Poker is an exciting game to both play and watch. And if you watch or play poker a lot, you must have noticed that certain table positions feel easy to play. That is because they have an advantage over the other table positions. This article will teach you various poker table positions and how to play them.
In poker, information is power. Therefore, knowing what your opponent will play is an advantage and will help you make better decisions. One of the factors that will help you do that is the table position. So, before starting to play in an online casino in India ensure that you understand the following.
Poker Table Positions
Following is the list of positions for a nine-player poker table.
- Small Blind
- Big Blind
- Under the gun
- Under the gun + 1
- Middle Position
- Middle Position +1
You can divide the above positions into four sections: blinds, early position, middle position, and late position. Blind includes the person who places big and small bets. The two seats left to the blinds are in the early poker table position, called under the gun. After that comes the middle table position. Finally, the last three positions to play are hijack, cutoff, and button. The player at the button deals the cards in the games without a dedicated dealer.
You can see the details about these positions below.
Players in this position must place bets whether they decide to play. The small blind ranges from 1/3 to 2/3 of the big blind; the person is immediately next to the button in the clockwise direction. In any best online casino in India, the software will automatically place blinds if you are in that position.
The Reason Behind Blinds
The blinds at the starting game give the players something they will try to win. Without them, you may see little action unless more than one player has premium hands.
The position is slightly disadvantageous. It is cheap to enter the flop game, making it difficult to judge if you should play the hand. It would be better to avoid playing with weak hands. Additionally, after the flop, your position will be poor.
These positions are the worst in poker and, therefore, the name under the gun or UTG. You don’t get low entry fees as in blinds, and your post-flop position will be terrible. So, if you are in the early table position, you must play only strong poker hands.
UTG position players must avoid playing hands that are only sometimes strong, for example, small pocket pairs. That is because you may not get the desired outcome every time using these hands.
This position players have a better position than the early position players. And they can play a wide range of poker hands. However, they still should be cautious as four players will wager after them.
The middle position is slightly tricky to play as you must adjust your game based on other players. For example, if the player playing before you is aggressive, you should play more tightly. And if the player behind you is tight, you can play more aggressively to make them fold.
These positions are the best at a poker table. You can wait till most of the players have made their decision. Late table positions are best for using weak hands to win the pot before the flop. The risk-to-reward ratio of these positions is low, making it possible to play against tight players. Additionally, you will be at an advantage after the flop as you can wait to see how other people react to it.
Why do You Need a Button in Poker?
All the positions on a poker table depend on the dealer button. It moves clockwise after every hand. It makes the play more interesting, and all the players will get opportunities to play all the positions.
In dealers’ games, the player with the button deals the cards to the players. However, you will also see the button in any online casino that has dealer software.
Table Position Strategy Tips
Now that you know the advantages and the disadvantages of the table positions, the question is, what can you do with them? These positions enable you to maximize your winnings after the flop.
- Try to identify and sit next to the weak players. You will then be at an advantage against them and get several opportunities to beat them.
- Being in the last table position allows you to know what others will decide. On the contrary, if you are in the early table position, you only can guess their play. For example, if you are playing at the button, you can quickly fold if tight players call. Similarly, if you play the UTG position and two others also called after you, you can be sure that your hand is worse.
- Table position strategies are very crucial to play draws efficiently. They are seldom advantageous when you are in a worse position. So, in addition to calculating pot odds, you should consider this.
Advantages of Table Position Strategies
Now that you know table positions and how to use them, read on to learn the advantages of a good table position.
- You may get abundant opportunities to check. And thereby, you may get a free card to complete your flush draw.
- You can control the pot size as you are the last person to bet. If you don’t want a large pot, check. You can bet if you do want a large pot.
- Because of your advantageous position, you can play with weak hands. Additionally, you may get higher betting opportunities than in other table positions.
- If you play the last position, you can know the pot odds with certainty. Contrary to early table position or blind players, who can only guess.
- And finally, you can know the decision of other players before making your own. You may call this the only advantage of table position as all the above advantages are because of this.
In conclusion, poker table position strategies are essential to improve your poker game. Early table positions are weaker than late table positions. A late table position like the button makes you know other players’ decisions before making your own. And you can use this information to control the pot size and pressure the opponents. Additionally, it allows you to calculate pot odds with certainty and play weak hands.