JavaScript must be enabled for Sign In.
Please check your broswer settings.

Home \ Community \ Blogs \

TheLangolier's blog


The Overpair's Dilemma Part 1

By: TheLangolier @ 23:33 (EDT) / 693 / Comment ( 12 )

For this blog I’d like to try something a bit different.  Let’s call this an “interactive” blog.  In part 1 today I’m going to give you a scenario, and encourage you to provide an answer in the comments section below.  If you’re not willing to comment, at least think long and hard about it.  Next week in part 2 I will address some of the comments and provide my thoughts on the subject.

So this scenario just happened to me recently in a cash game, and got me thinking about discussing the hand in a blog since it’s a common issue we all must face.  Let me set the stage.

The game was a loose and somewhat fishy 200nl full ring table.   The opponents were a pretty even mix of strong players, average players, and fishy players.   It was a good table.

I was in the hijack with pocket JJ, and made it $12 to go over 2 limpers.  The SB and one of the limpers called, and we took the flop 3 handed:  983 rainbow.  Both players checked to me and I c-bet $22 into the $40 pot.  The player in the small blind check-raised to $48, folding out the other player, and I called.  There was now $136 in the pot.  The turn came a 4 completing the rainbow, and the opponent moved all in for his last $86.  The opponent was one of the average players, who was capable of playing a draw aggressively.

So now the dilemma is, do we call with our overpairs in this spot, or do we fold?   Obviously his line shows great strength.  If we just fold our overpairs every time we face this sequence, we could potentially get run over as we have way too narrow a calling range in many similar circumstances.  If we always stack them off however, perhaps we are paying off too much.   So which do you think we should do, call off our overpairs or fold them?    Or perhaps, call sometimes and fold others?   Since I suspect many will say the latter, call sometimes and fold others, I want you to think about how often we should call vs fold, and which overpairs make the best calls and which the best folds?  Perhaps you could even rank them in order of preference…

If you wish to get down and dirty with some math and numbers you can, but at the very least the purpose of this blog is to get us all thinking about how to handle this delicate situation which, while we don’t face it all the time, we all do face it and when we do, a big pot is on the line.

In part 2 next week I’ll share my thoughts on the subject, and also what happened in my JJ hand.   Until then…

In order to comment, you must login or register.
Take Quiz
New here? Take our Poker Assessment to start your education.
already a member? sign in here
JavaScript must be enabled for Sign In.
Please check your broswer settings.
Learn From basics to advanced strategy
Practice Improve your skills with our trainers
Win! Establish yourself as a winning player
/Featured Promotions/
Progressive Jackpot Progressive Jackpot Playing our new 'Scratch & Match' game is free and very easy. If you match 3 symbols you win a prize!!!! View details
Earn 10 Tournament Tickets Today! Earn 10 Tournament Tickets Today! Invite your friends to join Poker School and you could earn up to 10 tournament tickets as a reward! View details

Getting PokerStars is easy: download and install the PokerStars game software, create your free player account, and validate your email address. Clicking on the download poker button will lead to the installation of compatible poker software on your PC of 51.7 MB, which will enable you to register and play poker on the PokerStars platform. To uninstall PokerStars use the Windows uninstaller: click Start > Control Panel and then select Add or Remove programs > Select PokerStars and click Uninstall or Remove.

Copyright (c) All rights reserved, Rational Group, Douglas Bay Complex, King Edward Road, Onchan, Isle of Man, IM3 1DZ. You can email us on