So what exactly is a freeroll?
A freeroll is a kind of poker tournament where participants don’t need to pay a fee to join. They’re mainly played to find knowledge about the game of poker as well as for players to enhance their skill. Freerolls are available at almost every poker sites on the internet with differing numbers of registrants and prize pools. Sites also reward players for their loyalty to the web site with special freerolls. These normally have a much higher prize pool and much lower amount of players.
Experienced poker players feel poker freerolls are useless becuase they are loaded with bad players and bad play. Needless to say if the play was like this in any other game, they would say how superb it is, so why is it any different for freerolls? The answer is it isn’t, freerolls are the way to build your bankroll and fairly easy if you know the way to play. So next in the article, is the best strategy to win freerolls. The kind of freerolls this technique should be used for are the general tournaments which are open to anybody and not those that require player points or a number raked hands as these games have a much better standard of play.
Poker Freeroll Strategy
In order to succeed at poker freerolls, you need a strategy which ensures you stay in the tournament but still have enough chips left so that you can go for the win. As freeroll payout structures usually are top heavy, you should go for the top positions because you will only be winning pennies if you finish anywhere below the top 5. To reach these positions you will need a chunk of luck and alot of skill. The greatest challenge is to just outlast the initial hour in a freeroll, so to start we are going to examine your opening hour strategy.
In the opening hour, play is at its very worst. You’ll be facing many opponents, happily risking all their chips each hand since they know they’ve got nothing to lose. At this point in the tournament, you need to keep it tight and play fewer hands as you normally would if you are out of position. Only call an all-in using one of the top 5 hands because it is likely you may be facing more than one opponent which dramatically decreases your odds of winning the pot. It’s adviseable to when as many cheap flops as you can, but only when you have position on the rest of the table. The best position is the dealer button, where sub-par hands become fairly strong and worthy of a call as long as the pot has not been raised. Hands are more deserving of a call at this point as if you hit a monster hand and you will more then likely be paid off. I’d especially call suited connectors in late position, as any straight or flush is extremely likely to double or triple your stack. Around 30 minutes into the tournament a lot of bad players will have been eliminated and play is at a higher standard. Blinds will be higher and may also be deserving of stealing with regards to the blind structure. You want to be collecting as many chips as you can coming up to the break because they will be much required in the next stage of the tournament. You could start to loosen up your play when you are in earlier positions now and hands like AJ become playable. As you are nearing the break you may find play on your table becomes much tighter, as players do not want to be eliminated just before the break. This is the time which you need to become the aggressor of the table. Start raising more pots and try bullying players with below average stacks. You can see your stack increasing constantly and you’ll be heading up the leader board. Once the break approaches, have a rest and refresh yourself. The following part of the tournament really makes or breaks the game. You’ll need to be fully focused in order to reach your goal of the top 5.
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The middle stage decides whether you’re making money from the tournament or be leaving empty handed. You will see play directly following the break is looser the immediately before it. You might need to calm down and be ready to fold hands and watch the other players battle it out. Of course you still need to be taking down pots. Steal pots anytime you can and by now you ought to know the weaker players at the table. Use this to your benefit and try to exploit them. You should be above the average players chip stack. As the bubble approaches play will change very much like when the break was coming up. Players will tighten up and pretty much stay out of all hands providing you with a great opportunity to steal more pots then usual. I would advise you to keep away from stealing a pot which involves the player with the highest amount of chips on your table. This is becuase they wont be bullied off a pot as easy as others. Lower stacks will usually fold their hand as you apply this strategy. Your stack will grow from winning just a few pots this way and you’ll start climbing the leader board.
Once the bubble has passed players with low chips stacks will be ready to go all-in with every hand. This is a complete change from their pre-bubble strategy since they’re happy to have made money, but know they will need to double up in an effort to finish in a position to make real money. You again need to tighten up and only play your premium hands, but also picking your spots and using your position to take down pots. This then will take you to the final table which is the final stage of the freeroll.
Final Stage and the Final Table
since you made it to the final table in the poker freeroll, congratulations your hard work has paid off. Needless to say you are now here to finish as high as possible. Keep your play tight until there is Five or six players left. You then need to play super aggressive and start stealing pots wherever possible. You might need to pick a spot to double up if you are getting short stacked. If you are still in the tournament when play is 3 handed you should be in a great spot. Your play now really depends on your own personal preference. If you’re pleased to finish second, allow the other two players to battle it out and knock one another out. If you are going for glory, play in the pots. When there is only 3 players left, average hands become stronger and are worthy of a raise. You should get your money in with any Ace and you’re likely to be ahead. If you played to finish second, once your heads up you’ll probably have a smaller chip stack and you will push with any decent hand. If you went for glory and were able to knock the other player out, now you can use your chip stack to bully your opponent. Be certain that you’re forcing them to risk all their chips when you have any kind of hand and eventually you’ll knock them out. They may double up a few times but if you don’t get incredibly unlucky, you will win the tournament.
So, there you go. Stick to the steps for each stage and you’ll be making more money then ever from playing both online poker freerolls and sit down freerolls.
June 5, 2012 | by tempdude |