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How to Play Overpair

For an overpair to be a decent hand, it has to be 99 or better as the chances of someone having a bigger overpair is much reduced as well as the probability of someone catching an overcard on the turn or river.

The way you play overpair is very similar to playing top pair. As a general rule, you should bet aggressively to chase away drawing hands or anyone hanging around with overcards.

First, analyse the board and see if the board has either or flush draw possibility. To simplify things, let's suppose you are first to act and is facing off against a single opponent.

Ragged, rainbow board. No draw possibility.

With a ragged, rainbow board, you are very likely holding the best hand with a strong overpair. You should bet about 1/2 to 2/3 pot.

Opponent is tight/aggressive

A tight/aggressive player usually either raise or fold. A raise here from such a player usually indicate at least a top pair with a solid kicker. You should reraise him to chase him away and not let him improve. Respect any subsequent reraise from this player here.

Opponent is tight/passive

If you get called by a tight/passive player, it is pretty likely that he or she has top pair or better. You should continue to bet on the turn but consider checking on the river. Consider checking on the turn and river if this opponent reraised you here.

Opponent is loose/aggressive

The loose/aggressive player will reraise you even if he only hit second or bottom pair. Reraise him back to force him to fold. If he does not fold, you can opt to check the turn and the river to let him do the betting for you.

Opponent is loose/passive

A loose/passive player will call you if he or she hit second or bottom pair. Continue to bet aggressively on the turn and river to extract as much money as possible from this player.

Board suggests straight or flush draw possibility.

When such a flop hits, you should bet more aggressively to chase away drawing hands. Bet about 3/4 pot.

Opponent is tight/aggressive

Tight aggressive players are usually solid players and don't play drawing hands. Hence, a raise here usually still indicates that he or she is holding top pair or better. Reraise him to get him to fold. Respect any reraise from this player.

Opponent is tight/passive

Similar to the tight/aggressive player, the tight/passive player will call here if he or she is holding top pair or better. If you get called on the turn, consider checking the river. Respect any raise from these players since they seldom raise unless they have a very good hand.

Opponent is loose/aggressive

The loose/aggressive player will likely call here if he is drawing. The very aggressive ones may even raise on a draw. Against such players, continue to bet aggressively on the turn to chase them away if the board doesn't suggest that a straight or a flush draw has hit.

Opponent is loose/passive

A loose/passive player will call here if he is drawing. An overpair is very profitable when playing against such players. Continue to bet on the turn and river and extract as much money from them as possible.

Suited, Connected or Paired Board.

Precede with Caution. Your overpair has a high chance of being the 2nd best hand here, especially against multiple opponents. You should still bet the flop here but be prepared to check/fold your hand when you meet significant resistance. Always remember: The best outcome when holding second best hand is to lose the minimum.

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