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Texas Hold'em Strategy

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When I play Texas hold'em poker I feel like James Bond in one of his movies. It's no coincidence that this is my favourite game; any person of reasonable intellect can become a good player through training. Psychology plays a major factor in this game. You can have a great hand but when someone puts all his chips on the table in a 'no-limit" game, you always have a hard choice to make. Lucky for us there are "limit" and tournament games for us to practice. I also recommend using software to find the fish (bad players). I have a great strategy for you, if you use a little common sense you can become a very good player and make a lot of money.

If you are new to texas hold'em please read the hold'em rules first. If you don't know the poker hand rankings click here.

 

Texas Hold'em Strategy

When playing Taxas Hold'em poker your best friend is patience. The best players flop 80% of the times in a 10 player game. The dealer is the best spot you can have whilest the small blind spot is the worst. This means when you are in dealer position you can play more loose to see the flop and in the small blind position you have to play tight. The closer you are to the dealers right side the better, because you can see the actions taken by other players.

The first two cards that are dealt to you are the most important. If you are new to Texas Hold'em I suggest you only play the following hands until you have more experience.

Ace-Ace

  When you have a double ace as a starting hand you need to raise, call a raise or reraise. This is the best starting hand you can get.

King-King

  The double king is the second best starting hand. Your strategy should be to raise, call a raise or reraise depending on your table position, the risk you're willing to take and the strength of your opponents. You need to study your opponents; are they loose? Is the one that just raised a good player or a bad? You need to get the edge, and the edges you get by knowing your opponents better then they know themselves.

Queen-Queen

   The double queen is the third best starting hand. Your strategy should be to raise or call a raise depending on your table position, the risk you're willing to take and the strength of your opponents. I wouldn't reraise with this hand, be a bit more careful with this hand.

Jack-Jack

   The double jack is a good hand but you should play more careful here. Your strategy should be to call the big blind or to call one small raise. If a big raise is done by a fish you could take your chances.

Ace-King Suited

   The ace-king suited hand is a good starting hand but you still need to wait for the flop before you start betting big. Your strategy should be to call the big blind or to call one small raise.

Ace-Queen Suited

   Same strategy as the ace king suited.

King-Queen Suited

   Same strategy as the ace queen suited.

Ace-Jack Suited

  

Your strategy should be to call or call one small raise against a loose player and wait for the flop.

King-Jack Suited

   Your strategy should be to call or call one small raise against a loose player and wait for the flop.

Queen-Jack Suited

   Your strategy should be to call or call one small raise against a loose player and wait for the flop.

Ten-Ten

   Your strategy should be to call or call one small raise against a loose player and wait for the flop.

Nine-Nine

   Your strategy should be to call or call one small raise against a loose player and wait for the flop.

Your following move depends on the flop. If you don't know the hand rankings click here. If you get a bad hand after the flop, floding is usually a wise decision. Sometimes you can still get a nice hand with the turn and the river; you will get a better feel at this as you get more experienced. I suggest you play tournaments at first.

Unsuited highcards

Sometimes you will get unsuited highcards like this:

  

You can have other variations like a king with a ten or an ace with a queen. If you get cards like this don't fold, you should wait for the flop, you should fold only if someone makes a raise. Again I have to say as you get more experienced you will get a better feeling for this. This is why I never recommend poker calculators, the only thing poker calculators do is turn you into a pokerbot, like that you'll never develop your own game.

When the flop unfolds and you get a hand like this:

Don't hesitate, don't fear, the chances of you losing are very slim. When I see a full house like this after the flop in a no-limit game I don't just put all my chips on the table right away. I bet a high amount first, after the turn I bet an even higher amount and when the river comes I put all my chips on the table. I do this to take more money from my opponents because if you put all your chips on the table after the flop chances are all of them will fold. When playing a limit game you should start making raises.

If you are posting the big blind and no one raises, always check. When if you get a hand like this:

Don't even try, just fold.

Here are a few more tips that will make you a better player

  • Do not play with fear, your opponents can smell it
  • Play with a good money management strategy; don't bet all your money on a weak hand
  • Learn to bluff, but don't bluff with garbage
  • Learn how your opponents play, are they loose or tight? Do they bluff a lot?
  • Enter tournaments, it's cheap and much better to improve your game then with play money games

 

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