How much to loosen when number of players are shrinking?

    • cobby
      cobby
      Bronze
      Joined: 14.09.2007 Posts: 813
      Hi once again,
      I hope some senior poker players here can help me with this question.
      I see starting hands charts all over the internet, but only for a 10 or 6 handed game. Can anyone give some tips or advice HOW MUCH to loosen my game when the table gets more and more shorthanded? Lets take the Sklanskys starting hand groups? Should i just include some more groups when the game gets short handed? Or is there a formula which HELPS me to decide, whether to play or not a hand? I know i have to observe how my opponent plays and which hands he plays. But generally I need some lead which helps me to decide better which hands to play when i have 2/3/4/5 opponents, or how much I should loosen my game. I'm looking forward to some comments.
      Thanks. Greetings
      -cobby
  • 5 replies
    • helemaalnicks
      helemaalnicks
      Silver
      Joined: 21.09.2007 Posts: 7,195
      I assume you play tourney or S&G. In a cash game, you shouldn't play less then 5handed, because the strategy articles on this site are not sufficient to learn you how to play those tables.

      However, for S&G and tournament play, you should read the table to determine how you should play.You have to play opposite style of your opponents. If your opponents are superaggressive, then stay calm and play conservative, play according to 6 handed rules, on a 4 handed table.
      If your opponents are conservative, then you should play superaggressive.
      If your opponents are aggressive, play opportunistic. Steal blinds, but be careful, don't get overexcited.
    • cobby
      cobby
      Bronze
      Joined: 14.09.2007 Posts: 813
      yes, i mean Sit and go tournaments.
      Thanks for your answer, but are there any rules i can orientate on, when the game becomes shorthande. E.g. should i play also dominated hands like K3o? If yes, when should i start playing these approcimately). I just want to collect some guidelines, which help me to improve my game.
    • Puschkin81
      Puschkin81
      Bronze
      Joined: 14.04.2006 Posts: 4,786
      Hi cobby!

      At the moment we are working on a completely new Sit and Go strategy area. I hope that you will get the information you need in these new articles. Just a little patience please.

      Good luck at the tables!
      Puschkin81
    • cobby
      cobby
      Bronze
      Joined: 14.09.2007 Posts: 813
      ok thanks :) But your post shouldnt others keep from posting :)
      Greets
    • helemaalnicks
      helemaalnicks
      Silver
      Joined: 21.09.2007 Posts: 7,195
      ok

      should you also play dominated hands? Depends. For a starter, you can't know wheter a hand is a dominated hand, so K3 is only possibly dominated.
      But if you see a very conservative table (4 handed is often conservative, because of the bubble danger) then it's fine to raise against two avg. or ss players with k3. Remember that they will often fold K10 because they know that any hand can be the last one).

      Let's look at a rough example:

      SB: 2000
      BB: 1500
      CO: 3500
      BU (HERO): 3000

      blinds are 300/150

      You pick up 72o, and you make a standard raise, lets, say 900 (I play 700 or 800 in S&G in this situation, but the PS recommended 900 is fine).

      possibilities:
      2 folds, you win 450
      Sb raises to all in
      BB raises to all in
      Sb calls
      Bb calls

      because 72o is a really bad card, you don't call to any reraise.

      In this situation, you win if both players together fold 66% of the time:

      0.66*450 = 300
      0.33*900 = 300

      You won't see odds like that a lot.

      So what you will have to determine, is, with what hands do I get proper pot odds on the raise I made, for a possible all in reraise (a possible call can be dealt with by playing the flop, if opponents checks, you raise, if opponent bets, you call with a nice hit).

      I think hands to do that are:

      any connector
      any ace (domination can be dealt with, because he could also call with KK or KJ, so an ace on the flop is a winner)
      any supported K, suited, some connection possibilities (Kt, KJ)
      any pair.

      If the blinds are lower, and a call is more likely then a raise, this widens the range imo. In that case I also raise 75s or similar hands, on a conservative table.

      Be sure that you make the right read though, a mistake can of course be costly in NLHE.

      If you have established yourself as an aggressive player by doing this, your monsterhands will triple in value.

      I can't give you a handrange but ill come back on that when Harrington vol. 2 falls on my doorstep in a couple of days.