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Thread: Middle stage tourney advice

  1. #1
    chenyan is offline PNW Semi-Pro
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    Default Middle stage tourney advice

    playing large tourney last night, starting chips of 1500, got up to 20k within an hour (average 3k), then remaind on 20k for an hour, until I was on the average chip stack. Absolutely zilch the whole time then picked up A 10. Another player raised about 1k, and i was the only caller. Flop came A, 10, Q. He checked, I checked. He slow played a lot of hands so far so I thought he may have QQ, or AA. Turn was ace. I bet 400, he re-raised all-in, all of my stack less 200. Now at this stage I have a full house, Aces on 10's. I thought about what he could have to beat me and decided there was no way he had A Q.I called, and he turned over Ace/Queen.After the routine of smashing anything I can get my hands on, I thought about the fact that I am consistently good at the beginning of tourneys but 80% of the time fall off after around 2 hours,when only 10% of the field remain. I know its a cliche, but I just get shocking cards, always. Perhaps I become too careful with my chips and don't play enough hands but I get outbet out of too many pots, and will rarely have confidence with high pair after flop. What changes should I make to my strategy once I reach this point in a tourney, and what could I do to counter being overbet constantly?And finally, was there any way to avoid the loss mentioned at the top of the post?Any advice would be appreciated as I'm getting trapped in middle-high non money finishes.Cheers

  2. #2
    Blu3B3ar is offline PNW Pro
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    Default Middle stage tourney advice

    An accurate description of the blind sizes, position in table, opponents style (passive/aggressive/loose/tight), opponent stack size, general table playing characterisitics and other reads would be helpful.

  3. #3
    chenyan is offline PNW Semi-Pro
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    Default Middle stage tourney advice

    bilnds were at 200/400. He had around 20k, like me, average in tourney was 22k. I was small blind on 10 person table, he was 5th from dealer. The whole table was very aggressive, with a lot of folds all round to pre-flop raises. The only read I had on this guys was when he slow played three of a kind twice and collected big on the river. Generally the table was aggressive, but very very few calls of all-in bets. We were 6th and 7th in chip sizes on the table, which had tourney leader on it. That help? sorry

  4. #4
    chenyan is offline PNW Semi-Pro
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    Default Middle stage tourney advice

    bumpanyone? sorry to move temporarily above pokerboks threads

  5. #5
    Blu3B3ar is offline PNW Pro
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    Default Middle stage tourney advice

