Factors that Influence the Poker Player’s Decision

The Texas Hold’em game has four betting rounds. The first is done after the are dealt. The second betting round happens at the flop, when the third community card is revealed. The third betting round happens at the turn, when the fourth community card is opened. And the fourth and last betting round happens at the river, when the fifth and last community card is exposed.

In each betting round, the must choose one of the five allowed decisions. These five decisions are to check, to bet, to call, to raise, or to fold. Usually, when the poker player opts to fold he has given up hope in ever winning the current hand. Probably, he believes that he has a weaker hand. And when a poker player opts to raise, the usual reason is that he ha has a strong hand. But these usual reasons may not be the real ones. A player can fold or raise as part of his overall strategy.

When confused, or when he has lost track of his strategy, a poker player cannot take a long time out in order to rethink everything. He must not delay the poker game. Thus, to think about which decision to make, the oker player must think fast and consider five factors. These are:

In Texas Hold’em, position is vital. A poker player in the early position (perhaps right after the blind) will have no idea about how much money will be the in the pot. He can not use his knowledge about pot odds. But he can compensate by playing stronger cards.

With pot odds, the poker player must decide whether staying in the game up to the river will be worth the money in the pot. Just like the rules in business investment, higher risks must lead to greater investments.

Obviously, the value of the cards will determine whether the poker player should stay or not in the game. If the pocket cards are strong, then, by all means, he should remain. If the pocket cards are weak, then it is best that he should fold. The poker player should also realize that the average statistic of getting the highest hand is just 10%. This implies that nine times out of ten, he will not get the winning hand. What he should remember is to bet aggressively when he gets the highest hand.

When the poker player is playing against one or two opponents, he should bet aggressively when he gets a high pair. But when he is playing against many opponents, the probability of having the high pair beaten increases. With 10 opponents, the poker player will be better off with a flush or a straight.

And lastly, the poker player should carefully observe his opponents. He should file away all the information that he can glean during such observation.