Is it good to limp with small pocket pairs in tourneys?

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bondgaurav21

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Hello friends!!

My name is Gaurav Sharma and I always have big problem in playing small pocket pairs less than 8.

Actually, It becomes more difficult situation for me when anyone in button raise (2xBB,3xBB,4xBB) me .

So, my question is I have to limp him or raise him from big blind with small pocket pairs such as seven pocket pair.

Kindly, give me any suggestion with a solid proof. So, i can rectify this problem asap.

Thanks

:confused:
 
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PrsHarlequin

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For me it always depends on 3 things -effective stack sizes, icm, and what you got on your opponent.
Deeper, you can 3bet or flat call, 'set mining'. Shorter, and if he is cbeting a lot you should just push 66+ . In rare instances fold, when you have great 'fold equity'.
-When your chips, as few, are very worthy due to great payout jump/bubble....
 
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bondgaurav21

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For me it always depends on 3 things -effective stack sizes, icm, and what you got on your opponent.
Deeper, you can 3bet or flat call, 'set mining'. Shorter, and if he is cbeting a lot you should just push 66+ . In rare instances fold, when you have great 'fold equity'.
-When your chips, as few, are very worthy due to great payout jump/bubble....

what is icm here??
 
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Lekoo

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I usually limp small pockets. When playing on 6max i usually make small raise so i can build the pot if I hit a set on the flop. If that player is rock you should fold your pair because in the best case you`ve got a flip.
In the early stage you can play more small pockets and in the late stage you can just shove or fold depends on the situation (if you are shortstack, his playing style, how many bb etc)
 
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bondgaurav21

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I usually limp small pockets. When playing on 6max i usually make small raise so i can build the pot if I hit a set on the flop. If that player is rock you should fold your pair because in the best case you`ve got a flip.
In the early stage you can play more small pockets and in the late stage you can just shove or fold depends on the situation (if you are shortstack, his playing style, how many bb etc)

It is really a nice suggestion but can you tell me what is flip term means??
 
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revskip

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I usually like to limp early in tournaments in early position with pairs lower than 8 and raise from late position if I am the first person coming in.

My reasoning is in early position I want to be able to call a raise and try to hit a set against a big hand that raised or see a multi-way pot with several other limpers since either situation increases my possible pot equity if I hit. In late position I am more than happy to either get a call or two out of the blinds to build a pot in case I get a set or am equally happy to just take down the blinds with my small pair if they fold.
 
ammytyagi

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Depends a lot on your position and table dynamics. I would usually call with 22-66 & raise with 77-TT. But if my table is passive then I would be raising it.
 
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RamdeeBen

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It really depends on your stack size and the tournament. Like, if there is lots of limping going on in a micro stakes tournament I'm ok with limping with the smallest pocket pairs because people won't know what you're doing it with.

If you're playing in a tournament where players are good then limping becomes bad.

Personally though, I will raise every hand I want to be in a pot with just so my range of hands is balanced. I know in micros it really doesn't matter in balancing your range as much but to keep things consistent I raise my worse hands exactly the same as my strongest hands so none can put me on a range of certain hands.

Also a vital and most important factor here is your stack size. If you want to limp or raise a small pocket pair you have to have the correct stack to do so. For example, if you was limping your worse pairs with 70-100bb that's fine but if your stack size or people left to act is like 30bb you have to throw these hands away especially in early position because we simply don't have the implied odds to do so.
 
el_magiciann

el_magiciann

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I just played some MTT'S earlier this morning with small buy ins sth like 1$ 2$ and 0,5$ and i can say for sure that there are so many bad players there that even if you play perfectly every single hand you can lose again because of bad play by some donks, they chase a lot , they call with crap and then hit hard, even if you know that the fish has complete air and u bet the river with worse hand you cant fold
such fishes, even if you limp with small pocket pairs at low buy in tournaments it is good but avoid this play from EP, also if you play bigger buy in tournament you should raise standart with your small PP when you have good stack more than 30 bb and good position so you can avoid situation when u had to fold to 3 bet raise pre flop. And you Small Pairs are good only when you hit set on flop and also you should CB with them when u are in position. That's from me, i hope i helped you little.
 
horizon12

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Its fine limp low pairs and suited conectors , when your stack big, but when in flop many viilains and some one raise better fold this hands,,,
 
TeUnit

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i agree with the icm, the fold equity, tourney equity,effective stack size, etc.

but another way that may be easier to think about it like you want to be able to win 20plus times the bet

because you dont hit trips that often, and sometimes you wont be able to get them to pay you off
 
Michael Paler

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22 - now what do I do?

