Overview of PLO SNG Strategy Including Major Differences Between Omaha SNGs And Holdem
Omaha tournaments are not only a nice diversion from the usual Holdem games, they can be very profitable in their own right. Your strategy will be driven by two main differences. First, hand values pre-flop are often very close in PLO. Second, the pot-limit betting stops you shoving all-in pre-flop before the very high blind levels. The main advantage of PLO SNGs is that there are fewer grinders in these games compared to recreational players. This keeps them softer than their Holdem counterparts, you can have fun while building your bankroll!
I’ll start this article by outlining some key differences at each stage of a PLO SNG compared to holdem. Next I will outline my top choices for where to find Omaha SNGs before wrapping up with some general tips to make your PLO game stronger.
Pot Limit Omaha SNG Strategy – Differences From Holdem At Different Stages Of The Game
In Holdem the standard play early is to stay tight and conserve chips, set mine and try and build pots when you have a monster. You are conserving chips for the mid to late stages and most good players are risk-adverse.
In PLO SNGs many hands look playable to novices, which often leads to a ton of limping. Raises can build the pot alarmingly. While there are some circumstances where limping along might work, good players wait for premium hands (double suited rundowns, premium pairs with good support and so on) and raise to isolate the limpers.
In Holdem you use the mid stages to steal, and maybe resteal chips – your goal is to keep your stack big enough to generate fold equity at the next stage, the bubble.
Pot Limit betting and the closeness of starting hands makes people more likely to flat that raise and see a flop than to give up their blinds. Restealing is also tougher when (bad!) opponents feel they have the odds to call. This leads to more ‘shallow stacked’ post flop play compared to holdem which can be a risky proposition. What tends to happen is that a string of marginal calls slowly sucks you into a big pot, finding yourself in a tough spot by the river often with no idea whether middle set is still good (for example). Key here is to avoid those tough spots in advance, fold to re-raises without good hands, and make smaller initial bets to steal pots. The times you fold the best hand before the flop will be more than made up for by the times you would have partially hit the flop and ended up losing a big pot!
In Holdem post-flop play is gone, good players know their ‘push-fold’ math to the nearest few cents and will fold the ‘best’ hand pre-flop when the prize pool equity calculations show it would be –ev to call with it. Since experienced players know it is hard to call, their shoving range becomes wide.
PLO SNGs are constrained by the pot-limit betting, you can’t simply shove all-in until the blinds are extremely high (or your stack is very short!). Since hand values are so close, someone raising facing a re-raise might easily be getting the right odds to call, even when they might have preferred to avoid the risk of busting at that moment. Noting the tendencies of your opponents becomes more important, some people will fold to that last raise and some will not. You will also find that the ‘shove fest’ part of the game moves to the flop. I recommend you stay aggressive, once you spot the players who will only ever re-raise with a monster hand then these players make great stealing targets during the bubble stage.
Pot-Limit Omaha SNG Strategy – Best Place To Play PLO SNGs
You’ll need to focus on the bigger sites to get much action in Omaha Sit N Goes. These include PokerStars, Full Tilt and Titan Poker. For the biggest choice of buy-ins and variations, I strongly recommend the easiest site of all – 888Poker.com
Sure, there are some good players there compared to many other sites. However the Omaha SNGs are not their main hangout – since they are harder to grind compared to Holdem. I have seen super-soft games right up to the $20 level, and the smaller buy-ins are very beatable. Check out the cool software at 888 Poker now!
Pot-Limit Omaha SNG Strategy – Tips To Make Your Omaha SNG Game Stronger
For those players still learning Omaha, here are some extra tips and things to think about to keep you ahead of your average PLO Sit N Go opponents!
- Combinations, Not Just High Pairs: Omaha starting hands gain equity based on the number of combinations, and not just their high cards. 4 cards working together to make potential straights and flushes are way stronger than hands with just 1 disconnected card. In fact a ‘double suited rundown’ like J-10-9-8 with 2 suits is a premium hand while KK72 with 4 suits is a very dangerous starting hand.
- Non-Nut Draws: If you are drawing in Omaha (which you will be a lot of the time!) then make sure this is to the nuts, or as close to it as possible. Non-Nut draws can act as bluff catchers or semi-bluffs – however the huge number of starting combinations means that hitting a non-nut flush (for example) can be expensive.
- Paired Boards: If the board pairs this can be a good semi-bluffing opportunity. Try betting half the pot, which hits the sweet spot between building a pot when you have it, and bluffing cheaply when you do not.
- Too Many Hands: Players new to PLO often go crazy with the number of hands they play… All those combinations make them want to limp in and see if they can nail a flop. Simply by being more selective you have a profitable edge over these players. Make sure that the pots start bigger when you have a good hand, and fold more of your junk than your opponents do.
- Planning Your Bets: Many beginning Omaha Sit and Go players either limp, call or bet the pot. Actively planning and sizing your bets depending on their situation will put you way ahead. Making smaller bets on an early street have a big impact on the pot size by the river, and if you are bluffing then the players who would have folded to a pot bet will often fold to less.
Remember, for the easiest Omaha SNGs online (including some cool mixed game variations which include PLO) check out www.888poker.com today!