I think the hardest thing for most beginners in low limit poker to grasp is the fact that once you have put money into the pot, you are no longer playing for free. If you run a little bit of math, you will soon see that the percentage of wins that you give up for free is substantially less than what you will earn. Sure, you may never be able to totally rid yourself of this thought, but if you are dedicated to winning and can comfortably accept a few losses, you can work your way up to higher limit where you will have the greatest increase in profits.
So, how do you give yourself a fighting chance in Dewabet play? Let’s take a few examples from the game of Razz. Let’s say you are dealt K-Q and raise to $1. The Flop comes Q-7-2 rainbow. You have a very strong hand, now are you willing to bet your $1 seven times the size of the big blind to see? If you are, you stand a chance of only winning $14. Since you are playing in a limit game, you know that if you bet $2, you have a 2.5 to 1 ratio of wins to losses, if you are willing to fight for your $1.
On the other end of the spectrum, if you are dealt A-J and raise to $3, the Flop comes 4-Q-3. If you bet $3, you have a 2 to 1 ratio of wins to losses, and if you are willing to fight for $1, you have a 2 to 1 ratio of wins to losses.
Now let’s say in both of our examples, there was a bet of $1.50. Let’s say your opponent calls, you re-raise to $6, and your opponent folds. In this situation, in order to win $12, you have to win two $1 bets, and in order to win $70, you only have to win $3. You lose $4 if anyone bets higher than you do. InGR a little suggestion, instead of $4, consider $3. This way, in the event of a tie, you will still be ahead by $1. It works, as long as the two players ahead of you both make bets.
This strategy is a simple one, but it is a good one. Your next move depends on what happens in the flow. If nothing else, the Flop comes, and if you make bets, your opponents will make moves to get you to fold. It could happen that nothing in your hand gives your opponent any reason to believe that you are weak. Let’s say that you hold what is known as the Big Slick. This is a hand that you felt for certain that you could win with. You now face a tough decision. Should you slow play the hand or should you fire the first bullet, so to speak? Good players know when to fire a bullet. They will fire a bullet when it is either best to get lots of money into the pot or to protect what they have already invested.
Other times, you may want to use this strategy and slow play the hand. slow play is simply limping into the hand with the intent of making a big raise or a big blind bet later on. Beating your opponent into a fold with the best hand you have is easier said than done, but it can be done. This strategy alone may not win you the money in the long run, but if it assist you in at least winning the money.
Remember the most important rule of gambling is: never lose more than you can afford to. Play within your limits and you will be safe. Winning more than you cost to is a great feeling. But if you spend too much, you will be hurting much more than you will be hurting. Play smart and you will be a winner.