Lara Brown

If you intend to quickly take your game to the next level, mastering the art of value betting would be of great importance to you.

Simply put, the objective of value betting is to extract as much cash from your opponent as possible.

Hence when you want to bet on the river, there are some things you need to ask yourself. First you need to figure out the probability of getting raised by a player who is either bluffing or holding a better hand.

You also need to figure out how much money he/she is willing to call. The answer to that question is rather very complex. This greatly depends on how astutely you have been observing your opponent.

If the player has a feeling of coming out second best, he/she may not even call a bet that is worth half the pot. Also, if you bet big there is a chance of being called by players that probably have a bigger hand than you.

This should not force you into always making a small bet on the rive. Remember, betting wisely against the right opponent is bound to fetch you a good pot.

For instance, when you hit a straight or flush on the river and are faced with an aggressive opponent, what do you do? A big bet is likely to draw a call from him despite holding a weaker hand. At this juncture, he/she may feel that you don't have the winning hand and are trying to intimidate him out of contention. Hence you job is to bet in such a manner that it appears as though you are bluffing.

The idea is to know what your opponent is likely to chase and the worth of what your hold. Since this is bound to change from opponent to opponent. For instance when you are playing a tight players, betting less will is more likely to fetch you a call. A timid player feels he is behind when faced with a strong bet and does not participate in the action.

It is also a good tactic to sometime go in for a bigger bet. This usually surprises them. You might end up being the beneficiary of a good pot on most occasions. This is primarily because they feel you are bluffing and end up making the call.

In short, to bet the right amount one needs to focus on betting patterns of opponents of all times. This might be a bit tough when you start out, but eventually you will have to develop a habit of understanding when your opponents are likely to call or fold on the river.


Peter Eichhardt created history at the ongoing WSOP has he became the first non-US player to win a bracelet with his triumph in Event #6: $1,500 No Limit Hold’em for $438,417.

The Swede put on a strong show, beating 2,016 players with $2,721,600 up for grabs. After three days of solid poker, the 50-year-old had just US player Davis Aalvik standing between the coveted bracelet and himself.

The latest win helped Peter extend his lifetime earnings to $1,289,702.

Speaking about the bracelet victory, he said:

“I think we have seven or eight gold bracelet winners in Sweden. Chris Bjorin has two. And, of course, there’s Martin Jacobson. But it’s still pretty unusual for us in Sweden to win a gold bracelet. It’s special for us.”

Some of the key names that had a decent outing included Steve Grass in 84th ($4,140), David Vamplew in 52nd ($7,681), Mike Leah in 37th ($9,229), Justin Young in 22nd ($13,786), and Adam Geyer in 10th ($27,351).

Nine players made it to the final table and after a series of eliminations it was left between Eichhardt and Aalvik to fight it out in the heads-up. The last hand of the event was played when the Swede (Kh-Jh) moved all-in preflop, only to be called by Davis (Kd-9c). The board ran Ah-3h-2h-Qc-6d to seal the deal in favour of Peter.

“A few years ago, I wasn’t good in poker, at all. I was playing in the Bahamas and I looked around and everyone at the table was like between 21 and 30 and they were so good. And I was so bad. I was like a tourist there. I just made up my mind to start taking the game more seriously and do something about it. And, I did. I started studying a lot. I worked a lot at it, and now here I am.,” the winner further added.

Final Table Payouts: 

1: Peter Eichhardt $438,417
2: Davis Aalvik $270,842
3: Michael Addamo $196,202
4: John Racener $143,563
5: Tim Farrelly $106,115
6: Bruno Borges $79,241
7: Raymond Phu $59,787
8: Anthony Zinno $45,582
9: Richard Dubini $35,121

Of late, 888Poker has witnessed plenty of action not just on its table but off them as well. The online poker giant has let of off Jackie Glazier as its sponsored pro and brought in Chris Moorman.

Glazier jumped on the 888Poker bandwagon in August 2014 and the two parties ended their association earlier this week.

Taking to social micro-blogging site Twitter, she posted:

“Thanks @888poker it was filled with amazing times! Wish the company and all the team every success in the future xx. I want to thank @888poker @jenvonstrohe @GazTheWolf @Dozdozy for signing me 3yrs ago. Great memories and so many fun times xx.”

At the time of joining 888Poker, Glazier was enjoying phenomenal poker success with live tournament earnings worth $1,188,451.

Through the course of her three-year tenure, Glaziers performances were not as prolific. She accumulated close to $135,042 with 888Poker.

“I have put in more work than ever, and that makes it even harder to take. I did a lot of training and spent a lot of time on forums but wasn’t getting the results.. It’s hard not to get a little bit jaded in poker because you can’t control the results. The past two years have been a little hard on me emotionally and mentality.. After 7-8 years of playing professionally, I needed some time out.,” Glazier said about this latest development.

Moorman on the other hand is considered one of the hottest properties in the world of poker.

