Hello all, welcome to my online poker blog.

I've been playing on and off for a decade after being introduced by a friend.

I played regularly for a few years during the poker boom and had a decent record at the micros, particularly Rush and Zoom No Limit Hold'em games (here's one of my graphs).

Around 2012 I began a new career which involved immersing myself completely in study in my spare time, so I had little to no time for poker. However recently this burden has eased and so I have been gradually dipping back in.

I'm an amateur player who still hopes to some day beat the rake.

Thursday, 29 April 2010

Making a read and sticking with it!

OK, this player had some really weird tendencies. He wasn't getting hardly any value from his made hands but was going pretty crazy with second / bottom pair. His donk leads were always weak hands like this and he wasn't afraid of turning hands into bluffs, despite the fact that he was slow playing his monsters and thus polarizing his ranges every time he took a line. He was also playing draws passively. Given all of this information, the hand probably looks easy to play and it was. His flop donk range given my reads was tens and eights exclusively. I'm certain he'd have called a raise, but then probably checked the hand down without improvement. My thought was that if I just flatted he would stack off with any ten or eight and that I'd max my EV by calling down. I have two blockers to any straight draw he might have and also thought he'd probably check if any flush cards come in allowing me to check back for a street of pot control. Fairly pleased with the result. I'd never have called down a few months back so I have definitely improved my play and look forward to getting even better in future.
A little trick that I've started using...
Watching a strong mid stakes HU cash player talking about his thoughts during play has taught me alot about how I should be thinking about a hand. He breaks his opponents hand ranges up into:
1/ Strong made hands
2/ Weak made hands
3/ Draws
4/ Air (bluffs)
- and then weights each subset according to villain's actions.
If we can ascertain what our opponents like to do with each of these subsets then it's easy (providing villain isn't playing in a balanced way) to decide which line to take to maximise our EV. In the hand above, I had narrowed villain's range to mostly subset 2, and my hand beat that part of his range. I also knew he'd 3 barrel that part of his range but slow down to a raise. So the best line was obv a call down. Now, sometimes it can be tricky to do this and I'll get better with experience but I'm sure I'm thinking about hands in the right way now. Hopefully over a few hundred HUSNGs I'll get really good at this process.

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