After taking a week off from online poker and from blogging, I decided I was ready to go back to the cash games.
Lately, when ever I play at DoylesRoom.com, I study the table statistics prior to choosing which table I want to play at. I look for the tables with the highest average pots per hand.
I believe that this gives me a chance to play at a table that has the loosest players, players that make bad decisions and are willing to give me their money. There is a danger that they may be too loose and will suck out with a poor hand and still beat me. But that is the risk I take for the rewards that I am after.
Last night’s table choice gave me 5 players that I have seen before and had notes about their style of play. I have been recently adding information if they play more than one table at a time. I call those type of players “MTP” or multiple table players. There were a few of those at the table as well. We had the super stack players, those with more than $50, the medium stack players, those with $30 or so. The ones with $15 or less, I call the short stacks or “hit and run” players.
Most of the short stack players seem to play at the table for one reason only and that is to hit a pocket pair, shove their stack all in, hopefully win and then leave with their winnings. They seem to go from table to table with this plan. Most of these players are on more than one table until they hit their magic cards. I am not sure if this is even a profitable play, but they seem to do it like clockwork.
The super stack players seem to come in two types, the bully and the tight but passive player. Both types were at my table last night. One even seemed to have read Doyle Brunson’s chapter on playing power poker from both of his super system books as the moves she made were right out of his book.
At tables with these type of players I try to play tight but aggressive. About two thirds of the time when I entered the pot with a hand, I would bet out with a pot sized bet. About one third of the time I would try to limp in. Limping at this table did not work very well as the aggressive super stack player would raise about 3 times the pot size making it hard to call with anything other than pocket aces or kings. If the super stack was in the big blind, she would defend her blinds with bets of 3 to 5 times the pot size or even go all in, daring you to call her.
I started the session with a buy in of $30 and played more than 200 hands during the course of the evening. I had pocket aces twice during that session, winning only $6.00 with them. My most profitable hand was a pair of jacks that I slow played preflop and hit my set post flop. The super stack player raised to $5.50 or a pot size bet after the flop, the next player, a short stack, re-raised all in for 8.70 and I re-raised all in for my remaining 29. The aggressive super stack folded and I was heads up against the short stack player who turned over a pair of kings. The turn and the river improved my hand to a full house of jacks over fours, increaseing my stack by $16.00.
Overall, I left the table with $11 more than I started. It was such an active table that it was not easy to hang on to my chips. Overall, I was satisfied with my level of play but left knowing that I have to work on dealing with the aggressive super stack players. I suppose that one way to combat that is to enter the table with a larger stack.
Do you play No Limit Hold ‘Em cash games? Do you buy in at the maximum allowed? Or the minimum? What is your cash game strategy?