Striking the balance between speed and accuracy

Balancing Rocks

In online poker these days then most people multi-table to some capacity. This brings its own problems because it involves the player having to think that much faster than in a normal live game. So we simply do not have the time to analyse everything down to an infinite level and so we need good decent approximations to guide us. To better do that then we need to classify our opponents hand into a range and this then helps us to know how much fold equity we have.

For example if our opponent raises from the button then it doesn’t really matter if they have a 25% or a 35% raising range. If we have a hand like say the 10d-9d then out hot and cold equity against either range will be almost comparable. What really matters in these situations isn’t how we debate and theorise our exact equity against each range but in arriving at a decent conclusion in the heat of battle so that we can make a decent play and take a decent line.

The flop is a key betting round in NLHE because it is where we decide if we want to take aggressive action not. As a rule then what we decide at the outset is what we take into the later stages of the hand. An analogy can be seen with grandmasters in chess for example. They spend a lot of time researching opening theory because it is this and only this that will dictate if they will reach the later stages with a good position.

If they don’t do a lot of work on openings then they will reach too many middlegames end endgames with no advantage or when their opponents have an advantage. In poker then how we start the hand is very important because it sets us up for what happens further on down the line. So there is very little point in trying to debate the intricacies of certain ranges when your opponents are not of a very high quality.

It is precisely for this reason why reading certain types of books can just lead to confusion. It paints the picture that certain things are more important than they really are when in actual fact the author was discussing areas that were highly relevant in much higher stakes games. In any field of endeavour then it is more important to focus on the vital basics than the finer details at the outset.


Improving your earn rate in online poker is a matter of considering the fundamentals and then concentrating on them in the heat of battle. Almost in the same way that an IQ test is performed, optimal results are obtained by a clever combination of speed and accuracy. If we stray too far down either direction and sacrifice one or the other then our IQ score falls. Online poker is like this and the very best players have mastered this part of the game.