I went to play a low buy in, turbo (15 min per level), big blind ante MTT like a week ago. And I feel frustrated on the game. on the first 6 level, I did not open any hand, and I have no idea what else could do beside folding (I had try to defense the 3x bet when I am on big blind 3 times, with T3o, 57o, K2s but I could not stay with others barrel).

And that lead myself to shove or fold situation at later levels. and this seem works sometimes that people willing to fold to me. However I could never get enough stack size to play 'normal poker'.

And the last hand I shove with A6s (with 6 BB) at UTG+1 get called with 44 in big blind (with around 13 BB left). And I did not with that flip.

I know that I got some advantage on my super tight image somehow, but that would not help much when somebody are short stack too.

any suggestion that I could improve? should I play some more trash hand for bluffing (but we get a call station on table...)? or I could re-raise LAG? aim ot other tight player on the table (but there are always have another LAG...)?

  • 1
    Question for you, why are you trying to defend with trash? I can understand opening in late with something like 67s, or checking a BB with T3o and making binking something, but it sounds like a pretty standard fold. I'm just asking as I'd like to understand your logic on why you think you should be changing your game to give you a better answer.
    – Grinch91
    Commented Oct 19, 2018 at 9:44
  • because I just burning my chips if I keep folding the blind :(, checking is not possible since a LAG is on my right, but he seems raise any 2 cards on any position anyway. I feel that I have no chance to alive if I do everything(or fold) according the the stand opening-position chart, hands are always come with no connector, non suited, 2/3/4 kicker. should we doing something out of line? or just following the idealized probability?
    – Atk
    Commented Oct 19, 2018 at 10:06
  • Two more questions for you, are you new to the game and is this live or online (assuming online but local casinos near me do basically this turbo format)?
    – Grinch91
    Commented Oct 19, 2018 at 10:27
  • I'm not sure folding for 6 levels gives you a super tight image. If I saw you do that I would just think you were scared or had no hand selection skills at all. To get respect as a tight player, you need to be putting in a couple of raises too.
    – Buh Buh
    Commented Oct 20, 2018 at 6:08
  • @Grinch91 that is a live MTT with around 60+ player with 1X rebuy. rebuy is allowed before end of level 6, no add-on.
    – Atk
    Commented Oct 22, 2018 at 8:43

2 Answers 2


In a short format if you are card dead there is not much you can do about it.

You don't want to blow off chips on marginal hands when you have chips.

When you have chips and are card dead maybe in position raise with speculative hands like 68s or 44. But if you are not getting any folds then back off. If you are getting called by marginal hands then you might be getting proper odds.

Bluffing does not typically work very well in that format as you have some players that just want to play poker and will call with a wide range. You will need to isolate on players you know are capable of folding. You typically don't want to bluff until you show a monster but you cannot show a monster if you are card dead.

Follow M-ratio = stack / (bb + sb + antes)

Zone name   M-ratio     "Optimal" strategy
Green zone  M ≥ 20      Most desirable situation, freedom to play conservatively or  
                        aggressively as you choose
Yellow zone 10 ≤ M < 20 Must take more risks, hands containing small pairs and 
                        small suited connectors lose value
Orange zone 6 ≤ M < 10  Main focus is to be first-in whatever you decide to play,   
                        important to preserve chips
Red zone    1 ≤ M < 6   Your only move is to move all-in or fold
Dead zone   M < 1       You are completely dependent on luck to survive. The only  
                        move is to push all-in into an empty pot
  • I could only play red zone :(
    – Atk
    Commented Oct 22, 2018 at 9:03

Great question, I felt this way too for a while.

A big part of making sure that you get the most out of every orbit is playing for position, Consider widening your range when you play hands in late position like the button or cut-off. This will allow you to play "normal poker" a bit more, even if your hand is not all that great a lot of times it is easy to outplay opponents after the flop with practice of course.

This does not mean that you should be playing every hand though, re-evaluate your playing range for each position and find something that works for you.

Do not feel obligated to defend every big blind, just fold the trashy hands. If the player on your immediate right raises every orbit when you are in the big blind, maybe mix in some 3-bet bluffs to put some pressure on him.

Nothing you can do about bad cards, try and think of a way that you can take down the pot in every hand. If you can't think of anything, fold and wait for a good spot to double up. Sometimes things do not go your way.

  • 1
    And you had been stealing a few blinds yourself, then it wouldn't hurt so much when you don't defend your own.
    – Buh Buh
    Commented Oct 20, 2018 at 6:14
  • 1
    maybe I should consider to steal the right hand side sometimes, will try it next time rather then looking my hole cards only
    – Atk
    Commented Oct 22, 2018 at 9:05

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