April 3, 2010 – 10:41 am | 7 Comments

I’ve compiled a short (just 7-pages) e-book, an introduction to the mathematics of poker. It’s basically covers how to calculate your expected value in a certain spot – starting with explaining what EV is, all …

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## 2NL Update

Submitted by on January 14, 2010 – 1:25 am5 Comments

It’s been about a month since I re-deposited my \$10 into my PokerStars account and started playing at 2NL. Since then, I’ve played over 2000 hands, and my deposit is currently at about \$22. Here’s my graph of results so far.

The details are slightly inaccurate – I started using PokerTracker only a while after depositing the \$10 (when I had lost about \$1-2 of that), and some hands didn’t get imported cleanly. That said, I think there is a nice trend.

Granted, it’s only been 2000 hands, and a win rate of 20bb/100 hands seems a bit too high to be maintained, but I think I’m happy with how it’s going so far.

My general strategy is to raise my pre-flop range to 2bb + 1bb per limper, and c-bet about half to 3/4 of the pot on most flops (especially when there are 3 players or less in the hand). I try to choose tables which are relatively tight for this level (tables which have an average pot of less than 50c, and see an average of less than 40% of flops). It seems to be working so far, I’m taking down a decent number of pots on the flop, and it’s allowing me to slowly grind up.

The exception, though, has been the last two days. I’ve lost something like \$7 in two nights. I don’t really know why, though. I can’t quite figure out what I’ve been thinking. I feel like writing it off as saying I’ve just been too mentally tired from lack of sleep, but I don’t want to keep falling back on that excuse. So I’ll keep trying to figure it out.

What do you think? Do you agree/disagree with the strategy I’m adopting? And do you think a lack of sleep is a valid reason for playing poorly, or just an excuse that should be ignored?

• Mac says:

I to am getting 10 and going to play 0.02NL

I think 2k is very small size, 10k is a decent one. From this I think your playing 1 table which means you could probably run 20bb/100 but if you find loser tables where you'll get more action.

I'm guessing your buying in for 2? And you got 10, so playing tight is probably the optimal strategy.

• Derrick Kwa says:

Yeah, definitely, 2k isn't really a big hand sample so far, it's taking time to build though. I'm trying not to multi-table yet, trying to train myself to take notice of what happens at the table, etc, which gets harder to do multitabling.

And yeah, so far I've been buying in for \$2. Had a period when I had between \$20-30 where I bought in for slightly more (10% of my bankroll), but after trying that out, I think there's not much need to.

To be honest I don't think I'm playing that tight, my VPIP is 31.88%, and my PFR is 25.51%. I'm playing a decent amount of hands, and raising almost my entire range (which generally is about any pair, most suited connectors, J-T or higher). I'm playing at the tighter tables for 2NL, generally not playing any table wiht more than 40% players per flop.

My thinking is essentially I'd rather play against the slightly better players who know what they're doing, instead of the fish. I think I'd learn more that way, and it'd be easier to move up when I eventually do. I also like to play quite aggressively, so against really loose fish, it gets frustrated because I have to curb the aggression a lot.

• Matt says:

I think 20bb/100 is not unrealistic at 2NL. That's just stacking someone once every 500 hands (once every 7 hours or so at normal rates). I would not be surprised if there are people making 40bb/100 at this level.

• Titan says:

I think you should deposit more at one go, and if you lose your roll, take a break.

With 5BIs you're not giving yourself enough space to maneuver, and you're playing with scared money. You become too cautious and aware of tilt. 2000 hands is too small for a decent sample size. In 2NL, don't raise 2+1BB. Raise something like 4+1 or even 5+1. Go for looser tables, not tighter ones IMO, because in 2NL the fish are generally looser and more station-y than tight, so just stick with the flow, get a really, really tight preflop range, and bring them all to valuetown.

• Ari says:

Hi Derrick,

I’m just starting to play poker as well..and I’m currently playing NL2. I’m just wondering, how many tables did you start with? I’m only play with 1 table at the moment, the result is starting to grow even slowly after I read couple of books and study them..:)

Thanks for sharing