No matter how many real money poker tournaments you’ve played in and how many poker strategy books you’ve read, bear in mind that when it comes to Freeroll poker, you’ve got to tear up the rule book.
Why? Primarily because the players you’re going to find sitting around the table with you are totally different. They’re not going to be as strong as the players you’ll find in a real money game and they’ll tend to be much looser and aggressive too. In fact, don’t be surprised if you find a load of empty chairs beside you … sometimes, Freeroll players just don’t turn up at all!
The truth is that whether they’re bored, frustrated or just decided to do something else, a freeroll player hasn’t committed any of his money to enter the tournament and will therefore leave whenever he wants.
If you’ve got an understanding of poker strategy though, it’s certainly going to help. It just means that a few little things need tweaking to ensure that you’ll become a profitable player!
1. First up, don’t get too clever. Remember you’re not playing against good players so trying to bluff them isn’t going to work. Your opponents will be mainly focuses on their own cards and aren’t strong enough to know when they should and shouldn’t fold. Don’t start trying to deceive people. Instead, concentrate on simple ABC poker.
2. Play your big hands strong. In Freerolls, your starting requirements need to be a lot looser. Players haven’t got to worry about losing their funds, so they’ll play anything. Don’t start waiting for a pair of rockets to go all in, if you’ve got two face cards or a high pair, you might want to start thinking about doubling up while you still can.
3. Stay Tight. One of poker’s oldest strategies could have been written for the Freeroll Tournamet:”You’ll make the most money at an agressive table when you’re playing tight.”When people are going all in every hand, there’s definitely money to be made and the best way of doing this is to show a little patience and wait until you’ve got something half decent before you go ahead and call them.
4. Be wary come the end. Once you’re down to just a handful of tables left, you can be sure that everyone still in the tourney is there for the duration. There’ll also be slightly better players, meaning that you might need to change your strategy a little. Your starting requirements can go up a bit and we’d suggest affording your opponents a little more respect – especially when it comes to big raises.
As long as you play with these four points in mind, you’ll do pretty well in Freeroll tournaments. It’s not rocket science – you just need to stay focused and keep your eye on the prize. Keep things simple and ensure that you minimise mistakes – after all, it only takes one error to ensure you’re going home empty handed rather than with the prize money.
After all, an error can be the ultimate difference between a paycheck and an empty bankroll.