# Winning tourney tips

Nov 18, 2003 4:05 AM

We’ve looked at ways to increase our winning chances when playing keno tournaments and if you find one to play in soon, here is a tip. Remember that when you’re playing in a tournament, you’re not only playing against the house as normal, but that you’re also playing against other keno players.

You must adjust your playing strategies if you want a decent chance of winning one of these affairs. Some keno tournaments offer an actual positive expectation at the outset for all players (because of the prize fund) and this is a rare situation in a casino. The intelligent player will take advantage of this situation.

To optimize a keno ticket for tournament play, we want to match its top payoff as closely as possible to the buy-in amount. Thus to optimize a two spot (which normally pays 12 for 1) for a \$1,500 buy-in tournament, we’ll want to play it for \$125. When hit, it will pay an even \$1,500. Let’s remember that if we play a regular \$1 two-spot in such a tournament, we’ll only win about 6 percent of the time, or about one-half as many tournaments as we should. Here are the results of 1,000 tournaments with a \$125 two-spot and everyone else playing \$1 tickets:

\$125 two spots

TOTAL WINS BY 1 SPOTS ARE 37

TOTAL WINS BY 2 SPOTS ARE 300

TOTAL WINS BY 3 SPOTS ARE 54

TOTAL WINS BY 4 SPOTS ARE 79

TOTAL WINS BY 5 SPOTS ARE 170

TOTAL WINS BY 6 SPOTS ARE 144

TOTAL WINS BY 7 SPOTS ARE 85

TOTAL WINS BY 8 SPOTS ARE 131

So by optimizing the two spot to pay \$1,500, we increase our tournament winning percentage from 6 percent to 30 percent! Some tournaments outlaw the use of one spots or two spots, but the same effect can be achieved by playing any ticket that has a high percentage of its pays at the top end, such as five spots, eight spots, or any so called "catch all" ticket.

Well that’s it for this week, good luck! I’ll meet you in the lounge.