Oct 16, 2018


Slow playing is a strategy when you check or call a bet with a very strong hand in a hope that someone else playing will raise. The goal is to make your opponent think that you have a weaker hand when you actually have a very strong hand, eventually inducing them to continue betting and inflating the pot. You ramblingly give your opponents a chance to improve their hands when you slow play.

Situation 1

This situation ascends when you have a tight player behind you and you are on the flop. Let’s say you are holding a pair of 8 and the flop is A, 8, 5. Here you can slow play in the hope that the tight player behind you has an A and will certainly bet it. You don’t have to raise until the river if the tight player is betting. Let’ say if the flop is 7, 8, 9 and no matter how awesome you slow play, but it won’t convince a tight player behind you to take a shot at the pot. You will probably be beaten by a straight if the player bets else the player will check on you. So, here it doesn’t make much sense to slow play.

Situation 2

If you have the best hand and there is a bet to you, then it is obvious that you will call the bet to hide your strength and let the opponent (bluffer in front of you) make the next move. The move is a bit obvious as you can simply call again if the player bets again on the turn. The best thing you can do in this situation is to look weak and take a long time to make your call.

Situation 3

Slow play is certainly profitable on the flop if your opponent (bluffer behind you) is a kind of player who bets at every pot. The secret would be to determine what he will do at the turn, you can call the bet on the turn and check on the turn if you know he will try his luck at the pot again. If you are not sure about his, then it is really essential that you take control of the betting.

It is indeed a sober way to disguise the strength of your hand and put many extra bets into the pot. However, you should only slow play when you have a very strong hand. Many weak players slow play way too much, but this is one of the reasons which make your bluffs very easy to pick off.

Poker is a fabulous game and you need to train yourself a lot before you can actually turn your learnings into real money in online poker. Do your research and study the rules of the poker variant if you haven’t started playing yet. Visit any live tournament venue in India to get the feel of the game. Once you realize this is your palate, you can start with the basics of the game. Don’t let the ‘basics’ confuse you as they are the key to master the game. There are tons of useful resources including free sites, videos, forums and books, etc. from where you can learn poker free and fast.

Videos- Poker videos are one of the popular ways to learn the game, but ensure that you are actually learning something from each video. Also, you will want to make sure that you are watching the right kind of videos. If you want to grab a knack on hand reading, then watch videos related to hand reading only. Advance to next set of skills once you have good knowledge of hand reading. There are many free videos available on YouTube and they are really useful.

Read- Read books, articles and focus your study on the hands you had trouble with. Read prudently on bankroll management, psychology, how to control emotions and tilt. You can also read our blogs, we release one new article on a daily basis so that you have plenty of content to learn and enjoy. Our topics vary from basic concepts to hardcore strategies of the game.

Forums- After having a basic idea of the game, it’s time to share your knowledge with other players on the forums. You can also clear your qualms related to any strategy. You might find these forums littered with trolls and jokes, but there are some genuine forums where players are friendly and willing to help. These forums are only beneficial when you balance the ‘give and take’ concept.

Play Poker- Once you have your feet wet, you can start playing poker on any trusted online poker site in India. Most of the sites offer 100 % joining bonus. At PokerBaazi, you can use the special initial deposit bonus code WELCOMEPB to earn a 100% poker joining bonus- up to Rs 7000. We have three existing professional poker players at PokerBaazi and you can certainly learn a lot from their experienced wisdom via their featured blogs and webinars.

Repeat these steps to learn a new topic to build a solid foundation of the game. Read articles on that topic, watch videos and post questions related to that topic on forums. Make notes what all you have learned, choose a new topic and start again.

Betting escalates with each betting round and expectedly or startlingly, you could possibly undergo a situation where you could be facing a very large bet. You might have hit a really great flop for your hands, but things are pretty sour on the turn and river. In many common scenarios, poker players even pros will call that big bet on the river, even when they know that they’re beaten. The river is the most important locale of any game and this is where you can win a lot of money or can lose a lot of money. It is indeed really stressful as there is no impending hope for you and you know where you stand. It is your capability to make a right decision, which can take you a long way. There is no acknowledged formula to know if calling on the river is right or wrong. Here are some tips you can remember to make a right decision.

Don’t get wrong

Don’t misconstrue that bogus disposition when there is a big bet coming from your opponent as a bluff. Many players make such a big bet move so that it is read as a bluff in order to expect a big call and win a huge pot.

Know how to deal

Poker is a game of strategy and you should always have an idea of what you are going to do on the river if you get that probable card or if your opponent checks, bets small or bets big. You cannot just wait for the situation to stand up and then decide.

Read to lead

If you notice your opponent’s bet is not steady, if he has been checking and suddenly make a big bet, then he might be bluffing or he wants you to think that way. Of course, it depends on how well you have been reading his moves and accordingly require some grave thinking. You can also make notes with the help of online poker software.

