Final Table Strategy

The final table is an exciting stage of an MTT. Your in the money and you have a good chance of winning the tournament. The question is how do you go about winning the tournament? Here is some advance on how to play a final table.

When your at the final table don’t be afraid to take risks. Your aren’t going to win a tournament by sitting out and hardly playing any hands. All that accomplishes is likely getting blind out. If you want to win the MTT you have to pick your spots against higher chip stacks and not be afraid to go all in to boost your chip stack. If your hand holds up after the cards are dealt in an all in your now in a better position of winning the tournament then you were before. If your hand doesn’t hold up and your busted don’t be discouraged. Making the final table is a great accomplishment you should feel good about. Remember there will be other final table opportunities. If your playing against a medium / lower chip stack opponents you should be playing a bit more aggressively and putting pressure on those medium to lower chip stack sizes.

Another important thing you should do when the final table starts is you should try and figure out your opponents playing style. Keeping notes on your opponents is a good way to quickly help identify your opponents playing styles. Having a good idea on what hand ranges they play with give you a better chance of being able to beat them. I like to keep notes on my opponents and include in my notes they’re hand ranges, betting sizes and how often they raise or fold if they’re opponent raises. Having an idea of what your opponent will likely do as the final table begins will give you a better chance of winning the tournament.

My last piece of advice is you have to be able to be successful in heads up play. A lot happens during the heads up battle. Your always paying either the big blind or small blind and ante every single hand. If the chip stacks are nearly even the chip leader will frequently change. This is why it’s important to come into the heads up battle with a strong, healthy chip stack. In heads up play you’ll want to open your hand range up a bit and like I said earlier don’t be afraid to take risks.

I like playing aggressively in heads up especially if I have a strong chip lead over my opponent. Lets say for example If I have 20k chips and my opponent only has about a 5k chip stack I like to play aggressively, go for the win and end the heads up battle as quickly as possible. In these types of situations I feel it’s important to end it the heads up battle quickly because the longer heads up play lasts the more of a chance your opponent has at making a comeback. If I have the short stack my strategy doesn’t change much. I’ll try to get all my chips in or play aggressively and win a few hands in a row to try to get back into the game so that I have a realistic chance of winning the tournament.

I hope this advice helps you at the final table of an MTT!



good post Marc. i use some of your advice almost always when i get to the final table :sunglasses:

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Thanks all yr advice makes sense. I do feel great at the top table - but afraid as well - so will try out yr tips. Cheers

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Lately, when finding myself at the final table, whether it be 6 or 9 players, it’s usually still not a position that gets me into the chips. I used to limp along and more often than not, found myself coming in between 2nd and 4th. Read your article and thought why not try being aggressive?
Well, after a week of trying your strategy, and now down over 300K in chips, I’m going back to my way today. Maybe just an unlucky week, but at least my way, I have a little more control of my destiny. Maybe it’s because I play hi/lo and the odds are much different, but the one thing I know for a fact, is that if I keep losing chips, I won’t be able to play at all!!!