Hand reading is one of the most important skills in poker and also one of the toughest skills to master – the best poker players are great hand ‘readers’. Sometimes it seems as if players like Daniel Negreanu have a sixth sense but great poker players aren’t mind-readers, they are just very good at using the information that is available to them to its fullest capacity.
So how do great players manage to consistently pin their opponents on a hand? Well… to start with they put their opponents on a range of hands and then they narrow that range as they get more information.
Online players lack many of the tells that are available in live poker: for example, they can’t see a players hands or study their posture when they bet. However, there are some advantages that online players have that are unavailable in the live game – using tracking software with a HUD gives access to statistics on your opponents as you play. Combine this with a good number of hand histories and you have instant information about the ranges of hands your opponents play in certain situations.
This tutorial takes you through the initial stages of the hand reading process for online players – putting an opponent on a ‘range of hands’. In the first video Vanessa Selbst describes the process of using a range and then narrowing that range as the hand progresses. The second video goes into detail on how to put a player on a specific range by using Poker Stove to help you interpret the percentages generated in a Poker Tracker HUD.