The Early Stages of a Poker Tournament

One of the most common pieces of advice given to poker players in tournaments is to play extremely tightly in the early stages as the risk reward ration is too high. Whilst this advice, often given by some of the best in the business, does have its merits you should generally play quite loose in the early stages of a poker tournament for the reasons I am about to highlight.

Poker tournaments attract the weakest of poker players, players who are drawn in by the potentially huge prize for the a small outlay. For example, at the upcoming Betfair GSOP $3.3 million is guaranteed to be paid out over the 15 events so the weak players will be out in force hoping to get lucky and make it deep in one of these events.

Weak players make the most mistakes and most mistakes are made whilst player deep-stacked poker, in fact mistakes made when deep-stacked are magnified compared to when you are playing much shallower. This in itself should be giving you the green light to go out and get your hands on the weak players’ chips before someone else does! I am not advocating playing extremely loosely but you should not be sat there waiting for premium hands. Instead you should be trying to see plenty of flops cheaply with small to medium pairs and suited connectors hoping to flop a massive hand and stack these weak players who over-value certain hands such as top pair.

Also, by playing a few pots early on in the tournament you can also create a loose image for yourself which could result in you being paid off handsomely later in the event when you have a big hand as people tend to initially label an opponent as playing a specific but then fail to change this label at a later time, first impressions really do count!

If you want to stand a chance of winning the Betfair GSOP 6 Hattrick promotion which could see you bag yourself a $100,000 sponsorship deal, you will need to accumulate enough chips to see you through to top three pay out spots. Why not use the chips of the weak players first before you begin fighting it out with the more skilled players deeper into the tournament?