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Neil Channing

I just read the first part of this interview with an Irish poker player.

From just this one interview I can tell that he is a really smart player. One would be well advised to read this interview and take some nuggets of insight from it. There are a few lessons, in particular, that any poker player should never, but can easily forget.

First of all, don’t piddle away your chips on little calls and raises in the early bidding just because you want to see what comes up. Only call hands that are worth calling. How to determine that is a whole different story unfortunately. Obviously one can make moves with more than simply the premium hands but making those decisions are based on position and information that can be gleaned from the other players. Channing admits to having made the mistake of just letting his chips slowly bleed away in the early stages of the Irish open and it took a bad psychological toll on him.

Which leads to the next lesson to be taken from this interview; don’t succumb to frustration. If you’re not feeling like your “on” get up and stop playing for a while. There is a point in the Irish open when channing was feeling very uncomfortable with his play. Rather that start playing desperately, he got up, took a walk, and collected himself. After coming back he felt much more comfortable and his play only improved throughout the rest of the tournament.

After having done so, he illustrates another important thing to keep in mind. A good poker player logically thinks through what hands his opponent could possibly have based on their betting pattern. I know that sounds obvious but people don’t always do it. Channing got mixed up in a pot where he thought he could have the best hand against a conservative player. But after having looked at that player’s betting pattern in relation to his own, he deduced that the number of hands he was likely to be holding were far better than his pair of queens.

These have just been some quick tips that can be picked up from a pro. Hope they have been helpful. Check out the full interview.

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