Strategy for Early Sit-and-Go

There are a few considerations when determining whether to steal blinds during single table sit-and-gos in the early stages of the game. Some people believe this is poor etiquette and doesn't really offer any great value as the pots are so low; others think that players should take advantage of any time an opponent can be taken out of play.

Stealing Early

Any successful poker player will engage in at least a few important steals during the game. The sit-and-go is a fast paced game and these steals may have to come early. Waiting for larger hands with bigger pots could be a strategy that backfires and may hurt you in the long run. You should be making your move fairly early because of this accelerated nature of play, even when the hands are only semi-premium; this strategy should be consistently applied during SNG games to ensure you increase your chances of success.

Your Position Dictates Choice

Your position in the game inevitably determines the risks you are taking when deciding to go after blinds early in the game. When stealing, you should be looking for situations where you are at least a few seats away from the button, allowing you to be one of the last players acting after the flop. This is ideal for stealing and raising the stakes in the game, and forcing others out of play. Use your best judgment to determine when pressing the game is appropriate.

The determining factor for you may, in fact, be how you want others to view your game. If you are trying to portray a laid back playing style, your opponents may not suspect early stealing, and those who earn a reputation for playing only when there are solid hands may be more successful when bluffing on poor hands.