July 22, 2014

Daily Poker Quiz

More Sites from DHQ: InstantPokerMoney.com | BCPoker


Game type: $150 NLHE Tournament, PokerStars
Stage of tourney: Fairly early
Your image: Active
Opponent’s image: No read
Your hand: A♦Q♦

This quiz is from Justin “WPThero” Rollo, a tournament pro and an instructor over at PokerSavvy Plus. PS+ offers one of the strongest lineups of online coaching videos available. Visit them here.

The setup: In this hand, the under-the-gun player limped in. Holding Ad Qd, I decided to raise. In the early stages of a tournament, a general rule of thumb is to simply add a big blind to your raise when someone has limped in front of you. In this case, rather than making a standard raise of three times the big blind, I made it $600, four times the big blind. This larger raise comes into play for a few key reasons. First, I was also in early position and wanted to eliminate other callers. Secondly, I wanted to make sure that my opponent had the chance to fold better hands, namely smaller pairs, to my raise. A raise to three times the big blind would have allowed my opponent to profitably see many more flops.

It was folded back to the under-the-gun player, who called. This call was my first piece of information to help me determine his possible range of hands.

With the pot size at $1,425, the flop came Kd Tc 3h. My opponent moved all-in for $1,755 more.

View a video of the hand here

What’s your play?

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16 COMMENTS  (Jump to comment form)

DHQ Staff

Justin says … Before deciding what to do, I first had to assign our opponent a specific range of hands. I felt it was unlikely that his holding would include hands like AA, KK, and TT. While he might have played those hands in a similar way preflop, it is doubtful that he would have bet out with such strong hands on a relatively safe flop. Hands that did fall into his range included AT, KQ, KJ, QJ, QQ, and JJ, amongst other lesser holdings.

My next step was to estimate my outs. I could safely assume that the four jacks in the deck would give me the winning hand. The three remaining aces and three remaining queens could also give me the winning hand. However, not knowing for sure that all six cards would help me, I decided to estimate that three out of the six cards would win the pot for me. The last way I could win the pot was to make a runner-runner diamond flush. For this I estimated one more out, giving myself a total of eight outs.

With eight outs, my chances of winning are approximately 34%. The easiest way to make this estimation is to multiply your outs by 2 and then add 1, which in this case equals 17%. Then simply multiply by the number of cards still to come to get your total odds of hitting your hand. In this example, our odds of hitting equal 34%.

The next step was to calculate my pot odds. I had to call $1,755 to win the $4,935 pot. Simply dividing $1,755 by $4,935 told me that I would need to have a 35.6% chance of winning the hand to make calling the bet correct. As you can see from these calculations, calling would be a slightly negative long term decision using these ranges.

However, the last factor to consider when facing a close decision is your stack’s ability to withstand losing the pot. I began the hand with $7,795 in chips and I had $7,195 when facing the all-in bet. If I lost, I would be left with $5,440, which was still extremely healthy at that early stage of the tournament. If I won, I would have $10,375 and an increased ability to withstand losing pots later, as well as the ability to see more flops.

In the end, the value of increasing my stack early in the tournament (something I always attempt to do), bridged the gap between the mathematical difference (1.6%) and led to my final decision to call.

This may seem like a lot to consider when quickly deciding how to play a hand. However, with experience this thought process will become second nature and will help you make more profitable decisions.

PS+ offers one of the strongest lineups of online coaching videos available. Visit them here.



Without doing all that math it’s easy to come to the same conclusion by just saying…

“Hmmm 3100 pot 1700 bet I got 7100 left and I’m obviously behind but have some miracle cards that will win in addition to spiking my ace”

And the natural conclusion is that the bet is just a bit too high to call – “but I got a decent stack and can afford the gamble and that pot would really help…”

I’d probably still fold.



It’s close and somewhat subjective, but I’d fold. The math is negative, so I used that as my primary reason.


Sted Ruckus

Simply put, dude hit. Youre behind. No strong draws. And youre still very healthy regardless of whether you take that pot down or not. Posture for a minute, and lay it down.
I’d rather have 7K in chips than 5K, and the fact is 34% chance to increase it to 10K seems like a bad call. I don’t care if the pots odds are even hhigher, I don’t think you can universally apply that to tournament games, since you can’t re-up your chips. Unless this is a rebuy tourney, in which case I still lay it down, because youre only winning on a miracle.



