Weak opponents

When you are playing draws, there are three main types of players you need to consider. Probably the best way to play against really weak opponents is the passive style of playing, meaning that you just need to call, because this way you control the pot. This type of players fold very rarely i.e. top pairs will be enough to call or even to go all in. With this type of players your Fold Equity (the probability your opponent to fold) would be equal to zero and this is one of the most important reasons to place a bet or raise.

Smart opponents

The second type of players are those players who play poker with their minds but to be afraid of them is completely unnecessary. In case you call on the flop and the turn and the river displays a flush after which you place a bet, these opponents will know that you most probably managed to form a flush from your draw. When you are playing against such opponents, you need to consider and make combination of two different aspects – to control the pot and to play smart. You need to do your best, so your opponent could not immediately recognize what draw you are holding and at the same time to make sure that the pot is not increased to a very large size. In order to achieve this goal, you need to check or call on the flop and bet on the turn when you are not in a good position. Such actions are pretty unusual for players with draws, so not many players will be able to read your combination if you act this way. Anyway you should not place a big bet on the turn – its size may only slightly exceed the half of the pot. Most of your opponents will not understand whether this is a sign of strength or of weakness, so they will decide just to call and see what will happen on the river. By using this style of playing you will not allow your opponents to read your hand and you have the opportunity to see the river without paying much for it. Nevertheless, you need to consider the fact that if your opponent decides to raise on the turn, most probably you won’t be able to call. You can’t avoid that risk. Of course, you can think about some other combinations of these two factors. Just try some of your own ideas and you’ll see which one is more suitable for you.

Good opponents

The third and the last type of players consists of really, really good players. Probably the best way to play draws against such players is to play aggressively. If you use this style of playing, this type of opponents are able to fold with over pair or top pair that gives you some Fold Equity and increases your mathematical expectation i.e. your Expected Value. Against such players you need to place a bet or call on the flop and place a bet on the turn (when you are not in a position), or bet or raise on the flop and bet on the turn (when you are in position). When you are using this style, you can be sure that your opponent won’t be able to read your hand and in case he has a hand with which he’ll decide to go on (of which there is no huge probability since he does not have enough info about your hand), you’ll be able to get your profit in case you manage to form your combination. Anyway, the best aspect of the game when you are playing against such opponents is your Fold Equity. This type of opponents are able to fold so many hands, that you can safely use this advantage. However, it is not recommended to use this technique too often. From time to time you need to change your style of playing so your actions become unpredictable to the rest of the players. That will work since your Fold Equity will become very low after your opponent sees how aggressive you are when playing draws.

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