It is important for all players to remember the basics of preflop play to ensure optimal play and good results. By keeping your actions consistent throughout a tournament, it gives you the ability mask your actual playing style to ensure good players that are trying to work you are out are constantly guessing and grow increasingly frustrated. Consistent preflop blind raising, good hand selection and taking advantage your image will ensure you earn the respect of the table.
Hand Selection and Position
If you are in early position it is always advisable to remain tight and play only strong cards like suited picture cards and high pocket pairs. Since you will have other players acting behind you after the flop and throughout the hand, a strong hand will ensure easier decisions if there is lots of betting action behind you.
If you are in middle position, you can start playing suited connectors as part of your playing range since you will have the benefit of acting behind the early position players, and can play hands the have some potential after the flop. If you happen to flop a straight or flush draw then it will be easier to mange if you have the correct odds to continue on further down the streets.
Late position is the best position to be in any situation and is a perfect position for blind stealing attempts. If it is a tight table where everybody is only playing high cards, then try to raise it up from late position to attack the blinds with any suited cards and connectors. If the table is a loose table, then it’s best to only play high cards and suited connectors to ensure you actually have a strong hand that you can push your chips in with once the action starts to build.
Building An Image With Consistent Hand Selection
By consistently only playing a certain selection of cards like high cards or pocket pairs, good players will take notice of this and learn to stay out of your way when you are betting. Whether it is a tight image that you are building or a loose image, changing gears after a period of time, after your consistent play, will allow you to change up your play and win many uncontested hands.
Consistent Raising Amounts
Raising a consistent preflop amount is very important to ensure continual masking of your hands. Many players will make the mistake of raising more with their big hands and less with their marginal hands or vice versa. This is easy information for the good players to pick up on and be able to act accordingly to take advantage of the information that you have presented to them.
A good guide is to consistently raise to two and half to three times the blind from early position, and up to four times the blind from late position. Good consistent raising not only puts pressure on the small and big blinds, but will allow you to represent a strong hand and win many pots from weaker opponents.
Working on a game based on a consistent tight or loose image will allow you to mix up your play and keep your opponents guessing when they do not know what type of hand you are on. This allows for many pots to be won when you represent a good hand as well as when you showdown with the best hand.
PokerNetwork is home to one of the most active poker forums online. With all the latest online poker news from both Australia and around the world, PokerNetwork is your home for the latest and greatest offers.