Double or Nothing Sit and Go Strategy
Double or Nothing SNGs are a relatively new form of poker that you can find online at PokerStars. The general idea is that 10 players join the tournament and the top 5 players double their money. The other 5 players go home empty handed
Double or Nothing tournaments should be approached with a very tight early stage strategy. Your goal is not to take first place so you don’t need to win every chip in play. All you have to do is outlast 5 of your opponents.
You should stick with only the very best starting hands and play them hard when you get them. If you hit a strong hand on the flop, bet it hard so that you don’t give your opponents a chance to draw out on you.
An early double up will almost guarantee you a cash in a Double or Nothing SNG but it’s not necessary to double up to win. You can easily sit tight, steal a few blinds when there are only 6-7 players left and coast in to the money.
In these kinds of tournaments, you can’t look at your odds of winning and make big calls just because the pot odds dictate it. Instead, look at how each option you have affects your odds of winning the tournament.
Let’s use an example to illustrate this point: Let’s say you’re 2nd in chips with 6 players left in an average Double or Nothing SNG. There is one player with a massive chip stack and 4 other players with short stacks.
Now let’s say you catch a strong hand in the Big Blind – something like top pair plus a flush draw. The chip leader has been playing aggressively and he takes a stab at the pot. You know you probably have the best hand but is it worth fighting for it?
You could very easily lose this pot and get knocked out of the tournament. With 4 desperate shortstacks remaining, you’re almost guaranteed to cash if you just sit out and fold until one of them busts out.
Instead of looking at how each option you have affects your odds of winning the pot, look at how it affects your odds of winning the tournament.
Always note the stack sizes
Stack sizes are even more important in Double or Nothings than in regular SNGs. When it gets down to the bubble, your decisions will be greatly affected by the size of your stack compared to the size of the other players’ stacks.
For example, if there are 6 players left and 3 of them have very low stack sizes, you should be extremely reluctant to enter a pot without the absolute nuts. On the other hand, if you’re a short stack, you’ll want to take advantage of everyone tightening up and steal a few blinds.
Early Stage Strategy
Play super tight early on and use this time to watch the other players at your table. Note who is also playing tight and avoid these players later in the tournament. There is no reason right now to get involved with anything less than super premium hands.
Middle Stage Strategy
The antes will start to kick in during the middle stages so you’ll have to start stealing occasionally to stay ahead of all the blinds and antes. Steal from the players who play super tight and avoid the big stacks.
It’s important that you don’t let yourself become the short stack during this part of the tournament. Steal when you can get away with it and keep up the pressure on the tight players.
You really shouldn’t play any pots here unless you catch a strong hand or a lucky hand in the big blind. The more pots you can win without a showdown, the more likely you’ll be to cash.
Late Stage Strategy
The late stage begins when there are only 6 players remaining in the tournament. At this point, the play will tighten up considerably as everyone waits for one more player to bust out.
Hopefully you won’t be short stacked at this point but if you are, you should be able to find some opportunities to steal. The only thing working against you is that you’ll be a target for the big and medium stacks looking to end the tournament.
Double or Nothing Bankroll Recommendations
I’ve always been extra conservative with my bankroll so take these figures with a little grain of salt. If you are a wining player and want to be completely sure that you never have to reload with these, you should use a 100 buy-in bankroll.
The higher your winrate is, the lower a bankroll you can get away with. After about 2,000 tournaments, you’ll have a pretty safe idea of your true winrate. If you’re cashing in anywhere from 50% to 60% of these tournaments, 100 buyins is the right bankroll for you.
It’s possible to play these with a smaller bankroll but just know that you’ll have a greater chance of going broke if you hit a bad run of cards. No matter how great you are, the occasional downswing is inevitable.
Top Poker Sites for Double or Nothings:
#1. Best poker site for double or nothing SNGs: Full Tilt Poker
Full Tilt Poker has a ton of double or nothing poker tournaments at all stakes. The competition is easy and you’ll never run out of tables. Use the bonus code HOOKMEUP for a $600 sign up bonus.
#2. Next best site for double or nothing SNGs: Party Poker
Party Poker is another very soft poker site. They do not accept players from the United States, but if you live anywhere else, it’s a great poker site. Use the bonus code BonusPP to get a 100% bonus worth up to $500.