Many poker players are adept at putting their opponents on a range of hands. This skill in turn leads to profitable decision making. Players who are unable to range their opponents properly often guess whether an opponent ‘has it’ or ‘doesn’t have it’.
Don’t ever guess during a hand. Instead, you should think through the hand and about the opponent’s tendencies. Take every piece of information into consideration when trying to determine their range. Poker Indian Group offers online poker news updates for all the poker lovers. Today, it brings the most common mistakes players make when estimating their opponent’s range.
If you think that your opponent will do the same thing as you do, you are wrong. You may think that because you would 3-bet with AKo in the small blind, your opponent will do the same. This type of thinking can bring you in trouble. Different players have a different point of view. So it’s unwise to think ‘what would you do’ trying range an opponent.
Obviously, they can think like you. But it is best to think about their skill level, tendencies, etc. and don’t think what you might do in their position.
You should consider a position on every street when trying to put your opponent on a range. Let’s look at an example:
Hero is dealt two cards UTG
Hero raises to 2.2bb. 7 folds. BB calls.
Flop (5.8bb) 8♥ 6♦ 5♥
BB checks. Hero checks.
Turn (5.8bb) Q♣
BB bets 2bb. Hero calls.
River (9.8bb) 9♠
BB bets 15bb.
Here, the villain’s position is very important. As he called from the big blind, he can have any two pairs, straights and sets on the board that we cannot have. When he overbets on the river, he is representing a straight with either 7x or JT.
So, an opponent’s position is very important when putting them on an accurate range.
Forgetting or disregarding the action on previous streets is another major mistake. Often you will hear ‘he has X hand, I know it’. Even when X hand doesn’t make any sense given the opponent’s line. Let’s look at one example:
Hero is dealt two cards in the HiJack
4 folds. Hero raises to 2.2bb. co folds. Button (strong regular) calls. blinds fold.
Flop (6.8bb) J♠ 9♠ 8♣
Hero checks. Button checks.
Turn (6.8bb) Q♦
Hero checks. Button bets 2.2bb.
River (11.2bb) 8♥
Hero checks. Button bets 7bb.
In addition to whether our opponent checks or bets on each street, we should also consider his bet size, whether the hand is heads-up or multi-way, position, etc. So, you should consider every piece of information when ranging your opponents.
Try to avoid these mistakes. In addition to paying attention to your opponents’ particular tendencies, make sure to study approximate open-raising ranges by percentage. For instance, if an opponent is opening 20 percent from middle position, then you should know what 20 percent range includes. It is useful for narrowing an opponent’s range even before the cards are dealt.