Sit N Go Poker Strategy - 10 Common Opponent Errors To Start Exploiting Today!

Wednesday, November 13 2013

By Mark R. Holland

Single table online poker tournaments, popularly known as 'Sit N Go' tournaments are an increasingly popular form of online poker. Usually lasting around 1 hour and playing 3 places these tournaments are available at buy-in levels ranging from just $1 up to $1000! This article focuses on the lower buy-in Sit N Go poker tournaments and examines common errors made by the players you will find there.

Sit N Go Poker Strategy - Opponent Error #1 - Playing Too Loose Early

Many opponents will play far to many hands at the start of a Sit N Go - when the blinds are low. The most common error is to play 'easily dominated' hands such as an Ace with a small kicker. Playing only the best starting hands early conserves chips for the more important later stages. If your opponents are playing too loose early make sure you raise strongly when dealt a premium hand - they will be a great source of chips.

Sit N Go Poker Strategy - Opponent Error #2 - Multi-Way Pots and Position

Many opponents will enter a multi-way pot by calling a raise pre-flop with a medium strength hand during the early blind levels. This is a dangerous play with a medium pair (for example), these players will have no idea where they stand after the flop and may be out of position relative to the original raiser. Playing for set-value for a small pre-flop investment is one thing - but calling raises in multi-way pots is usually asking to lose a lot of chips.

Sit N Go Poker Strategy - Opponent Error #3 - Adjusting to Increasing Blinds

As the blinds increase and the number of players go down then adjustments to your starting hands are required. In the middle stages of a Sit N Go Poker Tournament your raising requirements need to go down the hands with which you can call a raise need to tighten up considerably. A common error would be calling a raise with a small pair - when the blinds reach 10% of your stack implied odds for this play disappear!

Sit N Go Poker Strategy - Opponent Error #4 - Bad Play From The Blinds

If you never defend your big blind your will quickly become short stacked in Sit N Go Poker. Conversely always defending will lead to being 'trapped' for a large pot sooner or later. Watch for opponents making errors at the extremes and balance your own play from the blinds - you need to put enough doubt in opponents minds as to whether they can steal from you without going over the top.

Sit N Go Poker Strategy - Opponent Error #5 - Understanding the Bubble

Many opponents will not understand the dynamic of bubble play in Sit N Go poker strategy. Errors come in various forms and include not being aware of stack size adjustments and calling all-in bets without premium holdings. Most of the profit in Sit N Go tournaments comes from correct bubble strategy. Make sure you check out resources such as the comprehensive strategy articles at 'Sit and Go Planet' to get a profitable edge in this area.

Sit N Go Poker Strategy - Opponent Error #6 - Understanding Chip Equity Models

The Independent Chip Model (ICM) is a key component of good Sit N Go poker strategy. This converts your chip stack into a dollar 'prize pool equity' figure. This figure is then used to compare your risk against reward for all-in confrontations at the bubble. Understanding ICM and adjusting correctly will give you a huge advantage in Sit N Go poker tournaments.

Sit N Go Poker Strategy - Opponent Error #7 - Playing 'In The Money'

Once the bubble is burst in a Sit N Go poker tournament your opponents raising and calling ranges will also change dramatically. This in turn will affect how many hands you raise yourself. Correctly understanding the 'In the Money' strategy change will allow you to exploit your opponents weaknesses and move up the payout ladder.

Sit N Go Poker Strategy - Opponent Error #8 - Heads Up Battles

Once the blinds are more than 10% of your stack it is possible to play in such a way as to become 'mathematically unexploitable'. Of course it is still possible to adjust to your opponents play, but using 'Nash Equilibrium' models will ensure you can not lose more than your share over time. Readers interested in this can search for the freely available Sit N Go strategy eBook 'A Comedy of Errors'.

Sit N Go Poker Strategy - Opponent Error #9 - Playing Trap Hands

There are many adjustments in Sit N Go poker strategy that do not seem obvious to inexperienced players. One such area is 'trap hands'. As the blinds increase and the number of players shrinks some hands become more or less playable. Examples include AK, Suited Connectors and Small Pairs. Make sure you understand the correct strategy adjustments for various levels and see those results improve.

Sit N Go Poker Strategy - Opponent Error #1 - Never Stop Learning!

Many of your opponents will get into routine of playing Sit N Go poker using the same old ideas and strategies. The real winners in these games are people who take the time to study, find the weakest sites and opponents and look for their own 'leaks' in addition to those of opponents. Sit and Go Planet is regularly updated with strategy articles for everyone from beginners to advanced players. Make sure you do not get left behind!

GL at the Tables,

Mark R Holland is an online poker pro, blogger and writer for high-quality poker sites. For great poker strategy articles and tips covering SNGs, Poker Tournaments and Satellite Qualifiers visit Online Poker Tournament Strategy Tips today!

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