How To Improve Your Chances of Winning A No Limit Poker Tournament

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Jeffrey | Poker Articles, Poker Strategy, Poker Tournament

Submitted by Mitchell this article belongs to the Poker Tournament series.

Mitchell Cogert is the author of “Tournament Poker: 101 Winning Moves.” It is the only reference book to reveal the plays the Pros use to win a poker tournament. These plays are based on reviewing 20 years worth of tournament poker strategies and by actual play against Daniel Negreanu, Erick Lindgren, David Pham and other top pros. The book is available on amazon and rated 5 out of 5 stars by customers. Find out more about Mitchell Cogert by visiting Tournament Poker or his website APokerExpert.

What really sets apart the winning players in no limit tournament poker?

Here is a list of 20 key skills that sets apart the tournament poker winning players from the rest.

You should review each of these areas, evaluate yourself on a scale from

1 to 5 (with 5 being the highest) and work on improving your tournament poker game for 2009.

1. Entering an event with the right mental approach to tournament poker–playing to win and not just to cash

2. Entering a tournament poker event with a plan–when will you play tight, loose, aggressive, solid, etc

3. Embracing the risk in the game and realizing that you can’t beat the luck inherent in poker

4. Identifying betting patterns of your opponents

5. Identifying tells of your opponents

6. Identifying your own betting patterns

7. Identifying the tells in your own game

8. Your skill at how to play pre-flop based on the strength of your hand

9. Knowing the importance of chips stack sizes on your decisions

10. Knowing how to adjust your game based on your position

11. Knowing how to make plays when you are card dead

12. Realizing the importance of and frequency to bluff successfully

13. Knowing the right time to push all-in

14. Knowing the right time to fold and realizing that sometimes it s right to fold when you are ahead.

15. Accumulating enough chips so you can survive at least one bad beat

16. Knowing how to play at the final table

17. Knowing how to play heads-up poker

18. Knowing the 101 winning moves you can use in tournament poker

19. Not letting your emotions influence your decisions and not going on tilt.

20. Making the best decision for every situation that comes up in tournament poker

  • If you scored each area, what is your total score?
  • Which areas do you feel you are weak and which ones do you feel you are strong?
  • Now take your total score and reduce it by 20%. Why?

You are not as good as you think. Almost every player over rates their own abilities in tournament poker.

In the coming weeks, I will write articles that will address each area with the objective of helping you improve your tournament poker game.

You could be posting your articles on the Poker Bankroll Blog. Read all about it here.

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4 Comments to How To Improve Your Chances of Winning A No Limit Poker Tournament

McTap03
January 7, 2009

20% reduction, that makes me an even worse player than I originally thought! In all seriousness, this is an excellent article and I plan on keeping a copy of it on my desktop so that I can continuously review it before playing. Thanks for all the advice and I look for to your future articles.

Poker Farce
January 7, 2009

I really think you should take #2 off the list. You never know when you will have a table you can run over or not.

Francisco Costa
January 8, 2009

I agree 100% with Poker Farce

#2 is one thing I never do and going to try to explain my self.

If you enter a tournament poker event with a plan to be loose and you get to the table and its a loose table I really think you got to change your strategy and went the other way.
If you decide to be aggressive ( loose or thight ) and you go into a table with 4 calling stations I really think you should change your strategy…

So my point is only after 20-30min you can know what is the way to go… what going to be your strategy! I´m not saying be passive or dont play hands in the begging I´m normally a Loose aggressive guy in the beggining of the tournment so I keep thay way but after 20-30min or 1hour if I got to change I will.

thats my 2 cents

p.s- talking about style, in a perfect table, imo, I want to play verry aggressive and loose in the beggining ( the 3-4 1st levels ) then one of two things could happend
A) I´m a big stack. over the average
B) I´m a short stack
if I´m a shorty well I´m going to have only two moves all in or fold because after level 5 the blinds should be 600-300 with ante and with 2k left I can´t risk calling
If I´m A big stack well I will change my game to tight aggressive why? 1st its always nice to change your way of play during the tournments and 2nd shortys are going to open the range of hands so playing tight I could caught more guys.
After level 10-12 I open my range again a go back to my loose game

but thats in a perfect tournment and in a perfect world

Francisco Costa’s last blog post..PokerStars.com Caribbean Adventure 2009 – The portuguese guys there

McTap03
January 9, 2009

Hey Francisco. What you are describing is exactly what I think Mitchell is talking about. You just talked about your plan on how to play the tournament according to table dynamics. If you just go and play your cards no matter what the other players are doing, then you are really not playing to a plan. But what you describe is playing to a plan, your plan.

McTap03’s last blog post..January Goals

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