04-15-04, LearnTexasHoldem:

Sit And Go Tournament Strategy

What is a Sit and Go tournament?

Question: What is the best advice you can give for winning sit and go tournaments online?

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Answer: So everyone knows what we are talking about, a sit and go tournament is usually one where it is only 10 players. These are just online. These are fast tournaments that last anywhere from a half an hour to an hour. A typical one would be if you buy in for $22 (20 for the tourney and 2 fee). The winner gets $100.

Sit and Go strategy

Now lets talk strategy. First off, you only get so many cards. This is somewhat of a problem for figuring out strategy since you are limited. It's hard to say how many hands you'll see total because people drop off at different rates in each tourney but you probably won't see more than 70-100 hands even if you win. Because of this, it wouldn't be unusual for you not to get one great hand the whole time (AA, KK, AK), let alone getting action on it. The good news is though that everyone else will be in the same boat.

Sit and Go Shark

If you want to gain an edge in Sit and Go tournaments, we recommend Sit and Go Shark. This advanced program gives you real-time advice regarding your cards, your position, the pot odds, and several other important factors. With the help of Sit and Go Shark you will be able to make correct decisions in every stage of the Sit and Go tournament.

Loose play

It has been my experience that people play pretty much the same in each low limit holdem sit n gotourney -- they play fairly loosely for the first couple levels and then tighten up later and only play good hands. I think they hope they can just wait out the blinds and let everyone else drop off before they do. That's not the worst strategy but I prefer to do the opposite.

My goal in these tourneys is to survive till it is down to five people hopefully with enough chips to make my presence relevant. There is no point in having 100 chips left when the blinds are 25/50. You have to make your move before it gets to that.

If you keep waiting for a decent hand until your raises mean nothing, then winning by going all-in will also mean nothing. This is why I prefer not to piss away too many chips early on. Every call matters, even the 15 chip ones at the first level. Now this isn't to say that I won't play a hand here and there when it looks like a good opportunity, it just means that I don't want to have a marginal hand and lose 200 chips right off the bat. It's hard to recover from there since you have little to work with.

Be aggressive

Next, be aggressive. You don't want to be a caller and you don't want to be a small bettor. You are going to need a little luck to win these tourneys since they are so compressed but your chances go up if you play aggressively.

People don't like to fold..especially new players and even more so in tournaments. So if you have a good hand, don't be afraid to put more chips in the pot then you normally would. Over betting confuses a lot of people and sometimes makes them more often to call then to fold. That's a trick that has served me well. Also people brand you as a wild player and often times you'll get more action that way too.

Aggressiveness should dictate much of your card selection as well as betting style. In other words, don't limp in with hands. When you come in raise, and if you can't raise don't play the hand. Try to raise enough to get heads up and then go from there. Remember that pot odds go out the door when you are playing poker and you can't reach in your pocket for more money. So instead of just calling with a draw and hoping to hit, it would be a much better move to just bet big and see if you can get a fold.

Stack sizes

Lastly, it is important to pay attention to the chip stack sizes of your opponents with relation to their play. If you see someone is getting low on chips, expect them to raise all-in with any decent hand (as you should too). And if you notice someone hasn't played a hand in 15 minutes and it is their blind, raise them. I'm always amazed when someone has just enough left for one more bet and they get their blind raised and they fold. Even if you have 72 it would be better to call there when you can double through and make something then just give away your blind and go all-in on the next hand.

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