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Psychology Skills - 1

An example is when no one bets on fourth street, a small pair and two high cards are on board, and another small card hits on the river.

If one of your opponents now bets, and he is the type of player who would try to pick up the pot with nothing. It may be correct for you to call or raise with a weak hand.

In deciding whether to bet, it is equally important to consider what your opponent thinks you have.

If your opponent suspects a strong hand, you should bluff more. However, you should not bet a fair hand for value in this situation.

An example is when you raise on the flop, which shows two suited door cards and only one small card, and a blank hits on fourth street.

If you check on fourth street but bet again on the river when a third suited card lands, it is difficult for many opponents to call with less than a flush. So bet your weaker hands in this spot.

Varying your play and making an “incorrect” play intentionally are also part of the psychology of Omaha eight-or-better, because you are trying to affect the thinking of your opponents for future hands.

Before the flop, for example, you occasionally can reraise a late-position player, who may be on a steal, when you hold something like deuce-trey for low and two face cards.

Assuming that your opponents see your hand in a showdown, they should be less inclined to steal against you in a similar situation.

Also, you are taking advantage of the impression you created to get paid off later when you bet with a legitimate reraising hand.

Another example of this type of play is to throw in an extra raise early with a hand that doesn’t really warrant it in order to give the illusion of action. For instance, before the flop, you occasionally can reraise a raiser with a hand like

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especially if you are going to play this holding anyway. This play costs only a fraction of a bet in expectation of mathematics but gains you a tremendous amount in future action on subsequent hands.

There are also other ways to affect your opponents’ play on future hands in Omaha eight-or-better.

For example, you may want to make what you think is a bad call if you believe this play will keep other players from running over you.

If you find that you have been forced to throw away your hand on the end two or three times in a row, you must be prepared to call the next time with a hand that you normally wouldn’t call with.

This is because you can assume that your opponents have noticed your folding and are apt to try to bluff you.

Another less obvious situation where you should think of the future is to check in early position on the flop with a high hands, such as

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and then check again on fourth street, even it you got a flop you liked.

Not only may you catch someone stealing, but this check also might allow you to steal the pot yourself in a future hand when there has been almost no betting on the early rounds ( especially when an irrelevant card hits the board ).

You can get away with a steal because you have shown your opponents that you are capable of checking a big hand twice.

Thus someone with a mediocre starting hands may not call the double-sized bet.

In general , you should evaluate any play you make on its merits alone, that is, on its expectation in a given situation.

However, you occasionally might want to do something that is theoretically incorrect to create an impression for the future.

Once you have opponents thinking one way, you can take advantage of that thinking later.

Finally, keep in mind that these types of plays will work against opponents who are good enough to try to take advantage of their new-found knowledge, but who are not good enough to realize that you know this and that they should therefore ignore it.

In Omaha eight-or-better, as in all poker games, there seems to be a large group of players who like to “realize things.”

You must know how these people think and whether they are thinking only on the level that you are giving them credit for.

If they think of a still higher level, you a have to step up to that level.

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