Low Stakes Tournament Strategy

Robert MRobert M Red Chipper Posts: 22 ✭✭
edited January 2018 in New To Poker Questions
At the moment I do not have a deep enough bank roll to play cash games. So, I am thinking about entering a $50 buy in tournament at the local casino, just to start playing some live poker a little more. As a result, I will have no information on any of my opponents prior to playing any hands with them in these tournaments. My initial thought was to play very nitty for the first few orbits to gain as much information on each player as possible, and then losen up as the tournament progresses. Is this a good strategy for this situation?


  • ChipFluxChipFlux Red Chipper Posts: 89 ✭✭
    Its usually a good idea to get a sense of the table, that is why I typically just let my starting cards determine how loose or nitty I am apparently playing early in a tournament. If the deck is really hitting my starting range, then it appears I am looser than I really am and vice versa. So in the first couple laps or level or two, just play solid poker using good starting ranges as you get a feel for the game. Pay attention to the other players, how the hands are played, and what gets shown down.

    I think another very important variable is the tournament structure... and if its the daily $50, its probably (but not always) going to be very fast as the blinds increase every 15 or 20 minutes.... at some point everybody is going to have 10-20 BB and you have to be ready to play a style that is correct for those conditions.

    Which casino are you going to play?

    Have Fun and Good Luck!
  • sumoswimsumoswim Red Chipper Posts: 148 ✭✭
    Play tight aggro early. Don't be afraid to push small edges bc of the structure.

  • Danny MDanny M Red Chipper Posts: 353 ✭✭✭
    edited January 2018
    Playing tight pre-antes in a tourney is never incorrect. There are 2 basic early stage strategies:
    1. Play tight and only play the premium hands
    2. Play loose and try to stack players who can't fold top pair or an over pair...

    Obviously, you'll need to have some good post flop skills to utilize #2 as playing loose just to hit a monster is going to bleed your chip stack rather fast unless you have a plan to steal pots.

    I target the tightest players at the table who's range is probably only 77-99+ ATs+ AJo+ KJs+... very easy to deduce what they have and very easy to get all their chips with 35s on A53 A33 or 246 like boards and steal pots on 875 T76 or 668 like boards especially if you get lucky to showdown the winner with some less than premium hands, make some huge bets, and properly apply pressure... it will make stealing blinds/antes and bluffing easier when people fear getting into pots with you... plus early on you definitely have the implied odds to crack the QQ+ with 45s or 33... later in the tournament we have to shift gears though especially if blinds are going up faster than the average stack where we must play push or fold

    of course nothing wrong with playing tight either in the beginning to accomplish a similar image where people will fear getting to the river or into pots with you if they think you are only continuing with strong hands...

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