How To Prepare For The World Series of Poker

Published on November 4th, 2003, 3:06 pm EST

By now, I'm sure that you have heard the story of Chris Moneymaker. 27 year old accountant, father, husband, who won the World Series of Poker after qualifying online with a $40 dollar entry fee. Chris Moneymaker's win is surely going to revolutionize the World Series of Poker, for the big reason that it is going to be so accessible to so many people. There were under 900 entrants this year; expect up to 50% more entrants in 2004, due to the surge in online poker popularity. Turn on ESPN, turn on the Travel channel, and there is a good chance you will see poker on TV.

In this article, we are going to answer questions for the beginner who is looking to follow the path of Chris Moneymaker. How do you begin? Where to start?

First off, realize that becoming a competitive poker player requires hours and hours of practise. You really have to immerse yourself in the game, and learn about how to bet, the different hands, when to bet and when to fold. This comes from two things: Practise and reading. Read, read, and read some more. You must have a thorough understanding of the odds involved in playing this game.

First thing, you need to set up an account online, so that you can play poker. You don't even have to deposit money; you can sign up and play for free against thousands of opponents from all over the world. The most popular poker room, and sponsor of the World Poker Tour, is Party Poker. There are usually 15000 players online at any given time, so you will always find some action.

Our advice is to start playing with pretend money. Party Poker gives you an unlimited amount of pretend money to play with. This is strictly so that you can learn about things such as how to bet and odds. Also, during this time, you need to purchase some books on how to play texas hold'em. We have some books in our books section that we recommend.

Once you are feeling comfortable with the rules, deposit $100 or something and start playing on the 50 cent / $1.00 tables. You will now be playing for real money, but the bets are low enough so you don't get freaked out by any high action. The worst thing you can do is start betting big as a beginner.

Keep playing. When you get home from your job, try to play an hour or two every night, with some extended sessions on the weekend. Play tight and smart. When you start making money at one level for an extended period of time, move up to the next level, such as $1 / $2, and so on. Keep playing, keep reading, and progressively move into higher brackets as your game gets better. This period, from the lowest level to the highest level will take at least a year, but be patient. You'll have plenty of fun in the process.

Once you are confident with your game, try entering some of the tournaments at Party Poker. They have tournaments which will give you entry to the Party Poker Million tournaments, which is what some of the big names play. This is just a step below the World Series of Poker.

Entry fees to the World Series of Poker are offered at different online poker rooms. Once your game is solid, look around and you will find tournaments which have entry fees to the World Series of Poker as prizes for winning.