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PokerStars 210FPP Satellite to the Sunday 200k Tournament Strategy

Published November 13, 2008 - RSS/XML Feed RSS
Okay, you're wondering why you should care about strategy to the Sunday 200k tournament. Although PokerStars doesn't have a form of rakeback, this is one way you can really turn your FPPs that you accumulate for free by playing in cash games and tournaments (MTTs and SNGs alike). If you are unfamiliar with what an FPP is, it stands for Frequest Player Point, and they are given to you when you sign up for Sit N Gos, Multitable tournaments, or as you play on cash game tables. If you are interested in learning more, we highly suggest you signup with Pokerstars through our link at the top of this page, and if you want specific information to the VIP club and FPPs, visit this link for more detailed information.
You can register for this satellite by buying in for 210fpp points (no money) and if you finish in the money (top 6 from the 20 entrants) you win an entry into the Sunday 200k. This is worth $11! You can unregister and save up the T$ and buy into whatever you want (SNG, etc) or save the money for a bigger tournament (can you say Sunday Millions?!) OR even find someone (hopefully reputable) and sell the T$ for approximately 97% of their worth for actual "money" in your PokerStars account. If you don’t know what “T$†means, it is just “tournament dollars†and you can use it towards any tournament buy-in on Pokerstars.
Cool huh! Now I am sure I have your attention. With that said let's look at the proper strategy and look at some hands using the replayer at the end to get the strategy down.
First, what I usually hear from players is that they think a "play a lot of cheap hands quickly" strategy is the right way to go. Nothing could be further from the truth! These things are played as quick turbos with 5 minutes blinds which means you get shortstacked - QUICK. Save your money and simply PUSH IT rather than try to "out poker" your opponents. You will find that players early on tend to shove VERY light. Don't be afraid to simply shove your stack when you see the play is wild and wooly early on.
In that case you have a solid hand, but getting it in with a raise and trying to "poker it up" just keeps committing your stack in this structure. Basically your playing range when you have more than 10x the big blind is limited to:
Maybe: AQ, JJ
And all you are doing is SHOVING. Pure and simple. Why? Because of the high likelihood (I am speaking from extensive experience) you are going to get called by garbage from someone "trying to chip up in a freeroll" ... we're talking hands like Q3 or J9 or weird dumb hands. You'll be a big favorite either way.
As you play tight / shove mode, you'll eventually get to the final 10 and play down to the final 6 when you all automatically win and receive the entry to the tournament (if you want the T$ go to the tournament and unregister). You're playing for 4 eliminations!
If you have the big stack (usually more than 4,500) : Fold it all. Tighten up. Basically only play AA and maybe KK and just open shove it to take the blinds or take the shortstack's money. The reasoning is that you have more than enough money (again typically) to fold your way to the money.
If you have a mid-size stack (2,000 to 4,000ish) : You'll probably have to play a hand or two and take it down. If you find yourself with AA or KK you might want to play it normally (i.e. raise preflop and shove the flop no matter what it is) or just shove if someone raises before you. If you’re at a wild table and you find yourself really close to the money and have a “vulnerable monster” like JJ or QQ then just fold if you are early in the hand.
For you shortstackers (less than 10x the big blind) it's time to chip up with a decent hand. If you are out of position basically you are waiting for any suited Ace, A8o or better, two broadway cards, or any pocket pair - then just SHOVE away. In late position you can broaden this since you will just be taking the blinds. At some point any two cards in late position (less than 5 big blinds) are all that's needed.
Finally - The Bubble! We've eliminated all but 7 players and it's one more person and we're all in the money. Here's the general feeling: Make someone else make the stupid mistake (hint: they ALWAYS do!). Tighten up as a big or mid stack, and even maybe tighten up as a small stack if there is someone else in worse shape than you.
So - that's basically it. Give it a couple of tries and you'll probably cash in the greater than expected 40% rate. Even if you only cash in 40%, at least you are doing as-expected and can gain the experience to do better in the future.

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