A few levels into a seniors event at the Wynn I open KJs from UTG. It folds to the small blind who hadn’t noticed my raise and tries to complete (this is a minor factor in the hand but makes it seem even more like nobody has much of anything). SB eventually figures out what’s going on and calls my open, clearly because he is already half way invested, and the big blind tosses in a call as we see the flop three ways.

The flop is AQ5 rainbow. Check check to me and I cbet something like half pot. SB folds and big blind calls. The turn is a blank, something like an 8. BB checks to me. This very much looks like someone with a weak ace. Theoretically speaking this board favors me as the utg raiser vs the BB defend and I do have a gutter which is slightly better than nothing. So this seems like an ok spot to fire a second barrel but let’s look at this situation through an exploitative lens.

I need two things to be true for me to win this pot. First, I need for my read to be correct that he has a weakish ace. I also need him to fold to my bet if he has the hand I think he has. I feel pretty good about the first one, I’m unsure about the second. In chatting later with a friend who has played way more seniors events than me, he immediately recognized this type of player and thought it likely he’d call again on the turn with a weak ace.

If that analysis is true I think I need to consider a different path instead of the one I took. I made a fairly standard bet on the turn which he called and I decided not to bluff off the rest of my stack on the river which was a small card that I thought more likely to hit him. He dutifully showed down A2os for the weakest possible top pair with which he had called flop and turn versus the UTG opener on AQ58. This is both dumb and makes perfect sense. So what else could I do?

Sometimes we make correct reads but our bets don’t accomplish the mission. This guy isn’t calling down because he is soul reading me for bluffing from UTG on AQ5. He is just not thinking too hard and he has top pair. But this kind of player could be convinced. I think if I really trust my read and I know what kind of player I’m up against then it would be very reasonable to fire a BIG bet on the turn instead of a standard one. I need to make an impression on this guy because I need him to stop and think. If he stops and thinks he will fold, if he proceeds on autopilot he will call. 

I really wish I could go back to that spot and just try way overbetting the turn to see what happens. I think he’d be surprised, a bit confused and would then fold. I don’t think I’ve really ever tried an overbet in this spot. I sometimes use overbets on the river to accomplish something similar. It works pretty well in situations where the opponent is capped to a medium strength hand but is inclined to call a normal river bet. Occasionally in spots like that you can try the overbet and way more often than not they conclude you have a monster and fold their medium strength hand.

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