the Right Table
selection has been a pre-session routine of mine for quite a while
now. Once I realized that the situation I put myself in was
more important than how my game stacked up against other skilled
players, I immediately began to win at a better rate. Before
then I would sit at any table and adjust my game to the
table. By doing this I was creating a learning curve for
myself. It would cost me bets to gain the information I
required about my opponents. It forced me to play tight early
until I learned what player types I was up against. Once I
started to watch a table for a couple of rounds before I sat down, I
found that I no longer lost those early info bets anymore.
For that reason alone, it will always be an area of consideration
before I sit down.
Art of War” teaches that careful ground selection is
imperative in battle. This relates to poker in the form of your
opponents. Favourable battlegrounds in poker are games with
weak players in them. Even if there are other skilled players
at the table, the presence of the fish will make it a profitable
setting. The more fish, the more profit. As long as
you can recognize weak play, you can continue to take advantage of it
initial table selection is important, but there’s one thing
about a good poker game: The better it is, the shorter it
lasts. That makes sense, the faster the weak players lose
their money, the faster they run out of money. Take this
mindset a step further and recognize when the fish are gone and look
for a new game. To remain with other skilled players is only
advantageous to the house. Money will shift back and fourth
between players with nobody really getting ahead, meanwhile the house
rake continues to bleed everyone’s bankroll. If you
document your play you will usually find that this is a situation where
you will lose more money than normal.
So get out
and go searching for greener pastures. Online poker allows
you to watch with no one aware you are even there.
Don’t be in a hurry to sit down and get started.
Watch until you see a weak player and then sit down.
Calculate your player types and wait for a good seat. You preferably
want to sit to the right of tight players so you can force them out of
pots; and to the left of loose players so you can take advantage of
their aggression after they act. This isn’t always
possible but it doesn’t hurt to have this in mind if the
opportunity is available.
you may not watch the table long enough and the information you thought
you had turns out to be incorrect. Some tables will play a
certain way until a new player sits down. Realize that you
could be wrong in some of your assumptions if things are going poorly
early on. The best table-selection practice is to leave one
that you’re losing at. This will be rare but
it’s important to stop the bleeding early at a new
table. If the cards don’t turn around after you
lose 25% of your buy-in you should get out of there before you end up
dumping all your chips in a poor poker situation.
table selection means you sit in the weeds and scope out the land for
limp, slow prey. I’m talking about grinding
here. It’s not about who’s the best,
it’s about taking steps to find the best situation possible
to make money. The time you spend looking for a good game is
not playing time lost, it’s playing time well spent.