Tight Is Right But Tighter Is Righter.
Many players who come to the six seater SNG are looking for action. It’s the reason they came in the first place.
They love playing many hands and accepting that they can be well beaten when their Q9 offsuit gets beat by AQ. They just accept it as part of the poker game and carry on.
Shorthanded poker is a skill that takes practice, practice, practice to develop. The full ring game player who comes to a six seated limit table for the first time usually loses their buy in within 30 minutes or so.
The reason? They can’t fold a great hand when they know they are beat. And because the blinds come round faster and the amount of hands dealt per hour are so much higher they go through their chips in no time at all.
In a full 10 handed ring game you are simply waiting for premium hands to show down with. It’s a boring game, but with practice you can multi table many tables and build your bankroll with this style.
When you bring this 10 handed winning style to the six seated game then you are not making the necessary adjustments to compensate for the changed dynamics. Simply put, waiting for great hands to play with and showing them down is not going to make you a winning six seat player.
In six seat ring game poker you need to have a far more developed sense of POSITION than in a full ring game. In addition to this you need to be prepared to defend your blinds to an attacking player a little more frequently than would be comfortable for a ten handed player. If you don’t make a stand then you risk losing your blinds every orbit and because they come around so quickly this depletes your chips rapidly.
Now, at this point I should mention that in the low limit six handed games it’s common to never have to defend your blind unless you have great cards. The reason is that there is so much action for your premium hands that playing in a more risky style is simply not worth it. You get paid off so much when you enter a pot that playing sub standard hands becomes a non issue.
At the higher limits players tend to play with better hands and check call more so that you don’t win so much for your high pairs and defending your blinds becomes more crucial to your win rate.
Low limit six handed games are an absolute goldmine to the good player. Beating this game is very easy if you play in position, play tight, don’t defend your blinds with crap and re raise at every opportunity when you know you are winning. Always raise your good stuff because you will always get called by people trying to make a drawing hand.
So what’s all this got to do with the six seat SNG?
Many people think that because the action is only six handed you need to be playing more frequent pots to make up for the fact that the blinds come around so much more quickly. So people tend to play with sub standard hands.
What this means to you is that you are now allowed the freedom to play even tighter than you would normally. The reason being when you go into a pot you are going to get paid off big style.
The blind structure in an SNG is there to create the action. However because there are so many players just itching to get their chips in the middle with their junk hands the blinds are really of no consequence in the early part of the tournament.
This is why tight is right but tighter is righter!
You only need to play one or two hands to make it to four handed play quite comfortably. That’s all you need to do.
There is no need to get involved in any other action. What the other players do is of no significance to you whilst you sit and wait patiently for your opportunity.
One of the most under rated skills that a poker player has to have in his armoury to be successful is patience. Without patience you will never amount to much as a poker player.
This is why Phil Hellmuth is such a great player. He has patience in abundance.
In this SNG environment the blinds are not forcing us into action. We don’t need to do anything.
By doing nothing we can sit and watch the weaker players bust each other out. We only need to play one or two hands to get to our 2000 chip target for four handed play. This is a very easy game to beat if you play in a very tight style until we get down to four players.