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PokerCoaching.com Quiz: Tricky Spot With A Straight Draw

by Jonathan Little |  Published: Mar 06, 2024

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You are eight-handed playing in a $1-$2 cash game with a $500 chip stack. UTG limps into the pot and the decent player UTG+1 raises to $10. After the lojack calls, action is on you in the hijack holding QClub Suit JClub Suit. 

Question 1: Should you fold, call, reraise to $42, or reraise to $62?

Answer: Whenever a decent player raises over an early position limp, you can assume they are raising with a good range, so you should not reraise too often. They will rarely fold to your three-bet, making this an optimal spot to call and see the flop with your strong suited connector.

You call along with the small blind, big blind, and the UTG player making it six ways heading to the flop. After the flop comes KHeart Suit 10Club Suit 3Diamond Suit, it checks to UTG+1 who makes a continuation bet of $30 (33% pot). The lojack calls, and action is on you.

Question 2: Should you fold, call, raise to $75, or raise to $150?

Answer: While it may be tempting to raise, it is relatively easy for UTG+1 to have a really strong hand like a set. Raising is not a terrible play, but considering the pot odds you are being given with an open-ended straight draw, you are much better off calling and seeing what develops on the turn. If you were to raise, you should do so only for a large size to generate lots of fold equity.

You call and everyone else folds, leaving three players in the pot. The turn is the 4Spade Suit and UTG+1 bets $60 (40% pot). Once again, the lojack calls.

Question 3: Should you fold, call, raise to $150, or go all-in?

Answer: Just like on the flop, there is no need to raise. You are being offered a great price to call and try and hit your straight on the river. If you raise and your opponent shoves, not only are you forced into making a crying call due to the pot odds, but one of your opponents likely has a blocker to your straight.

If you get the overwhelming sense that both of your opponents are holding marginal hands that will fold to aggression, you can consider raising, but overall this is a nice spot to call and try and river your straight. 

You call and the river bricks with the 4Club Suit. UTG+1 checks, and the lojack bets $60 (18%).

Question 4: Should you fold, call, raise to $150, or go all-in?

Answer: The $60 bet from the lojack screams weakness, suggesting they are holding a marginal made hand like K-Q or K-J that is going for thin value. You may be able to get away with a bluff, but an attempted bluff may get looked up by a top pair or pocket aces that are well within UTG+1’s range.

The deciding factor when contemplating whether or not to bluff is the “trickiness” of UTG+1. If  UTG+1 is straightforward and only bets with made hands, you can consider raising to steal the pot, but if they are capable of checking strong hands that can easily call a raise, do not bluff. In situations where you do decide to bluff, you should go all-in, given the size of the pot, but in this spot, the best play is to simply fold.

You fold and UTG+1 quickly calls revealing ASpade Suit KClub Suit to beat the lojack’s KSpade Suit 9Club Suit. While you may have been able to get a river bluff past both opponents, you likely saved yourself from making a costly, overly-aggressive play.

For access to more than 1,200 interactive poker hand quizzes just like this, but in video format, visit PokerCoaching today.