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adeny   Norway. Nov 21 2010 06:15. Posts 23
... My leaks, that is. Or is it even a leak? Maybe just bad luck.

Hi, I'm trying to learn to not suck, so I've been playing a lot. There's this one thing I keep losing to over and over. It's when I have overpair or top pair top kicker on a seemingly blank board.

I'm just going to post a couple of examples, there's 10+ of these over ~7k hands, I don't know if I'm supposed to be a master hand-reader or if I should just play the odds... Or something in between I don't know.

Maybe I just bet too weakly to maximize gain when I should be trying to protect my hand?

Anyways here you go, feel free to call me terrible etc.

Submitted by : adeny

PokerStars Game #53032978137: Holdem No Limit ($0.01/$0.02 USD) - 2010/11/21 12:00:44 CET [2010/11/21 6:00:44 ET]
Table Zerlina 9-max Seat #9 is the button
Seat 1: Mctwist09 ($2.79 in chips)
Seat 3: willsonnn ($0.83 in chips)
Seat 4: fucanto ($2.98 in chips)
Seat 6: Mix3rr ($1.09 in chips)
Seat 7: Valega :-D ($6.27 in chips)
Seat 8: HamsterXL ($2 in chips)
Seat 9: Hero ($1.51 in chips)
Mctwist09: posts small blind $0.01
willsonnn: posts big blind $0.02

Dealt to Hero KcKs
MihoRedd joins the table at seat #2
fucanto: raises $0.06 to $0.08
Mix3rr: folds
Valega :-D: folds
HamsterXL: folds
Hero: calls $0.08
Mctwist09: folds
willsonnn: folds

Flop(Odds) (Pot : $0.19)

willsonnn leaves the table
fucanto: bets $0.16
Denis Riv joins the table at seat #3
Hero: calls $0.16

Turn(Odds) (Pot : $0.51)

fucanto: checks
Hero: bets $0.10
fucanto: calls $0.10

River (Pot : $0.71)

fucanto: bets $0.64
Hero: raises $0.53 to $1.17 and is all-in
fucanto: calls $0.53

Hero: shows KcKs (two pair, Kings and Eights)
fucanto: shows 6c6h (a full house, Sixes full of Eights)
fucanto collected $2.90 from pot

Total pot $3.05 | Rake $0.15
Board  3c3h8s8h6s
Seat 1: Mctwist09 (small blind) folded before Flop
Seat 3: willsonnn (big blind) folded before Flop
Seat 4: fucanto showed 6c6h and won ($2.90) with a full house, Sixes full of Eights
Seat 6: Mix3rr folded before Flop (didnt bet)
Seat 7: Valega :-D folded before Flop (didnt bet)
Seat 8: HamsterXL folded before Flop (didnt bet)
Seat 9: Hero (button) showed KcKs and lost with two pair, Kings and Eights

Submitted by : adeny

PokerStars Game #53029850267: Holdem No Limit ($0.01/$0.02 USD) - 2010/11/21 9:33:44 CET [2010/11/21 3:33:44 ET]
Table Fredegundis V 9-max Seat #4 is the button
Seat 1: twocut ($3.04 in chips)
Seat 2: bazsanszki ($0.82 in chips)
Seat 4: nammax ($2 in chips)
Seat 5: BratWu ($5 in chips)
Seat 6: dodge321 ($3.94 in chips)
Seat 7: NaDTriNa ($6.13 in chips)
Seat 8: Hero ($1.70 in chips)
Seat 9: kslacker2 ($1.84 in chips)
BratWu: posts small blind $0.01
dodge321: posts big blind $0.02
Yahan588: sits out

Dealt to Hero AcAd
NaDTriNa: folds
Hero: raises $0.06 to $0.08
kslacker2: folds
twocut: calls $0.08
bazsanszki: calls $0.08
nammax: folds
BratWu: folds
dodge321: folds

Flop(Odds) (Pot : $0.27)

