Anyone tries Texas Hold’em will quickly realise it’s a tricky game. It requires players to have multiple skillsets in order to become a strong and consistent winner. You can’t just sit at a cash game and expect to dominate without knowing a thing or two. In this article we’re going to explain four fundamentals you will need to master in order to win at Texas Hold’em. By the end of this article, we hope you will be better prepared and maybe do some research into this key concepts.
Knowing What Hands to Play
The start of any hand is deciding which hands to enter the pot with. This is something professionals do with ease but beginners and even intermediate players can struggle with. Knowing which hands to play is called solid hand selection.
It’s about appreciating what seat you’re in and what hands are going to be profitable. If you’re unsure about what hands to play I recommend you look for a hand chart. Poker training sites offer a free downloadable poker cheat sheet. They usually give you some pointers on what hands to play and from what position.
Counting Outs & Computing Odds
A lot of post-flop poker playing relies on maths and counting the number of cards that can help you win. If you are on a straight draw on the flop, you want to know how many cards there are to help you win (8). Knowing the number of outs is one thing but converting that to percentage is another.
A good rule of thumb is to multiply your outs by 4 on the flop to give you the percentage and double it if it’s the turn. So, with 8 outs on the flop, you have approximately 32% chance of hitting it by the river.
Knowing How to Fold Top Pair
This is something new players really struggle with. Folding medium strength hands come naturally to experts when the situation calls for it. But losing players have a hard time folding hands like top pair. If you want to master Texas Hold’em, you need to assess when you’re beat and fold. Money saved is like money won in the long run so you have discipline and release your hand if it’s mediocre and your opponents are betting loads.
Managing Your Bankroll
OK so this is not a technical poker skill but it’s fundamental to winning. Good bankroll management is about playing within your means, having enough for your stakes and playing at a level you can beat. There’s no use jumping up high and trying to mix it with better players if you can’t beat your current stakes. Managing your bankroll well is about playing with players who are weaker. That way you will be more likely to win. You can also gradually move up stakes and learn important skills along the way.