Since America is the land that gave us political correctness, it was not easy to come across some honest opinions on how the other half plays. Fortunately for us, top pro Daniel Negreanu is well known for being candid and outspoken to the point of getting in trouble, and this is what he has to say in his blog about European play:
Well, in Europe, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a limit game. It’s pot-limit Omaha first and foremost, pot-limit Hold’em, and an occasional stud game, played both pot-limit and limit.
There are some major differences from the United States in the way Europeans play pot-limit and no-limit. One of the tendencies I noticed is that the Europeans bet the whole pot, or even overbet the pot in no-limit. They’re sending out the message that if you’d like to draw out, you are going to have to pay full price.
This no-fear style makes them susceptible to getting trapped, of course, but the European way seems to be to “go out with a bang” and protect a hand at all costs. If they lose a tough hand, they lose a tough hand; they just move on to the next one.
It’s a very frustrating style to play against, but there definitely are ways to exploit it. The simplest way, obviously, is to slow-play big hands, but even then, there is no guarantee that they will hold up or that you’ll get any action.
It seems that Negreanu agrees with the general opinion: European play tends to be more aggressive, especially preflop. It is a shame that for all his candidness he failed to say anything about the reviled Scandinavians… it would have been interesting to hear his take!
Again, before moving on to the last installment of this series, here is a little trivia about the WPT and the EPT:
The buy-in for the EPT is about half that of the WPT. This means that the prize pools are smaller, but with EPT first prizes still in the region of $100,000.
World Poker Tour has only 6 players at the final table, where the European Poker Tour has 8.
Finally, the last part in our series: what do bloggers around the world have to say about each other? Prepare for strong language and inappropriate racial stereotyping!
Stay tuned for part V…