Pre-Flop Strategies

T

Toby

Play money lover
Before you start betting like a madman when you get two eights in the pocket, you need to carefully consider all factors involved in solid pre-flop strategy.

The factors to consider are the number of players, how aggressive/passive the players at the table are, your bankroll, your position, and how much risk you are willing to entail.

Number of players
: With 10 people in the game, it's much more likely that someone else has a strong hand in the pocket than in a short-handed game. Also, you'll need to be more cautious in larger games, as the chances of someone's pre-flop hand fitting the flop will be much better. More competition means stiffer competition.

How aggressive the players are
: Assuming you've been playing with a few people for several hands, and you noticed some jackass is raising every hand pre-flop, you'll want to play tighter. Let the guy win the blinds (big deal) and nail him to the wall when you have a solid hand in the pocket pre-flop.

Your bankroll: If you have $2 left, you'll want to play extremely carefully and select one hand to bet on, hoping to get as many players involved as possible for a larger pot. You'll want to be all-in before the flop is dealt. On the flip-side, if you have $1000 at a $1/$2 table, you can take the high-risk, high-payout bets.

Your position: People in late position have the ability to influence the size of the pot much more than those in early position. This is especially true pre-flop.

Your tolerence for risk: Depending on your playing style, you may want to play more or less aggressively pre-flop. Players who shoot for larger pots, but don't mind a greater chance for losing a few hands will want to raise pre-flop, especially if they are in late position. Some players prefer to be as selective as possible pre-flop, grinding out a winning hand here or there. It really depends on your own style of play, and how you perceive the players around you.

Without taking much of this into consideration, you want hands that have high card value, or the ability to be the best hand (the nuts). You'll want to seriously consider playing high value cards (queens, kings and aces), suited (drawing for a flush) and connected (drawing for a straight) cards, and obviously, always play high pocket pairs (queens or better).

Article written by texasholdem-poker.com
 
S

stilt

Rising Star
This is not really news, most of the things from there you learnt the first time you played poker.
 
HTFCacc2005

HTFCacc2005

UltimateBet Freeroll #2 Winner
Normally with a decent hand a raise of 3x or 4x the BB is advised, someone also going all in from an early poistion also worries me. Pre-flop is important but its also advised to watch how they play before the flop with how they play after.
 
wutangtony

wutangtony

Guest
I'm such a tightwad that I call a lot pre-flop. I will never be super-rich, but I will also never be super-poor. I tend to come out a heck of a lot better in the long run than the jackal who raises with crap hands.
 
E

ericraider1

Guest
preflop strategy

i understand how you like to play supertight, but sometimes when you have a good hand you need to "protect your hand." what i mean by that is you need to bet enough preflop to force other people to fold. the people you want to fold are the ones with something like 3 4 suited or unsuited. if the preflop bet is low or just the bb, they may call and the flop could come A 2 5. now youre pair of aces is crap because they just got lucky and made their straight. with this particular hand, if you had made a healthy raise, this person probably would have folded leaving you with a powerful pair of aces. maybe im just crazy but thats how i see it. if someone goes big over the top of you, then you have to decide if you still think you have the better preflop hand. hope this helps a little.
 
J

justinroyal

Rising Star
I AGREE SLOW PLAYING IS NOT THE WAY TO GO UNLESS U HAVE THE TOP END OF THE STICK NO MATTER WHAT I LOST A LOT OF HANDS FOR FUN AND real money SLOW PLAYING WHEN U HAVE THE CARDS LIKE A K DON'T ALWAYS RAISE UR HOLE STACK SWITCH UR BETTING STYLE UP DON'T JUST CALL CAUSE LIKE ERICRAIDER SAID IT CAN GET U INTO TROUBLE WIT SOMEONE THAT CALLS WIT LOW CARDS WELL GOOD LUCK ANYHOW I HOPE U TAKE THIS ADVICE FROM SOMEONE WHO LEARNED IT THE HARD WAY
 
T

ThECreWKiLLa

Guest
pre flop is the best time to use deception, i usually raise with random hands so people dont always know what your holding.
 
S

sports

Guest
i tend to raise with decent hands that always have the chance to be good but yet take out the popele who limp in with crap hands i liek to raise with j9 j10 q10 and suited connectors over an 8
 
P

peter1811

Visionary
Hi ,

i don't know. I am waiting and i decide from game to game.

