Give Opponents a Chance in Real Money Texas Hold Em Poker

Let's pretend that you are playing Texas Hold Em poker for money, either in a real-life game or playing online poker, and that you just saw the flop of your dreams materialise right before your eyes. You watched in disbelief as those three cards now looking up at you from the centre of the table match perfectly with the two cards that were dealt to you at the start, and you are now in the enviable position of having one of the strongest hands that you have ever held in all the time that you have been playing Texas Hold Em poker. What now?

No doubt your first instinct if you are relatively new to the game is to go all in and wager all the chips you can lay your hands on, or if you are in a limit game of Texas Hold Em to raise and re-raise as fast and as much as you possibly can. But the main aim of real money Texas Hold Em poker is not to just win the pot, it is to win a pot which contains as much money in it as possible. To this end, it is worth exercising caution and restraint, even if you do feel like dancing from the ceiling with this remarkable hand.

For starters, just be advised that whilst your fantastic hand is likely to win, unless you hold the ace with which to make a royal flush, there may still be potential for a rival to make a better hand. This is one of the dangers of Texas Hold Em poker, in that five communal cards out of seven means that players can often showdown with similar hands, sometimes pipping an opponent to the pot with just a stronger kicker.

However, let's just say that your hand is going to be the winning one, and looking at the cards on the table and in your hand you are pretty certain that it will be. Should you bet or raise everything you have?

One of the most frustrating things in Texas Hold Em is, apart from a flop which would have fitted perfectly with those starting cards that you just folded, having a tremendously strong hand only to win a tiny pot compared to others that have been won at your table. Whilst you may just be unlucky in that all or most of your opponents fold what they deem to be inadequate hands, one of the primary reasons for this happening is scaring them away by betting big too early. If you have been calling or modestly raising all night, only to suddenly throw everything you have into the mix now, it will be strikingly obvious to them that you hold a stellar hand which they have no chance of competing against, and they should fold immediately before they waste another penny in the fight. If this happens, all you are likely to be left with are the blinds and a call or two if you are lucky.

If you do hold a winning hand, it is far better to keep opponents in the game so that they call or even raise in the false belief that they have the winning hand. By doing this, they will be contributing much more cash into the pot which will ultimately become yours at the end when you show your mega hand.

A large element of any poker game is bluffing, and whilst many think of bluffing as trying to get opponents to believe that you have a strong hand when you have a weak one, it can also refer to tricking your adversaries into carrying on through the betting rounds in blissful ignorance of your superior strong hand, with the goal of relieving them of a lot more of their chips than you would if you came clean about your hand too soon.

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