A Typical Hold’em Mistake for Beginners


Starting out in poker is like anything else. It’s the same as starting out some of the basic games on a platform such as KoinQQ. It takes a lot of practice to become a solid player. Even with a lot of practice not everyone will become good poker player. Those who play particularly bad poker are known as fish. Our goal is to prevent you from becoming another fish in the sea. One major mistake that beginners make is overvaluing their two hole cards. There are premium starting hands all the way down to what are referred to as rags. We will focus on a holding that may seem like a good starting hand when it is really just begging to help you lose all your money.

Any card below a jack or ten, paired with an ace may seem like a great starting hand. For example, ace 5, or A5 as we will refer to it from now on. You are just dealt your cards and look down to find A5 with two different suits. You are sitting in middle position at a table of six players. With all the betting aside, take a second to think about what you are holding, an ace and a five. That means that you need to pair one of those cards to begin to have a good hand. That will only happen 35% of the time on the flop. So where does that leave you? Not in a good place. You basically have just a high card with a terrible kicker.

Now we will start the action. First player folds, second player raises, and now it is to you. Well most novices would just call here. Again, take a second and ask yourself why that does not make sense? Before more smoke comes out of your head, here is the short version. You are calling a raise to see the flop. What are you hoping for? I hope it is not for an ace, because if it is and someone else has paired their ace you will lose most of your money. So now, are you hoping for a five? Against a preflop raiser that is not something to hope for. That leaves us with only one thing to hope for, two pair. This will happen about 2% of the time. That is not a good investment. Any other, more powerful hands, such as trips are even less likely to happen.

In this example, it is clear that no outcome you could hope for is either good for your bankroll or probable of happening. Therefore, for a beginner, just fold your A5, A6, A3. Leave hands like that for future play when you can take into account your seat position, chip count, and opponent’s likely holdings. Stick to strong starting hands that need little help from the flop to win pots. With practice and avoiding situations like the one above you are likely to improve overall as a poker player.