Knowing how to raise, check-raise, value bet, continuation bet, all in raise may not be enough if you don’t catch cards to back up your play.
Last night I played “No Limit Hold ‘Em on the Twitter Poker Tour played on Full Tilt poker. I was a late registrant arriving at the table about three minutes after the tourney had started. Already one person had busted out having his Kings beaten by Aces in just the second hand dealt to him.
My first hand was AQ off-suit in the big blind. There were three callers and I checked. The flop was 5 7 8, two spades and a heart. I checked, there was a small raise of 30 so three of us called. I am not sure why I did, having really missed the flop. The turn card was 9 of hearts, giving two spades and two hearts on the board with a straight draw as well. I folded to a pot size bet. There was one caller and two people saw the river which was a Jack of hearts. They both checked. One made a nine high straight while the other won with a flush, Jack high.
And so the evening went. My highest pocket pair were 10’s, folded pre-flop to a 6BB raise. I had AK three times, raised with two of them and limped in with one. All of the flops seen were small cards and I folded to large raises before the turn. Most of the rest of my pocket pairs were folded pre-flop due to aggressive raising prior to my turn. My final play was an all-in bet with pocket fours when I was short-stacked, less than 10 times the big blind in chips. I was called by someone with QJ unsuited and he ended up with a straight on the river to bust me out in 22nd place after two plus hours of playing.
While I was not pleased with the results, I was satisfied with how I played. Skills aside, you do need some luck in the form of either good cards or great flops.
What do you do when you don’t catch premium cards? How does that affect your game? Or do you try to force the action?