Poker Coverage: Poker Legislation Poker Tournaments Daily Fantasy Sports Poker Stories Podcast U.S. Poker Markets

Poker Hand of the Week: 3/18/16

You Decide What's The Best Play


Give us your opinion in the comments section below for your chance at winning a six-month Card Player magazine digital subscription.

Ask any group of poker players how you played your hand and they’ll come up with dozens of different opinions. That’s just the nature of the game.

Each week, Card Player will select a hand from the high-stakes, big buy-in poker world, break it down and show that there’s more than one way to get the job done.

The Scenario

You are at the final table with six players remaining in a $1,500 live tournament. You are guaranteed to win at least $29,768. You have 1,060,000 in chips with the blinds at 20,000-40,000 with a 5,000 ante, giving you 26 big blinds to work with. There are two other players sitting with 30 big blinds or less, but nobody is in any immediate danger.

The chip leader, an aggressive player with 3,460,000 in chips, raises to 90,000 from the cutoff. It folds to you in the big blind and you look down at JSpade Suit10Spade Suit. You call, and the flop comes down QSpade Suit7Club Suit6Heart Suit.

Content to just give up, you check, but your opponent checks behind. The turn is the 9Spade Suit giving you an open-ended straight flush draw. You bet 90,000 and your opponent suddenly raises to 225,000. You have a total of 875,000 behind your turn bet.

The Questions

Do you call, raise or fold? What are the arguments for folding, if any? If calling, what is your plan for the river if you miss? What is your plan if you hit the river? If raising, how much? Given your opponent’s flop check, what does his range consist of?

What Actually Happened

Ludovic GeilichAt the Card Player Poker Tour Wynn main event, Jared Hamby opted to move all in for a total of 965,000 on a board reading QSpade Suit7Club Suit6Heart Suit9Spade Suit holding JSpade Suit10Spade Suit.

His opponent, Ed O’Connell, quickly called with QDiamond Suit7Diamond Suit, having slowplayed after flopping two pair. According to the Card Player Poker Odds Calculator, O’Connell was a 68 percent favorite to bust Hamby.

Unfortunately for him, the river was the 5Spade Suit and Hamby doubled up. Hamby’s success was shortlived, however, as he ultimately finished in fourth place, earning $53,727. O’Connell went on to finish runner-up, taking home $106,366. The eventual winner was Scottish poker pro Ludovic Geilich, who banked $150,662.

What would you have done and why? Let us know in the comments section below and try not to be results oriented. The best answer will receive a six-month Card Player magazine digital subscription.



almost 2 years ago

Calling turn seems optimal, chip leader is never folding and you will still have enough chips if you miss the river. However, getting all-in on a draw with only one card to come seems to be a very optimal/high level play, as it works quite well at tournaments I play. Quite the universal game.


almost 2 years ago

I think we get folds from enough of his range to make a shove the right play. This is an aggro player so a flopped 2pr is a small part of his range, most of it are naked A8, 87, 98 type hands what we are behind but can get folds from. When we run into the top of his range, as we did here, we still always have outs.


almost 2 years ago

Why are we assuming that there are many bluffs in opponent's range, here? Would he even be using the delayed C-Bet bluff effectively, here? It seems much more likely if he had hands that he is folding to a shove at this point that he would've just C-bet the flop and won a HUGE majority of the time. Trying to polarize his range here to either air hands and monsters (like he had), I believe is incorrect. The range has to be heavily weighted more towards nutted hands like QQ, KK, AA, 66, Q 7, Q 6, sometimes even 6 7. He's the chip leader, can afford flop cbets that are going to win a huge amount of the time against a BB defend. Add in ICM considerations, and I believe air-hands CBET 100% of the time on this board texture. The same reason for Cbetting air-hands is the same reason for checking huge hands, because so often we don't connect with this board. When we fire the turn and he raises, he doesn't care about keeping bluffs in our range by just calling, and can beat most made hands, so he's raising for value. We should just call, and then jam river if we make our hand, because the hands in his range are either folding (very small percentage of air) or calling (huge percentage of strong hands).


almost 2 years ago

villain raise from steal position (standard play 2.1x bb)
Hero calls (playing fit or fold) this is a fold or raise situation calling is big mistake
I would have 3bet reseal shove all-in and give myself two ways to win
Fortune favors the bold
Hero profile is safe solid passive ( better know as a owl)
Villain profile is loose aggressive gambler (better know as a jackass)


almost 2 years ago

Answer to ur ?
Hero flop equity is like no outs 0%
Villain equity is 90%
Check check
Turn play
Hero equity is 30%
Villain equity is 86%
Hero leads with a weak bet
Villain raises(the sound of trap shuts)
Hero pot odds are 20% equity 30%
Can't call (bad implied odds)
Can't fold (30% equity, pot committed)
Must re raise shove all-in and di
Hero mistake #1 call pre flop
mistake #2 bet on turn (checkraise all-in would have been best play or get a free card)



over 1 year ago

You don't want him calling with j 10 suited against an aggressive player 6 handed, you make a lot of comments and I don't think you really think about the hand


almost 2 years ago

Pot odds to call on the turn are around 2,6-1. Around 27% equity is needed to justify the call. When you count out the equity (i left out 2 outs because a lot of the time a paired board would give him a full house as there are a lot of 2 pairs/sets in his range) he has around 33% equity. At first glance i would say this is clearly all in or fold, but when you work out the maths you can see calling isn't wrong too. When he calls and misses he will still have around 17 BB to work with. Not a lot, but not ultra short neither. A close one I would say. When I am sitting in his place, playing a live tournament and not being able to go as deep trough the math as i am able now, it's an all in. When you work out the match etc. it is a call for me.


over 1 year ago

I would have just called the raise, you have a lot of outs, but right now you don't even have a pair. You know your opponent is aggressive, so if you push he will almost certainly call. By calling it gives you the ability to walk away from the hand if you missed on the river. The thing you would be most worried about would be a spade coming that paired the board, Because I would not put the opponent on a high spade draw, but two pairs or a pocket pair that allowed him to get three of kind, When the river comes a third spade, that makes your day, since the board didn't pair, the only thing to be worried about would be higher flush cards. Now the biggest challenge is what to bet, do you shove, or make a small bet. Personally I think because he is aggressive I might make a small bet, chances are he will re-raise a small bet, maybe going all in to try and force you to lay down your hand. You might not earn as many chips, if he folds your river bet, but if you missed on the river you can get a away with more than 10 big blinds still


over 1 year ago

it looks like all your commentator all play fit and fold strategy pre flop
And chip and a chair strategy postflop TV poker
Give us a puzzle that hero plays a more aggressive poker strategy like play that's constantly attacking opponents
constantly accumulating chips
constantly keeping track of pot odds and winning percentages
make the Hand of week hero a player profile of a alligator instead of a sheep


over 1 year ago

There's nothing wrong with calling here if you factor in everything, couldn't agree with your take on it more Hoffman , unfortunately for me the spade hit