Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Holdem Manager and Pre Flop Card Discussion

I've learned a little trick today, to help with stat info for Holdem Manager. Pokerstars doesn't save summaries in the Hand History files for Tourneys. Consequently, I have been keeping a separate spreadsheet based on my own recorded data, and the Sharkscope database. I've now learned how to request tournament history data for the tourneys I'm interested in tracking (the last 3 for example), and pasting that into a Notepad Test File. I then Open up Holdem Manager, Auto Import the new Tourney Hand Histories, and then manually IMPORT FILE, navigating to where I saved the Tourney History text file. Walla, the only manual change to be made is type of tourney (regular, turbo, etc.).

Now, there are a lot of Stats to go over in improving your game with this program (77 preflop comes to mind). And, I will be writing up an article for Basic Low Buy In Tournament Strategy soon, which is a combination of tips I've learned through education, research, and my own play.

However, this post reflects on the PreFlop cards. Holdem Manager likes to quickly summarize the details for the Premium Hands, listed in order of QQ, KK, AA, and AK (I'm presuming this is suited and non suited, since suited only adds 3% +EV to a hand). In the Hutchinson Point System, AA has a value of 42, KK a value of 38, QQ a value of 36, AKs a value of 37 (note, this is above JJ), and AKo a value of 33 (though everyone appears to want to always go all in with it, can be handy nearing the bubble time).

In my stats for 16 games, I have received these cards 2.4% (this appears to stay fairly steady). I was dealt AA three times, and won all three hands (but not necessarily the tourneys). I was dealt KK 3 times, and only won once. I was dealt QQ 3 times, and only won once, when no one called. Lost twice, the guy next to me (a limper) had KK. Dealt AKs twice, won one and lost one. Dealt AKo three times, won twice and lost once to AJ off.

So my take on these premium starting hands, KK is great with preflop equity of 50+% from early position to 80.9% from later positions, but at the lower buy ins, someone with bigger stack may just call with AQ suited, and get there. AA provides the best PreFlop Equity, great hand to double up on (I'm sure it gets cracked, but since I've only had it three times, I've been luckier than the draw). QQ, while everyone likes to shove with these cards from any position, has the best equity from mid to later positions, BUT ONLY 18% OR LESS.

What does this tell me? That I maybe shouldn't go all in with QQ unless really short stacked, and simply call raises from mid to late position with these cards. Early position, all in, you are at a bit of a disadvantage. I know they are hard to fold, but I need to discipline myself in order to increase ROI and Hourly rate.

As to AKs and AKo, there doesn't appear to be much of a win difference between the two types. AKo is obviously better in later positions, and shoving is what I like to do with this hands when the blinds are over 200 or 300 (since everyone and their dog with a small pocket pair will call an all in with the early stages, as I discovered with my AKs shove). Many advocate, especially when nearing the bubble, that if there are reraises, and you hold AKo, should probably fold. Depends on your chip stack. If the amount will put you all in, maybe think it over some. And there are those times when preflop you are the favorite, but the AJo hits his Jack, and that's all she wrote.

Now, as to other Pocket Cards, been dealt JJ twice, and won both (who knew), even on a board with AQx flop. Look for JJ preflop on the Button or Cut Off for making moves, when the preflop equity is 67.1%, and the only other opponents are limpers.

Everyone's favorite shove (so far that I've noticed) is AQs and AQo (of course, if someone folded it, I don't know). I was dealt AQs twice, from middle position and the Big Blind. From Mid Position, won by simply calling the raises (took my 16k down to 14k, not all in), and when raised from the Big Blind, the limper folded. These are not shoving cards, but if you have the chips, they make calling a raise in position profitable. AQo, the same (simply calling raises that aren't too large for my stack size). I was dealt AQo 7 times, won three times, lost twice, and folded twice (the big raiser would have took half my chip stack, and I would have won, Q on flop, but I do tend to play a little tighter).

Well, there are many more hands to discuss, I hope you liked this starting hand discussion. Query, would you fold the above hands or shove? How do you analyze your play?


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