9 Tournament Tips for Intermediate Players
1. Be smart with your poker money. You should have enough to backup cash to buy-in to 100 tournaments. If you have a $100 bankroll then play $1 tournaments. You will lose tournaments. Even the best pros lose several times in a row.
2. Wait for strong cards at the start of the tournament. There’s no need to risk losing your chips early in the game with fancy bluffs. Play few safe hands and fold with weak cards.
3. You have to be an aggressive player. Generally these players have higher odds of winning because they can win in one of two ways: with strong cards and by getting opponents to fold. If you only call with strong cards then your win purely depends on your hand.
4. Bet and raise when you think it is appropriate. Only go all-in if you have a hand that can fight. Learn to calculate poker hand odds mentally.
5. Become more aggressive as blinds increase. Avoid fancy bluffs – just play tight and smart. The higher the blinds the more aggressive you should be. Increase your aggression as the bubble approaches.
6. Players with a middle stack are more likely to fold. As the game progresses chips stacks are not evenly distributed. Those with large stacks have chips can afford to call you out. Those with fewer chips will call out of desperation.
7. Position matters because those who are last know more. If your position is early then stick to strong hands. You can play around more if you are among the last because you have an advantage of knowing ahead.
8. Learn from your opponents. Many opponents play in several tournaments and if you are the same you may encounter them again. Know who to avoid until you have the experience. Sit in on games and to learn from them, but don’t copy them. Note that copying a famous player is not advised because playing poker is situational. The famous player may have been calculating or luring his/her opponent into this one hand.
A great poker site for watch professionals play and even get some coaching advice is Full Tilt Poker. Sign up and start interacting with the pros.