WPT Global Strategy Ten Quick Improvements You Can Make To Your Poker Game Now
However, you should still try to carve out some time to study poker, even at the earliest stages. To help you start to improve your game without cutting into your playing time, the folks at WPT Global have put together ten bite-sized strategy tips.
These ten short strategy lessons will take less than ten minutes to learn, so you're never taken away from the table for too long.
Tip 1. Position Is Key
Once you have played online poker for a while, there's a phrase you'll have heard so many times it'll start to lose all meaning—”Poker is a game of information.”
This fact is key to understanding why position is so important. The later you act in a given round, the more information you have to work with when you make your first decision. Similarly, every player that acts before you in a hand does so with less information than you.
So, remember that you can play looser, more creative poker in late positions but need to tighten up and play more straightforwardly from earlier positions. Pay particular attention to the blinds where you are last to act before the flop but first to move for every subsequent round.
Tip 2. Play Tight-Aggressive
The classic strategy for preflop poker play is tight and aggressive. Tight play means folding a lot of hands, and aggressive play means betting and raising with the hands that you do play.
There are hands you can call and limp with, but, on the whole, if it's good enough to call, you should probably be raising.
Tip 3. Tilt Is The Stack-killer
Tilt is any state in which your emotions are affecting your play. Maybe you're bluffing too much trying to show up an annoying loudmout, maybe you're playing timidly after a bad beat. Whenever you deviate from good strategy it costs you money.
Don't tilt. If you do tilt, try some Stoic thought, Zen practice, or CBT exercises to get a handle on it.
If none of that works, then it's time to hit the bricks.
Easy to say, hard to do because, by definition, you're not thinking straight when you're on tilt. This is why it's often good to have scheduled breaks. Getting away from the table for a smoke or a pancake can give you a moment to check in on your mental state and either shake it off or walk away.
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Tip 4. If You're First In, Don't Limp
When you're first into the pot, it is especially important to avoid limping. But if you're playing tight-aggressive poker, you should already be used to avoiding the limp.
However, if someone has limped already, then they can open up opportunities for you to limp profitably. Certain hands, like suited connectors and low pocket pairs, do well in multi-way pots. These hands can be limped with, but only when someone else has limped first.
Tip 5. Semi-Bluff Aggressively with Your Draws
Semi-bluffing is a strategy where you bet your draws as if they were made hands. This move hedges your bluffs with some draw equity and hedges your draws with some fold equity.
Mixing semi-bluffs into your repertoire makes your bets harder to read while mitigating some of the risks inherent in a naked bluff.
Tip 6. Never Slow Play
Strictly speaking, never is the wrong word. Obviously, you should mix things up to stay unpredictable. However, if there is one form of deception you can cut out of your repertoire without losing much, it is the slow play.
If you're already playing tight-aggressive poker (and you should be) then the change of gears will immediately seem suspicious to good players. And since bad players tend to be check-call machines, you're likely to just end up missing value against them if you don't bet into their checks and calls.
Tip 7. Don't Get Attached To “Big” Hands
A pair of aces seems huge before the flop. But by the river, a high pair can look pretty weak depending on what came down on the board.
Don't let the absolute value of a hand blind you to its relative weakness. An ace-high straight is a big hand, but A♣Q♠ is unlikely to be good on an action-heavy river of K♦K♣J♣10♠10♣.
Tip 8. Attack Weakness
Here's another place where new players can amp up the “aggressive” part of their tight-aggressive strategy. If your opponent checks, then you should probably bet.
A lot of players will check-fold a bunch of hands without giving it much thought. Others might call your bet this street just to see another card before folding.
If you don't have a concrete reason to suspect a slow play, then betting into weakness is almost always the right move. You bluff bad hands and force draws and weaker-made hands to pay for the next card.
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Tip 9. If Someone Consistently Attacks Your Weakness, THEN Slowplay
This is where tip 8 and tip 6 combine. If you spot a player who bluffs a lot or who is following tip 8 too mechanically, then you've found the rare spot where a slow play is perfect.
If a check will guarantee a bet from your opponent and you have the goods, then go ahead and check for value.
Tip 10. Pay Attention to Your Opponents
Too often, new players assume they should be watching their opponents for live tells. Live tells are great when you spot them and make you feel like a genius when they lead to a good call or a jammy fold.
However, what you're really watching for is your opponent's patterns of play. Does she only overbet when she's bluffing? How wide are his pre-flop raises? Do they call-flop, fold-turn a lot with draws?
Pick up on these patterns, and you'll be picking up extra pots in no time.
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Bonus Tip: Get Your Sign-up Bonus With WPT Global
One way to boost your bankroll as you play online is to take advantage of sign-up bonuses like WPT Global's first deposit bonuses. You will want to check the terms and conditions to ensure they work for you and your bankroll, but if you do join WPT Global, they are currently offering a generous matched deposit bonus of 100% up to a maximum of $1,200.
Along with your matched deposit bonus, WPT Global also gives depositors several tournament tickets with which to online poker events. The exact package of tickets depends on the size of your deposit and whether you are a new or returning player.
|New or Existing Players||Deposit Number||Minimum Deposit Amount||Reward|
|New Players Only||1st Deposit||$20||4 x $5 WPT World Championship Satellite tickets|
|New and Existing Players||2nd Deposit||$20 (2nd deposit of this amount)||4 x $5 WPT World Championship Satellite tickets|
|New and Existing Players||Next Deposit of $300+||$300||$22 WPT World Championship Satellite ticket & $110 Sunday Slam ticket|
|New and Existing Players||Next Deposit of $1,200+||$1,200||$220 WPT® World Championship Satellite ticket|
The playthrough requirements for the deposit bonus are fairly straightforward. For every $10 of rake you generate in tourneys or cash games, one $2.50 increment of the bonus is released to you.
The bonus expires 90 days from the date of your first deposit.
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