Sometimes i go and sometimes i let it go....

It depends on the feeling i have. I have some pounds , so a big belly to trust in it....

See you
 
J

JonSherwood

Guest
I don't know. I've won many a tournament by being selective with my cards pre-flop, but I've also hit great hands plenty of times when I folded and kicked myself. There's only one way to see how you yourself make more money. Try it both ways. If you call a lot, you're relying more on the luck of the draw, if you're selective pre-flop there's a much higher percentage that you're going to have a better hand than someone else if you do hit.

Oh, and protecting your hand. I highly advise it. When I first started playing I'd just call with good hands, worried they might not hit, and then someone with crap cards beats you. You gotta protect that good hand.

And don't milk it often. Don't place low bets in order make a larger pot. A lot of times someone else will hit something better than you on the turn or river. Be happy when you win the blinds! Blinds after blinds after blinds adds up to a lot, believe me.

Jon
 
D

donvic

Rock Star
HTFCacc2005 said:
Normally with a decent hand a raise of 3x or 4x the BB is advised, someone also going all in from an early poistion also worries me. Pre-flop is important but its also advised to watch how they play before the flop with how they play after.
HTFC,

YEA, i agree.

just raising,while putting more $ in the pot

does not seem to scare anyone away.

i want to start upping 3-4 times.

ok, but with what?? do you think a q off suit

is strong enough?? or is it a calling hand?

donvic
 
D

donvic

Rock Star
sports said:
i tend to raise with decent hands that always have the chance to be good but yet take out the popele who limp in with crap hands i liek to raise with j9 j10 q10 and suited connectors over an 8
sport,

now would that be in later position?

i can see it in early pos. but later??

and what kind of raise.....enough to

drive players out???

donvic
 
D

donvic

Rock Star
JonSherwood said:
I don't know. I've won many a tournament by being selective with my cards pre-flop, but I've also hit great hands plenty of times when I folded and kicked myself. There's only one way to see how you yourself make more money. Try it both ways. If you call a lot, you're relying more on the luck of the draw, if you're selective pre-flop there's a much higher percentage that you're going to have a better hand than someone else if you do hit.

Oh, and protecting your hand. I highly advise it. When I first started playing I'd just call with good hands, worried they might not hit, and then someone with crap cards beats you. You gotta protect that good hand.

And don't milk it often. Don't place low bets in order make a larger pot. A lot of times someone else will hit something better than you on the turn or river. Be happy when you win the blinds! Blinds after blinds after blinds adds up to a lot, believe me.

Jon
jon,

again, what kind of protection you talking about.

just a raise or more substantial??

thanks,
donvic
 
W

western_cj

Guest
if your a grinder at the casino then a cold call is the way to go but in a tournament it'll be the end of you...your good cards will always get beat by bad cards unless you raise the bad cards out of the pot...easier to do preflop then after letting them catch a good draw...
 
D

digihhhballz

Guest
.

i think he's talking about when you have high card and there's a straight draw or flush draw coming and you don't want ppl to get their cards...

or like you flop 2 pair with a 2/3 and you slow play it and they turn and river Aces and someone beats you with A/7 or something like that...

sometimes you have to just buy it when you have a chance to lose even with best hand before flop...at flop or even going into the river...make sure ppl don't get the chance of hitting their cards when it's in that situation where an opponent might have lot of outs...or easier draws....

Digi
 
R

rdizzy

Guest
I feel that you should have a set hand limit when you sit down at a table. so you knw the types of hands your willing to play
 
alexgrin

alexgrin

Enthusiast
With a good hand, only a raise, a raise, a raise.
Forget about the slow-game, at the distance you will have a minus. It's better to let the players drop to the pre-flop than win your good hand.
 
Limited_Al

Limited_Al

Enthusiast
I’d add to this, and say never limp in. Always have a raising range, 3-betting and 4-betting range.
 
bbennie1

bbennie1

Rock Star
I play a lot of 6-max 2NL. People always open 3x, 4x and sometimes even 5x bb. But when I watch streams on 200NL, almost all of them open 2.5bb. What do you suggest?
 
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