The Briton has close to $13,379,398 playing online tournaments to his credit so far.  With 25 PocketFives Triple Crowns, there is no denying Moorman is the real deal.

Some of his best live tournament performances include a runner-up at the 2011 WSOP Europe Main Event for €800,000 ($1,068,690), and a win at the 2014 WPT LA Poker Classic Main Event title for $1,015,460.

“888 is doing big things and really is working hard to expand their reach in poker. Things like sponsoring the WSOP and the Super High Roller Bowl have shown they are committed to their growth of the brand and I can’t wait to see what they have coming up in the future,” he said after joining the world’s second biggest online poker site.

Earlier, Jeff Gross too was signed up by 888Poker. Their roster is now made up of Dominik Nitsche, Kara Scott, Sofia Lovgren, Gross and Moorman.  

Robert Mizrachi on Monday captured his fourth World Series of Poker bracelet by winning the $10,000 buy-in Seven-Card Stud Championship at the Rio Convention Center.

In doing so, Robert not just went past his more famous brother Michael but entered a select group of players - Amarillo Slim, Huck Seed, Mike Matusow among others - to with four bracelets.

The event had 87 players participating in it. Some of the most notable players, including Chris Ferguson, were in the fray for the $817,800 prize pool.

This is the Miami native's third bracelet in as many years at the biggest event in the poker world.

The 37-year-old edged out Chicago's Matt Grapenthien in the heads-up battle, walking away with a cool $242,662.

The duo commanded close to 60% of the chips in play when the game resume on Monday afternoon. Interestingly, Grapenthien won this event in 2014. This time though he had to settle for a second place finish for $149,976. 

Robert's latest triumph seals his position as one of the best mixed-game players in the world. His first WSOP bracelet arrived in 2007 at pot-limit Omaha. After a brief spell of failed bids, the oldest of the Mizrachi brothers won the $1,500 buy-in Omaha High-Low 8-or-Better tournament and $1,500 buy-in Dealer’s Choice Six-Handed event in 2015 and 2015 respectively.

His fourth WSOP bracelet helped take Rob's WSOP earnings to $2.4 million.


In a significant new development in the poker world, online poker giant PokerStars and Ukrainian pro Eugene Katchalov have parted ways.

Eugene was a Team PokerStars Pro for a period of five years. He joined PokerStars in March 2011 with $6,104,132 in live tournament earnings.

At the time, poker legend Daniel Negreanu had said this about Katchalov:

“Eugene has always flown under the radar, but among his peers, his game is well-respected and he is considered one of the best in the world, both in tournaments and cash games. I’m thrilled to see Eugene as part of the team. He’s a great guy and an excellent poker ambassador.”

At the time of his PokerStars exit, the 35-year-old has accumulated around $8,669,109 in tournament earnings. His most impressive performance during this tenure was a runner-up finish at the 2014 EPT Deauville Main Event for €379,500 ($518,981).

Eugene took to social micro-blogging site Twitter to share the news of his PokerStars exit with fans and followers.

Katchalov is currently in action at the 2016 WSOP where in 2011 he captured the $1,500 Seven Card Stud event for $122,909.

He is also part of the Global Poker League (GPL), representing the LA Sunset. On June 6, he will battle against Paris Aviators along with his teammates Fedor Holz, Olivier Busquet, Chance Kornuth, Maria Ho,and Aaron Paul.

Online poker players often find themselves in tricky positions during tournament play. The real challenge of the game is to emerge relatively unscathed from such situations and go on to win the poker tournament.

One such instance is when you find yourself short-stacked in the game. No player, irrespective of his/her level of experience, has managed to escape this. Hence learning the best ways to combat when short stacked will hold you in good stead.

Keep in mind that when you are left with less than 10 times the big blind, the only option you have left is moving all-in when you are first to act.

Your objective here is to steal the blinds. You decisions at this juncture should be based on how short-stacked you are.

For instance, with 8x the bb you can afford to wait for a decent hand. But when you are left with just 4x the bb, you don’t have that luxury and might want to move all-in the moment you are first in the pot.

The thumb rule in such cases is this: more the chips, more you want play your card and lesser the chips, more you wait for the perfect chance to double or even triple up by going all-in.

When you wake up to high-value hands like AK, JJ or KK, you can push all-in even If you are out of position or one of your opponents has already played before you. However, if several players have shown strength before you turn, you might want to let go and wait for another chance.

This strategy is ideally suited to beginner poker players. However, if you are at an advanced level, do not implement this plan unless you are left with less than 6x the bb.

It also must be kept in mind that different players tend to have different strategies when going all-in. Hence one must adopt the method that he/she is most comfortable with. However, keep the above-mentioned tactics in mind since they will help you in decision-making when you don’t have much to play with.

Image courtesy: pokerground

US poker pro Kevin Martin has become the latest player to join online poker giant PokerStars as a sponsored pro.

The Calgary native grabbed headlines as a contestant in Season 3 of the Canadian version of Big Brother. He hasn't looked back since, becoming an extremely popular Twitch broadcaster with 28,106 followers. Martin's session on an average attract over 1,000 viewers.

