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Old 08-05-2007, 01:25 PM
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Default Ripple Squeeze

Based on the following scenerio

When the number of tables gets down to sit & go size, a standard play seems to be to put out a bet of from 10 to 30 percent of a player's chips. If there is a reraise (often all-in), it seems the original raiser will almost always fold.

I was hoping you might do a thread on this subject to explain the technical aspects of this play and how to make it correctly. How much should you bet and when to be willing to call a reraise.
This above is a form of Squeeze.

To execute this right is an absolute minefield, and hence a lot of people will try it and look very stupid, very often. There are a lot of pre-requisites


1) Your own table image should be tight, having folded a high percentage/number of preceding hands at this particular table. Certainly not playing many hands in the last few orbits.

2) You shouldnt have attempted it before at this particular table. Repitition breads sceptisism.

3) It should be deep in the tournament. Absolutely essential. There is too much to be lost and not enough to gain if you do it earlier with lower blinds.

4) It should preferably be a high buy-in, where you are more likely to encounter more cautious and/or under-rolled players (generalisation, of course)

5) The initial raiser should be raising often (large range of raising hands), but shouldnt be considered loose. He is the type of player who chips away with pre-flop raises, but is underlyingly tight when faced with a lot or strong oppostion in a hand. These types of players are pretty common, but it still means you need to correctly spot them.

6) People between you and the raiser only flat call.

7) Neither the initial raiser nor any of the callers have commited more than a third of their stack. (Preferably lower, closer to 20%)

8) You should not be the shortest stack out of those entering the hand. The preference is that you will in fact have 3:2 chip dominance or better.

9) There should be no shortstacks left to act behind you.

So the above are all pretty much essential pre-requistites. Heaven forbid you think you are the next Phil Ivey and try to pull this move at blinds 15/30 in a $10 tourney against someone you havent even seen play more than 15 mins. Stick to the pre-requisites I have outlined.

The Dynamics

Villain 1 (see points 5+7) raises, Villain 2/3/4 flat call (ie between one and three flat callers)

You (holding any 2 cards) re-raise all-in. This works better than a measured re-raise, because if you re-raise too low you will likely get a caller based or some real or perceived value. If you re-raise too high, but not all in, then it can sometimes look like you are trying to buy the pot and dont want action (ironically even more so than the all-in)

If you have huge chip dominance (eg 3:1), and the initial raise is a smaller proportion of their stack (eg 10% or less) then a re-raise to 50% of their stack (one sixth of yours) is fine. But if this isnt the case then the all-in of the above paragraph works better.

The Psychology and The Ripple

Now, the initial raiser has his tournament on the line with players still to act behind him. There is a strong likelihood (see point 5) of a far from premium hand. He hasnt seen you play a lot of hands, and he knows you are tight. After consideration a fold is likely.

Now here is where the ripple squeeze part comes in. Each flat caller with increasing likihood is not going to have a premium hand (anything is possible, so it is a generalisation, but you will understand the dynamics). A flat caller is often on a hand when they want a flop to help. Eg low pocket pair, AJ, KQ type hands). Each flat caller behind them is usually incresingly of this mentality. Otherwise why on earth wouldnt you re-raise as with ever caller the value of the pot is looking extremely attractive at this stage of the tournament.

So every player now in turn fears the large reraise, but also fears the other player left to act. He feels squeezed on an average feeling hand. But this ripples down. The player with least callers to act behind him, is usually the one you have most confidence in having the weaker hand due to the lack of reraise mentioned above. So you get the folds based on players to act, but often folding to a theoretically weak(er) hand. The squeeze ripples along, and hey presto everyone folds and you have just added a huge pile of chips to your mountain.

Remember the pre-requisites though, otherwise you will look such a fool. And even when you have all the pre-requisites there is always obviously a chance you will come unstuck. But excuted successfully when there is a very sizeable score on the horizon, there are not many better feelings as the moment the last player folds and you start to stack you chips.
Just be nice and fold. Please. I will never ever bluff you again. Dont make me sit here for your whole time bank. Just dont. No. No. No. I cant stand it no longer. Just fold already. FOLD. FOLD. FOLD......Phewwww.
Heaven goes by favor. If it went by merit, you would stay out and your dog would go in - Mark Twain

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