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The Secret To Working out Bluffs And Making Money

New Online Poker Poker Strategy

We are going to look at a hand today from a Live $25 ZOOM session we played, where we defend a hand from the blinds and the action gets a little spicy. Click play to pick up the action with the hand.


The hand starts with blinds at $0.10/$0.25 in a 25 NL Zoom game, Our opponent opens the button to $0.53, so a little over a minimum raise, he has $25.12 remaining in his stack for us to win. We are in the Big Blind with 5♠ 3♠ and $0.25 already invested in the pot and elect to call, getting a very good price having to call $0.28 into a pot of $1.16 having a suited one gaper that can flop well in a deep stacked pot.

The Flop

The flop is quite good for our hand 3♦ Q♦ 5♦. So we have bottom two pair, on an all diamond flop. This is good for us, as we likely flopped the best hand with the exception of our opponent having flopped an extremely strong hand like a flush for example.
In general, this flop favours our big blind defending hands more than the buttons raising hands as we will have all the combinations of 53suited and Q3, Q5 suited, whereas the button won’t be opening those as often.
However, we are going to proceed with caution, we want to gain information about our opponent’s hand as we are out of position and not likely to get 3 streets of value from a worse hand like just one pair. So we begin with a check, our opponent decides to bet small here, placing just $0.40 in the middle, we could raise for value here and deny equity against someone diamond hands that can call one raise but fold turn cards where they don’t improve, however at this point I like to continue through a call and see what develops on the turn, as we are out of position this hole hand and there are many bad cards that can come, we elect to take the slower of the two options.

The Turn

The next card to come off is 7♣ Making the board now read 3♦ Q♦ 5♦ 7♣. This again is better for our range than the buttons, we can have all the combinations of 6 4 and 7 5 in our range, this is where we decide we want to put some money in the pot, there are a few reasons for this, many times our opponent may choose to take the free card with one diamond hands to try and complete the flush for free. It is hard for us to get raised as a bluff, as our play looks so strong, we flat call flop and lead-out large on the turn, so we won’t face raises often from hands like a Queen with a diamond.
We should get raised here a very high percentage of the time if our opponent wants to get all the money in the middle by the river, as we are still very deep at this point with them having $24.72 left behind.
With all this in mind, we lead out for a $1.50 bet into the pot of $1.87. Our opponent thinks it over and calls, off to the River we go.

Fifth Street

We get a safe river with the 9♣ rolling off, meaning diamonds bricked and any flopped flush draw missed. The final 5 cards read 3♦ Q♦ 5♦ 7♣ 9♣. We now lose to flopped flushes, although these are unlikely as our opponent would probably want to raise to protect a flush on the turn and play a bigger pot hoping to get a full double up on the river. We also now lose to two pairs such as Q9 and 97 and 99 that makes three of a kind on the river.
So what shall we do? Well, we are still going to get called by anyone pair hand, hands like QK, AQ, QJ, Q10, Q8 and maybe some pocket pairs such as AA, KK, JJ, 10 10, 88. With that huge range of hands in mind that we are still beating with our two pair, I like leading rather large to get value from our hand. So we bet out $3.25 into a pot of $4.74, around three quarters the pot…. now the interesting part our Opponent moves all in for a huge overbet piling $23.22 into the middle.

What do we do here?

So our opponent has polarised his hand, he has raised so big here that he is representing ultimate strength, making him even doing this with hands that may put in a small raise such as 79 for a two pair that beats us or even now a straight like 46 out of the question, he has a flopped flush and slow played it or he has nothing and is trying to buy the pot.
With the line our opponent has taken in this hand, it is hard to imagine them having a flopped flush, they bet tiny on the flop and just flat called a bet on the turn. This is the key to them not having a flush in my eyes, the only question is whether they are good enough to raise for value with two pairs or hands like three of a kind nines that beat us and the answer I came up with is that they may do that sometimes, but I don’t think they would risk their whole $25 stack on hands like that with a flush and straights already possible. It felt a lot like a one diamond hand now just bluffing to win the pot or a decent hand like a pair and a draw that now decided to turn their hand into a bluff. Either way, the way the hand went down it just seemed like if the opponent had the hand they were representing on the river they would have wanted to put more money in at some earlier point in the hand. So we call and our opponent tables A♦ K♣ for a complete bluff with just Ace high and the nut flush blocker

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