Friday, February 22, 2013

ATo, LP, Early in Tournament

(This one comes from Phil Gordon's Little Blue Book)

It's the tenth hand of a major, deep-stack, big patience factor tournament. Blinds are T25/T50. Your stack size is approximately the same as everyone else: T10K.

You're dealt ATo on the cut-off seat and the action folds to you. What do you do?

Short Answer: Fold.

Longer Answer:
  • You're 200BB deep. There's not much to steal (both blinds combined make up less than 1/100th of your stack. Is it that important for you to increase your stack this tiny amount? The risk: reward ratio isn't worth it.
  • Trying to steal immediately makes your image right off the bat look as a blind stealer; you want your opponents to think the opposite of this, so that when the blinds are bigger and worth stealing they are more likely to think of your hand as being real. 
  • You have zero reads on the other players. What are you going to do when/if someone re-raises you? Fold, of course. And this means that the other players will start see you as a pushover. Instead, you want everyone to think of you as a squeaky-tight player; when you enter a pot, they should be afraid.
Spend the first few blind levels establishing both your image and your reads.

All-in for now...