Blazing Cannon is back!

March 5, 2014 by  
Filed under Angus Dunnington, News, Poker School

If you missed it before you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy its re-introduction to 32Red Poker because it’s here until the end of March.

The attraction of Blaze Poker is the Quick Fold facility. Clicking on the Quick Fold button automatically folds your hand – without waiting for the play to reach you – and immediately sends you to a brand new table, with a new set of hole cards, and a new set of opponents. Not having to wait for play to come around to you and, subsequently, for a hand to finish when you have too poor a holding to get involved, can make a considerable difference to a poker session in terms of time. And herein lies the beauty of Blaze Poker – Quick Fold allows you to simply get on with it and make the most of your time.

Moreover, this format also helps maintain a higher level of solidity because in a ‘normal’ game we tend to be less patient and thus a little looser than we’d like to admit – such a weakness is less likely when we know that we’re maximising our hands per hour and can trade in a trash hand for two new cards in a second or two. And more hands per hour, of course (even without multi-tabling), means being able to fully take advantage of our excellent 30% Rakeback deal.

As for the fun Blazing Cannon itself, simply win 20 raked hands and a video game opens in which you have a chance of winning up to €100! Fire a burning chip from a cannon into a house of cards – avoiding pesky birds and UFOs, and see if you’re in line for a cash prize. When the game ends you’re simply dealt back into your cash game.

Good luck at the Blaze tables, and with Blazing Cannon!

Angus Dunnington (AngusD at the tables)
32Red Poker Ambassador 

No Limit Tournaments: When Tight Isn’t Right

February 21, 2014 by  
Filed under Angus Dunnington, News, Poker School

Poker is such a rich game that, depending on the specific format we’re playing, a successful approach is by no means guaranteed to have the same results in an ostensibly similar scenario.This is true, for example, when considering the No Limit cash game and tournament scenarios. The conventionally accepted tight-aggressive strategy might be well suited to No Limit cash games (albeit not the only worthy approach) but, in today’s modern tournament environment – particularly online – we’re going to struggle to do better than make a minor cash if we adhere to this style too strictly.

Apart from the fact that strong holdings, by definition, come around all too rarely in this context, when we are ‘fortunate’ enough to be dealt a premium hand there is, of course, no guarantee that we are going to be rewarded with any significant action. For one reason, we have hitherto been inactive, which is already a good indication to the opposition that we’re holding something when we suddenly get involved, so they are likely to avoid commitment. And thus the cycle could well continue as the blinds inexorably rise and our stack diminishes. To compound the problem, there inevitably comes a point as the tournament progresses at which our waiting, safety-first policy seriously puts our tournament survival in jeopardy, let alone the prospects of finishing among the top prizes.

It’s simply not possible to realistically expect any level of success with a pure tight-aggressive approach. Indeed it is imperative to loosen up and experience the liberating experience for ‘too’ tight players that is broadening our starting hand range and indulging in the occasional bit of such delights as speculation and even slow-playing, for instance. This – enjoyable – strategy can begin as early as the opening stages, when the low(est) blind levels afford us considerable flexibility to mix up our game. Note that this also gives us the advantage of being able to engineer a deceptive table image.

As the blinds increase the pressure on just about everyone it makes sense to step up a gear. Instead of being overly cautious the key is to put yourself in other players’ shoes and appreciate that much of the opposition is going to be afraid, and rather than join them it’s much more important to exploit them. The phrase ‘you can’t make an omelette without breaking eggs’ is particularly apt when it comes to NL Hold’em tournaments

Good luck at the tables!

Angus Dunnington (AngusD at the tables)
32Red Poker Ambassador

No Limit Poker: When a Value Bet is a Loser

February 18, 2014 by  
Filed under Angus Dunnington, News, Poker School

‘Value’ is often used in poker and, being such a sensible sounding word, tends to be incorrectly assigned to situations where ‘caution’ might be a more prudent subject matter. A very common example of this is when players, believing they have the best hand against a lone opponent, attempt to extract the maximum from a hand in which they have been making the running by raising the river for value.

Of course such a strategy may well add a few extra chips to the coffers but, alas, doing this kind of thing can be a recipe for disaster. Apart from laying ourselves open to a massive bet (bluff) that forces us to make an awkward decision, there is also a good chance that we are falling into a trap. And herein lies the crucial difference between value and a good old common sense slice of caution – a distinction that we come to appreciate with experience.

Here’s a typical example of this kind of scenario. We are dealt Ad Qd on the button and our standard raise is called by the big blind and a mid-position limper. The flop comes Ac 8d 5s, giving us top pair with an attractive looking kicker, a backdoor flush draw and, of course, we have the advantage of position. It’s checked around to us and we make a pot-sized bet which is called only by the big blind.

