Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Going with your gut

I read a great article earlier this week from Matros about going with your instincts in a 50-50 situation. I'd like to the think that my instincts are one of my best attributes, but mainly I think they only seem pretty good because I'm not good at the numbery aspects of the game.

Last night I was playing 10-20 PLHE, and I was dealt AQo UTG in a six-handed game. I limped in, and the loose-aggressive player in the cut-off made it $95 to go. With $1300 in front of me, I elected to just call. The flop was A-7-9 with two hearts (I had the ace of hearts). I checked, and my opponent bet $200. I decided to call and see what developed on the turn. I was sure he didn't have aces, but it was just as likely that he had AK as JJ, QQ or TT, and I really thought at this point he had AK. The turn was a non-heart jack. I checked, and he bet $400. This was a hand I would often fold in this game, but here I decided to listen to my poker soul. For no reason I can articulate, I just didn't believe he had AK anymore, or JJ for that matter. In thinking back over the hand, I think he probably would have slowed down on the turn knowing I'm a very tight player and has called his flop bet, but on other hand, he could just as easily think that I'm on a flush draw. In any event, I just didn't think I was beat anymore, and I raised all in and took down the pot.

I think hands like these (and these) are what people who don't play a lot of poker really miss about it. If you play enough, particularly with some of the same players, there develops a rhythm to the game that, if you pay attention to, can help you make the right decisions in a tough spot.


Tulsa said...

Get back to work, Law. Troy needs some cigars.

Anonymous said...

My gut says my shoes need polishing and you're working this weekend.


Tulsa said...

Christ almighty! It's almost midnight, and I need a glass of water. Brown! Get the fuck in here! And bring me a stogie! -- T. Darling

Ed said...

Nice entry tbr and I agree. In my home games there are a few that I can read and usually decide at the time if I think they are full of shit and trying to take the pot. Sometimes I am wrong because I put them on a hand and they had the total opposite but for the most part I can turn the tides and chase them off.

Kinda like the call I made when Sang went all in last Sunday at the lodge during the final table. It was about 1300 more and something inside told me my A9o was good and since I had money in I called. He flips over JQ and I catch an Ace to seal the deal. I mean after all..."It's just Sang."