Emma Oosthuizen
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The practice of calling the clock is one of the characteristics of poker that has recently been the subject of much discussion. In certain private games, players are not permitted to call the clock; however, this practice is tolerated in big poker tournaments such as the World Series of Poker (WSOP). If you are unfamiliar with the regulations that govern this move, this article will help explain it in detail, including who is allowed to begin the move. If you haven’t already, this article will assist you. 

“Calling the clock in floorman” is a term used in poker

When the call of a clock is completed, the floorperson is contacted. He will decide if he determines that a player has been wasting time. 

In poker, who has the authority to call time? A clock can be requested by anyone at the poker table. When a player uses the clock, they will summon the floor person to the table. The employee on the floor inquired with the dealer about the player who was called on the clock to ensure that the player was not wasting time. 

After the dealer confirms this information, the floorperson will inform the offending player that he or she has thirty seconds or one minute to make a move to avoid losing the hand. The floor person is given the right to start the clock in certain competitions if they have good grounds to suspect that a player is tanking the game to an extreme degree.  

In poker, “calling the clock” is a move that is often frowned upon by other players; yet, it is occasionally necessary to make this move to move the game forward more rapidly. It is well known that poker is a game in which players must make difficult decisions; nonetheless, the game can become rather frustrating when players take an overly long time to act on their turn. Because the hand grows longer the longer they wait to make their move, they must summon the clock. 

When a player calls the clock after it has started, the floor person is expected to come over to the table. The floor person is responsible for confirming with the dealer that the player whose turn was called took an unusually long time to act on their turn. There is no set time limit before all poker players must make a choice or their opponents can start the clock. In reality, under the recently approved World Series of Poker rule change on “calling the clock,” players can now do so at any moment. 

Someone called the clock while playing poker

 If the clock is called on you, you will have anywhere from 30 seconds to 2 minutes to determine whether or not to proceed. During the final 10 seconds of the round, a floor person will give an oral pronouncement. The maximum length of time you have to act on your turn is two minutes, however, this is regulated by the house rules. When the dealer determines that a player is taking too long to act, he will warn that player that he has thirty seconds or one minute to complete his turn before his hand is pronounced dead and the next player will take his turn. The floorperson will perform a ten-second verbal countdown before the timer begins to count down from zero. If the player is unable to complete the hand before the time limit expires, the hand is automatically forfeited. 


When a player takes an unusually long time to act on their turn, they are said to be tanking. Because of this lack of decision-making, they risk having other players call time on them while they are still in the middle of a hand. The term “tank” is an abbreviation for the phrase “tank bank,” and it has since become the term of choice among poker players to describe the act of taking too long to decide on a hand of poker. Players can tolerate tanking, but excessive tanking is considered poor poker etiquette and may result in an opponent calling time on the player (villain). 

Even though tanking is deemed unethical in poker, it is a well-known truth that many players still tank. What causes this to be the case? When a poker player is faced with a high-stakes game or an incredibly important choice, they are more inclined to “tank.” When there is a large sum of money at stake, there is a lot of pressure to make the right decision. When this happens, players often spend a significant amount of time weighing their options and deciding on the move that will give them the best chance of winning. 

Tanking becomes an exceptionally appealing play style when a player is near to making the money in a tournament. Players with a limited number of chips in their stack usually wait until the timer runs out before making their hand, which is usually a fold. They are playing a waiting game, hoping that someone else will fail before them, allowing them to get into the money. This occurs far more frequently in online games because you don’t have to worry about other players’ irritated stares if you take too long to complete each task. 

Furthermore, novice players are more likely to lose their stack during a round of poker. Given that their comprehension of the game’s rules is always expanding, it’s reasonable for them to be unsure about the decisions they’ve made. As a result, it stands to reason that they would take their time evaluating numerous possibilities before taking the next step. 

You should not tank for several reasons 

Tanking is widely acknowledged to be detrimental to the game of poker. Unfortunately, this strategy has not been effective in keeping both experts and amateurs from sinking significantly. In case you were wondering, here are three reasons why tanking is not accepted. When someone tanks in a poker game, the other players become annoyed. 

Tanking will not only land you in hot water with the rules, but it will also enrage many other players. It’s bad manners.

Although some players believe that calling time on an opponent is immoral, the one who tanks is the one who is causing the problem. When your tank excessively, you not only reduce the excitement of the game but also limit the number of hands that can be played in the allocated time. 