    Fairly interesting hand, however a number of fundamental mistakes were made and I'll go through them one by one.I. PREFLOPYou didn't specify the exact suit of your holding, however both ATo and ATs are generally hands that you do not want to call a raise out of position, especially if the raise consist of 5% of the stack. A read of the initial raiser is of extreme importance here and you'll need to account for 4 factors before deciding on the correct play.a. How loose/tight/passive/aggressive is he and what is his preflop style? An examination of the opponents tendencies preflop is important. More importantly, you'll need to firmly put your opponent on a hand range before deciding what to do. Does he regularly open limps or disciplinely open raises? A player who open limps regularly and infrequently open raises is likely to have a stronger preflop holding. Once you put your opponent in a hand range, the decision to fold/call/reraise preflop becomes much easier. Let's demonstrate this point here. If your opponent is a tight straightforward ABC-tight player, we can put me on JJ+, AQo+, AQs+. Many of these hands are favourites against your AT and hence it's a easy fold here. The possibility of being dominated preflop (AJ+) also cannot be ignored as this means big trouble. However, if the opponent is highly tricky and capable is raising many hands such as 77+, A9o+, Axs, suited connectors, etc... then calling here becomes worthy of consideration. Most players (95%) in tournament poker are generally of the straightforward type and a fold becomes safe as their raises consist of enough information.I would suggest plugging ATo into a simulation program like Pokerstove and likelihood of winning against a variety of different hand ranges. You'll be surprised that ATo is not in great shape against many hands, and the fact that you're out of position compounds these difficulties. In fact, I would rather play 23s in your position rather than ATo.b. How competent is your opponent postflop? Holdem is a game where the flop would frequently miss both players and the postflop play becomes of critical importance. Is he the weak-tight-straightforward type or the highly tricky/aggressive/tenacious type postflop? Can you outplay your opponent post-flop often enough despite the bad position? These are important questions that are frequently overlooked in the heat of battle. If your opponent is weak, it is frequently possible to take down the pot straightaway on the flop (or in the turn) via betting it out (or check-raising). If you are convinced that you can frequently make two better overcards or a medium-pair fold with the strength of your postflop bets, then calling becomes more attractive.c. What is your table image?If you have a very tight, aggressive and tough image in the table, your opponents will respect your calls and bets more. If this is the case, you may be able to get away with a postflop bet in the case of the flop missing both players. Do you often call preflop raises? If yes, the opponents are likely to make it even more difficult for you with continuation bets. However, if they respect your game, you can capitalize on your image and you would oppurtunities to take down the continuation bets via flop check-raises and they may even be too scared to bet the flop if they miss!d. Is your opponent splashing a big stack?Many players go crazy when they have a largish stack behind them, and would have the courage to splash the pot with many pre-flop raises. If your opponent is doing so AND you're not too confident of your postflop game, then re-raising preflop should be considered as you are a favourite against a random hand (and a favourite against the top 40% of hands, I think). However, ATo is very marginal hand and if you wish to tangle with the chip leader postflop with bad position, remember that you are risking all your chips.II. FLOPFlopping top-bottom two pair is an excellent hand but is a hand that still needs to be protected, especially on a board consisting of three broadway cards. I would not immediately give credit to the opponent holding AA or QQ. You didn't specify the exact suits on the flop. The danger with the flop is that a number of turn cards could make the turn play tricky, especially with such a large stack remaining in your hand. Any King or any Jack would put a four-straight in the table and such a card would give your opponent a great oppurtunity to outplay on the turn and river (even if he doesn't have the straight cards). These difficulties are compounded if the flop contains two cards of one suit.Therefore, a flop bet is absolutely essential here. Why did you slow-play here? Perhaps it is to induce action from a weaker player. The trouble is, if you checked the flop with the intention of check-raising, your hand screams of too much strength and your opponent would make an easy laydown with a number of marginal hands. The paradoxical thing about holdem poker is the best way to play strong hands is to fast-play them in a straightforward matter (refer to Yoyo's NL400 post). Most opponents (99%) would never give you enough credit holding such a hand, and many hands such as AK, AJ, KK, QT, A9, other suited connectors and weaker hands will raise immediately (especially if you play very aggressively). To put it another way, if you want to induce action from your opponent, you might as well bet it out straight away with the intention of re-raising (or smooth-calling a flop raise) as such a play gives your opponent the least information about your hand!TURNThe initial turn bet of 400 is poor and it is suspiciously too small. I would read it as screaming of massive strength because this bet is far smaller than the preflop and flop bets. This bet extracts far too little value from weaker hands (such as Ax, KJ) and such hands will just making a "crying call" on the turn. Such hands were to call you anyway if you make a larger turn bet.As it is played, the all-in reraise screams of massive strength you can immediately put your opponent on a narrow range of hands. What could he have? He could have QQ, AT, AQ. Let's examine the possibilities your opponent holds each holding...QQ - 3 handsAQ - 3 handsAT - 2 handsHence, you are probably beaten in 3 out of 8 cases. You mentioned that there is "no way he had AQ". In poker, there is no certainty and at best, you can only attach the probability that your opponent has a given holding. That said, if you certain that your opponent would play QQ and AT in a similar exact fashion 65%+ of the time (which most players do), then calling is automatic. As for the results, it is an unfortunate beat though.CONCLUSION- Fold preflop against most players unless you are confident that you can outplay your opponent, he has a large/huge betting range or is going crazy with a big stack. - Bet out the flop.- Bet out the turn with a larger bet. Re-evaluate when put all-in but call the all-in most of the time.- And finally smashing things never helps. Such beats are the nature of poker.

  6. #6
    chenyan is offline PNW Semi-Pro
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    Default Middle stage tourney advice

    thanks mate.Gave me a lot to chew on.But you were wrong about one thing, smashing stuff does help.

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