Dealing with Overly Aggressive Players
When you sit down to play a poker session you have to determine who will give tons of action and who will not give tons of action. When playing online it does become a little more difficult in today’s game especially because a good portion of players are more aggressive than they used to be. That high percentage of aggressive players almost allows you to play more cautious and keep you from stepping out of line in too many pots.
Patience is Sometimes the Key
Sitting back and waiting is a big part of what poker has become today. So many players play too aggressive and bluff chips off rather frequently. How you play against the super aggressive young kids of today’s poker world is to wait and trap them. It is almost that simple, but it also means you have to take some chances here and there. If you are perceived as a very tight player, you will get played back at almost every time you enter a pot simply because you will fold to three bets pre-flop tons of times to make it worth it for your opponent.
Most young kids feel that they can out play any player in any spot, and this means that you should let them try to when you have a big hand. We can thank televised poker for this, as they only show the high bluff – exciting hands so people think that’s how pros always play.
The players who make big bets or over-bets in spots are kind of fading in the online poker world, but some still remain. The over-bet used to signify extreme strength, but now it is more commonly something like a flush draw. It can be either a big pocket pair that is over that of the board or a flopped flush draw. Either way it puts you to the test almost instantly, and you have to know what the best move is in any given spot. It really depends on what your hand is for how you want to deal with it.
Example: If you have top pair with QJ on a board like Q83 with two hearts, it is extremely difficult to figure out what to do when facing an over-bet. This is also why when facing aggressive players you should play more premium holdings pre-flop. This will avoid the scenario completely and put you in better shape post flop. When you have a hand like QJ on that flop, you are really just guessing what your opponent has. They could have AK and make a strong lead or pocket tens even, but most commonly you will see hands like AQ, KK, AA, a set, or a flush draw. The whole key to avoid this spot is remaining discipline with your pre-flop holdings. You don’t want to put your money in behind or guessing especially if it is for your tournament life in a major poker tournament.
Example 2: However, if you have a hand like pocket Aces or Kings, you want to inflate the pot, so, that you give your opponent the chance to fire an over-bet. If you notice you get three bet before the flop almost always, you can just call a re-raise instead of moving over the top with a big pocket pair. This will allow you to win a big pot off of an aggressive player and give them the idea that you will fold, but in reality you can scoop a monster pot from them. The reason you don’t want to put in a fourth bet against an aggressive player is because they will do the betting for you. You can trap them in to thinking they will win the pot then you can snag a monster pot from them without them thinking you will.
It is tricky and something that you will learn over time to be effective, but it will only work in scenarios where your opponent will never give up.