When to tap the glass. (By Betfair.com)

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When to tap the glass.


By Betfair.com

Although for the most part you hardly ever want to tell bad players how bad they really are, occasionally it is profitable and correct to try and get under the skin of bad players through berating them. A great example of this comes from <a href="http://betting.betfair.com/poker/web-watch/stu-ungar-031208.html">Stu Ungar</a>'s behaviour at the end of a gin rummy tournaments.

Gin Rummy usually has extremely high variance, Ungar was so good at 'defensive' gin, a strategy based on playing your hand based on stopping your opponent getting gin, that he largely eradicated the high variance in his own game. Because of this, at the tail end of gin tournaments players would nearly always make some kind of deal. Ungar once talked about how he got heads up in a gin tournament, and the guy he was playing asked what kind of deal he wanted to make. Ungar replied 'How about we just put first and second place together and play winner takes all?'. Apparently his opponent looked a little sick, politely refused, and quickly lost.

What this shows is that a little careful prodding can often really help in demoralising your opponents. I find these sort of techniques particularly helpful when either playing heads up cash or at the business end of tournaments - when a lot can rest on both how stable your opponent feels, and how much confidence they have in themselves. Although telling your opponents that they are bad is usually a big mistake, trying to get them to gamble at higher stakes, asking them to fire up more tables, or trying to set up winner takes all deals can be extremely profitable in many games.

No human being likes to be made to feel out of their depth at anything, and shame and pride can drastically change a players game. That attacking aggro player at .50/1 may well shrink into a tight passive rock if you can get them to play 2/4 or higher, simply because they don't want to be made to feel like an idiot by you if they make a poorly timed play. If you are not looking like an idiot occasionally in poker you are not making enough moves, and if you can stop your opponent from making these types fo plays through shame, they become extremely easy to read.

For the most part, you just want to let bad players get on with it, but if you spot a situation where you think a few words might get you ahead, never hesitate to do it.

<strong>Related Readings</strong>

<a href="http://betting.betfair.com/poker/bloggers/please-do-not-tap-the-glass-041208.html">Don't tap the glass - <strong>Betfair Poker</strong></a>
<a href="http://betting.betfair.com/poker/marcus-bateman/beating-weak-games-301008.html">Beating weak players - <strong>Marcus Bateman</strong></a>
<a href="http://betting.betfair.com/poker/marcus-bateman/understanding-bad-players-171108.html">Understanding bad players - <strong>Marcus Bateman</strong></a>
<a href="http://betting.betfair.com/poker/web-watch/mizzi-lands-first-live-event-071208.html">Sorel Mizzi lands first live event - <strong>Poker Web Watch</strong></a>
 

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