Know when to give up

You might need to rethink about the value of your strong hands if your opponent is just checking and calling and suddenly makes a large bet. When you have a strong hand, make your bet large enough that makes your opponent think twice before calling that bet.

If you are not consistently evaluating tendencies of each specific player and not working out on your strategies accordingly, you are indeed going to lose a lot of money there. Remember, a bad fold is much more profitable than a bad call.

The blind stealing is a situation when the move is carried out with any two cards, including weak hands or garbage and the pot only contains the two blinds. If you are in the late position either on the button or cutoff and are first to act, you raise pre-flop in a hope of picking up the blinds. It is deemed as the most important factor of playing cost-effective pre-flop poker. In a layman language, it is any open-raise made from the SB, Button or CO. You have a blind steal opportunity if everybody so far has folded and you are on the button. Here are a few tips to make the best out of stealing blinds-

Understanding the system- Most successful blind stealing opportunities take place in the first hand of the blinds changing. Show your good hands and bluff with a near zero frequency. Create a very tight but very aggressive table image.

Passive big blind- Any player who decides to attack the passive big blind will certainly profit as this player is particularly free money. You may have to concede the passive blinds to him if he has a position on you, depending on how he opts to fight the pots. React according to the situation, if you have a position on the aggressive player, then you should play back at him regularly.

Know your opponents- A few players will just love to put you in the complicated situation by re-raising your blind take attempts. You need to be really cautious with your attempts of blind steal, especially when sitting to their right corner. There will also be some players who will fold approximately no matter which to a raise. Give their hand a respect on the flop if they call, it might lead to worse hand on the flop, but you can still enhance your stealing range against these players.

When you get caught- Your history will definitely be jot down by your opponents sitting at your table if you are caught blind stealing. It will lessen your tight table or any fold equity image. However, you can turn a loose table image in your favor by overplaying superior hands such as QQ or KK, particularly against loose opponents.

When to give up- The most difficult moment of blind stealing in Texas Hold’em is when the action has not yet finished by the turn. At this time, you may have the benefit of position, but you should give up the hand if your opponent starts to show signs of aggression.

Do remember that blind stealing is a small pot strategy, so avoid putting up your entire stack and moderate your blind stealing attempts if you have a few calling stations behind you. Take advantage of your average player’s inability to correctly adjust to increasing blinds instead of slowly adjusting your aggression, which would indeed be a scientifically correct way to play.

The bubble is one of the most significant stages of any poker tournaments and is also one of the easiest to get all wrong. It may let you wonder whether you should be getting in such kind of situation in the first place. Some player will always show that they do not care whether they win money or not, but when bubble approaches, nobody wants to be the last to leave without money.

Stacks- Most of the tournament have such flexible bubbles that it can be used to structure your pre-bubble strategy with a stack that allows you to steal. It simply means passing on thin gambles when losing the pot would leave you unable to steal on the bubble or taking gambles when you don’t have hope of doubling up to a healthy stack.

Play the last bet- As it is a lot tougher to call a push with a marginal hand than it is to push, so try to structure your betting in such a way that you are the only player pushing all-in. You will notice that most players will not be interested in going after the flop if you play your draws aggressively. It’s not always necessary that if your opponent decides to see a flop, he has a big hand. Most of the time, they are just doing it to get a cheap showdown.

Blinds- You should defend their blinds if the play-to-cashers are not doing so. Don’t think an aggressive player on your right as a cramp, but instead, it is an opportunity for you as he is putting a lot of money into the pot that he cannot defend. It will always be a win-win situation for you as either he will keep raising and donating to you or he stop raising and let you go back to picking on the weak players' blinds.

Pay attention to chat- You can get a lot of clues from the chat about table nods or who is playing to cash. Players will comment on how often you have been calling or raising. They might also threaten to call you next time. So, try to focus on such chats as they might help you make tough decisions when facing a re-steal.

Know the players- You should start paying attention to who is making big laydowns and who is not defending the blinds. You should start evaluating probable play-to-casher even before the bubble begins. The tactic of open raise depends on three factors- your cards, your position and who is in the blind.

Not playing position- Your opponents won’t know when it is safe making a stand against you by being constantly aggressive. You won’t lose too much if you have to fold while making a less than standard raise. Make your move if there is a better than even chance you can steal this pot. It is a huge mistake to fold when it’s folded around to you and you are acting in the position. So, always raise in position unless you are facing an extreme stack.

It is gloomy, but simple that if you play a lot of poker games, you are going to bubble a lot of tournaments. You are going to lose some painful coin flips, take some horrific bad beats, cost yourself money, miss out on a lot of big tables and final table bubble a lot of big tournaments. So, better understand the dynamics and realities of the bubbles, it will help you able to crush the bubble stages of all major tournaments.

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