I played at one of the forty player 888 Poker sit and gos recently, and ended up taking third place. I did so well in this sit and go because I was armed with a new style of play and information I had picked up playing in previous 888 Poker games, except this time I was trying to clear my 888 Poker bonus.
Loose Players at 888 Poker
The players at 888 Poker are extremely loose, and love to see flops with marginal hands and worse. I had gotten hurt in previous games at 888 Poker where I had excellent hands get beaten by loose callers. Therefore, I figured the prudent option for this sit and go was to remain as invisible as possible, and act as if I wasn’t even there.
I folded early and often, seeing the flop around 10-15% of the time. When I saw the flop, it was with hands such as AQo and KJs. The players at 888 Poker can be fairly tentative after the flop when they don’t hit, so I was able to pick up the pot even if I din’t hit my cards, because nobody else hit their cards either. I folded K10 quite a few times throughout the game as well.
Playing Big Hands at 888 Poker
This method had been working for me, and I was at about double the starting stack of 800 chips when I picked up AA. Due to the loose players at 888 Poker, I knew that I had to force as many possible players out prior to the flop so that their junk hands wouldn’t catch. I raised from middle position to 3x the big blind. More than half the table called before I got some more help, which I was hoping for.
In addition to raising, I was hoping for somebody to reraise to force more of these loose 888 Poker players out, and I got it. The big blind reraised and forced some of the loose callers out, as even they couldn’t call a raise and reraise with the marginal hands they were holding. I pushed the rest of my chips into the pot and the big blind plus one other player called, both being forced all-in. I took both players out in that hand.
A few hands later, I once again took advantage of the looseness of 888 Poker players when I picked up JJ. I raised from the big blind, forcing out a large number of limpers who were wary after I showed my Aces earlier. One player went all-in with A5o and I took him out too. These were the only two hands I had played in the previous two rounds, so I had built up a reputation as extremely tight, while playing my strong hands to the fullest. The blinds were picking up, which meant it was time to switch to intimidation tactics.
Non-Intimidating Intimidation at 888 Poker Sit and Go
I had been folding throughout the game for the most part, and had earned a lot of respect. While I normally shift gears quite often, I felt that it was better to keep on playing the style I had been using, my ultra-tight and very aggressive play. Every time I entered a hand, I would always win if it went to a showdown, but more often than not everyone folded to me before then.
The players in this 888 Poker game had realized that I only entered hands when I had a very good hand, and my aggressiveness when I did come in forced them to lay down their hands. If this had been a regular cardroom, the other players would have run off screaming if I so much as glanced in their direction. That’s what it seemed like.
I didn’t enter very many pots, so I wasn’t being an outright bully, but when I entered, the others folded fast. At one point, I had a run where I was dealt AQs four times in six hands, and I picked up the pot preflop all four times. This non-intimidating style of intimidation continued into the final table.
The Final Table at 888 Poker
I was in fourth chip position upon entering. This was due to the fact that I wasn’t winning big pots, I was just winning small pots very frequently. The game tightened up considerably at this point, as only the top five places paid out.
There were a few short stacks that were eliminated in short order, and we were quickly left with only six players, one elimination left before the money. We played six handed for at least four levels of blinds. I was still in fourth at this time, but it was at this point that I opened up my game a little more, while the others were being more conservative, trying to reach the money.
I picked up a lot of small pots in quick succession, thanks to the fact that everybody was still very apprehensive about tangling with me and the good hands that they knew I was holding. I rose to third place, then to second place, before finally taking the chip lead in the one big hand that the table had seen since the last player was eliminated.
What I Learned in the 888 Poker Sit and Go
After what seemed a lifetime later, we were down to five players. Two hands later, we were down to three, with me still holding the chip lead. I got unlucky at this point double up each of the other players when their hands beat mine. Both situations were live card situations, and they hit their cards, while I didn’t hit mine.
I finished in third place, but I learned something valuable in this game: how to play against 888 Poker players in tournament situations. I know that I have to be tighter than I normally would, avoid conflict, and wait for a chance to take my superior starting hand up against the loose players’ bad calls. This is how to play against the loose 888 Poker players.