Q♠J♥ on the Turn, what do you do here?
DECISION POINT: In a $1-2 game action folds around to you in the Cutoff and you open raise to $10 with Q♠J♥. The Button calls and both the Small Blind and Big Blind fold. The 6♠3♥9♦ flop is checked. The turn is K♠ and action is on you. What do you do here?
PRO ANSWER: We are playing a low stakes cash game where the standard opening raise size is to 5 big blinds. It folds to us in the CO with QsJh and we raise to $10. The Button calls our raise and everyone else folds.
The flop is 6s3h9d. If we were playing against a very straightforward opponent this could be a great opportunity for a continuation bet. We do have a slight range advantage here given that we have more of the over pairs in our range than our opponent does. However, we are out of position against an opponent who likely has a condensed range which tends to connect with this flop reasonably well, given they called a 5 BB open.
Against aggressive opponents who are capable of floating and raising our continuation bets appropriately, we want to be careful in this particular spot with this specific holding in our range. We check.
We pickup a gutshot straight draw on the Ks turn. More importantly, the king is far better for our overall range than our opponent’s range. We also block some of the more common Kx hands our opponent might call with like KQ/KJ, and they would likely raise with a premium hand like AK.
Additionally, when our opponent just checks the turn that caps their hand range. They likely would have started to build a pot on the flop with a very strong hand. Our opponent is likely bet with a large portion of their range in position once we check, even with hands as weak as bottom pair.
Any time that you have a card that is extremely favorable for your range and your opponent’s actions have capped their range you should look to attack. Often the best way to attack their range is with an overbet. The pot is currently $23 (11.5BBs) and an overbet to $29 (14.5BBs) seems about right. It puts a tremendous amount of pressure on our opponent who is extremely unlikely to have a strong hand here.
Betting is the best play.
How would you play it?
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