One thing you never want is to always raise UTG only with AA, KK, QQ, AK suited. Reason being that on flops with all middle cards you can get torn apart by smart players who know this. So, raising UTG (OCCASIONALLY!!!!) with a small pair or small suited connector is a great way to add some unknown parameters to your game - makes you far less predictable.

But what about when you do not hit a set or even have an overpair? Sometimes a Cbet can take it down. If you get called by more than 2 players, you might not want to Cbet the flop. When you do bet you are "semi-bluffing". Also, if you do not connect you still might want to call a bet or even check-raise. Depends on dynamics at the table/players. Nothing better than catching an over aggressive button with a set or straight draw on the turn!

Donkey betting is becoming more prevalent. They limp UTG, flat call your raise, then bet out on the flop (betting into the original raiser is what donkey betting is). Depending on what pair you have, this can put you to a decision. But folding is not always bad. Sometimes you have the D-bettor convinced he can run you over, so when you do flat call his flop bet he might well fire out big on the turn. If you got a good hand, you will probably get it all in and take him out.

Overall I would not flat call with any pair unless it's cheap. I might instead, maybe, 3 bet with a small pair or even shove, again, depends on table dynamics and my pair. If I get shoved on after I 3 bet with a small pair, I might lay it down. If I think the guy most likely has a range with only one overcard, I might go for it.

What you need to watch out for is when the guy limp-calls preflop, then bets out on a ragged board when you got a set that is not top set on the board. I flopped a set of 3's today, the guy d-bet into me on a ragged flop with an 8 as a high card. I just knew he had a set of 8's. What else would he bet so big with? A-8? Not likely. So, I called. Sure enough, he was holding 88 and took my chips. It happens. Sets are hard to get away from.

Doyle Brunsons books (Super System 1 and 2) have extensive talk about small pairs and sets, what to look out for, etc; I really recommend it.
 
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bondgaurav21

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One thing you never want is to always raise UTG only with AA, KK, QQ, AK suited. Reason being that on flops with all middle cards you can get torn apart by smart players who know this. So, raising UTG (OCCASIONALLY!!!!) with a small pair or small suited connector is a great way to add some unknown parameters to your game - makes you far less predictable.

But what about when you do not hit a set or even have an overpair? Sometimes a Cbet can take it down. If you get called by more than 2 players, you might not want to Cbet the flop. When you do bet you are "semi-bluffing". Also, if you do not connect you still might want to call a bet or even check-raise. Depends on dynamics at the table/players. Nothing better than catching an over aggressive button with a set or straight draw on the turn!

Donkey betting is becoming more prevalent. They limp UTG, flat call your raise, then bet out on the flop (betting into the original raiser is what donkey betting is). Depending on what pair you have, this can put you to a decision. But folding is not always bad. Sometimes you have the D-bettor convinced he can run you over, so when you do flat call his flop bet he might well fire out big on the turn. If you got a good hand, you will probably get it all in and take him out.

Overall I would not flat call with any pair unless it's cheap. I might instead, maybe, 3 bet with a small pair or even shove, again, depends on table dynamics and my pair. If I get shoved on after I 3 bet with a small pair, I might lay it down. If I think the guy most likely has a range with only one overcard, I might go for it.

What you need to watch out for is when the guy limp-calls preflop, then bets out on a ragged board when you got a set that is not top set on the board. I flopped a set of 3's today, the guy d-bet into me on a ragged flop with an 8 as a high card. I just knew he had a set of 8's. What else would he bet so big with? A-8? Not likely. So, I called. Sure enough, he was holding 88 and took my chips. It happens. Sets are hard to get away from.

