If you want to play free poker games then it isn't too hard to get started, firstly you will need to find a poker site. This should not be difficult as there are lots of sites to choose from. You will also need an email account so you can register an account with the site. Many poker sites will let you join up for free by downloading the software and filling out a quick registration form, the hardest part of this is picking a unique user name for yourself that has not already been used. Once you have an account and have confirmed your email address you are ready to get started playing free poker games. Read More>>
For beginning players, there is a tendency to view each betting round in isolation. While the mathematical odds of having a winning hand shift from each round, information gleaned from previous betting rounds can provide valuable insights into overall strategy. The best poker players take mental note of each bet, hesitation and fold to help them paint an overall picture as the hand emerges. Importantly, getting a high level of accuracy in prediction can help make you a better poker player in the long run.
By understanding how each player bets relative to his or her tendencies, you'll have much greater insight into how the hand unfolds. If a player makes a move you don't expect, it may be a good idea to re-evaluate what you believe he or she is holding, or to update your player expectations accordingly. By playing close attention to every hand, including those you're not active in, you'll be able to improve your understanding of how other players bet at the table.
Evaluating Pre Flop Play
Positioning plays an important role in understanding what each player is likely to hold. A raise in early position in a round signals a player has a strong hand, generally either a high pair (10s or greater) or a high ace (Ace-King or perhaps Ace-Queen suited). In a simulation of a large number of hands, it has been determined that there are 25 hands which have a positive expected value from playing ranging from an Ace-8 suited to pocket aces. The strongest five hands are A-K suited, and pocket Jacks to Aces - having one of these hands maximizes ones chances of success in the long run.
When a player raises in early position, you can assume they have a particularly strong hand, and a re-raise signals another player believes he or she has an even strong hand. Unless you have pocket aces at this point, it may be a good idea to re-evaluate your strategy. Often times, playing a strong pocket king hand in the face of a re-raise or two might put your at a disadvantage to pocket aces. Importantly, an A-K hand is a statistically underdog (slightly) to pocket tens, so make sure you adjust your odds accordingly.
Learning from Each Betting Round
If you stay in a hand past the flop, take mental note of what you believe the other players hold based upon their behavior. Being able to determine the likelihood another player holds a high pair before the flop can help greatly if you remain in the hand thereafter. When there is a large pot with multiple players, staying in with a chance of hitting top flush or straight might give you good pot odds - although keep in mind you may be drawing against a player with a higher drawing hand in certain cases.
Making smart betting decisions and updating your analysis each round can help you make the best possible decisions at each stage of the game. Creating a complete narrative from each round of betting will help you determine the optimal strategy for betting as you approach showdown.