The New Short Stack Strategy
This is a play i learned about last week and i have used it with surprisingly great results. It is called the Stop and Go.
First of all, What is the Stop and Go?
The normal short stack strategy is, when you get good cards, put all your chips in the middle and hope for the best, but in this situation you are actually giving better odds
to call you with any two cards than with this strategy. Here is how this play works - Some one raises the normal amount and even though you are the short stack, with reasonably good cards, you just call the raise with the intention of going all in after the flop. Ideally you are out of position but it really does not matter that much in the end because if you went all in pre-flop it is the same cards, situation, etc... By just calling the bet pre-flop and pushing on the flop your opponent will now have to call to see just 2 more cards instead of 5 with an all in pre-flop. This reduces the odds your opponent has to call and so it increases your fold equity hugely, especially 60% of the time when they miss the flop all together.
Here is an example- You are two hours into a tournament and the blinds are 150/300 and you stack is 1800, while the average stack is 7000 chips. You are holding AJ in the big blind, everyone folds too a player in late position who makes a standard raise to 900. the rest of the players fold and the action is on you, in this situation you could happily go all-in but our opponent will definetly be calling our re-raise and at best we would be 50/50 coinflip. But lets assume that our opponent is holding a pair of 8's. Rather than coming over the top, you call the raise which leaves us with 900 chips. The flop comes K 5 9, and we move all in. Our opponent is now faced with a tough decision to call if he didn't hit the set and is stuck with lower middle pair, therefore if they fold we take down a decent size pot with the worst hand, whereas if we pushed pre-flop we would probably be out of the tournament.
By increasing our fold equity it improves our chance of winning the hand, even if our opponent decides to call we are in the exact same situation as we would have been if we had pushed pre-flop. They would have improved there hand either way the chips went in, this way just gives us a better chance of winning without contest. The cards that come out on the flop have no influence on the way we play the hand as our intention at the beginning is to move all in at some point in the hand.
Only use this play heads up, it loses its value if there is 5000 chips in the middle and they are both getting 5.5-1 on there money to call. This play should be used sparingly though and only in certain situations against timid or passive opponents. If you have a great hand QQ+ push pre flop because you really don't need fold equity there, you want them to call, but if your stuck in a bind with mediocre-good cards try the stop and go next time your short stacked and tell me how it goes.
Credit to the Poker Bank who i learned the play from and got a lot of the ideas, its a great site that everyone should check out, i dont know who writes it but they are very informative and easy to understand.
Hope it works out! GL on the felts