Avoiding Bad Beats
Avoiding bad beats is one of the most important skills to learn in poker.
players at any level just hate it when they get a bad beat, they are
are the most annoying and frustrating hands in the game!
So what are they, and more importantly, how can you go about avoiding bad beats?
a bad beat is when you are overwhelming favorite to win a hand - but
still lose. It really is a sickener as often you can lose all your chips
and go out of the game on a bad beat, just because you were convinced
you had the hand won.
There are two types of bad beat in the game
of Texas Holdem poker - the type that you can't really do anything about
and the type that can be avoided.
Here's a scenario for the first type:
got a pair of aces, the best possible starting hand while your only
opponent left in the betting is holding a pair of fours. The flop comes A
Q 4 and your opponent goes all-in. You call, you've got the best
possible hand at that point. The turn is a 4 and you don't catch your
ace on the river, you've just lost to four of a kind.
In this case
you could not have done anything about it. There is no way you could
fold your triple aces, you had the best possible hand. If you fold that
you might as well take up knitting!
Here's how the second (avoidable) type of bad beat plays out:
got A Q and again only you and MrX are involved in the betting. This
time he's low on chips and is going all in with J 9 out of desperation.
You decide to call as you've got a good chance of boosting your chips
and you feel he doesn't have a hand. Flop is 10 7 2 and he hits his 8 on
the turn for a straight.
So how can you go about avoiding bad
beats like these? Firstly you need to realize that in online poker
tournaments the instances of bad beats are much higher than in real life
poker in a casino or home poker game.
There are several reasons
for this, but the botom line is that it comes down to the online poker
player being a different breed. The average online player is far more
likely to play a hand and is far more likely to be distracted by other
games he's playing at the same time, or the TV, or the kids or whatever.
need to counter this by playing a very tight poker game. Only play VERY
big hands and don't get involved in any hand with more than three
callers. Even pocket aces have only a slightly better than 50% chance of
winning against three opponents.
So stay tight, and when you do
hit a hand, bet big. You want to limit your opponents as much as
possible so make a big raise and get them to fold. Avoiding bad beats is
a skill that it definitely pays to learn.