There are certain situations when you do not have a monster hand but you still want to make the pot larger preflop. Your goal is to win a larger pot if your hand hits and for this reason you make a small or medium preflop raise. The great opportunity this hand provides is that your opponents will have a very hard time putting you on a hand. If you make this play many times in a session your opponents will have no idea of what kind of a hand you have.
To be successful, at least one of the following circumstances must occur in order to have an advantage over your opponents:
- there are several players who entered the pot and you are in late position
- you are at a table where you are stronger than (most of) your opponents
- you have advanced post flop skills
- you and your opponents have deep stacks so winning a large pot can compensate for the many other hands when you lose your initial investment
I show you a perfect example when the small preflop raise pays out very well. The game is $2/$4 Pot-Limit Omaha High with 9 players. You sit on the button with $166.80 and your hand is ♠A♦J♥9♠7. Three players limp in front of you. Your hand is not a premium holding but you have several straight possibilities and a nut flush draw. It makes sense to make a small raise. First of all because some of the players might fold their hand, secondly, you have position on all players so it makes sense to raise. You bet $12, the blinds fold and the three limpers call. The pot is $54.
The flop is: ♦6♦8♠5. The first player checks, the second bets $40 and the third player folds. What a perfect situation, you flopped the nuts! The question is what kind of a hand does player2 have? He will definitely not put you on the nut straight. He might have a set, a flush draw, a smaller straight or the same straight as you. to come under top 20 online casinos a website should be toto verified and free from the risk of red flags marked against it. This also makes it popular among the players and they can trust it with the betting procedures. No matter what he has, you are better than a flush draw or a set. A lower straight has no chance against you and against 97 straight you are both at 50%-50%. You even have a backdoor nut flush draw. The only hands you do not want to see in your opponent’s hand are:
- set with a flush draw
- set with 97 straight
- 97 straight with a flush draw
- 97 straight with a straight redraw
Based on the action at the table you do not have to worry that you are behind. You push all-in, player1 folds, player2 thinks for a while and makes the call. He shows ♠J♠6♣7♣4 for a smaller straight. His only hope is to hit one of the remaining nines and split the pot. The turn is ♠2 and the river is ♥4. You take down the $375.6 pot with the nut straight.
If you had not raised preflop maybe your opponent would have put you on the nut straight. However your preflop raise confused him and he just did not put you on medium high cards. Most likely he thought you had a pair of aces with the nut flush draw and that is why he made the all-in call with a dead hand. Your unpredictable play won you a very nice pot in the end.