Bonus Clearing – Limit Strategy
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Article by Gentari.
Bonus clearing for the novice poker player will be difficult if you just jump straight in, but if you read a little and have a great deal of patience then you will do well.
Before we begin I must point you to the rakeback article, you will rely on rakeback to improve your profits see this post.
Instead of reinventing the wheel when it comes to a good strong Limit Holdem Strategy I thought I would go to the most successful player in poker tournament history and let you know how he started and paid for his college tuition!
Phil Helmuth has won more World Series of Poker tournament Braclets than any other player dead or alive and started off playing Limit Holdem in a college ‘staff’ game with his proffessors. He quickly found that he could beat them with a basic, patient game plan, he played his TopTen hands and played them hard.
So what are these mythical hands?
4. A-K suited
9. A-Q suited
Now these hands are your first 2 cards dealt and will win near to 80% of the time, it is not to say that the cards will win every time, far from it, but you need to start with the best hand to stand any chance. I play these hands currently at NoIQ poker (they have a bonus of 100% of your first deposit up to $5000) and have been regularly making money at the lowest stake level $0.20/$0.10) I have run over 1000 hands and have been working off my bonus VIP points slowly but surely.
Once the flop comes then you need to make different choices, but overall straight play is recommended. If the flop comes down with 3 hearts and you don’t have 1 then it is time to slow down as a FLUSH is very likely.
Simple flop rules:
If the flop has 2 cards the same I always consider a Full House
If the flop has 3 cards of the same suit consider a Flush
If the flop has straight potential ie 7, 6, 5 come then fear the Straight
At lower stake levels you will be playing lots of players who have very poor starting hand requirements and could be playing AA or 72, you need to identify the players who play a lot of hands and those who are selective, this will save you money down the line.
Once the flop is complete and more betting takes place you should have a clear picture in your mind if you are still ahead (we assume when playing the Top Ten Hands we will be ahead pre flop) play your hand heavy by raising as often as you can if you feel you are still ahead. For instance you start with QQ and the flop comes 2, 5, J Rainbow (each card has a different suit) then you are going to still be ahead most of the time so bet hard.
If you think you may be being beaten, then you can lay down your hand or slow down (the way I do it) meaning you just call the bets, don’t raise anything. A situation where this may be the case is if I start with AQ and the flop comes A, 3, K – I will be concerned that someone has AK, but often my opponent (if playing a lot of hands) will be playing A5 or KQ so it is worth continuing slowly.
To work out how many hands your opponent is playing you need to be attentive and take notes or use some sort of tracking software see this article.
Top Ten Hands taken from the book – Play Poker Like the Pros, Phil Helmuth
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