I was playing a game on Full Tilt the other night when I was dealt KdQc. I was the first to act and raised to $300 with about $400 left in pot. The small blind folded and the big blind called.
The flop was QdJd7h. I hit the flush and raised to $600, this was the point where either everyone folded or everyone met in the river. Although not uncommon I actually prefer not to go all-in until the river if you have not invested anything into the pot. This is not to say that you never do this, but if you are dealt AQ and the flop is 9s8h6d, it is probably better to check and live to fight another hand.
However, I do play well under the gun and I put in a small raise when I was first to act with first position. The first to act bet all of his chips to me, $600. I had about $3000 in chips and I had about 15 blinds at the time. This was not a position trap because if I had position on him, I would have simply made a cbet so not many chips on the table could be lost. However, by limping through, a bet might give him the impression that I had a strong hand. The same type of player would also make a cbet in position if I had 9s high.
The analysis of the Flop is fairly simple, you can’t be making good calls if you have nothing, and you especially can’t be making bad calls if you have nothing. I usually don’t like getting bluffed out of pots and even though he may have had AK, if the flop had a Q or a J, he would have been crushed, but this was a situation where I would call an all in if I had a Q. Q J or Q 10 are better hands than KQ. Q 10 can be suited or unsuited. Either way, you are forcing your opponent to have to call all in with good hands or fold.
- Therefore, making a cbet when you have nothing is not correct poker strategy. However, consider doing this when you have high pockets such as AK or AA. Being first to act allows you to be the first to bet. If you check behind, you can get a free card that might turn out to be a higher pair.
- When you have high pockets, cbetting raises are less valuable. If you check behind and your opponent bets all in, you are first to act and you will have to call. Therefore, in the sense that you check, you are first to bet. In addition, if you make a small bet, your opponent may value it less, and call your cbet on the flop or the turn.
This is probably the best advice because cbetting is an important part of an Ace/King poker player’s game. For newer players, Ace/King hi lo is one of the most common starting hands and cbetting is an important part of strategy. However, it is not until later in the event that the cbet takes on more complex characteristics. For instance, it is not until late stages of the event, where the Banker is usually at a discount to obtain goods and the cutoff to steal blinds is very short. Therefore, a cbet after collecting the blinds usually has more value.
In a sit and go poker event, Having a cbet is always less useful than in a cash game because the speed of the game is so fast. In a fast tournament, a cbet in Ace/King hi lo is rarely a profitable play. In a sit and go, the objective is to accumulate a small number of chips. Therefore, a cbet in Ace/King is frequently the right play, especially if you have a big stack and the blinds are high.
Cbos connected with Ace/King is also a powerful play. Even if the other players are not raising, this is still good because it is the strongest possible hand. Therefore, in situations where your opponents are raising the cutoff or stealing with Ace/King, meaning that their hands are stronger, then it is a good idea to go ahead and cbet. It likely that you will still end up winning the blinds. It is still possible that you will get a call, but if you do, then it is worth the risk.
In conclusion, when you have Ace/King, you have one of the strongest top starting hands in the game. It is important to play a good cbet because it is a sign that you have a strong hand. However, it should be remembered that cbeats are not that strong on their own. Therefore, don’t push your own chips in to clear the blinds because it is a sign that you an going to get called.