Doyle Brunsons books (Super System 1 and 2) have extensive talk about small pairs and sets, what to look out for, etc; I really recommend it.


Thanks, It is really a nice suggestion for a beginner...
 
Jacki Burkhart

Jacki Burkhart

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For me it always depends on 3 things -effective stack sizes, icm, and what you got on your opponent.
Deeper, you can 3bet or flat call, 'set mining'. Shorter, and if he is cbeting a lot you should just push 66+ . In rare instances fold, when you have great 'fold equity'.
-When your chips, as few, are very worthy due to great payout jump/bubble....

fold equity has nothing to do with YOU folding and everything to do with the equity you gain by causing your oppoent to fold. Folding our own hand is always neutral or "zero" equity, which is oftentimes better than continuing with a negative equity line. Hence the expression "folding is free".

It really depends on your stack size and the tournament. Like, if there is lots of limping going on in a micro stakes tournament I'm ok with limping with the smallest pocket pairs because people won't know what you're doing it with.

If you're playing in a tournament where players are good then limping becomes bad.

Personally though, I will raise every hand I want to be in a pot with just so my range of hands is balanced. I know in micros it really doesn't matter in balancing your range as much but to keep things consistent I raise my worse hands exactly the same as my strongest hands so none can put me on a range of certain hands.

Also a vital and most important factor here is your stack size. If you want to limp or raise a small pocket pair you have to have the correct stack to do so. For example, if you was limping your worse pairs with 70-100bb that's fine but if your stack size or people left to act is like 30bb you have to throw these hands away especially in early position because we simply don't have the implied odds to do so.

Ramdeebam is spot on!

One thing you never want is to always raise UTG only with AA, KK, QQ, AK suited. Reason being that on flops with all middle cards you can get torn apart by smart players who know this. So, raising UTG (OCCASIONALLY!!!!) with a small pair or small suited connector is a great way to add some unknown parameters to your game - makes you far less predictable.

But what about when you do not hit a set or even have an overpair? Sometimes a Cbet can take it down. If you get called by more than 2 players, you might not want to Cbet the flop. When you do bet you are "semi-bluffing". Also, if you do not connect you still might want to call a bet or even check-raise. Depends on dynamics at the table/players. Nothing better than catching an over aggressive button with a set or straight draw on the turn!

Donkey betting is becoming more prevalent. They limp UTG, flat call your raise, then bet out on the flop (betting into the original raiser is what donkey betting is). Depending on what pair you have, this can put you to a decision. But folding is not always bad. Sometimes you have the D-bettor convinced he can run you over, so when you do flat call his flop bet he might well fire out big on the turn. If you got a good hand, you will probably get it all in and take him out.

Overall I would not flat call with any pair unless it's cheap. I might instead, maybe, 3 bet with a small pair or even shove, again, depends on table dynamics and my pair. If I get shoved on after I 3 bet with a small pair, I might lay it down. If I think the guy most likely has a range with only one overcard, I might go for it.

What you need to watch out for is when the guy limp-calls preflop, then bets out on a ragged board when you got a set that is not top set on the board. I flopped a set of 3's today, the guy d-bet into me on a ragged flop with an 8 as a high card. I just knew he had a set of 8's. What else would he bet so big with? A-8? Not likely. So, I called. Sure enough, he was holding 88 and took my chips. It happens. Sets are hard to get away from.

Doyle Brunsons books (Super System 1 and 2) have extensive talk about small pairs and sets, what to look out for, etc; I really recommend it.

I agree in general with your suggestions except 1 thing: don't worry about set over set...seriously it should not even be a blip on your radar. yes, it can happen but it is rare and the true definition of a cooler. You should almost never fold KK preflop and you should almost never fold any set on the flop (even bottom set). The exceptions are so rare and specific that your game as a whole would not suffer to simply ignore those exceptions.
 