Hero: bets $0.06
twocut: raises $0.26 to $0.32
bazsanszki: folds
Hero: calls $0.26

Turn(Odds) (Pot : $0.91)

Hero: bets $0.30
twocut: raises $1.34 to $1.64
Hero: calls $1 and is all-in
Uncalled bet ($0.34) returned to twocut

River (Pot : $3.51)


Hero: shows AcAd (a pair of Aces)
twocut: shows Qd9d (two pair, Queens and Nines)
twocut collected $3.34 from pot

Total pot $3.51 | Rake $0.17
Board  3s9sQh6c4s
Seat 1: twocut showed Qd9d and won ($3.34) with two pair, Queens and Nines
Seat 2: bazsanszki folded on the Flop
Seat 4: nammax (button) folded before Flop (didnt bet)
Seat 5: BratWu (small blind) folded before Flop
Seat 6: dodge321 (big blind) folded before Flop
Seat 7: NaDTriNa folded before Flop (didnt bet)
Seat 8: Hero showed AcAd and lost with a pair of Aces
Seat 9: kslacker2 folded before Flop (didnt bet)

Submitted by : adeny

PokerStars Game #53029759976: Holdem No Limit ($0.01/$0.02 USD) - 2010/11/21 9:29:00 CET [2010/11/21 3:29:00 ET]
Table Kalypso II 9-max Seat #5 is the button
Seat 1: MillieMutt ($1.85 in chips)
Seat 4: Emby59 ($4.96 in chips)
Seat 5: ktire1982 ($1.87 in chips)
Seat 6: Hero ($1.52 in chips)
Seat 7: TheBigChees1 ($0.87 in chips)
Seat 8: O`Capuchina ($2 in chips)
Hero: posts small blind $0.01
TheBigChees1: posts big blind $0.02

Dealt to Hero AhQd
O`Capuchina: folds
MillieMutt: folds
Emby59: folds
Trader820 joins the table at seat #2
ktire1982: raises $0.08 to $0.10
Hero: calls $0.09
TheBigChees1: calls $0.08

Flop(Odds) (Pot : $0.30)

Hero: bets $0.10
TheBigChees1: folds
ktire1982: raises $0.18 to $0.28
Hero: calls $0.18

Turn(Odds) (Pot : $0.86)

Hero: bets $0.20
ktire1982: raises $0.78 to $0.98
Hero: raises $0.16 to $1.14 and is all-in
ktire1982: calls $0.16

River (Pot : $3.14)


Hero: shows AhQd (a pair of Queens)
ktire1982: shows KcKd (a pair of Kings)
ktire1982 collected $2.99 from pot

Total pot $3.14 | Rake $0.15
Board  7d4dQc8sJh
Seat 1: MillieMutt folded before Flop (didnt bet)
Seat 4: Emby59 folded before Flop (didnt bet)
Seat 5: ktire1982 (button) showed KcKd and won ($2.99) with a pair of Kings
Seat 6: Hero (small blind) showed AhQd and lost with a pair of Queens
Seat 7: TheBigChees1 (big blind) folded on the Flop
Seat 8: O`Capuchina folded before Flop (didnt bet)

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Gigabeef   United Kingdom. Nov 21 2010 07:14. Posts 111

You're not getting anywhere near enough value.

In a nutshell what is happening here is that you bet so weakly that people call until they beat you and then go allin, which you are then calling. You want to make them commit when you have them beaten much earlier rather than calling their huge bets when they hit miracle hands.

People love to call so much at 2nl, so do not be afraid to raise. I'm not sure why you are betting so small, but if it is because you are afraid that they will fold, just don't worry about that. Almost all of the time, if they are going to fold, you were going to hardly get any value anyway so you aren't missing anything.

On hand 1, I would always reraise with KK in position there for value. People at 2nl will call 3bets all day long with all kinds of trash: broadways, small pocket pairs and sometimes just random suited connectors/air. If he folds then fine, he basically didn't have a hand anyway and we are unlikely to get much value postflop unless he hits some single pair hand and likes the look of it. This way the pot is a lot larger to see the flop with and it is easier to extract larger amounts of money from people calling with worse hands.

