How to Defend against an Aggressive Player?
We have all combated an aggressive player at least on one occasion on a table. Their presence on the poker table can be rather nerve-wracking and annoying to play against them. They playing style is wild and free and it almost seems foolish. With any two cards that they have, they bet and raise nearly on every turn. They bluff on the flop repeatedly and often take the pot during the flop with aggressive bets.
An aggressive player is very beneficial and profitable to play against for the professional No-Limit Texas Hold’em player. Here are a few guidelines on how to play against an aggressive player.
1. Don’t make unnecessary continuation bets.
Don’t always expect this player to fold. The word fold doesn’t come to his mind that easy. Therefore the continuation bet is often a waste of your money against this wild, assertive maniac.
If you have a hand and you want this maniac to fold, consider going all in. Make him risk all his chips if he wants to continue that hand. Otherwise, keep checking or folding if he raises, and wait for a better hand.
2. Don’t play too safe and start bluffing
Raise in hands as a bluff in areas where you have draws. This helps you to capitalize on your opponent extreme aggression in spots where you range is still fairly strong, your opponent may think you are making moves but there is nothing that he can do about it as you have shown him that the strength of your overall range is high.
3. Slow-Play your opponent
Aggressive and wild players and often good in reading hands and will assume that when you call twice and don’t raise on a flush or a straight that means you can never have a strong hand like a 2 pair or a set because you would have raised before. This would give them a reason to either bet thin or go for the 3 barrel bluff. You need to keep your strong hands in the lower range so that they can make this error against you.
4. Sit at the position which enables you to act after him.
Ideally, you want to sit to this player's left. This enables you to act only after he has acted. This gives you the following advantages. Firstly, his frequent raises will not cost you much as you can fold during weak hands and you can decide to limp in only after he had folded or limped in too. Secondly, you can re-raise his bet to isolate him and play versus him alone when you have a good starting hand.