are slightly biased since I don't know the mid and late position ranges. I used the same mid ranges as the early ranges and the same late ranges as the pokerstrategy.com charts.

Script results
Probability that blinds have at least one ace or king when folded to: 50.905037530935 %
Probability that blinds have at least one ace or king when at least one opponent joined: 48.926761500382 %

EDIT: The margin of error is likely (95 % likely) to be within 0.1 % using sample theory.
• Bronze
Joined: 15.01.2011
TYVM.

Interesting to see the probability increase (as I would have assumed).

I assume you can calculate the margin of error with a t-test (I would imagine such a large sample to have a low degree of error, though of course, I imagine the 0/1 output on 50% creates a large standard deviation).

I could ask all day about different ranges etc, but thank you for giving some food for thought.