How to stand against your opponent

Once becoming a more advanced player of the game, like those at the WSOP, it is crucial that you are able to think on so many different levels. This is something that advanced players have over their less educated opponents and only comes through playing the game at a constant level but after all, poker is a thinking man’s game so being able to develop your level of thinking over time is an important factor to become an all-round good poker player.

When I say being able to think on different levels, this means thinking about what you have, what your opponent has, what your opponent thinks you have and so on. You must always remember that your opponent is essentially doing the same thing for you so you must always remain one step ahead and develop your skills and abilities of thinking with practice.

It isn’t always necessary in a game of poker to think any more than the first two or three levels especially when playing in a low-limit hold’em. As you advance in limits it becomes much more crucial for you to be able to think on many levels. You must always remember that poker is essentially a game of information, and the better your opponents play, the more information you will need to be able to get from them to be successful.

Being able to psyche out your opponent takes much skill, time and dedication to learning the art of bluffing, but being able to detect the bluff of your opponent is as equally important so you must always be thinking about your opponent’s moves just as much as your own.

This is something that comes with first being able to ‘tell’, notice a player on a ‘tilt’ and being able to identify your opponents betting patterns. Mastering these takes time but once mastered you will prove a very formidable opponent at the poker table.

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