When poker tournaments are in the late the stages there are many different kinds of stack sizes that players could have. You’ll have the chip leader; middle stacks and you’ll have those small stacks clinging on for dear life. In this article I am going to discuss the small stack play and how to use your chips more effectively than you may have in the past. Playing small stack poker can be a tricky thing and players sometimes do not play their stack correctly which in result could end their tournament life. I am going to discuss small stack play in which the player has roughly 10 big blinds to work with.
Let’s imagine that you are in a tournament in the late stages and you find yourself with a stack of about 10 big blinds. This is a situation in which a player has to choose a hand to make their move with. With this many blinds there is no time to mess around and, in my opinion, there are only two options when you have a stack of this size; it’s either all in or fold. I say this because you don’t have a stack to limp in with because odds are you will miss the flop completely and someone will more than likely bet you out of the pot. If you were to keep doing this over and over your chips would disappear very quickly. I don’t really recommend limping but it makes me cringe when I see players do it with 10 big blinds or less.
The other option I don’t recommend doing is the standard raise unless the player is an experienced player and they have been in this spot before. The two options I would stick to if I was a new player would be to go all in or just simply fold. Now this can tricky as well because you don’t constantly fold your hands away because the blinds and antes will eventually run you out of chips. On the flip side a player doesn’t want to all in with any two random cards at any point in time. The decision to go all in can come down to a couple different factors. One factor would be the position on your table. If you are one the first to act then I would recommend shoving a stronger hand but if you are close to the button and one of the last to act then your hands don’t have to be as strong. It’s a very tricky situation to master but on the flip side I don’t think poker is a game anyone can master because the game is constantly changing.
So, if you find yourself in a 10 big blind situation think about some of the tips I just gave and see how the works out. Choose your spots wisely, don’t fold all your chips away and finally pay attention to your position on the table. Stay tuned for my next article where I will discuss the type of hands that I recommend when making your move all in. Good luck in your next poker tourney!