I am learning how to play poker at the present.
In the mid to late nineties there were 65,000,000 players int he USA but probably a lot more since Texas Hold’em has appeared regularly on US television and now, even on British “mainstream” television.
I started playing on partypoker.com and then moved to 888.com but was never really happy with them so have moved to Ladbroke’s version which is ideal as it gives full stats of your percentage wins, flops, winning flops, and a whole lot of other stats as well. These are visible as you play and you can see how your game improves as you play. (Link below.)
All the websites I mentioned above have real money games and also “play” or “fun” money games where you are given $1,000 starting money which is replaced if you continue to lose.
I was winning an average of 5% of my games on “ten player” tables.
I then read on the ‘net about a book by Ken Warren called “Winner’s Guide to Texas Hold’em Poker”. Ken left the US Airforce in 1987 and has been earning his living playing poker ever since.
Since reading only 116 pages of the 222 page book, my winning percentages have risen from 5% to 13% so the book really is helping me.
I intend to read it fully, and then a second time and if I can get my winning percentage up to 20$ I may well consider playing for real money stakes. There is no hurry and it pays to be cautious.
Once a month I go to a pub in London’s Waterloo area and play with about fifty other players in the private room. The cost is £10 for the evening to play and £1.50 towards the room and our own waitress to bring us drinks to the table. However it is best not to drink alcohol before or during a game – but I do encourages others to!
The person who comes third in our team of eight wins £15. The person who holds out to second place wins £25 and the lucky bastard who wins the whole game on a table gets a stonking four times his initial stake; £40.
This is really fun and it is more than a matter of luck as the above percentages tell you. It is a complex and highly involved game. Luck doesn’t come into it half as much as bluff and knowing the odds and the rules of play.
For example, if the dealer is to the right of you, you would throw in a Ace and Jack, which you would certainly play if the dealer was to the left of you. Each hand and each position to the dealer on the table have a different method of play.
Poker winning hands go, from lowest to highest: Pair; two pairs; three of a kind; a run (mixed suit); a Flush (cards in the same suit but not a run); a full house (a pair and a three of a kind); four of a kind, and lastly, a running flush (run of the same suit).
Follow the link after my sign-out for Ladbroke’s Internet Site.