Strategy for 45-Man Sit and Gos

45 Man SNG StrategyThe best strategy for 45 man SNGs is to play a tight aggressive game and gain chips quickly. Forty-five man SNGs offer a unique challenge because they require you to battle it out against many opponents in a relatively short amount of time. With forty-five people fighting for only seven prizes, 45 man SNGs require you to play a very sharp game to make any money.

The good news is that once you learn how to soundly beat 45 man SNGs, you’ll make great money with them. The prize pool is very top heavy so if you consistently play a smart game, you’ll bring in a lot of cash. Many people who play 45 man SNGs have no idea what they are doing and just contribute dead money to the prize pool.

Early Stage 45 Man SNG Strategy

You’re going to have to collect a lot of chips to win this tournament, but that doesn’t mean you need to play loose and take chances during the early stages. During this part of the tournament, your goal should be to play a tight, smart game and take advantage of opportunities as the present themselves.

What you want to avoid is trying to “push” things to happen. You’ll find a lot of loose players during the early levels of a 45 man SNG so you can’t rely on pure aggression to collect chips. At the same time, the stack sizes aren’t large enough for you to play a lot of speculative hands in the hopes of getting lucky and winning a big pot.

The best strategy for the early stages is to play a tight, straightforward game. There’s no need to get tricky quite yet. Just play strong hands from early and middle position and add a few more hands in late position. If several people have limped in already and you catch a drawing hand in late position (such as a small pocket pair or suited connector), you can limp in and see a flop. Just don’t make a habit of doing so unless it’s cheap and you have good position.

In summary, you want to play a tight, solid game during the early stages. Don’t get mixed up in a lot of pots without good reason. It’s always nice to gain chips during the early stages but it’s not necessary because you can win many more chips during the middle and late stages.

Middle Stage 45 Man SNG Strategy

The middle stage begins when the blinds reach about 50/100 or so. At this point, fewer than half the players have been eliminated but the blinds are really starting to pressure those who haven’t yet doubled up. As the middle stage progresses, more and more players will be knocked out until the tournament gets down to the final table.

Your strategy from here on out will be almost entirely based on stack sizes, position, and blind sizes. The blinds are now big enough that you can start stealing them to build up your stack. Other than the occasional monster hand, the majority of your effort from here on out should be concentrated on finding good spots to steal.

You might notice a tightening of play right before the final table. In that case, you can intensify your blind stealing efforts. You are going to need all the help you can get to win this tournament so keep attacking those blinds. Look for the tightest players at the table and steal from them as often as you can.

If you happen to get lucky and catch a premium starting hand like AA or KK, go ahead and play it fast like you do all your other hands. If you’ve been working hard stealing the blinds, your play will look suspicious if you try to slow play. Instead, come in with a raise like normal and hope that someone chooses now to stand up against you.

Late Stage 45 Man SNG Strategy

The late stage begins at the final table and continues until the tournament concludes. At this point, the blinds will be very large and almost everyone will be under considerable pressure to collect more chips. The remaining players will fight hard for the last chips, with lots of stealing and re-stealing.

This is probably the most difficult part of the tournament. The only thing you can do here is look for good spots to push your money in the middle. Stack sizes and opponents’ tendencies should take precedence over the actual quality of your cards.

The bubble will begin when there are 10-8 players left because the tournament pays out the top 7 players. Notice which players tighten up and which ones begin stealing. The tightwads are great targets because all they want to do is make it to the money. Attack them as often as you can but keep an eye out for the other aggressive players.

After the final bubble breaks, there will only be 7 players left but your work isn’t done yet. The payouts are heavily weighed towards first place so that’s what you need to play for. There’s nothing to be gained by playing for the last two hours and winning a grand total of $9 for your efforts. First place is where the money is.

Don’t let up on the aggression after the bubble breaks. Keep chipping away at your opponents’ chip stacks. The blinds will be pretty large by this point so there won’t be much room for getting overly tricky. Just look for decent hands, tight opponents and push all-in to steal the blinds. If you have to gamble it up once or twice, that’s fine – as long as you’re the one doing the pushing.

If you make it down to heads up play, you’ve done a fantastic job so far. The blinds will likely be so large right now that heads up play is mostly a crap shoot. Your best bet during heads up play is to be the most aggressive person out of the two of you. Since the game is basically a crap shoot right now, you’ll only gain by making your opponent fold repeatedly. Read our heads up strategy for more tips.

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