You’re in a Texas limit hold’em game. There is one player at your table who often offers to “check it out.”
Already folded for you. You decide to raise. Maybe you can steal the blinds – a form of bluff that has worked really well for you. To strengthen your bet visit lapak303, you use Esther Bluff. Only Big Blind is calling your raise to see failure. Just the two of you in the pot – heads-up.
As the dealer prepares to put the flop on the board, Big Blind (let’s call him Tom) turns to you, looks you in the eye, and, with a friendly smile on his face, says, “Let’s just check it out. . “
In other words, he wants you to check all the way to the river, and then the two of you will show your hands. Whoever ends up with the best hand will take the small pot. There are no bets on the flop or after.
This isn’t the first time you’ve seen Tom do this. Why doesn’t he fold his hole cards after you raise and everyone folds? Chances are, if you just called instead of picking up, he will suggest cutting off your hand. Then both of you will take your stake back – no charge.
The dealer will take one chip from Small-Blind. The house always comes out in front, but the main point is Tom will save his Big Blind, and get a chance to get better at the next deal.
Tom realizes he might be far behind you; After all, you did raise. The odds were against him. If you agree to check it out, it guarantees no further fees during this time.
Of course, there is always the chance that he will get lucky and attract you; but the odds are very much against it happening. Most likely, you are the big favorite. So, sure he was the winner, Tom hopped a free ride right up to the fight.
My suggested response to Tom is one of caution: “Impossible. I have too good a hand to examine! Now, Tom is more and more convinced you are holding a strong hand – maybe a bigger partner or better. Take advantage of this situation.
Now that the dealer issues the flop, you have a choice. Tom will likely examine you. The possibility of failure did little to help his hand. But, he knows you started with a strong hand – and you still have it, or better. After the check, you have two options:
• If the flop makes a set for you, playing slow would be wise. Hopefully he’s good enough that he’ll call while you bet. Then, you stand to win a decent pot – at its expense.
• On the other hand, as is more likely to happen, failure doesn’t help you. In that case, you have to bet – using Esther Bluff’s tactic – hoping he’ll mess his hand, leaving the pot for you. It’s kind of semi-bluff.