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drugsterr

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you can limp only if others players limped befor u too...I play small pairs with a bigger bet than 2XBB or 3 X BB
 
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zgaiba23

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depends how big is your stack i usually limp small pockets
 
deluns28

deluns28

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Game duration
early game = limp
mid game to end game = raise/shove

Stack Sizes
Hero (Short Stack) vs Villain (Deep or Short Stack)= Shove
Hero (Deep Stack) vs Villain (Short Stack) = Shove
Hero (Deep Stack) vs Villain (Deep Stack) = Limp
 
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floweryhead

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To me it depends on my stack size relative to others stack sizes. If I'm large stacked and outstack everyone in and yet to act then I'll raise with small pairs. If I've been playing this way and had a huge suckout against me I may still play this way dependent upon my opponents. If I'm shortstacked I have to work out whether it's worthwhile to call or raise depending upon the styles of my opponents.
 
Michael Paler

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fold equity has nothing to do with YOU folding and everything to do with the equity you gain by causing your oppoent to fold. Folding our own hand is always neutral or "zero" equity, which is oftentimes better than continuing with a negative equity line. Hence the expression "folding is free".



Ramdeebam is spot on!



I agree in general with your suggestions except 1 thing: don't worry about set over set...seriously it should not even be a blip on your radar. yes, it can happen but it is rare and the true definition of a cooler. You should almost never fold KK preflop and you should almost never fold any set on the flop (even bottom set). The exceptions are so rare and specific that your game as a whole would not suffer to simply ignore those exceptions.

Were I playing in a cash game, no, I would not worry about set-over-set. However, cooler or not, in an MTT it really is something to consider, if losing can knock you out of the MTT.

That was what took out Phil Ivey last year in the wsop main event. The board and number of players in the hand was such that he had to have a warning bell going off. He was looking at a big re-raise from a good player into a player who just bet out - what could the guy have? A flush draw? Top two? With three players in the pot you gotta know someone has something better than two pair or a draw.

 
Jacki Burkhart

Jacki Burkhart

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Were I playing in a cash game, no, I would not worry about set-over-set. However, cooler or not, in an MTT it really is something to consider, if losing can knock you out of the MTT.

That was what took out Phil Ivey last year in the WSOP main event. The board and number of players in the hand was such that he had to have a warning bell going off. He was looking at a big re-raise from a good player into a player who just bet out - what could the guy have? A flush draw? Top two? With three players in the pot you gotta know someone has something better than two pair or a draw.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8A5pfTB4ElA

suit yourself. I realize it CAN happen. just like kings CAN run into aces all in preflop (in fact your kings will run into aces a lot more often than you'll face set over set on the flop). Just because it CAN happen doesn't mean you need to guard against it. An asteroid can hit the earth at any time essentially wiping out human civilization; but it's not productive to my life as a whole to worry about it or even really think about it.

The reason I've come to this conclusion of "don't fold a set on the flop" is because I've learned through the school of hard knocks. I've folded sets on the flop a few times because I knew I just "had" to be beat because of the action. So, I make a tough fold and get shown an overpair vs. 2 pair. Or an overpair with a flush draw vs. a smaller set. Or a big combo draw vs 2 pair. (all 3 of those really happened).

And then there are the times that I didn't fold, got shown a monster hand such as a straight or a flush, and then the board pairs and I scoop. Sets are hard to flop and too strong to fold, ESPECIALLY in tournament poker where you don't have all the time in the world to wait for rock solid situations.

just my opinion of course! ;)
 
SanJoseShark

SanJoseShark

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If I have a comfortable stack (100bb), I'm limping with my low PPs all day, or calling raises of 2-3x bb if a bunch of players are getting involved. You'll hit a set about 16% of the time. It's worth the risk of 3% of your stack when you know if you hit you'll have a lot of action from unsuspecting opponents.
 
Michael Paler

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suit yourself. I realize it CAN happen. just like kings CAN run into aces all in preflop (in fact your kings will run into aces a lot more often than you'll face set over set on the flop). Just because it CAN happen doesn't mean you need to guard against it. An asteroid can hit the earth at any time essentially wiping out human civilization; but it's not productive to my life as a whole to worry about it or even really think about it.

