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Texas Hold’em – Strategy

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Texas hold’em is a deceptive game. It appears easy to play, yet beneath that simple façade, lies a game of incredible complexity. Many variables must be taken into consideration when making any decisions. Figuring out the correct play is often difficult. Here are a few tips that will help you determine the best course of action:

You need to know what the best possible hand is and how likely it is to be dealt. With certain upcards, the potential for many different strong hands increases. While with other upcards, however, the number of combinations is dramatically reduced.

Make sure that you recognize when you hold the best possible hand. Even though this tip is actually a continuation of the previous one, its importance is such that it rates a separate listing. If you have the nuts and fail to recognize it, you will miss important betting and raising opportunities, which in turn will cost you money. Thinking that you have the best possible hand when you don’t can cost even more. However, by paying close attention to the board, you will avoid making these costly errors.

Table position is important to consider for your game play. Texas hold’em is known as a “fixed-position” game as opposed to a “random position” game. In other words, the order in which the players act each round is prearranged, rather than determined by the strengths of the exposed cards, as it is in stud. Since there is an advantage to acting last in poker, you should be more discriminating of the hands you play in early position than those you play in late position.

Don’t overvalue suited hands. Having two cards of the same suit definitely makes your hand better, but many beginning players tend to overrate the value of suited cards. In short, a hand like 10-6 almost always should be thrown away, whether it is suited or not.

High cards are much better than low cards; it is just as easy to make a pair when you have high cards as it is when you have low cards.