The game’s purpose is to create a sense of accomplishment in addition to material benefits. It is impolite to be the person who destroys everyone else’s fun. 

Setting low expectations: Any poker enthusiast would probably agree with me when I say that poker players like attempting to replicate the methods of other players who they consider to be more proficient. 

Because of the imitation plague, many players come to games sporting unusual attire like hoodies, baseball hats, sunglasses, and other non-traditional headwear. If inexperienced players see more talented players tanking as if their lives depended on it, those players are likely to tank more frequently in the next game in which they participate. On the other side, while professionals can exhibit terrible behavior, such as excessive tanking, they can also exhibit outstanding behavior. If more pros opt to play at a faster pace, it may encourage amateurs to follow suit. 

Contrary to Winning Players’ Best Interests: The goal is to become a successful poker player, and if that is your goal, you will certainly be looking for strategies to increase the amount of money you win in an hour. Because time is being lost, the number of hands in which you participate is likely to drop if there are six other players at the table. Each of these players has up to three minutes to complete their turn. Because of this, it is in your best interest to prevent excessive tanking from prolonging the average game length for each hand that you play. 

Experience for Players Who Only Play Casually: Many players are just interested in the pot, but recreational players just want to have fun playing the game they love. Many players are only interested in the pot. They are there because of the game’s reputation for being exciting and unpredictable. 

Nothing is interesting about seeing your opponent take an inordinate amount of time to make a relatively straightforward play. When you talk too much, you are doing nothing more than making it difficult for casual gamers to enjoy the game. 

Should you call time on an opponent who has the clock running? 

When playing poker, you will inevitably find yourself in head-to-head competition with another player at some point. It doesn’t matter if you up the ante for your opponent or just call their stake; each move might be considered confrontational in its own right. As a result, the strategy of stopping the clock on one’s opponents needs to be regarded as merely one more component of aggressively playing the game. 

Fortuitously, there are still some players who grimace when their opponents call the clock, and there are others who feel the move to be excessively “in your face.” The issue at hand is that the game of poker is the one that has to bear the repercussions of an excessive amount of tanking. Nobody enjoys a dull game, but that is exactly what you get when players spend three to five minutes on decisions that ought to be straightforward. 

When it comes to poker tournaments that are shown on television, the stigma of tanking is much more severe. Although a player might be willing to put up with a tanking opponent for the sake of the game, viewers glued to their seats in front of the television are not nearly as patient. As a result, it should come as no surprise to players that they should stop the clock on opponents who are tanking to an excessive degree. A string bet is something that almost every poker player will immediately call out. Therefore, there is no reason why calling the clock should be difficult. 

When you call time on an opponent, it forces them to make their play much more quickly than normal. This is something I’ve experienced from my own experience. The majority of players who have the clock called against them typically make their move even before the floor person arrives at the table. 

When players are willing to call the clock on any other player at the table who is tanking, the energy that is generated as a result of that decision causes a ripple effect that impacts every player at the table. Not only does a clock hasten the action of the person it is called on, but it also serves as a warning to the other players at the table, reminding them that slow play will not be accepted under any circumstances. In other words, a clock serves a dual purpose.

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The Shot Clock is a substitute for “Calling the Clock” 

The shot clock will be digital (unlike this old mechanical one ), and it will count down the seconds until you must make a move to win the round. Before this moment, no time limit was set for players to complete their movements before the clock may be called on them. Even though the call clock option is accessible, some players are afraid to utilize it because they do not want to appear unfriendly. One example of a good invention that has been used to deter tanking is the introduction of a shot clock. Live competitions are an excellent venue for putting it to use. 

The shot clock, despite its name, is a real clock that is kept on the table. It creates a time limit for each player to act on their hand in the game of poker. As the clock approaches the end of the game, the players have no choice except to make their move as quickly as possible to avoid having a dead hand. The competition rules may specify that a variable amount of time is allocated on the shot clock. The majority of events, however, employ a time limit of thirty seconds. 

Another noteworthy component of the shot clock is the ability for players to be given time bank cards at the start of a hand. If a player believes they need more time to make a move, they can use these cards to “buy” more time from the game. You can buy an extra 60 or 30 seconds with these cards, depending on the situation. The shot clock gained popularity among poker players after the World Poker Tour opted to use a 30-second clock for the Main Tour event Season XVI in 2017. Toward the end of a hand, players were given time chips that may be used to buy more time for their turn. Although numerous tournaments had already begun to use shot clocks, their introduction to the World Poker Tour in 2017 is largely recognized as the event that heralded the beginning of shot clocks’ broad acceptance in poker tournaments. 