The reason I've come to this conclusion of "don't fold a set on the flop" is because I've learned through the school of hard knocks. I've folded sets on the flop a few times because I knew I just "had" to be beat because of the action. So, I make a tough fold and get shown an overpair vs. 2 pair. Or an overpair with a flush draw vs. a smaller set. Or a big combo draw vs 2 pair. (all 3 of those really happened).

And then there are the times that I didn't fold, got shown a monster hand such as a straight or a flush, and then the board pairs and I scoop. Sets are hard to flop and too strong to fold, ESPECIALLY in tournament poker where you don't have all the time in the world to wait for rock solid situations.

just my opinion of course! ;)

Please realize we are talking MTT not Cash games. So, no I wouldn't worry about an asteroid hitting me, unless I were in space - then I would be worried. And for your example to be valid, on earth would be a cash game and in space would be the MTT!! So, yes, you worry about those asteroids that can hit you. Ask NASA - they most certainly do.

In any MTT you have to survive, period. No, that does not mean playing scared, but it does mean you need to learn how to read a board and think - think! - about what the other guy could have, especially when it could end your game if you are wrong.

Look, I get what you are saying, and no, in many MTT's the levels are such you cannot wait all day. Yet, what kills off most players in these games? Refusing to let go of a hand that could be dominated in all in situations. Looking at the example of Phil Ivey I posted, notice he started the hand with 140 (!!) big blinds! Would you not ask "what is he betting so much with? Two pair? A flush draw?" How about "I cannot call, only go all in - will he fold?" Not after committing almost 1/4 of his stack - would he do that on a draw or with only 2 pair? Not likely.

What he should have asked was "what can I beat?". The answer to that was one or two pair - could not beat a higher set, could not beat a flush if the guy made it....what else could a pro be betting so big with and why? A set was obvious here, as the large bet indicated he wanted to remove any flush draws from the pot. Pot was raised coming in, 3 more called to see the flop...what do most people flat with pre flop? Pairs are at the top of the list. Another set looked very likely. Would you go to war with only top 2 when a set could well be out? No, so he had to have a set as well.


Two pair did not even make sense, as he would have had to flat a raised 4-way pot with only A-10 or A-3. Forget A-3, would he flat with A-10? Maybe, yet even if he did and flopped two pair he does not want to risk that flush hitting and most likely would have flat called with his two pair or raised just enough to isolate - not put in the huge 3-bet that he did. He came over the guy for almost 1/2 the pot! After the initial raiser C-bets into 3 other players UTG, a clear and obvious sign of strength?

Why do I think this? Because the impossible was that he was betting big into the original raiser with 2 pair or a flush draw. The improbable was that he also had a set. "If you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth". Bang, he has a set, my 333 is no good.

The whole idea of never folding a set on the flop is just ridiculous in an MTT. Lets say you have AA, flop comes AKQ, all spades, and there is a bet, a re-raise and another raise before you. Do you really think your set is good? So you shove, find out at least one of the four of you have the flush, and now your drawing to 6 outs - 3 kings or 3 queens. Or lets say you call down to the river and you still have only a set and one guy shoves after you fail to make a full - are you really going to call all of your chips off with a set into a obvious flush or straight? This is where calling stations are born, my friend. Calling stations and table Sheriffs, who just want to "make sure I'm really dead" (?!?) Sorry - "make sure he really has it". You know - keep 'em honest! Well, keeping them honest can often lead to going out after hours/days of play with nothing to show for it but the satisfaction he wasn't bluffing you. Please.

I think "playing scared" can also mean refusing to fold a hand that could be dominated just because the guy might have a weaker hand...or be bluffing.....and just is not good MTT strategy. In any MTT you will fold the best hand almost as often as you bluff others off of hands on scary boards. Never folding a set on the flop is a clear weakness likely to be exploited by other players.

Like me.:eek:
 
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