Heads up poker is one of the most fun ways, in my opinion, to play some popular variations of the game, but playing heads up is also the most difficult way to play Texas Holdem. Going from a full ring table to only a two man table is much more intense. I’m about to disclose some awesome tips that’ll help you stack your opponents during a one on one match.
First and foremost, the best way to play profitably long term is to play aggressively. However, There’s literally two ways to win at heads up poker. Two very obvious ways; Show the best hand, or get your opponent to fold his hand. Aggressive players tend to aim for the latter, betting, raising and re-raising all the way to the point where their opponent gets up and leaves the game, and it doesn’t matter how strong or how weak their hand might actually be.
A lot of players heavily depend on bluffing when they play heads up poker. Obviously players can’t make a hand every single time, and the more aggressive don’t tend to check their hands away. Therefore, they bet (the bluff). Bluffing can be fairly easy in a heads up game, as it’s often simply to lead your opponent in thinking you have the upper hands. However, tread with caution. As sometimes players might often slow play the “nutz” (best possible hand) and let you do all the betting for them.
While playing heads up poker learning how to read your opponent may go a long way. It’s just as important as knowing how to bluff and knowing how to play an aggressive game. It’s important to watch your player movements; hand gestures, facial expressions, chip playing, and other tells. For example: A player’s hand may shake more when they’re bluffing. Or a player may sit completely still when holding the best hand. Remember to hide your own tells by mixing it up a little. If you notice you do a certain movement when holding a strong hand, then do it when you are bluffing. It’s a great way to maximize your profits. Also, be sure not to consistently fold, check, bet, and raise with the same hands all the time. You will give your hands away.
Last but not least, if you’re confident you have the upper hand on your opponent in a game (as in your holding a 4-of-a-kind or straight flush) then start raising and even re-raising. You want your opponent to bet as much as possible that way you take as much as you can, since you know you’re going to take down the pot anyways.
You’ll find many online poker rooms, and some live casinos that offer some decent heads up SnG’s. Just remember that even if you’re playing in a MTT (multi-table tournament) that it’s likely you can find youself heads up against someone. After all, it’ll come down to one player taking the game down, and in this case just apply the same strategy as mentioned. I hope you learned something new that’ll help you become a more consistently winning player at heads up games. Good luck on the tables!
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