Freeroll Poker Tournaments

News RSS / Annette 15 / 03 April 2009 / 3 Comments

The first thing to remember about freerolls is that players do not value their tournament life very much.

This is simply because they got in for free - so who really cares if they bust? Unlike in the higher buy in tournaments, where a huge amount of pressure can be applied to players in marginal situations, in free rolls such marginal situations will always nearly result in a call, and as a result bluffing is a much harder proposition.

When you cannot bluff in poker you only really have one choice left - to let the cards do the talking. All the way up to the bubble of these tournaments the only realistic strategy you can play is to just try and hit big hands and bet them very aggressively.

Once these tournaments hit the money they do start to change slightly. Firstly, the players left usually have a vague idea of how to play as they have survived - all the very weak players have busted out by this point so some more advanced plays are possible.

Secondly, there is now real cash on the line which always changes peoples behavior in some way. This second point is particularly true on the final table bubble and the top three bubble, where relatively big money is now on the line (relative to a game with a free buy in that is!!). Opening up your game and trying to steal the blinds a lot more becomes a decent strategy here if the table seems to have tightened up.

These tournaments provide a great way to start a bankroll from nothing, and also give you valuable practice at the basic mechanics and situations of no limit hold'em. Although it is much harder to bluff and make creative plays, often in high stakes poker it is difficult to bluff and make creative plays if the table is set a certain way, and being able to play a good tight aggressive game is important all the way to the top.

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Comments (3)

  1. iain | 07 April 2009

    I like your method of how when you cannot bluff you let the cards take over. Great article

  2. Zeljko Maslov | 18 May 2009

    annette, thanks for this article

  3. Clin | 02 June 2009 frustating play a freerolls when the people there doesnt care about play high strong or goods hands, just play all the hands they received, bluffing all the time and make imposible to the very best players reach the final table....some times players with 2-3 can beat a K-K going all in pre-flop and make 4-5-6 on the amazing but it happens, and the player with K-K made the correct decision, it must be interesting an article where can teach you how to beat that bad players on the freeroll tournaments...thx.

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