Funny. I heard Hellmuth the other day talking about not taking coin flips to win tourneys. This seems like a situation where the “coin flip” is between calling with slightly negative chances, and folding to preserve your stack. Phil is a squeezer, no doubt, but his advice is very important. Why run off another 25% of your stack when you are almost certainly behind and have and M well above 20.



I understand that sometimes cEV < $EV, but you can hardly convince me that the other way around can be the case.

This is not a very drawy flop, nor a flop that looks safe for small pairs to shove at. Without a read it is hard to tell what kind of hand villain would be willing to limp-call UTG with his short stack. Looks donkish regardless of his holding. But it seems to me that in these spots when you cant put villain on anything they are usually good.

Unless you have a read on what kind of donk he is, that tells you you are often in front here, I cant possibly see why you should call.



Sry, I meant cEV can be bigger than $EV in a move, not the other way around. Typed it wrong.



I sided with Justin on this one with the call. It’s not an easy call by any means. But on top of the near coin flip situation of the estimated value of return, and chip value early in the tourney, and the comparison of the bet to the pot to my stack, I also want to put out an image of being willing to gamble a little to hopefully scare off some future semi-bluffs and to establish a willingness to defend my pot early in the game so that I can take advantage of that image later in the game.



Because of the limp and flat call preflop, Im putting him on any 2 broadway, mid and small pairs. If the limp was a trap with a big hand, he comes over the top of the raise preflop. This smells like a typical stop n go. Hes pushing no matter the flop. So lets say he hit the flop for a pair, we have at least 7 outs, maybe 10 if were lucky. If hes got a mid or small pair we have 10. He could have a draw with something like q/j and were actually ahead. Against his overall range, and because of the way Im reading this situation, I think the math adds up for a call -especially since we have enough of a stack to withstand the hit if we lose. Even if we lose, we have more of a read on villain, and established were not scared to call. Its minor consolation, but Im always looking to use whatever image elements Ive established in later hands.


poker noob

I’m thinking fold is the better option. Given the villains low stack situation due to call, there’s quite a few hands that can be eliminated. My raise represents strong A or JJ+.

AA and KK shove as soon as that 4x BB is folded to him. AK or AQ can’t be entirely eliminated, especially if suited, but seems likely they would fold or shove these pre-flop. With what I’ve represented, anything less than AQ as a drawing hand seems unlikely, but possible. And AK or AQ should either shove if they have me on a draw or fold if they have me on a big pair, but a call isn’t out of the question. Weaker drawing hands like KJ or AT are in his range, but seems like a weak play. More likely, a decent pair (99-JJ, but maybe QQ) is calling here, looking for a dry flop or hitting a set.

With what I’ve represented, a shove is pretty dangerous as it won’t take much for me to call given the potential pot odds. TT is the perfect hand to push given my range and potential call. As much as I want to add to my stack, in the early stages, I only call after the flop if I think I’m ahead. I think I’m behind and there’s no reason to play a draw.


poker noob

I can’t watch the video. Can someone post what actually happened?


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poker noob…villain had k/q off and we spiked the j on the river for broadway.



I’d fold, not to mention that that hand was played incorrectly from the get go. I don’t raise 4xBB with AQ suited from early position. I limp from early position, then let the CO/button raise me. I gauge the button’s strength from the size of his raise and his range. Then see if anyone if the SB or BB reraises the button. I then decide from my read on the one/two players what most likely is going on, then take a flop.

One of the most profitable mistakes that new-intermediate players make is that failure to realize that AQ is a DRAWING HAND. They overbet it preflop which pushes out the hands it would be most profitable against ‘Q10, QJ, A10′ and maybe KOo, AJo, to either grab the blinds, get called/folded by the villain on a missed flop, get called/raises on a fold villain hits, or gets run over by a monster.



lol at dwarms saying not to raise pre


no luck

@dwarms “WPThero” is not exactly a new-intermediate Player with a ROI of 79% and half a million in cashprizes on pokerstars alone. Although i think you have a point with overvaluing AQ (whether its sooted or not), this is not a situation where you want to play squeezed between UTG and any crap that follows. makes postflopplay way more difficult with maybe the CO, DB and both blinds in the pot.
The hand itself: can’t see him pushing “anything” here that he wouldn’t had pushed preflop like smaller pairs or AJ, although the King might be a scarecard for us if we held QQ,JJ or any not pairing ace, i dont think this is simply a stopNGo. so most prolly we are left with 4 jacks and three aces on the flop, which gives us ~30% to win and that is less then we actually would need to make a call. Then again it is a tourney, you take some risks to chip up and this seems to be a good spot.


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