Thursday, October 11, 2007

Folding Aces Pre-Flop... Some Scenarios

Some poker psychology today... well a new look at an old question at least - want to run an old scenrio by you all, and then apply this to various situations...

The Situation:

You just sat down, the very first hand is dealt - you are dealt a pair of red aces in the big blind... nice.

The UTG player pushes all in... even nicer.

Before you know what is happening UTG+1 also pushes, as does the next player - in fact by the time the action gets to you every player at the table has pushed all in!!


So now you need to make a decision as to your action... calling would have a positive expectation of course. You'll win something like 27% (did not look it up so approx from memory) against 8 opponents (maybe chop against someone else with aces). This means you would be out of the game 73% of the time you call but big stacked the rest...

Do do you call, or disreetly fold and wait for a less dangerous opportunity??

OK - as with everything in poker, you can not yet make a decision right? Some more info needs to be taken into account... what game are we playing and what is our personal situation.

Situation 1: Its a SNG tournament paying the standard 50/30/20.
- Easy fold, if you do not understand why then check out the introduction to ICM over at

Situation 2: Its a 1 table satellite paying 3 places!
- If you call with your aces here please drop me a comment, I want to play poker with you immediately!

Situation 3: It is the very first hand of the 2008 WSOP
This is where the original question came from... think about this one, you are playing in the biggest tourney you have ever been in and have an opportunity to get 10x your stack or (most likely) bust out... now the question becomes one of bankroll management right?

Situation 4: It is a cash game, however you just ground your bankroll back from the brink of going broke and have your last $100 on the table (with no easy means of redepositing).
Horrible situation here, if you are not calling in a cash game with this hand then why are you playing poker? If you are playing your last 100 on just one table then you'll go broke soon enough... imagine how easy this question would be if that $100 were just 5% of your bankroll!

Situation 5: It is the first hand of a $5 rebuy on your favorite site.
Now it is the worlds easiest call!

Situation 6: First hand of the poker stars sunday million.
To some this would be an easy call - to a micro grinder who satellited in it becomes more similar to the WSOP question right??!

Hopefully something to think about... what do your answers (and the strength of conviction of those answers) say about your own approach to the game? For example in the WSOP situation... if you say 'call' - is this a 'no brainer' for you, or did you think about the pros / cons first? If you say 'fold' (or vice versa with the 'call') is this because you feel you'd like skill to play a greater part in the game (over many hands) or that you'd like your WSOP experience to be a little longer.

Anyway - post now long enough!

Cheers, Mark


Csaba said...

I'd be glad to play against you... is it fair if I lie I'd call with aces? :)

KajaPoker said...

I probably fold them all except the rebuy. And if possible, I get up and go to another table. said...

I only play the one-table sit 'n go's. I haven't run into this situation, but I have folded KK on the bubble with the other three pushing all-in. I was the short-stack at the table. So, assuming it wasn't a split pot, I was guaranteed cashing by folding the KK. In the situation you described with the AA, I would also fold.