2-Pair vs a Straight Draw, what do you do here?
DECISION POINT: In a live $1-2 Cash Game, you raise from UTG 4x the BB. Hijack calls and everyone else folds. You bet the A♣Q♠T♦ Flop and Hijack calls. The Turn is 8♣, you bet and Hijack calls. The River is K♠ and action is on you. What do you do here?
PRO ANSWER: When considering a river bet, we should analyze it's profitability as both a value bet and as a potential bluff.
In this hand, it's pretty hard for us to get value from worse hands than ours. Most two pair combos that we beat, such as AT, QT, KT will all fold to our river bet very frequently. That means that when our opponent calls, they will usually have a better hand than ours.
There's also no real reason to bluff, since few better hands will fold. We might occasionally get sets to fold, but most players will find a call on the river for only half pot.
This makes checking the best play against a default opponent. If they move all-in, we should typically fold against most opponents. Fewer opponents are capable of turning something like QT into a bluff on the river, so when they bet it's usually a value heavy range.
If we are up against an opponent that will always call with all two pair combos, then we can justify betting the river.
Otherwise, checking is the best play.
How would you play it?
Share your answer in the comments below!
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