The turn throws up the 3d, which is both pretty innocuous and not exactly unwelcome as we now have a nut flush draw to add to our collection. The BB checks once again and, perhaps buoyed by the turn, we make another pot-sized bet which, again, is called. It’s by no means clear what our opponent is holding (maybe a flush draw), which is more troubling than we might assume because poker is all about information, and it can be more convenient to know we’re up against a strong hand than a complete unknown.

The river is the 5c and, breaking the rhythm of the pattern of play thus far, the BB bets around a quarter of the pot. If it was a – now unfulfilled – flush draw, this could be an attempted steal against our possible, albeit unlikely bluff. Alternatively, we might have been up against a poorly played pair of tens or even 8 9. Not only is this the kind of thinking we should adopt, but the process should have started earlier (in fact we should get used to it from the very beginning of a hand). It prevents us from, in a situation like this, now raising with our absolutely beatable top pair and being called by a holding like 8 5, thus wasting money. The possible hands we’ve just considered wouldn’t be calling a raise, and there’s a chance we could even finding ourselves calling a crafty re-raise here. Note that by raising we are also walking into hands such as AK. Moreover, even if we held AK ourselves a raise would still be foolhardy.

Essentially, a would-be value bet can end up being a losing bet, so beware, and listen out for those internal alarm bells that come with experience (and are heralded by a paired board!)

Good luck at the tables!

Angus Dunnington (AngusD at the tables)
32Red Poker Ambassador

No Limit Bullies: Run? Or Rope-a-dope?

February 10, 2014 by  
Filed under Angus Dunnington, News, Poker School

Here’s a typical unpleasant poker experience – having eagerly anticipated sitting down to play a hopefully rewarding poker session (and with that familiar determination and confidence with which we tend to begin), perhaps after brushing up on our game, things soon don’t appear to be going as we had planned. Read more

No Limit Hold’em: Slow-playing the Turn

February 5, 2014 by  
Filed under Angus Dunnington, News, Poker School

While betting strong hands tends to be a worthy strategy we must, of course, take a different approach occasionally in order to avoid being too transparent and, in doing so, extract the most from a very strong holding.

One such tactic is slow-playing the turn to induce a bet or commitment from an opponent on the river. A typical example is when we are sitting on a powerful hand come the turn, in position, against a lone opponent. This is particularly effective when we have been the aggressor since the beginning of the hand. Read more

Special Tournaments at 32Red Poker

February 4, 2014 by  
Filed under Featured, News

We like to give our players special treatment at 32Red and, with this in mind, we have made sure that there’s an exclusive, Special tournament every day of the week.

There’s something for everyone:

Begin the week with our €50 Guaranteed Multiplicity Monday (8pm UK time), which is well worth being a regular fixture in your poker entertainment. Finish in the money in consecutive tournaments and earn the luxury of being able to multiply your latest winnings by the number of consecutive cashes! For example if you manage this three times you can triple your latest winnings. Read more

The Transparency of the Minimum Raise…

February 3, 2014 by  
Filed under Angus Dunnington, News, Poker School

No Limit Hold’em is so-called for a reason – unlike Limit poker, where our betting choices are defined by the limit put on how much we can add to the pot at each betting juncture, NL affords us literally unlimited flexibility.

However, when presented with such an abundance of choice we are also given the opportunity to make mistakes, and the minimum raise is one such fundamental part of the NL game that in some respects – for the vast majority of players – is best avoided altogether.

Let’s see why… Read more

Short-handed No Limit Poker Tips

January 16, 2014 by  
Filed under Angus Dunnington, News, Poker School

Years ago, when first introduced to online poker, we would start off on the No Limit path by sitting down at full-ring games, where the conventional, solid ABC approach tends to be a good foundation on which to build a repertoire of strategies. It’s a good idea to do the same today, not least because it teaches us to have patience and appreciate the (relative) value of starting hands.

However, short-handed poker is so popular now that we tend to try out the murkier waters of 6-player tables earlier in our careers, and it’s important to appreciate the implications of there being fewer players at the table. Read more

Poker Psychology – We should be so lucky…

January 9, 2014 by  
Filed under Angus Dunnington, News, Poker School

Most of us like to think of ourselves as being optimistic. Yet when it comes to luck we tend to be negative in that we feel good things seem to happen only to others, and that we appear to be going through life missing out.

Of course some people will have more than their fair share of good fortune, while others will be on the other end of the scale. However, luck is linked to a frame of mind in that if we have the right kind of attitude we are going to benefit on more than one level. Read more

Poker Psychology – Know Yourself

January 8, 2014 by  
Filed under Angus Dunnington, News, Poker School

Poker is no different to all sorts of other sports, games and activities that have in common a high level of personal effort and input. It’s not a team exercise. Lady Luck plays her role, of course, but that evens itself out over time and consequently renders luck’s contribution irrelevant.

Ultimately we’re left to our own devices and, this being the case, it’s imperative we understand ourselves as well as possible in order to get the most out of our abilities and skills and – equally important – address and reduce the detrimental impact of our weaknesses. Read more

« Previous PageNext Page »