Originally Posted by Jurn8
thats quiet interesting what you said about it takes a better hand to call a raise than it does to make one. Thinking about it, it actually does lol
so i take it you just have to be aggressive and pick your spots. what sort of hand ranges do you suggest as a rough guide although i know i will have to adapt to the game and current playing styles.
Like you said you'll have to adapt to the game: stack sizes, playing styles, payout, ect... but when 3 handed in a normal 9 man i will open a pot w/ any PP, A8+, KJ+, QJs, and mid-range suited connectors on occaision. I am not saying that anyone else should play like this, it just personal preferance... And obviously this is only when the blinds are high and Ms are low.
If the sng has been running really fast and the blinds are only say 100/200 and avg stack is ~4K-4.5K you don't need to be so agressive because your not getting a big enough reward for stealing the blinds and your not blinding out as fast (although this isn't usually the case).
I also find that reverse psychology can be very profitable in short handed play... Overbetting or shoving your premium hands to induce suspicion in your opponents. Most times an open shove from the small blind looks like a blatent steal attempt, widening the BB's calling range. So if you shove a hand like QQ for example he may look you up with a much weaker hand than normal (his reasoning being- why would he shove into me if he wanted a call... this must just be a steal)
Once that pesky 3rd place finisher is out of the way stack sizes can often dictate your play, but when the stack sizes are fairly equal i spend the first few hands trying to peg my opponent's HU style. If you don't feel comfortable setting the pace yourself it's usually best to adapt to his play and use it to your advantage. If he's super agressive, and the blinds aren't eating you alive try to find a spot where you either have a monster preflop or connect hard with the flop and trap him. Let him dig his own grave.
If he's fairly tight and you've noticed that he won't defend his blinds then by all means take them whenever you can. If he's folding to 60-70% of preflop raises and not contesting your BB, the constantly raise from the button, even regardless of your holdings in some cases. If you are called, re-evaluate your situation on the flop, and if raised only continue w/ stong hands. Pretty simple, but i feel that playing the opposite of your opponent is a solid strategy, and HU it is very easy to decide if he's an agressive player or a more passive one.
You will almost always have to change your style when HU, and there is really no starting hand requirements here. In HoH: volume 2, Action Dan says that it is never the right play to fold from the SB, in position and getting 3:1 odds
. I don't completely agree here, but the math he uses to back it up is that even w/ 23o you are only a ~2.1:1 underdog to an average hand. So your odds are always good enough to at least call.
To sum up another long/rambling post adapt to your opponent and think your actions through.