Friday, February 8, 2008

Tough PLO8 Hand

Setup: You have been playing for a few orbits at full-ring .05/.10 PLO8. As you would expect, there are a lot of flop junkies and not much preflop raising.

Your image: one of the few preflop raisers, you are showing more preflop discipline than most, but it’s doubtful that anyone is paying attention anyway.

Opponent’s Image: sees most flops, and does a lot of calling on the flop and turn. In the previous orbit, you pot-bet him on the flop, turn, and river, and he eventually folded on the river, so he seems to like to call along with drawing hands. He is the big stack and has been since you sat down, but never has stack size had less correlation to player skill than at PLO8.

Your hand: As Ah 9s 2s

You raise pot in MP, getting two callers, including our hand villain from the cutoff seat.

Flop: 8c 7s 3h, giving you the nut low and an overpair.

You bet pot ($1), and villain calls.

Turn: Kd

You bet pot ($3), and villain calls.

River: 2c

What’s your action?

  • Lead large
  • Lead small
  • Check-call any bet
  • Check-fold to any bet
  • Check-fold to a big bet, check-call a small/medium bet
What actually happened.


Ryan said...

I took maximum time before making the call, and I still don't know if it was fully correct. It was pretty obvious that I was no longer good low, but what is this guy's range for a high hand? There was never a flush draw...would he raise with two pair, or flat call like he did?

Does he have a second-best low that he was calling with, and no high to speak of? His play pattern suggested drawing to a high hand there, meaning a straight draw that missed.

I finally decide to call $9 to win $4.50, knowing that my read was probably correct, but that he might have some random holding that scoops on accident.

That's not the case and I take my half, but given my read, is that the correct play, or should I be folding that despite my read?

sstadnicki said...

I actually like leading out here for a modest amount. Checking is a blatant announcement that 'o hai, I have ace-deuce', and he'll bet if he just made a decent low vs. your counterfeit, and check if he didn't; and of course, if he wasn't on a low draw, then you're getting half the pot anyway. I think your call is perfectly correct once he bets; it's hard to put him on any plausible hands that scoop you, especially on a board that dry.

mb said...

I would either lead large (first choice) or lead with a mid size pot bet. I am not going anywhere with a low that is likely good. If villain has the nut low my AA is likely ahead of whatever his 2 other cards are.

Ryan said...

Why is your low "likely good?" Any combination of 654A has you beat, now. If there was one thing I was almost certain of in this hand, it was that my low was no longer good...and if by some miracle it was good, then he had two-paired and my aces weren't good.

My only question was whether it was worth calling $9 to win $4.5 with no shot at a scoop, and a chance that I was getting scooped.

Ryan said...

Oh, continues to run about 50/50 that MB is Jason. ;)

jason said...

I guess I phrased it wrong, your low is likely good or your high is likely good. There are very few hands that are scooping on you so I would definitely call here and not fold.

Sushi Cowboy said...

1) Where is the Sammy Farha "check/raise" option? Talk about applying maximum pressure as he does not have the nuts either way and he would be the one having to commit money to get it back. But by the time the guy bets he's probably calling the extra to try to salvage a chop and cursing you for increasing your mutual Cake tax.

2) I guess I don't mind a crying (check/) call since you do have a high and a low AND it's heads up action so you more more likely to have one or the other be good based on the action. Overpair is just so fragile in Omaha.

3) A pot sized bet is probably the highest pressure tactic out there since he is still no very committed to the pot and likely your best shot at a scoop. You have been hammering all the way and you could have been betting a nut low with counterfeit insurance. Hard to argue with Jason (or is it MB?) given his (or is it her?) track record in this game.

Ryan said...

Jason is absolutely my go-to guy for perspectives and feedback on Omaha situations. I value a track record of monetary success combined with a massive hands-played count in my poker authorities, and Jason has a higher rating in both categories than anyone I know. If he says the correct play was to lead out there, then that was the correct play, and I hope to carry that lesson forward with me in future hands.

Despite my respect for his verdict on the correct action in that spot, I contested his specific claim that my low was "likely good," because that just didn't make statistical sense to me. An ace-low hand from him seemed quite likely given the action, and A6, A5, A4, 65, 64 and 54 all beat me low, and A8, A7, A3, and A2 (although I really don't have him on A2 here) chopped low.

Maybe when I said, "My only question was whether it was worth calling..." I sounded like I was disagreeing with Jason's assessment that leading out is the correct play in that spot. I didn't mean to; I meant, "I don't question that I should have led out after reading and considering Jason and Steven's responses, but given that I elected to check, my only question at the time was..."

Oh, and no check-raise option offered because not even Jason could convince me that getting it in there with no fold equity is the correct play over getting it in there with fold equity.

jason said...


You are correct again. Check raising has virtually no fold equity in O8 though I have check raised once on the river and had a fold.

At the higher stakes there are players who will bluff, particularly in NL O8. Not a semi bluff, but an air bluff on the river.

I either turned or flopped, I can't remember, quad Kings. I jammed the turn with quad Kings with a pot size bet as there was a sure draw to the low. Villain called. The river did not make a low so I checked, hoping for a bluff. Villain made a pot size river bet and I check raised pot. He folded so we will never know if he had discipline to fold a lower set or bet the pot on the river on a failed low draw.

Check raising on your hand would not be a good play. You were either chopping or being scooped on with a much higher chance in my mind for a chop.

Also, I did withdraw my comment that your low was likely good and amended it to "if your low was not good your pocket aces likely were good." You were correct on challenging my comment that the low was likely good.

I still like the lead out vs. the check call as you will have some fold equity against really tight players.