Starting out in 5NL - why am I 3-betting 99?!?

nemoroninnemoronin Red Chipper Posts: 45
edited September 2014 in Online Poker Hands
I was trying to stick to Ed's 15% range for EP/MP and his 23.4% CO range for the CO/BUT, but I probably stepped out of line a couple of times out of curiosity. Mixed results.

The 99 hand felt like I put myself in an odd situation and I don't feel like I played it well.

6-max 2c/5c.

In the previous hand, Villain bought in for $1.5 and posted in the CO. He checked :8c:2c and button overlimped, 3way hand.
He led the flop for 8c into 17c on a :Qd:8d:9s flop
check/called a 5c bet from the button on a :8s turn
donked the river for 21c on a :Kd river - button looks him up with :Kc:Jc

I didn't quite catch all this as I was probably paying attention to my other table, but I did notice something odd going on in the hand. So yeah, I don't really give him much credit.


Next hand - Villain UTG open raises to 10c, MP flats, (no CO), I'm OTB and 3-bet to 45c w/ :9d:9c
I'm not entirely sure why I'm doing this - isolation/thin value? I figure my hand plays better HU vs. a single player's probable wide range.

Villain and MP both call - pot is $1.42
Villain has $1.47 left, MP has $2.5 left

Flop is :Th:5c:2s

Both players check, I bet 55c - My hand is probably best, but I'm only really betting for protection...?
I think my goal was to get random missed overcards to fold and to avoid getting bluffed on the turn, but I'm not sure this is a good reason to bet.

Pot commitment seems to be an issue as well. Probably have to call it off vs. the original villain and not like it?

Flat preflop, call the flop and play accordingly after that?


  • persuadeopersuadeo Red Chipper Posts: 4,376 ✭✭✭✭✭
    You don't have to do something the same way every time, but yes, you can 3 bet 99:
    1. for value, it being one of the best starting hands in poker;
    2. to isolate, as it plays well heads up and you may have trouble if others come along;
    3. for balance, as if you are flatting middle pairs you will be easier to play against;
    4. for initiative, so that you can represent an even stronger hand should you want or need to, which in turn makes 99 easier to play.
    5. as a sort of semi-bluff, as whenever you fold out overcard hands that have significant equity against you, such as A10 or KQ, you have stolen the equity from your opponent's hand.
  • Ed MillerEd Miller RCP Coach Posts: 330
    Can you tell me where you got the idea that you should be 3-betting 99 here? I don't think it's mandatory at all, though with this joker UTG and the flat in MP, I'd probably 3-bet. In this case you're 3-betting 99 because it's a strong hand compared to what the other two are likely to show up with. And they're likely to call your 3-bet because that's what guys like this do.

    On a flop like this with these stacks I think you're committed against a single opponent. I would bet small like you did only if I thought it would induce a bluff-raise. In this game I probably would have open-shipped the flop, expecting to get called by weaker pairs and even some ace-high hands.

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