We all know that there is a certain element of luck about the game of poker; however, more serious poker players realize that there’s a lot that they can do to minimalize the luck factor. When poker players use a strong tournament strategy in conjunction with a well thought out bankroll management plan, the game of poker becomes a challenge instead of a chance.
As players build a strategy that lands them in the money more often than not, they can actually map out a battle plan that allows for some loss, but is geared overall toward making a continuous profit playing poker either online, or in live games at casinos or other establishments.
The strategy below is a very simple strategy that guides players through a multi-table poker tournament by dividing it into three stages. If you divide poker tournament into three distinct stages, and execute this simple strategy properly, your results will improve significantly.
For multi-table tournaments, the beginning stage usually continues on through about the first 5 blind levels. During the early stages of a tournament it is important to keep in mind that a player with no chips cannot possibly make the money. In Early Play your primary objective is non-elimination, your goal at all times is to hang onto your chips, without risking them unnecessarily, while accumulating more chips and advancing your position in the game.
Often times in this stage of a tournament, players test the waters by going all in, or seriously over-betting their stack. If you’re able to take advantage of these types of situations, then by all means double, triple and quadruple your chipstack. The only hands you should be prepared to play for all-in are: QQ, AK suited, KK, and AA. For the most part however, just hang back, relax and enjoy the game. Learn what you can about the other players.
Blinds are cheap at this stage, so it can be tempting to get involved in a lot of hands; however, this is a major cause of chip bleeding, and can get you into situations where you could bust out of the game. If you’re seeing flop after flop, and throwing away blind after blind, you’re slowly bleeding off chips that can be saved for larger opportunities later on in the game.
It’s possible that you’ll catch someone at this stage of the game and double up early, so by all means, if you can get into a pot for just the blinds with a pair, or other playable hand then this is the place to do that. The way to do this is to play multi-way pots that have not been raised or has been raised a minimal amount. You can try to win these pots but stay out of the big pots and avoid major conflicts in this initial stage.