General strategy for SNG Sit and Go
So, first goal would be to end up in the money. Considering the fact that your average SNG player is not the most patient guy on the planet, that means playing real tight in the early stages. Many SNG players tend to take rather high risks very early on, trying to buy small pots with sometimes oversized raises, going all-in in obvious coinflip situations.
So it is important to stay out of those kinds of situations initially and control the pot size unless you have a strong hand. Hands can escalate pretty quickly here, to a point where you find yourself pot committed with a mediocre hand.
For your general strategy, consider the following:
Example: A table of ten players with normal blind structure and 1500 starting chips, total chipcount is 15,000.
Let’s assume that you fold 90% of the time during the first 30 hands, for the hands you do play the winnings should equal the losses. In this case, after 30 hands let us assume you will still have 1200 chips after giving up all the blinds. Very frequently, after 50 hands many of your opponents will already be eliminated.
Down to three opponents (let’s assume you have managed to hold on to your initial 1500) your opponents will have a total of 13800 chips now, meaning an average of 4600 chips per player.
By the time you are down to two opponents (which means that you are already in the money!) these two would share the total of 15000 chips minus your own, meaning they would have an average of 6900 chips per player. So you already have doubled your money, with a chance of further improvement.
Both of the above situations are not as bad as they may seem. Improvement is still possible. First, there is a good chance that one more player will be eliminated, and second, since the blinds are higher now and the other players' readiness to gamble at this point will give you plenty of opportunities to double up your stack.
2. After having played a very tight game in the beginning, the remaining players (usually the better ones) will give you a lot of respect when you start raising more often now. Instead of winning small blinds with relatively big raises and the risk of running into a big hand at the beginning, you will now be able to make more profitable steals. Add to that the fact that you have more information on the remaining players, and you will be able to cash in on your tight table image.
3. In the final stages, you will of course have to play a more aggressive game, but you still have to consider the opponent’s character. Against a player who has not defended his hands against raises and steals, you should play aggressively. If he waits too for a good hand, try to reduce his stack by taking his blinds. If the opponent is aggressive it is often more profitable to let him make the first move when you have a strong hand.
In any case you have to think in advance:
What do I want to achieve?
How can I best achieve this goal?
What will I do if the opponent does not react the way I want him to?