Playing When You Flop Two Overcards

vercards are cards higher than anything on the board. Let's consider an example. You have

and the flop comes



i ♦




* in



♦ i

You have two overcards — can you call a bet? Can you bet? Many poker experts say that you can bet or call a bet in this situation. However, it takes a lot of experience and knowledge to know when you can play with just overcards. A bet with two overcards is usually a semi-bluff (you're hoping to win the pot right there, but have chances of improving to the best hand). Most low-limit games are sufficiently loose and passive that a semi-bluff won't work, so betting is probably not correct.

We believe you are not losing much by folding in this situation if there's a bet ahead of you. If it's checked to you, take a free card and hope you turn top pair. In the situation above, if a queen or king falls on the turn, you probably have the best hand and can bet (or even raise).

Expert players are able to make some money with two overcards, but you are not giving up much by dropping them unless you have other possibilities (which we discuss below). Misplaying those overcards once or twice will cost you more than you could make by playing them correctly a dozen times.

The problem with overcards is that you can win a little or lose a lot. Most of the time, you'll have to throw them away on the turn because they don't improve. Therefore, to make a profit with them, you must play aggressively when they do hit on the turn. If you pick the wrong time to do this, you may be raising with the worst hand. This is an area where you can improve your results by limiting your mistakes. Until you have a lot of hold'em under your belt and understand your opponents well, you can best limit your mistakes by staying out of these situations.

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  • ray
    Is it correct to call with overcards in limit holdem?
    2 years ago

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