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Card Room Getting Value From Trips

by Jonathan Little |  Published: Jan 24, 2024


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You are eight-handed in a $5,000 buy-in tournament with a stack of 20,000 with blinds at 100-200. It folds around to you in the hijack and you look down at 10Heart Suit 8Heart Suit.

Question 1: Should you fold, call, raise to 400, or raise to 600?

Answer: It is fine if you want to fold 10Heart Suit 8Heart Suit, but you are likely playing too tightly if you fold it every time. With a stack of 100 big blinds, you have enough chips to make the standard three-big blind raise from the hijack.

You raise to 600 and only the young kid playing from the button calls. The flop comes KSpade Suit 8Diamond Suit 8Club Suit.

Question 2: Should you check, bet 600, bet 1,200, or bet 1,800?

Answer: Both betting small and checking are fine options. From out of position, a poker solver will recommend mixing it up, but for the most part, you should frequently bet using a small size. Betting small invites your opponent to call due to their excellent pot odds, and if they like to battle, they may attempt a bluff. 

You bet 600 and your opponent calls. The turn is the 9Heart Suit.

Question 3: Should you check, bet 1,100, bet 2,200, or bet 3,300?

Answer: When out of position, you should occasionally check to protect the non-premium hands in your checking range, or if you can tell your opponent does not like their hand too much. With the 9Heart Suit on the turn, you have a lot of draws in your range that would want to apply aggression. Execute a polarized bet representing top pair or better, or a straight draw. 2,200 adds plenty of chips to the pot and is not too large to the point that it will make your opponent fold all hands worse than a top pair. 

You bet 2,200 and your opponent calls. The river is the 4Club Suit.

Question 4: Should you check, bet 3,300, bet 6,600, or go all-in?

Answer: Checking makes sense in some cases, but only if your opponent has some extremely weak hands in their range that will feel inclined to bluff. By calling your flop and turn bet, it is highly unlikely they have junk, so checking would not be a good play. Do not go all-in because you will have a difficult time getting called by a worse hand. To get max value from a king, bet 6,600.

You bet 6,600 and your opponent calls. After flipping over your hand, your opponent mucks their cards. Way to get full value!

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