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25NL FR Zoom: Choosing to be Passive

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  • 25NL FR Zoom: Choosing to be Passive

    This is from 25NL FR Zoom. The villain is not a regular. I only had a few hands on him. However, I had a note from last year in a tourney saying that he ignored the board and couldn't lay down a good starting hand post flop. The few hands I had showed him as tight aggressive. It seemed like he didnt play many hands, but went all the way with the ones he did play.

    Often, I would 3-bet preflop, or raise the flop or turn in spots like this. However, here I decided the board seemed safe and I wanted to see if my note was good. I was comfortable flatting until the Q on the river which definately was in his range. I thought about folding, but there were too many hands in his range that I felt I was beating. And, his bet seemed a bit too large to be for value. It looked like he wanted me to fold. I considered raising but opted to play it safe and just call.

    Taking such a passive line the entire hand is not something I do that often, but I see more and more that this can be a viable ine in the right situation to get value, and perhaps better than "turning my hand into a bluff" by raising.

    Am I playing with fire here, or does my line seem make sense in this spot?


    Roland GTX

  • #2
    Passive play works best against a player who will bet misses but fold when played back at. That read seems consistent with the play here, especially if they play their hits differently but you don't appear to have enough information to make that assessment.

    Poker is situation dependent and requires one posses many tools. A essential key to success is knowing when to reach for those less used tools. I looks like you assessed the situation and chose a very good tool to go with that read. Well done.


    • #3
      Hi Greg,

      How you played this hand is actually the standard way I would play it against the villain as described. Flatting pre is generally better here in position keeping his range wide and not folding out lots of worse hands by 3-betting. Against a loose-goose who will call with a lot of worse hands I'd 3-bet for value with TT quite often.

      I think the Q on the river and his subsequent bet sizing is actually good for us. The better hands, JJ-AA, have been to this point trying to get value from the parts of our range that will be calling, namely smaller pairs. The Q is not a good card for that cause as it represents a plausible over card he could hit and makes it harder for us to call down with some small pair. So I somewhat expect those holdings to bet a bit smaller on the river, make it easier for small pockets to pay off. So as you note, it feels like he's trying to get us to fold those hands, and in light of that I think TT will be good enough to make the call.

      Raising the river would be pretty terrible imo, as I'd expect him to only call with better hands and fold his bluffs. Maybe JJ is the only better hand that would fold to this action, but given his line the river bet makes little sense with JJ so I doubt we're facing that specific holding.
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