Online Poker

Fold Equity in Turbos

by Jeremy

Obviously nobody wants to be shortstacked in a poker tournament. After all, it’s the bigger stacks who aren’t constantly fearing for their tourney life, and they can bully other players around more easily. But if you play enough poker tournaments, you’re going to be in a lot of short stack situations - especially in turbos. However, there is some silver lining in being shortstacked in turbos, and it comes through fold equity.

What is Fold Equity?

The simple definition of fold equity is the value you get from situations where your raise could make somebody fold. For example, if you knew that an opponent held pocket 9′s and you had A-K(o) preflop, your equity in the hand is 44.16%. However, if you raise when the opponent and you both have a stack of 10bb, it’s possible that you could force a fold. Assuming there was even a 25% chance of the opponent folding, your equity in the hand now becomes 69.16%, which is much more advantageous.

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Why Fold Equity becomes Important in Turbos

The reason why we bring up turbos is that a lot of players are going to be shortstacked throughout the event. Some turbos start players off with as few as 10bb, which only gets worse as blind levels increase. That said, your short stack will have a lot of fold equity in plenty of situations.

Even if you’ve only got 5bb left, there are going to be other players who are in similar trouble and - more importantly - scared to call with marginal hands. Taking this into account, you’ll be able to steal a lot of small pots and blinds in late position. Going further, realizing that you’ve got excellent fold equity helps out a lot with not being scared to steal when the situation looks favorable (opponents, table position).

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