Many beginner poker players use the “I had to call” excuse to justify their wrong decision. In reality, they were not bound by anything in their judgment. A number of circumstances may influence you to pay, believing you have no alternative; below we will analyze the most common mistakes made: why “call” is not a variant many times and why sometimes it is better to even raise to the detriment of the dry payment, although your hand is worthless.
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You know someone’s bluffing
Perhaps the most common situation, which causes a fundamental error. How many times has it not happened to you that, after the flop, an extremely loose and aggressive opponent will have a position. You call the check, and he makes a big bet.
There is no one else in your hand and the temptation for you is great. You’ve seen him do so many times and you’re convinced that this time he is bluffing. “And steal, I can not refuse to call,” you will say. Although you have nothing, you bet that the tower or river will help you. Or you will cause him to bend to the next street. It may be so, but the correct option in the long run is to fold. You’ll save a lot more chips in perspective. Or, if you are absolutely sure that your opponent is “stealing”, call the raise and throw it. Sometimes a check-raise is better than a call, even if you seem to expose yourself more.
Our advice, however, is to fold most of the time in such situations or at least wait for position. In any case, give up the belief that “you must call,” only because you feel the opponent is bluffing.
You finally have a good hand
Invariably, if you are a long-time poker player, at some point you will have a very long period where you will only receive weak playing cards. It’s extremely frustrating to stay for tens of minutes or even hours and not get involved. Especially if the blinds are growing and your stack is in danger.
Let’s imagine an example. After such a period, you receive A-J offsuited. “Finally, a good hand, I will play it,” will be your inner monologue, as soon as you view your start books.
Imagine that you are in a wide position, and in front of you, from UTG, a tight opponent increases, and from the middle position another opponent comes with a re-raise. Are you required to call? Many think so, but this is a classic example of not. Beyond the possibility of the early position player coming with a four bet or even an all-in shove, in which case you should risk your entire stack on A-J, the math doesn’t help. Let’s say you have the guarantee that the one from UTG also goes on the call version. What hands could you fight with A-J offsuited? In most cases, you will go behind your opponents and need good luck to turn the odds in your favor. Therefore, do not call in such cases, even if you feel the pressure of not having received a decent book for a long time.
Protection of blinds
Often times, players pay with marginal or weak hands, just because they feel the need to defend their blinds. Another fundamental error.
Let’s look at another example. You’re at a cash table with $ 1/2 blinds. Everyone folds up to the button, which increases to $ 8. From the big blind, turn the cards over and see the J-4 offsuited. The opponent is aggressive and his range of cards is very high. You know this and you suspect he wants to steal the blinds.
It may be so, but your hand is extremely weak. Calling here is the worst choice. You have no position and you will be vulnerable on each of the following streets. Do not try to protect your invested files at any cost, just because you think the other is trying to play. Again, a re-raise in such situations is preferable to a flat call. But that is only to the extent that you have been very careful about the opponent’s game and all the information converges to a steal of it.
Call the check-raise
Check-raise is one of the greatest weapons in poker and, most of the time, such a move means power on the part of the executor.
Let’s say you own J-J and you get on the river with one of the opponents. The common books are 3 clover – A cup – 8 spades – 8 cup – 2 clover. The opponent was extremely passive, and on the last street, after his check, you decide that this is the case for a value bet. It was not the case of such a movement, but, for the sake of the example, imagine that you do so. The player in front of you, who until now has only just checked in, now comes with a raise. “I invested a lot in the pot, I have to pay,” many will say in such situations.
Nothing wrong, a check-raise on the last street from the opponent generally indicates great power. Basically, with your pair of valleys you can only defeat one bluff. What to put the opponent to justify the call? There was no obvious draw and you have no reason to think that it would appeal to an assembly such a move just to steal the pot. Even if you put in enough chips, you can’t commit. And even if you were, you would defeat almost nothing in such a situation. The right decision? No doubt the fold.
You’re in the button
You are in the most privileged position at the table and, until the action reaches you, you attend a lime festival. Everyone gets involved in the pot, which grows substantially.
With the best position, the button, you will often be tempted to call. The choice is not a bad one in theory, but many do it with too weak hands. If you do not have K-x markers or connectors, whether they are suitable or not, specialists think you should fold. Not only will you save the files for a blind, but you’ll protect yourself for what might follow. With so many players in the pot, it is very likely that someone will grab a monster hand. And you will be extremely exposed, even if in your turn you will “hit” the flop. Learn to protect yourself and do not feel that you have to call, when in fact there are other better options.