When to lay down high pair (advice needed)

    • Trbst
      Joined: 26.09.2007 Posts: 191
      Hi guys,

      Often I find myself in a situation where I can't lay down my high pocket pair.

      Most of my leaks seem to arise from situations where I raise preflop with say, JJ or QQ, and get called. Flop comes with one or two overcards, say, A93, or K64.

      Here, I have two choices:

      If in position, either C-bet to a check, or fold to a bet ?

      If out of position, either C-bet 1/2 pot and see where that takes me (check/fold turn if no J/Q comes along), or simply check/fold the flop ?

      I was hoping to hear some inputs on that situation and brainstorming on what would be the best way to handle that, as it turns out, many times I take the wrong decisions.

      Sincere thanks.
  • 5 replies
    • Fagin
      Joined: 06.05.2008 Posts: 544
      If I am the pre-flop aggresor I will C-bet 99% of the time in these cases as that way I can win the pot there and then.

      If villan donk bets and I know he will only do that with a hand then folding is probably the best option but that is down to reads. I folded JJ on a Kxx flop yesterday to a donk bet from a complete unknown who then showed 73os and hadn't hit (I tend to play too conservatively at times). I took his stack later so that was sweet revenge lol.

      If you always check fold flops with an overcard then that will quickly get picked up on by the regs and they will bet at you more frequently and you will lose many pots you should otherwise have won. Mixing this up with check raising a few times might help

      A large part of this is down to reads and knowing your opponents in my opinion. Using the Auto Rate function in PT3 has helped me a lot in this regard as I can get a quicker overall impression of a player. Taking notes as often as possible helps too.

      PS - posting difficult hands/decisions in the hand evaluation threads can help too!
    • BattleHunter
      Joined: 12.11.2009 Posts: 870
      I'm sure that everyone will tell you that it depends on the type people you play against, your reads, history with them... so on.

      I too think that the best thing you can do is post some plays with or without your reads in the hand evaluation forum, where the hand judges will pretty much tell you what to do and in a couple of hands you'll probably get the hand of it ^^

      What I do in general is:
      Out of position - I usually have the initiative with this kind of hands. Cbetting a boards you mention are perfect. A or K will often be in my open betting / 3betting range and they will often fold. Now if they call I just ask myself - how often does he fold to cbet? If the answer is that he never folds to cbet, but always calls to see what happens, I happily bet/fold the turn and check/fold the river.

      Now in position I think a similar line is also possible, but with a little change. I will cbet pretty much any day against his check. If he donks close to 3/4 pot I will fold, but a small bet I call or even raise. As a matter of fact that's the other line you can take (considering he can fold) - raising his bet. Since you represent a decently strong range, rising a donk bet is often good, but you need some reads to do it. If he's a calling station and never lays down hands like K7 on a K64 board you shouldn't really do that.

      Another good line imo is if it goes check-check on the flop and he opens the turn, you can raise him. That accomplishes two things:
      1) if you get re-raised you can fold easily
      2) if you get called, he will most surely check the river, giving you a free showdown, that can often win, mainly against lower pocket pairs, missed draws (if any) and middle pair kind of hands. If you with that way once out of two times (and I think you should on low limits) it's +EV

      Of course if it's check-check flop and he checks the turn again, checking is not a mistake and calling any reasonable bet (like up to 2/3 - 3/4 pot) is OK too, because him checking 2 streets indicates a lot of weakness and he will "value" bet any piece he has of the board.

      Again, try posting such hands to see what the hand judges will tell you :)
      Hope this was of some help,

      good luck
    • WildBeans
      Joined: 23.09.2008 Posts: 586
      what limits?

      I think you should almost always raise a donk bet from an unknown unless it's more than pot, but just raise it 2.5x. remember you have position so you can wait and see how he acts. Obviously if he reraises you fold..
    • Trbst
      Joined: 26.09.2007 Posts: 191

      Thanks for the tips. Forgot to mention, limits are NL10 and occasionally NL25 (coz I can't keep up with the BRM there :) )

      See the thing is, I do try to take reads when I see showdowns, but no those limits ... what can you read...people are off the hook there. Half of them are like they won the jackpot and are just f**** around on an NL10 table, making fun of other people who think about odds, pot odds, and stuff like that :) )))))

      There's another thing though.

      Many times they call the flop and my bet on the turn, and then show me the pair of Kings/Aces (A3o, K8o, etc). I.e. I can't get them to lay down the pair. To confirm - does that again get to the point where I have to actually know my opponents before making any strange moves or should I just stay on the safe side considering I'm a noob by simply stopping to act when they call my c-bet ?

      Thanks in advance.
    • sjaakdaniels
      Joined: 22.08.2009 Posts: 371
      sounds like you don't use any tracking software, start using stats, even the most simple thing like hands/vpip/pfr will give you a great oversight on the people on your tables.