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  • Playing Winning Poker Down the Stretch of Tournaments

Obviously the definition of “winning poker” is one that can be thought of in many different ways by the poker community. To most though, it means playing strong, solid play, and doing your best to get the chips in ahead whenever you are attempting to get it all in. Everyone understands that taking a bad beat happens, and while it is painful to have it happen, if you play the right way and make the right decisions you can be more than profitable in the long stretch of things. So today, I’m going to take a look at how to play winning poker down the home stretch of a tournament. This will include things like making big folds, big calls, and even changing up betting sizes. Let’s get right into it.

Keeping Your Opponent Guessing

If you keep your opponent on their toes with your style of play, it will give you the edge in many different situations. So for example, if you change up the bet sizes, and continue to make your opponent have to make decisions throughout hands, you’ll find that it can frustrate them and even put them on tilt. Showing bluffs and showing strong hands after your opponent folds is another good way to keep them on their toes, because if you don’t bluff often, but you show a bluff, it could potentially result in your opponent chipping you up in a later situation. The key here is just to make sure that the other players at the table never REALLY get you. This is something that some of the professional poker players like Phil Ivey do incredibly well.

Big Calls

Sometimes you just have to go with your gut instinct. If your opponent has been throwing chips around left and right, and throws out a big bet that feels like it’s a bluff, and you are fairly strong, you really have to make a solid decision. Big calls can make or break your entire tournament, but at times they are also the calls that can help you win a poker tournament as well. Now, this doesn’t mean that you should be calling off your chips often, because it’s always better to be the one forcing the calls, then the one calling the opponents’ bets.

Big Folds

This is almost the complete opposite, as laying down a big hand like two pair or even three of a kind to a very ugly board can be tough, but it can also be the right move. This type of fold can save you a ton of chips, and let you see another day. If you make these calls and leave yourself with almost no chips, then it can make it so that all you are able to do is sit back and wait for a spot to push it all in. This isn’t the spot that you’re hoping to get for, as you always want to give yourself some chips to work with when all is said and done. It hurts to fold big hands, but sometimes it’s just the right thing to do.

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