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Playing Medium Pairs from the Blinds

by Andrew Arnott |  Published: Jun 25, 2010


Game: 25¢-50¢ no-limit hold’em Stacks: Mine: $51.85; His: $92 Opponent: Unknown M*y Position:* Small blind My Cards: 8 8 Perhaps one of the most discussed situations in poker is when we are dealt a medium pocket pair in either the small or big blind, and we face a raise from a late-position player. None of our options seems good; we don’t feel strong enough to reraise, but we feel too strong to fold, and calling always seems to get us into a mess. Let’s take a look at each option in isolation. Folding seems too weak for a pair such as 8-8, given that it has quite good equity against our opponent’s raising range. Furthermore, we can expect to win big if we flop a set. So, we can pretty safely eliminate the option of a fold. Reraising has some merit, in that we might get our opponent to fold ...

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