Flopped a Set with 6♠6♣, what do you do here?
DECISION POINT: In a live $1-2 game you raise first-in from UTG+1 to $8 with 6♠6♣ and get called by a Middle Position Player and the Cutoff. You continuation bet $16 on the 2♦6♥7♥ flop and the MP2 player raises to $52. The Cutoff calls and action is on you, what do you do here?
PRO ANSWER: We are playing in a $1-2 cash game with mostly 100+ big blind stacks. The Under the Gun player folds and we are dealt 6♠6♣ in UTG+1. This hand falls into a very standard opening hand range from early position with 100BB effective stacks. We raise to $8, which is the standard raise for this this particular game, and it folds around to MP2 who calls. The Cutoff also calls while everyone else folds and we’re off to the flop.
The flop is 2♦6♥7♥. Given the likelihood of a bet getting called in this multiway pot and the risk of losing value by checking and giving free cards, making a continuation bet here is very standard. In multiway pots somewhere around half pot is a reasonably sized c-bet. We opt to make it $16 and MP2 raises to $52. Cutoff cold calls the $52 raise and action is back on us.
One of the tougher decisions many players face, particularly in lower stakes games, is when to slowplay. When deciding if we should slowplay we should take into account a variety of factors.
Position is a critical factor when decided whether to slowplay.
Slowplaying when in position is much better than when out of position because we can always control if a bet goes in on any given street. If we slowplay out of position and check the turn, sometimes the action will check through and that could mean some potentially difficult future decisions, particularly on coordinated boards.
We also want to assess the coordination of the board. Boards that are connected and two tone (have potential flush draws on them) can be problematic to slowplay. Not only do we potentially let our opponents draw for cheap, but if the turn is for example the Qh, our opponent is less likely to give us action with hand like JJ on the turn when they may have gotten all-in with us on the flop if we chose to reraise with our set.
Lastly we want to consider stack depth. Calling here would leave us with $173 in the pot and $198 effective stacks. That means that a bet from either player on a future street is very likely to commit them to the pot.
When we consider all of those factors as a whole, stack depth is in favor of slowplaying but both position and board coordination favor fastplaying in this spot. It would be a disaster if we call and it checks through on the turn. Also, the fact is a raise and a cold call on this flop indicates at least one of our opponents is likely holding a high equity hand means this is not the ideal spot to slowplay.
Reraising is the best play.
How would you play it?
Share your answer in the comments below!
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