The Amaya Gaming-owned poker site of late has tapped Twitch to attract a younger audience. Apart from Martin, PokerStars' other sponsored Twitch stars include Jaime “jaimestaples” Staples and Jason “Jcarverpoker” Somerville.

At the moment, Kevin “GarlicXToast” is a low-stake MTT grinder and aiming to move up the ladder in due course.

Speaking about the latest edition to Team PokerStars Pro Online, Jaime Staples said:

“I’m excited to welcome my friend Kevin to Team PokerStars Pro Online. In a short space of time, Kevin has built a fun and entertaining online poker stream, and shown that by focusing on excitement and engagement with audiences, any Twitch streamer can become a big success with some hard work.”

With several thousand Twitch users following the exploits of the current PokerStars roster on Twitch, it remains to be seen how their latest addition helps the company build a broader young audience.


Poker legend and Full Tilt Poker co-founder Howard Lederer issued a statement apologizing to online poker players for failing to protect their funds in the aftermath of Black Friday.

Earlier in the week, Amaya Inc merged FTP with the PokerStars brand. This served as an ideal opportunity for Lederer to own for his unethical business practices in the past at the help of the iconic website that is now retired.

Since the scandal, the American pro has been a pariah of the poker community and issued the apology via Daniel Negreanu’s Full Contact Poker blog.

The 51 year-old wrote that he “should have provided better oversight or made sure that responsible others provided that oversight.”

He also clarified as to why he didn't do it earlier, saying “the bigger picture’ and had convinced himself that much of the criticism levelled against him had been unfair, and instead should have been directed towards others.”

He ended the piece saying this:

“An apology is not enough, but it is what I am able to offer to the poker community in the wake of a travesty that I should not have allowed to happen. I am sorry.”

While some in the poker business are willing to bury the hatchet with Lederer, Negreanu has adopted a different position.

He feels that this statement should have been out five years back and questioned whether players “should be any less pissed at him for what happened?”

Some members of the fraternity are wondering whether Lederer has timed his apology as to pave his way to play the WSOP in Las Vegas.

Maybe the two-time WSOP champion felt like easing his way into a hostile environment by apologizing first.

Well, our guess is as good as yours!


Amaya Gaming on May 16 announced its financial results for 2016's first quarter of 2016. The numbers showed a 6% increase in revenues to US$288.7 million from $272.29 million last year.

That figure was prevented from going up to 14% by unfavorable fluctuations in the Canadian dollar to the US dollar exchange rate, claimed the company.

Amaya Q1’s net earnings ($55.5 million) too rose by 138.5% as compared to last year.

Interim CEO Rafi Ashkenazi said:

“During the first quarter, we continued to execute on our growth plans despite unexpected challenges, including management changes and the ongoing strategic alternatives process. We attracted new customers to PokerStars, continued to introduce changes to improve the overall poker experience, expanded our online casino offering and continued to invest in our emerging online sportsbook.”

The company's business has witnessed a steady growth with last month's unaudited revenues estimated to around $96 million, an increase of 11% from a year earlier.

Out of that, 77% was accounted for by real-money online poker and 21% by online casino and sportsbook. The positive Q1 figures and April’s results made the markets very happy.

Amaya’s PokerStars product in New Jersey has already captured more than half the revenues of the state’s online poker market. The online poker giant entered New Jersey in March.


US pro Seth Davies beat 416 other players to win the WPT Canadian Spring Championship main event for C$256,390 ($203,992) as first place prize.

The C$3,500 buy-in tournament was hosted at the  Playground Poker Club in Kahnawake, Quebec with a prize pool worth C$1,294,368 ($1,029,843) up for grabs.

During the seven days of high-action poker, some of the players to walk away with a return on their investment included Andy Frankenberger in 48th (C$5,860), Jeff Gross in 45th (C$6,880), Darryll Fish in 41st (C$6,880), Amir Babakhani in 31st (C$7,900), and Antonio Esfandiari in 24th ($10,330).

Six players made it to the final table and after a series of eliminations Seth Davies and Ruben Perceval remained to fight it out for the title. Davies held a 6,780,000 to 5,680,000 chip advantage over Perceval as the two collided in the heads-up round.

Final hand of this duel was played after about 90 minutes when Perceval (8-7) went all-in on a 10-9-4-7-5 board. Davies (K-10) made the call, which ended Ruben's hopes of a win. He had to settle for a second place finish for $180,088 CAD ($115,598 USD).

Davis on the other hand took his live career earnings to $495,552. The 27-year-old's other notable performances have come at the WSOP Main Event where he finished in 123rd place for a $54,851 in 2001.

Final Table Payouts (US)

1: Seth Davies $226,893

2: Ruben Perceval $148,833

3: Joel Miller $95,512

4: Thomas Taylor $70,628

5: Guillaume Nolet $53,025

6: Tony Dunst $42,479