Image via WikipediaTournament Poker: Do You Know This? I Didn't!
Yesterday, I was playing in the Oaks tournament and my game plan was working very well.
We were down to 20 players, the blinds were $1,000-$1,500 with $200 antes, I had $30,000 and I was in a middle position.
With pocket 7's, I raised to $4,500. A tight player smooth called, and another tight player moved all-in for $12,000.
What should I do? What would you do?
The first thing I did was to put my opponents on a range of hands. I put the first player with a middle pocket pair like 8's, 9's or 10's or A-Q, A-J. The second player, I put on QQ, KK, AA or AK.
The second thing I did was look at the odds. It was going to cost me $7,500 to call. So if I called and the first player called, I was betting $7,500 to win the blinds (2500), the antes (3000), my bet (4500), the all-in bet (12000), and the first player's bet of (12000) for a total of $32,000. Therefore, it would cost me $7500 to $32000 or about 4+ to 1.
The final thing I did was look at how many chips the first caller had left. He had $10,000 more, so I thought I would probably have to call this amount as well. This reduced my odds a lot.
I figured my odds of winning this hand was now really poor, especially given the pot odds, so I folded.
The first caller had pocket 10's, and the all-in player had pocket Kings. I felt like I made the right play. On the flop a 10 showed up, and I felt really smart. Of course, that changed when the turn and river revealed that I would have hit a runner-runner straight..Doh!
What I did not know....
I know that in a pair versus pair situation, the bigger pair is an 80% favorite. What I didn't know are the odds in a pair versus pair versus pair situation. I checked the Cardplayer hold'em calculator for the answer using the above situation:
My odds are 5-1...a lot higher than I thought.
Given this learning, do you think I made the right decision?
I did cash in the event, and my system is now 2 for 9, with one win.