Freeroll tournament Strategy--Ten Steps to first hour Success
This is my first post to the forum, after reading some of the other posts regarding freerolls
and 5000 and 10000 person tourneys, I thought I would share. I have a good winning record, I have won several freerolls and other playmoney tourneys. Some of the advice I saw is good, some not so good, so here is my ten steps to freeroll success.
1. Sit Out--that's right! In the first fifteen minutes sit out and watch carefully, this is when the moms and teenagers love to all in their Q7 K8 Ace-anything. Take careful notes on the players. When the big blind comes to you, don't just pop in out of no where, if you wouldn't play it, don't come back. When you get a good hand, knowing a little about your opponents, calmy return and play your hand solidly.
2. "IM ALL IN!!!!" Use your chat people. I like to, when starting a big tourney, put others into a frenzy, just typing ALLL IN no MATTER WHAT!! will get at least one or two to go all in (I am not recommending going all in at first, quite the contrary, but if you do have a AA KK AK QQ then you push out the other A8's etc....use your chat to present a person that you are not, but never over do it.
3. THE FIRST HOUR--don't look to the tourney lobby and say, this guy has 80,000 and I only have 1,600, I need to catch up. Forget them! only play your table. In the first hour, your only goal should be surviving the first hour with more chips than you started with. See who's weak, see who's strong, and play position poker.
4. Decide on your personality--I like to play the fish for the first hour, chatting, reraising, being 'suprised' that I win--follow strict pot odds
, implied odds, and bet odds here.
5. Hour one continued....---after 15 minutes, you should be able to spot at least three fishes at your table, if you are having trouble finding the three fish at this point, look in the mirror. These players will chase cards, overplay weak pairs and call pretty much anything. NEVER ALL IN your monster hands in the first hour, try to price at least two people in and play the board and your opponents.
6. SHOW YOUR BLUFF--that's right, early on, I pick a hand that if I get, I will play uber aggressive, mine is usually 7, 3 offsuit or 8 2 offsuit; play your bluff hand strong as possible if opponents don't catch. I play these bluff hands as suited AK. When your preflop, flop and turn raises scare people off of pairs, show that flop--here you put a table on tilt and everyone thinks you are bluffing always (caution: do this once only!) and get away when re-raised.
7. How many hands--the first hour you should see no more than 25% of flops, I usually see between 15 to 18% of flops being I am a tight player early on. Don't play those weak small blind hands. Raise on good hands, but not too much, and not too little. In the first hour, you only need to crunk on one or two hands, that should, along with blind pickups and cheap pot pickups should get you going fine. As a rule of thumb, I like to be at twice the amount I started with, but if I am at just above the start, I am fine with that also.
8. BLUFF BUSTING--this is key in the first hour--noting betting patterns and timing will expose a few weak bluffers at the table, take advantage! If jonny X raises and misses the flop, watch his betting patterns and timings, as always, strong is weak, weak is strong, if someone in middle position on flop of 72J goes all in, what could he have, usually AK. Another note, "say this out loud when you get this hand" Repeat after mE "I CAN GET AWAY FROM AN ACE KING!" learn it and live it.
9. PATIENCE PATIENCE PATIENCE--in the first hour you will get around 50-75 hands, be patient, if you are calling a lot, your stack will be diminished from your calls, don't play weak hands; as a general rule of thumb, in good position in the first hour I play suited connectors down to 78, pairs to 66's and no ace lower than a 9---which I usually fold though.
10. finally and most importantly, MAKE GOALS!! write them down. Write the words FOLD and NO ALL IN, and play to first break and have in front of you.
Your goal in tourney poker is surviving the first hour, that is the hardest part, don't get greedy, and be patient, with these simple steps, I can assure even the most novice of first hour survival. On average, these tourneys take about five hours, but if you don't make the first hour, forget it. Don't compare your stack to the tourney leaders, the first hour leaders will not be the 4th hour leaders, I assure you.
THis has been my introduction post, you can see me at pokerstars
under scottysdad, I play lots of freerolls and 10,000 sit n go's usually. Hope to see you all at a final table soon!