Also on that river, the board isn't particularly blank there, any 3 or 8 beats you which he could just randomly have (A3, K3, A8, K8, 87, 98 etc, people play suited versions of these all the time at 2nl) or 66 as we saw.

The most important question is: 'What hands is he betting pot on the river that I beat?' Unless he's just spazzing out with one of the other pocket pairs (which he isn't going to be unless he's a mega aggro monkey) then you're always beat here, one way or another, as unlikely as some of the hands that beat you will seem.

People at nl2 play extremely straightforwardly most of the time, if you look at all of the hands from the villian's perspective they all played pretty much way we would expect with hands of those types:

Cbet as preflop raiser and then check call tiny bets, hit the nuts on the river and raise pot/shove stacks (hand 1). Calling preflop with dominated crap and then start going crazy when they hit 2 pair (hand 2). Open raise 5x bb preflop with KK (this may well not be normal for this guy, you would have had to play a few hands with him before to see whether this sends of warning signals, but a 5x open is not standard) and then reraise all over the place with an overpair (hand 3). Unless you have seen this person be a bluffy nutcase, reraises at 2nl are almost always for value. There is a useful theorem called the Baluga theorem, look it up because it is extremely simple and also very useful 99% of the time.

Oh just another note, hand 2 is fine preflop, nothing can really be changed there. But when you get to the flop, you want value from flush draws, Qx hands (AQ, KQ, QJ etc) and people will call with these hands if you bet more. The exact sizing comes with practice (something I am still working on, bet sizing is more of an art than a science) but it just depends on how much a given player will call with these hands that you beat. As a default size, most people use about 2/3 of the potsize, here you have an extremely strong hand however and beat 95% of the range they are calling with so you could bet 24c or something and get nice decent value.

Hope this helps, just my take on things. All of us microstakers are learning things about ABC poker all of the time, so keep trying and it should come together eventually. Just never stop trying to improve and learn new things. Gl

adeny   Norway. Nov 21 2010 08:11. Posts 23

That's one hell of a reply, thanks a lot. To be honest I don't even know where to begin. I thought 2NL was supposed to be easy.

It's even hard to get practice because these situations happen so rarely. It seems I'll have to play millions of hands to get this sorted out.

johnmagi   Norway. Nov 21 2010 15:58. Posts 1424

wtf is this?????

Oly   United Kingdom. Nov 21 2010 19:38. Posts 3584

1: raise flop

2: 3bet flop

3: 3bet pre, as played 3bet flop.

At this limit all you have to learn is to aggressively get max value out of your big hands and that's it. More things are added higher, but that really is it for 1c/2c.

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adeny   Norway. Nov 22 2010 18:11. Posts 23

TL;DR: WTF do I do when I don't hit the flop?

Thanks guys, appreciate the advice, I've been experimenting with betting strongly, 5bb/100 currently, over 2k hands. Sample size aside, I've gotten to test this out against a couple of different situations. So now my question is this, when do I fold?

Example: AK early position, raise to 4x bb, villain calls in late position.
flop comes, 27Q rainbow to keep it simple.

Here I would bet right? Folding would be pointless, can't expect to hit a pair every flop so I might as well be playing pocket pair only if I fold. So I bet 2/3 pot, he calls and turn comes in as a 9, not helping us at all, probably not helping villain either because we can't really account for 2 pair, if he has Q9 or whatever.
So now the situation didn't really change so do we keep betting? How do we find out if villain hit his pair? Do we throw a check to see if villain bets? Then we might as well be checking flop, right? Do we just assume he has something because he called on the flop, cut our losses and get out of the hand?

I'll go look up some post-flop articles I guess... Either way thanks for helping me, I know I'm probably a hopeless case but I want to be less hopeless and I have to start somewhere.

 Last edit: 22/11/2010 19:00


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