Early in a Tournament with 7♣7♦, what do you do here?

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In a Tournament both Early Position payers limp and a Middle Position player raises to 400. The Hijack calls and you call from the Cutoff with 7♣7♦. It folds to the UTG players who call. Both UTG players check the 6♣5♣3♣ flop and MP1 bets 3,200. Hijack folds, you call, and the UTG players fold. Villain bets 4,500 on the 7♥ turn and action is on you. What do you do here?

PRO ANSWER: Early in a Multi-Table Tournament at 100/200 blinds we are dealt pocket sevens in the Cutoff. UTG limps and UTG+1 limps behind. MP1 makes a minimum raise to 400, the Hijack calls, and action is on us. Stacks are still fairly deep at this point with 400 chips not even being 1% of our total stack. Some of the stacks are much shorter however a 400 chip bet still well under 1% than the effective stack of 60,400. Calling with a speculative hand here is a great play and we do call. UTG and UTG+1 also call and we see a flop 5 ways.

The flop is 6c5c3c giving us an over pair, a gut shot straight draw, a weak flush draw, and a one card straight flush draw. It folds to MP1 who over-bets the pot by making it 3,200 into the 2,300 pot. The Hijack folds and action is on us. We could justify folding here given many of our outs in this situation aren’t very clean and we could potentially be drawing to 4 outs if our opponent has an over pair with a club. In this situation, with position and the stack depths, we can justify continuing profitably. We do call and everyone else folds.

The turn is the 7h and now we have a set and full house draw in addition to all our other draws. Our opponent bets 4,500 into us and action is on us. Our Opponent made an unconventional play preflop by min-raising over multiple limpers. Some players will do this with very strong hands to induce action while others will do it as a “pot sweetener” with hands like KQs.

Continued below...

Min-raising after multiple limpers preflop is not a recommended play, however we can assign a likely range of over pairs (with and without a club), big cards with a big club, and some big flushes. Given this range, if we raise in this spot we are likely to fold out a lot of the hands that could continue to give us action on the river that we beat and have our opponent only continue with hands that either beat us or have a lot of equity against us. We also open ourselves up to being reraised and we don’t want to play a 120,000+ chip pot at 100/200 blinds with top set on a 4 to a straight and 3 to a flush board.

Raising here given the strength of our hand and draws seems like a tempting option, however utilizing our positional advantage and just calling is quite a bit more profitable versus their entire range of hands in this situation.

Calling is the best play.

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