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From beginner to winner !

What does it take to become a winning poker player as an beginner?
By: 95NiX
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''Chris Moneymaker is the WSOP Main Event Champion of 2003!'' A 27-year-old  accountant who turned $39 into 2.5 million dollars by qualifying at Pokerstars. In 2012 we have Maratik, a taxi-driver from Russia, who turned 40 FPP into a million by winning the WCOOP Main Event. He also gave birth to the legendary phrase ''I wont million'' during the discussion of a 6-way deal.

Stories like these, has motivated me and probably you too to start learning poker. I mean, if an accountant can win the WSOP Main event, everyone can win it, right?

Unfortunately my poker journey didn’t start with winning the WSOP Main event, but playing freerolls and play money tables. This is something I would recommend all new players before starting with a deposit. I know, it sounds stupid to play hours for a couple of cents, but it is a great way to learn the basics!

At a certain point, I had build a bankroll of 35 dollars, just by playing freerolls. Me, full of confident, thought at that time I was ready to make some real money. So I sat down at a $0,10/$0.25 cash game. Of course it went horribly wrong; I went on tilt when I lost a big pot with Aces and decided to blow it all away in a 15$ dollar hyper turbo. It was a hard lesson, but at least I got to know the terms 'variance' and 'bank roll management'.  ''What, you're saying that AK can be beaten by 104-suited''? Yes Phil, they can, it's variance!

But how do we beat variance? Proper bank roll management is one of most of the important things to become a winning poker player.  It basically means that you have plenty of buy-ins left when the Russian fish on your table cracks your aces with 72. You will be able to handle swings without hurting your bankroll too much. Continuously taking a shot at higher limits (while your bankroll doesn’t allow it) with the hope you'll win a big pot, won’t make you rich, but broke instead.

When I learnt about bank roll management, I started to play tournaments and sit and go’s with a much lower buy-in: yes, grinding the $0.25 sit and go's !  Starting reading poker forum threads became also a part of my game. However, as a new player, I sometimes interpreted some advices a little bit wrong. Let’s take a hand after someone gave me the advice of playing a $1 dollar SNG’s aggressive:

Despite the fact I played this hand so bad, I think is good to try out some different play styles, to develop a play style which suits you. Which brings me to another point: gaining information !

There is so much information available, why wouldn’t you use it to improve your game? Watching professional poker players analyze hands, or reading a book can improve your game so much. At least mine has. I also decided at this time, it could be helpful to join a forum. Pokerschoolonline was the one which felt me the most welcome. The members here are really helping each other, instead of making fun of beginner mistakes. A member who analyzis your hand,  could give you new insights, you didn’t come up with yourself!

Playing poker is one long journey, with failures and successes, but sticking to the three points I mentioned in the blog (experience, bank roll management and obtaining information) can make your journey much more successful. And maybe you’ll become a Chris Moneymaker or a Maratik yourself one day!

By 95NiX  - http://www.pokerschoolonline.com/articles/Poker-Blog-Championship-2014

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