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Poker: Understanding Your Range

In poker, your range is the word used to represent the types of likely hands that you could be holding. 

For example, imagine that you are playing six-max No-Limit Hold’em (NLHE) on Betfair Poker, and you have been four-bet pre flop by an opponent who has opened under the gun. 

Let’s pretend that the player has not got out of line, has played fairly tight, and you have no history. If so, you can confidently predict that his range of hands is AA-QQ and possibly AK. 

So, that’s how you evaluate a player’s range, but what about your own? It is important to always be mindful of the range of hands your opponent may perceive you are holding and there are many reasons for this. 

Against weak players - that cannot hand read - this is not an issue, but it is great practice to always be mindful of your perceived range, especially if you are thinking of participating in the Betfair Summer Slam poker event. 

When you are bluffing, it is important that your opponent understands the story you are telling him. Your perceived range needs to fit into the story of the hand. Here is an example of why it is important to understand your own range.

Once again, the game is six-max NLHE cash and the player on the button makes a standard raise; you call in the big blind with [Ah] [Jh]. 

The flop is [As] [7d] [3c] and you check/call his c-bet. Both of you then check the [8h] on the turn, before you lead with a near pot-sized bet on a [Ks] river. The way that you have played the hand tells your opponent that you have a made hand. 

For this reason, you should check because your opponent knows that your range is heavily weighted to made hands and will therefore fold to most bets.

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Last Updated 16 November 2013
Poker: Understanding Your Range

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