The World Series of the Poker Calling Clock Rule 

The World Series of Poker (WSOP) is widely regarded as one of the world’s most renowned poker tournaments. As a result, it is not surprising that they have responded to efforts to reduce excessive tanking by imposing further limits. 

Prior Legislation 

Previously, players may “call the clock” on other players if they did not act on their turn after a predetermined amount of time had passed. Although the WSOP did not specify how much time was “an acceptable duration,” it was widely assumed that players could wait up to two minutes before calling the clock on a tanking opponent. 

The dealer will then summon the floor person when an opponent has had the clock called on them. When the floor person arrives, he double-checks with the dealer to ensure that the “villain” in question did not tank for a longer period than was permitted. After the dealer confirms this information, the floor person will begin a fifty-second countdown for the player. If the player does not act at this time, the floorperson will start a ten-second countdown, after which the villain’s hand will be regarded dead. 

A New Paradigm 

As a result of the new rule, the “fair period” of two minutes has been eliminated. This rule allows players to stop the clock on their opponents whenever they want. The dealer may still call the floorperson, who is responsible for judging whether or not a player has been tanking before starting the countdown. If the countdown were spoken and counted down in 10-second increments, it would only take 40 seconds. Furthermore, the new rule provides the floor person the right to start the clock if they believe a player has been tanking for an extended period. 

Reactions to the New Ground Rules 

The new law is a step in the right way. If we’re being really honest, players that take more than a minute to act on their turns are already tanking. Giving participants the power to call time at any point throughout the game may foster a faster-paced and more exciting game. Furthermore, the World Series of Poker has done a fantastic job of allowing the floor person to call the time. As a result of this rule provision, players who are unwilling to call time on tanking opponents are effectively checked. 

The onerous back-and-forth between the dealer and the floorperson, on the other hand, is a component of the rule that must be eliminated. In-game activities such as calling the clock are designed to expedite the action. When the dealer needs to call a floor person, and that floorperson wants confirmation that what they were called for occurred, you have a process that takes even longer than some tanking players. 

Even if the new regulation is a step in the right direction, a large tournament like the World Series of Poker needs to go above and beyond to assure that tanking is no longer an option. 

A Comparison of the Shot Clock and the Calling the Clock 

Many people believe that putting a shot clock into every competition would be the best thing for basketball. This is even though calling the time makes every effort to ensure that players do not talk excessively. Consider the occurrence of tanking in online poker games, which is not a problem because players are aware that they have a limited amount of time to act on their turn. The addition of a shot clock into no-limit games will undoubtedly speed up the gaming while also eliminating the process that occurs after invoking the lock. 

A shot clock might also help to alleviate tension at the poker table. Because some players believe that calling the clock on an opponent is bad manners, a large amount of tanking is disregarded to avoid confrontations. When a shot clock is present, each player at the table is aware of the commitment they are making the moment they take their seat. There is little doubt that removing players from the decision-making process regarding checkmating and tanking will improve table harmony. 

The use of a shot clock, on the other hand, will substantially reduce the length of time that players have to take their turns. Some movements can be completed in as little as 10 seconds, while others can take up to one minute to complete. There are times when players need more time to make the best possible move. There is little doubt that using a shot clock will increase the speed of no-limit poker; but, this will also increase the pressure on players to make hasty decisions. The shot clock is bad news for players who prefer to have plenty of time to consider how to make the best possible move. 

Conclusions and thoughts 

There is one certainty, and that is that competitions will not need to use a timer if players do not tank for an unreasonable amount of time. This is true whether you like calling the clock or simply want a shot clock installed. The true issue originates from players that spend an abnormally long time deciding what to do during a hand. We need to learn how to play without tanking if we want to get rid of those annoying timers that prohibit us from having those extra 20 seconds to completely assess a circumstance. 

Slow play in poker harms the game’s reputation. If we desire to improve the game’s reputation, we must immediately eliminate the habit of stalling and tanking. As fans of the game, we are all required to fulfill the roles that have been allocated to us. If you can finish your action in less than ten seconds, don’t take any more time than necessary. 

Furthermore, if you are playing against an opponent who tanks excessively, you must call time on that player regardless of whether you are currently involved in the hand. The final phase is for players to reconsider when the clock should be stopped. It is neither an unpleasant gesture nor is it intended to incite ill will among the participants. Poker will become much more fun for all of us if we learn how to respect the game by not playing too slowly.