Thursday, January 04, 2007

Sit and Go - The Death of Pushbotting??

All over the poker forums at the moment are posts along the lines of 'SNGs are so much harder', and 'Everyone is using the same strategy'. These posts are (prematurely IMO) declaring that the tried and trusted 'Pushbot' strategy is dead...

What we are describing is the super-tight early and super aggressive all-in or fold late game that the members of 2+2 and Pocketfives.com have been using for many years.

There is a simple reason why I do not think this strategy is dead - this is that the strategy is sound at the lower levels because it maximises your ability to take advantage of your opponents mistakes! It conserves chips for when you need them (mid-to late stages), it avoids tricky decisions after the flop and it allows you to get to the most important part of the game (the bubble) where the real money comes from!

Will not go into more detail in this post, the concepts I have outlined are discussed at length in my eBook 'A Comedy of Errors' available free on the top right of this blog. BTW, if you enjoy the eBook please recommend Plan3t Gong poker to a friend!!

Now back the main hypothesis in all these forum posts - that SNGs have got harder over the last 6 months or so... is this true?

Well the closure of Party etc to US players means that PokerStars / Full Tilt now have more experienced players at the tables (assuming the winners moved over and the losers did not bother). This argument may work at the higher levels, but at the 16s / 27s and below? No - not really, sure there are multitablers / big winners out there - but most tables are filled with novices most of the time. Add to this the fact that there are simply so many games filling up that it is easy to avoid those winning players if you feel that would negatively affect your ROI.

I think the reality is that there are a group of people, prolific forum posters no less, who are experiencing the joys of varience for the first time! They see their ROI going down from 20% to 10% and have to blame it on something!! Of course every poker player thinks they are more skilled than their opponents so it must be something else.... now thinking this through, with a relatively small sample size of a few hundred SNGs it only takes a few coinflips, a small run of good cards and a couple of lucky suckouts to make a big difference %-wise to your ROI. If you are averaging $2 per SNG at the $10 level, 3 preminum pairs at the bubble over 200 SNGs could mean the difference of 3 1sts ($150) vs 3 4ths ($0)... thats a 40% swing!

I personally feel there are a lot of players out there that start off on a winning streak and assume it will last for ever. For these types it is easier to blame something else than work on their game and fix leaks. I'm not going to be one of them, are you??

BTW, If you are not already playing at PokerStars then I have to ask why not!!! SNGs there fill up so fast you have to be quick to register for them, they are so full of novices that a thinking player has a real edge - and (importantly) if you play the Turbos the rake is significantly less than at most other sites ($6+50c and $15+1 etc). There really is no excuse not to sign up today!!

Cheers!

Mark

1 comment:

G-Rob said...

It's true of any winning strategy that it becomes less effective and, eventually, ineffective, over time.

Nice post.