Heads-up, continuous awful cards

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findus

Rising Star
Joined
Oct 9, 2007
Total posts
17
Home game, decent standard of play and I know villain very well, I start heads-up with a bit less than a third (250) of the remaining chips (700). Blinds are 10/20.

Over the first ~20 hands, I literally get trash hand after trash hand, even for heads-up - unsuited 3-6, 2-3, 4-6, 7-2, etc... Villain raises every call I make in the SB and raises every time I'm in the SB. I push back a few times to stem the tide, but cannot keep pushing back with complete trash.

What do I do in the situation of getting so much trash heads-up? P.S. I know the odds of calling from the SB, but the BB was raising from the BB so often it made it more or less useless to call from the SB as I was losing money and 'could not' call a raise without being underdog.
 
Dorkus Malorkus

Dorkus Malorkus

HELLO INTERNET
Joined
Jul 12, 2005
Total posts
12,422
Raise more and call less on the button and either take pots down preflop or play postflop with the advantage of position. If he raises every time, limp-reraising with a wide range of hands isn't a bad idea and will help you get paid off more handsomely if and when you do get a big hand.

You don't need good cards (although they obviously help), simply because in most hands your opponent is going to have crap cards and miss most flops too. You just need to do what he is apparently doing and seize the initiative in hands.

Edit: Just noticed the stack sizes - the relatively shallow stacks do limit your options somewhat here and if you have to fold for a while then so be it, but once you're in the 6-7bb stack range you need to think about shoving anything from the button to maintain your stack and preserve fold equity.
 
F

feitr

Legend
Joined
Feb 8, 2008
Total posts
1,570
Although cards don't really matter that much in HU, if you are short stacked and your opponent is picking up huge hands while you can't even remember what a face card looks like then yea there isn't much you can do. If the blinds are pretty big you have to start to consider shoving everything from the SB and calling from BB with any decent hand if he is shoving/raising every hand from the BB. Then it just comes down to getting a little lucky when somebody calls.

But you don't have much choice. If you call/fold all the time soon your stack becomes so small that you are giving him a free coin toss to end the game and even if you double up you are still in a terrible position. It is piss easy to beat a short stack HU if they are unwilling to shove. You just grind them down then get a shot to put them out. If they double up you grind them back down then get another shot to put them out etc. Once you are short stacked it takes some luck to get back into the game. But unless you are MUCH better than your opponent, it is unlikely that you can get back into the game without a double up. So in that way, trying to get lucky is actually the most skillful thing you can do.
 
F

findus

Rising Star
Joined
Oct 9, 2007
Total posts
17
Thanks for the replies.

The problem with raising more on the button was that villain was coming over the top and I nothing to shoot back with. The problem with calling no the button was that villain was raising and I had nothing to call with. While my stack was still playable relative to the blinds, I figured it was a better bet to be patient and look for a better position to get my money in the pot.

In the end, I 'caught' an Ace (4 kicker) with 6 BBs left and really had to push. I doubled up on that, then I started getting a few more playable hands and I outplayed villain and was winner within 5 more hands. The value of a little patience and self-control heads-up!
 
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