Online Day 1’s, a look at what they bring to the 25/25 Tour

Grosvenor Poker have introduced online day 1’s for their ever-popular 25/25 series, meaning you can make it through to the second and final day – held at the casino – from the comfort of your own home.

While not for everyone – and remember there’s still just as many live day 1’s as there always was so you can continue to play 25/25 day 1’s live as usual if you want – the option to play online is a new opportunity that makes playing the best structured £225 comp around viable for more people.


Rather than having two days in the casino, and all the organisation that can take to fit into everyday life – childcare, pass out from the other half, getting to and from the casino, fitting poker around work and much more – players can now play online. And one of the more delicate balancing acts – having a great structure but finishing day 1 at a time when players can still be up for work the next day – is helped by being able to switch off and go straight to bed after day 1 too!

The powers that be have taken every precaution to maintain the integrity of the tournament and make a level playing field so you have no advantage or disadvantage by playing online.
The £25k guaranteed 25/25 Series has become the UK’s premier tournament series at this buy in level because of its fantastic structure – 25,000 starting chips, every level included, 40 minute blinds, and the online leg plays out just as well.

Online the blinds are 20 minutes long, but the game is naturally faster here and it works really well and comparatively, and while some see an advantage to playing online, others feel an edge in the live alternative.

An online day 1 plays out pretty much like any other online tournament, but the big difference is it doesn’t play to an end, it’s almost like the tournament is stopped at half-time and will be moved to the live arena.

Remember if you play the online day 1 you can still play live if you bust. In fact, you can have two reentries per live flight, so there’s plenty of scope to give the online day 1 a go, and still play live if you find that suits you better. The online leg is a freezeout though, so don’t expect to be offered a reentry there.

Factors involved

Before playing an online day 1 I would consider the following:

– Make sure you’re playing the right online day 1 – the last thing you want is to find you’ve qualified for a day 2 of an event you can’t or don’t want to play! The online leg of the 25/25 is held on the Wednesday before the event at 8pm

– Decide whether you want to play from the start or late reg. It might be worth looking at how many people are registered, how many handed the tables are (I do this live too!)

– Make sure you know how long you’re playing for and that you’re free for that long – there’s no pointy starting an online day 1 if you have to go and collect the kids later!

– Bear in mind what the blinds are at the start of day 2 and what kind of stack you’d be happy taking through. There are 10 levels on day 1 of a 25/25, meaning players come back on day 2 with blinds at 1k/2k

– Look out for people trying to make day 2, steal their blinds and keep the pressure on

There are definitely some slight differences between playing an online day 1 and the live version, such as the heightened aggression towards the end of the day, which is often the complete opposite of how a live day 1 plays out.

Personally, I don’t see much of a difference between day 1 and day 2, and those who change their play towards the end of a day just so they can stay in for the following day are making a mistake. As with any mistake in poker, that’s an opportunity for us, so try and take advantage of those who have locked up towards the end of day 1, whether you’re playing live or online.

Just because the tournament organisers have decided that levels 10 and 11 will be played with a day’s break in between doesn’t make it any more important to stay in than the difference between levels eight and nine, 12 and 13 or whatever.

However, you will definitely notice that online the end of day 1 will play out more aggressively compared to live, where people are generally more happy just to make it through, so make adjustments, be aware you’re more likely to get shoved on, perhaps lay a trap or two by just calling raises with big hands and hoping to induce a squeeze from a weak holding behind trying to pick up the dead money, and tighten opening ranges if your hand is strong enough to call a shove, particularly on the blinds of players who are looking to get it in.

This is of course because players are less invested in the tournament and more likely to think ‘I’m not going to play this unless I’ve got at least 20bb/30bb/40bb for day 2’.

While you can’t reenter the online leg, you can fire again in the live day 1’s, and as with any reentry tournament, bankroll management will also play a part in your tactics. It may be that you’re willing to take a flip or play more aggressively to try and really build a monster stack, or that you want to avoid flips and preserve your stack in order to progress.

If you’re coming towards the end of the day and have fallen below 20 big blinds (40k) it may be that you want to get your chips in and gamble and either finish with 80k (40bb) or have another go at doing so on a subsequent day.

Of course if you don’t want to play again, you’ll play more conservatively in those spots.

Some people don’t like playing their day 1 online, maybe they feel better suited to live poker, or they feel there’s more gambling towards the end of an online day one as players decide not to settle for just making it through with a medium stack but prefer to gamble, but others like them, and the choice is there.

Stacked Satellite Schedule

And of course whether you choose to play your day 1 live or online, there are plenty of chances to win your 25/25 seat in Grosvenor Poker Online’s numerous satellites.

Sat’s start at 25p and there are three finals a week guaranteeing 25 seats, running Monday (£10 rebuy, 10 seats), Tuesday (£30 freezeout, 10 seats) and Saturday (£30 freezeout, 5 seats).

So whether you win a seat live or online or buy in direct, there’s the opportunity to play day 1 of every 25/25 online on the Wednesday leading up the event. Why not give them a whirl?!









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