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Strategies for Winning at Poker

Jun 29, 2008
Being predictable is a death sentence, as any good poker player knows. The player who only uses one or two different plays has developed a tell. Other players know what you are going to do and possibly what kind of hand you have by your tells.

Playing aggressively is known to be a key to success. However, playing aggressively every time also leads to opponents knowing that you are bluffing. An aggressive play is when a player bets and raises when they have a bad hand.

An aggressive player bets forcefully on his first two cards and the flop. Being as the hand usually has to improve with the turn and the river cards; an aggressive player has to know that he can win. Also, aggressive players might be bluffing as advertisement for future hands incase he gets a higher-ranking hand later, he will sacrifice with a losing hand.

This tactic is also called bluffing which has other characteristics too. The player is actually holding a losing hand so he tries to get the other players to fold. Often successful, this is called a pure-bluff.

When a player bets aggressively upon only seeing the hole cards, this is called a semi-bluff. The hand has a chance of improving, which is why it is called a semi-bluff. The player will win the pot if his semi-bluff works and the other players fold or his hand improves.

A check-raise play is when a player checks, or doesn't bet on a round, and hopes another player will bet on, or open, the round. Then the player will raise after the other player bets. This is a form of deception in that it makes the other players initially think the player has a poor hand but he is actually trying to get the other players to bet for a bigger pot.

Being a deceptive play, the check-raise is a double edged sword. The check-raise play causes the player to allow the other players a chance to improve upon their hand whereas if he had just bet in the first place, it is possible that the other players would have folded guaranteeing his win. Even though having the players know you might have a stronger hand is not a good thing, it could help in bluffing.

A steal is a form of bluffing which doesn't move the game past the ante or blind stage. In this strategy, the player will raise at the ante, if there have already been many players who have folded. Because a steal is done right at the ante, it doesn't win the player much money, but it is usually reserved for games where the blind limit increases.

A drawing play is a normal strategy for poker players. Drawing plays are when the player is trying to create a hand from the cards in the window. This usually only works if the other players do not have a made hand, which is an already set hand from the hole and the flop.

Raising in order to make all but one player fold is called an isolation play. The player with many chips targets the player with the fewest chips in this play. Depending upon the luck of the draw, this play may take one try or a couple.

When used together and consistently, but not in a predictable fashion, will help keep his opponents on their toes. Being eliminated early is a result of having tells or being predictable. Winning the final pot depends on hiding your tells from the other players.
About the Author
The world series of poker is the place to be in the summer if you are a poker player. It is a series of poker tournaments where players try to win coveted wsop bracelets for capturing tournament wins. All the best poker minds in the world show up for these events. The main event is considered the world championship of poker. US Poker Sites or Deposit Bonus USA
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