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Betting With the Best Hand

Do you have the best hand? Then you need to act as if you do. Sounds like silly advice, doesn’t it? Naturally, if you have a Queen and Jack of hearts in your hand and the board flops Q Q x, you likely have the best hand and should be betting and raising. The problem lies when you have Queen Eight in your hand and the board flops 2 5 8 rainbow. Do you have the best hand or not? Top pair with a huge kicker is likely to be, but you can’t be sure unless this is the World Poker Tour and you are sitting at home watching the game on TV. Otherwise, you are going to have to do a little detective work and a little guess work to figure out if you should be playing this top pair aggressively or not.

You could even have middle or bottom pair and have the best hand at the table, although those become even harder to determine. How do you figure it out? By paying attention to the betting, both in this hand and the betting habits you have been observing during the game. If you are in late position this helps, but you don’t have to be. In the above example, even in early position, if everyone checks that round and the turn card is a 7, odds are that you are sitting good. You might need to stir the pot to see the ants scurry, however, so definitely bet and see how the table reacts. The second you get the inkling you have the best hand, become a bit aggressive and feel out the table.

You should always be on the look out for the best hand, even if all you have are a pair of fives or something similar. Best hands win money.

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