How to Play in a Re-Buy Tournament
Re-buy tournaments can be a lot of fun, but they can also kill your bankroll of you are not careful. Many poker players get excited about the guarantees and then figure that it is only $x and it’s no big deal as long as they don’t re-buy and add on. The problem is, unless you get very lucky very early you are dooming yourself to failure by playing at a limit that you cannot afford to re-buy at.
The first hour of a re-buy tournament is far from a normal tournament. While you may think you can play conservatively and get away with not re-buying, you are going to be put to a decision time and time again by more aggressive players with huge bankrolls. When you have a $200 bankroll, you cannot play in a $10 re-buy and expect to do well.
You see, the problem is that the people with the large bankrolls have a tendency to treat this as a 5 or 6 buy in event. So in order to be effective, you need to buy into tournaments that you can do the same thing with. Playing $1 and $2 buys ins would be more to your liking.
In most cases, the first hour of play is all about getting your chips in with the best hand and hoping they hold up. Whether you like it or not, you are more than likely going to have someone at your table that is willing to throw their money into the pot every time they play a hand. This is far from a recommendation that you should play that way, you just need to realize that every time you put chips into the middle of the table, you just may have someone come over the top and put you on a decision.
The question is how do you play against this? First and foremost, don’t ever buy into a re-buy tournament unless you can take advantage of the first re-buy right off the bat. You start the tournament with double the chips and if you do manage to double up, you are well on your way to a monster stack.
You also need to plan on purchasing a double add on at the break. Anyone who plans on winning this will be doing an add on and you will fall 4,000 chips behind everyone else in the tourney if you don’t use it. Plan on it! Finally, expect to have to re-buy at least once before the break. That is a total of 6 re-buys that you should plan on paying for.
Now you can start to see how only having enough money for the buy in is a problem. A $10 re-buy should be treated more like a $60 buy in. No while you can play in a $6 tournament with a $200 bankroll, you have no right getting into a $60 tournament. You are going to be playing scared the whole time and we all know that scared money never wins.
In regards to your actual play poker online, keep it the same way you would play normally, just expect to have some extra chips in the pot and definitely expect people to be all in on draws. Since they can re-buy, they are going to have no fear about tossing those chips in there. If you are willing to take a little risk, you can take advantage of this and use it to build a stack. If you get a little unlucky, you can either drop out or buy back in and take another shot.