When was the last time you won a poker tournament? Have you ever won a poker tournament?
If you are not a winning poker tournament player, there is a reason. And it's not about bad luck, bad beats or bad cards. It's about the way you approach the game.
The theory on playing poker tournaments is often that you have to get to the final table to win. As a result, players will play to survive. They wait for premium hands like pocket Aces, pocket Kings and pocket Queens and hope to win big pots. These players avoid taking chances and play predictable poker.
The problem with that approach is that their opponents notice that they are tight and will often fold against their raises. As a result, the predictable player gets no action, no big pots and slowly get blinded and anted off as the event continues.
The way to play to win a poker tournament is to play to accumulate chips. It means that you have to learn to play a range of hands in many different situations. You have to learn how and when to bluff. You have to learn to read your opponents. You have to learn the plays that the Poker Pros use to win.
First, while many players believe in playing tight early in the event, this is simply wrong. Put aside about 20% of your starting stack and take risks to win a big hand with suited connectors or calling in the big blind when getting 2-1 or better on your call.
Second, attack blinds when you are on the button, the cutoff (one to the right of the button) and the power position (two to the right of the button). You have position, so use it to accumulate chips by attacking the blinds.
Third, learn to re-raise a late position raiser when you are on the button or in the blinds. Late position raisers are often stealing, so play back against these opponents to win a bigger pot.
To win a poker tournament be aggressive, be smart and be on the look-out for opportunities to accumulate chips.