One of the most fundamental skills in poker is knowing when to place a bet. Skilled poker players use this technique to manipulate their opponents into acting accordingly so as to maximize their profits. Additionally, professionals know why they are betting and what they are trying to accomplish.
WHY SHOULD YOU RAISE?
Adopting an aggressive approach is ideal for any budding poker players – which means you will have to either raise or re-raise frequently. Here are some good reasons to raise,
● To take control of a hand
● To thin out the playing field
● To raise for value
● To get opponents to fold
TAKING CONTROL OF A HAND:
By raising you are announcing to the poker table that you have a dominant hand. Even if you miss out on the flop, you can carry on with your aggressive demeanor by placing continuation bets until you eventually win the pot. Since you raised pre-flop, it is likely that others will respect your upcoming bet. Raising pre-flop ensures that others will check you after the flop, to see what you are going to do. Thus, you have taken control of the hand.
THINNING OUT THE PLAYING FIELD:
In most situations you do not want to play a raised pot against more than two players. In spite having a big starting hand it can still be vulnerable. The fewer people in the hand means having fewer people fighting for the same pot, which means having fewer decision to make.
RAISING FOR VALUE:
Perhaps the most obvious reason why players bet is to bring in more money. Players generally want to make the most of the value of their hand, and proceed to bet. However, there are several considerations to evaluate. Determine what bet size would be the best for these considerations. Regardless of your holding, your bets must be consistent. This makes it difficult for your opponents to analyze your strategy. The main point is that you should be raising an amount where you maximize how much you win.
GETTING OTHERS TO FOLD:
Bluffing is a significant part of the game. Often times you will be betting, in order to get opponents, who have stronger hands than you, to fold. This holds true in poker tournaments where stealing the antes and the blinds is important for piling up your chip lead.
Try to bet an amount that an opponent can’t call. Each bet tells its own story. Going all-in might be the biggest bet you can make, but if it looks like you want a fold then you might get a call from someone who sees right through your bluff.
There are several reasons to bet and one should always have a reason than just firing out chips aimlessly. Being aware of criteria such as your table image, position, knowledge of opponents’ tendencies and depth of stack sizes should assist you in identifying what your aim is before proceeding.
Therefore, it is always important to ask why. This is how one learns to play in online poker tournaments. Always question your next move once before executing it.
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