Posted on July 28, 2008
Insurance Strategy in Pot-Limit and No-Limit Omaha High-Low Games. The 1st Part
In pot-limit and no-limit Omaha hi-lo games insurance policy is often taken in case a player goes all-in and bargaining no longer takes place. It is extremely fair in Omaha.
Insurance means that a player having the best chances to win the pot agrees to pay back a certain sum of money (premium) to the player laying out the insurance if his hand is folded. If the opponent draws badly the insurer pays him the defined sum of money as compensation. Thus the insured gets back from the pot at least the sum which the insurer promised to pay if the insured loses the deal. The insurer can be his opponent, a player not taking part in the pot or somebody who doesn’t play in the pot at all.
The insurance practice has its advantages and disadvantages in poker practice
The positive side lays in the facts that players stay in the game, those who have little money are protected and there is an additional opportunity of using playing skills.
The main disadvantage of insurance is that it slows down the game substantially. In Omaha for the same period of time fewer games can be played than in holdem that is why insurance practice can slow down the game even more especially for those in tight.
Another disadvantage (as I see it) is how discussing of pot odds makes unaccustomed players to feel nervous. In most cases it allows them to understand how wrong it was to go all-in. Some players explain their dislike for insurance because an opponent can be bent to call a big bet if he is sure to get back a part of his money. As for me any addition to the game which makes big bet call more probable is not a bad thing. If my big bets are called oftener in case of insurance then it is more like a case for than against using insurance.
I don’t mind using insurance but only in big pots and only when there is just one more card to appear on the board. I think insurance should be excluded from any poker game if there are two more cards to appear on the board.
Should you get insured yourself?
Only if the insurer estimates the insurance sum in the wrong way otherwise you make it even worse for you. You don’t need to buy insurance without serious reasons. If you have little money and the loss of the pot risks your working capital then yes, insurance is recommended.
Another reason for you to buy insurance is failure protection in the beginning of gaming session in order that failures in the beginning didn’t influence your further game. If you consider yourself a player subjected to losing balance in case a long-range hand draws better than you, it is better to be patient and buy insurance; it can turn out less expensive for you now than your nerves throughout the whole session later.
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