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Handling Aggressive Opponents in Poker

There are plenty of situations where aggressive opponents at poker tables can make it difficult for you to play. Although being aggressive can be a wonderful thing if you use it against your opponents, it can be quite difficult if you have to face it yourself. There are plenty of kinds of opponents that you might come across and there is a different way to handle each of these types of opponents.

The basic thing you must understand is that not all types of aggressive opponents are the same. Each of them will show their aggression in a different way, some of them would raise each time you bet, some of them would put in a bet on every move and others would try to scare you off by putting it all in. The first thing to do is to try and understand the different behavior patterns of the opponents and determine which category they fall into.

Aggressive opponents

The manic aggressive opponents are those who would regularly put in large bets on the pot and would regularly put all in at the pre flop stage. These opponents are quite common and the thing is that this is not a strategy that will work for long time. These types of opponents are quite easy to manipulate. Do not get frustrated and let them get their share on small points. Wait for the right time and strike back to get a bigger pot, even if you have a medium strong hand put it all in, re raise their bets and they would get easily intimidated.

What to do

Players in position would often raise, other types of opponents would raise the bet no matter what. When you raise the bet in position these opponents would always call, bet even with the weakest cards and get easily irritated. If you have strong cards and if there are only a few cards on the board you must take every opportunity to make a bet and encourage your opponent to call or re raise the bet. Bet on every hand and raise the pot, show gestures that would make them think that you have a weak hand and let them bet and at the end reveal your hand.  

Most types of aggressive players would raise the bet often; however, how their reaction would be when you re-raise would greatly vary. Another type of opponent would be the one who would easily bet on every card and raise the bet when they are in position but when you re-raise them they would get more cautious. When up against this kind of an opponent you can look for an opportunity and place a bet on the pot when you are in position. And their reaction to your move would give you a fair idea of what their hand is like. If you bet yourself you can figure out your next move.