Jack's back!

Jack Love
Image by HAURY! via Flickr

In my previous post I talked about what  I learned on how to play with Jacks. But I may not have taken my own advice as I ran into Jacks in two of the poker sessions that I played yesterday.

In the morning session, I was dealt a pair of Jacks in early position. I placed a pot sized bet and was called by one person. The flop was J 10 6, rainbow, no matching suits. I made a 3/4 pot size bet and was called. The turn card was a 2, matching the 6, making it possible for a flush draw. I made a 3/4 pot size bet and again was called. The river card was an Ace. I bet 1/2 of the pot and was called. My opponent turned over his cards, a 10 6, for two pair and my three Jacks won a large pot. This time, having Jacks and playing them the way I did, produced good results for me.

Three hands later I was dealt pocket nines. I was in early position and just called the bet, not putting in a raise.  The flop was J 8 3. I bet out a 1/2 pot size raise and was called. The turn card was a Jack, giving me a pair of nines with a pair of Jacks on the board. As I was the first to act, I again bet a 1/2 the pot size. My opponent called. The river card was a Jack, giving me a full house of Jacks over nines. This did concern me as my opponent might have had a pocket pair higher than my nines. But his betting did not seem to indicate that this was the case. Or so I thought. I lead out with a 3/4 pot size bet and my opponent re-raised with a pot size bet. If I called, I would be all in and would lose my entire stack if I was wrong.

I gave the situation some thought, trying to figure out if he did have a higher full house than mine. Based on the betting, it did not seem likely.  So I called for all of my cash. We both turned over our cards.

I might have had the highest full house, but, he had a Jack 10, giving him four jacks, four of a kind for the best hand. He had let me do the betting for him. Not once had I considered that he might have had a Jack and that he was slow-playing this monster hand. Definitely, Jack was back, with a vengeance.

Being beat by four of a kind or quads, happened to me twice yesterday. The second time, I had pocket 10’s. At the end of the hand, at the river, there were three eights on the board, giving me a full house of eights over tens. And just like the morning session, I did not give my opponent credit for having an eight in his hand. The results of the evening session were the same. I ended up losing my buy-in with a full house against four eights. Overall, an interesting but frustrating way to end the day.  On the bright side, I am learning to be careful how I bet a full house when holding the smaller end of  the hand.  Before retiring for the night, I had recovered almost 70% of what I had lost.

When you have a full house, do you take into consideration that your opponent might have a larger full house? Do you bet cautiously or do you try to increase the pot size and force your opponent to fold if he has a hand that cannot beat yours? What has your results been when having the smaller half of  the full house? Have you ever had your full house beaten by quads?

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