How to play pocket pairs? The poker books and poker videos and other training videos might show you some tricks to play pocket poker pairs. Pocket pairs are considered to be the most profitable hands to bet on in poker. If you misplay them, you will seriously suffer in terms of your chip stack.
Specifically, in Texas Hold’em, a pocket pair becomes a “must play” hand. A pocket pair is when you are dealt 2 cards of the equal weightage or suit. Pairs are important in all forms of poker and in the other variants of poker.
How do you define pocket pairs?
There is a 0.45% of chances of receiving pocket pairs in Texas Hold’em while playing online poker or offline. In that case, if you receive a pair, you need to play it right. Learn to assess the strength of your pocket pairs. Pocket pairs are divided into-
Low pairs: A pair that holds lesser value. For examples a pair of 2’s or a pair of 5’s.
Medium pairs: These pairs have a medium strength to be played on post-flop. For example, pocket 8’s and 10’s.
High pairs: These pairs are the strongest to bet on. A pair of Kings, Queens, Jack’s or aces are the highest pairs, and you can bet aggressively.
What do you consider before you play a pair?
You need to consider a lot of elements to bet on the dynamic pairs that you are dealt with during the game. The following elements play a bigger role in your game.
Your stack size – The bigger your stack, the bigger you bet. The lesser your stack, the less you can play. In this case, you decide your game.
Your table position – Your table position matters a lot in general. You need to act quickly. Do not be conservative while playing pairs.
A cash game or a tournament – Tournaments usually can be played on shorter stacks and more on pre-flop moves. But in case of cash games, you need to have an ability to hold a bigger stack and play big. You cannot be conservative in this case.
Your amigos- If your opponents are holding a shorter stack, and you are holding pairs, make sure you make them fold. You need to realize the value of your pairs depending on the value of bets made.
The odds of being dealt pocket pairs!
Odds of getting pocket pair of Aces 0.50%
Odds of getting dealt with premium pairs (J J+) 1.9%
Odds of being dealt 8, 8+ 3.3%
Odds of receiving any pocket pairs (2, 2+) 6.1%
Breakdown of pocket pairs further down!
1. Premium pocket pairs: The value of premium pocket pairs significantly increases as the number of players. Even the ones new to poker know it well that strong pairs like K, K or A, A etc. work stronger than any other hands. You definitely cannot always achieve your goal if you have pocket pairs. But there keep this in mind:
You can still play since you are holding a very strong hand.
Don’t invest a lot of money in the pot. Play safe!
Players usually go crazy when they have a pair in hand and start betting aggressively. But keep in mind that, playing aggressively on pairs can cost you a pot.
2. Medium pocket pairs: You cannot really come up with an apt strategy for medium pocket pairs because they fall in between. If you’re playing against only one opponent, you can easily win the pot even without betting on a flop. If required, you should play your medium poker pairs as premium hands. In case you play pocket sevens, it makes it a small pocket. But if it hits the flop, it becomes a premium hand for you.
3. Small pocket pairs: Small pocket pairs are the hardest hands to play and bet on. They have very little potential, but if the right cards open on the flop, you can win big. To be honest as a general rule, try to get involved in the game to wait and see the flop. It’s best not to turn your hand into a bluff and fake. Try to play passively.
Basic strategies to keep in mind while how to play pocket pairs!
Though all the pocket pairs of different weightage have different strategies to tackle them, there are a few that stay constant.
1. The size of your stack: The stack size is usually considered the most. It helps you make a decision of how big or small to play. With a smaller stack size, you tend to give up on a lot of hands because you don’t have the capacity to play it. But if your stack size is bigger, you tend to play rash and bet well. You can play better on higher and medium pairs if your stack size is huge.
2. Table position: It is easier to bet when you are seated in a late position on the table. You can easily judge the players from that point of your table.t is easier to extract the pot when you are the last one to act on it.
3. A good judge: You should be a good judge of the tendencies of a player. You need to recognize the elephant in the room. The moment you spot the monster in the room, you can start making your calls accordingly. You can be careful by betting then. If you involve yourself in wild and lose games, people tend to count you in a strong player.
4. Your image: Make sure you create a positive image of yourself. If your opponents start judging your behavior in terms of your betting pattern, it stays. Make sure you create a very positive image of yourself. You don’t want to be considered a negative person on the table and thrown over by the other players.
Making the most of your pocket pairs!
One of the most strategic considerations, while playing the game of poker is to make sure you bet correctly in terms of the cards you are dealt with. Be realistic and practical. Head to Spartan Poker to try your luck on playing the pocket pairs. Invite friends and play poker tournaments. Are you ready to play your next real money poker game with your pocket pairs?