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Win Your Way to the WSOP

May 12, 2006

The past 4 WSOP main event winners have gone from poker nobodies to celebrities of superstars status. This could be you. How? The first step is to win your way to the World Series of Poker! Many chances to win Daily.

Here's an example. Suppose the party poker.com pot contains $90, and your opponent makes a $10 bet. That pot now contains $100, and the cost of your call is only $10. Even if you figure your opponent to be bluffing only one time in ten, you should call. By calling, you'd lose a $10 bet nine times, for a loss of $90. Although you'd win only once, that pot would be worth $100. John Juanda proved that after ten such occurrences, you'd show a net profit of $10.

Because these blinds were a forced, first bet, they can raise (but only on the first round) when the betting has gone around the table, and it becomes their turn to act again. Since the order in which players act is fixed throughout the game, hold'em is very positional. Acting after you've had an opportunity to see how your opponents play is a big advantage. In hold'em you have seen five of your seven partypoker.com cards by the flop - which is the second round of betting.

  • Partypoker com Props play on their own money but are paid a salary by the house to help start, or prop up, games. A prop's life is tough. They play in short-handed games, or games struggling to get off the ground. Props typically play no better, no worse than most regulars. Many cardroom newcomers panic at the thought of a prop in their game. Since the prop is paid an hourly wage by the casino, players often believe they have a big advantage. Not true.
  • In a game with a time collection, you are paying the same fee per half hour regardless of how many hands are dealt. Consequently, dealers act efficiently and players are expected to make prompt decisions. Rules are interpreted strictly, and consistently. All games are table stakes and cards speak. You can only bet with money on the table when that hand was dealt. You cannot go light, as you might in a home game.
  • Here's part one of the general rule on check-raising: Do it when you believe that you will have the best hand most of the time that you are called. Part two of the general rule on check-raising states that you need to be fairly certain that your opponent will bet if you check. It's no fun to check a big hand only to have your opponents check behind you, especially when you know that they would have called if you had bet.
  • You'll need to watch poker on tv to see several Partypoker opponents so that the size of the pot will offset the mathematical odds against completing your hand. How many opponents do you need? If you're facing three or more, it's worthwhile to draw. If you're holding two large cards, such as A-Q, you're probably favored against any lone opponent regardless of whether you make your hand. You also might win by pairing either of your cards on the turn or river. Sometimes, just two big cards will be sufficient to win in a showdown.

A feel for the game's texture and how it should influence your play can be obtained only with experience and you can win without leaving your house. In the absence of that experience, err on the side of caution. It costs less. Success in Hold'em demands that you be patient, pay close attention to position, and take comfort in the knowledge that good hands are run down less often than the best seven-card stud hands.

My first instinct was that my opponent was bluffing. He knew that I mostly likely didn't hit the partypoker net flop and was trying to take me off my hand. I thought, "I can take this pot away from him with a reraise". But then I said to myself, "What if I am wrong? What if he has hit a big hand?" There weren't very many big hands he could have been holding but it was a possibility. Most of the time I would be right and would take down a nice size pot.


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