Facing a nonsensical shove


Villain is mostly unknown, except he limps most of his hands, so he could have anything with the preflop limp. I don’t think he is on tilt.

What cards would you call with in this situation? If I call with 2 pair+, then the villain can make this play with any two cards and show a profit. However, people rarely bluff like this on RP unless they are on tilt. Should I call with a king? What about aces?

Do you think I can exploitatively make this play against the strong TAGs, assuming they will fold their pairs. Once in a blue moon, I’ll just shove with T9 in this situation.

@aoeu, I’ll have a crack at this one :slight_smile: … Bear in mind that I probably have no idea what I’m talking about :grin:

A bit more info would be helpful - if you know he limps most of his hands, presumably you have some idea of how he reacts to a preflop raise or a raise on the flop? If he normally folds to even a min-bet then you were in trouble the minute he called you preflop. I’d be putting him on JJ+, KQ+, JQs. 66 or 77 isn’t impossible on a 6 seat table.

I would expect that he’d fold to a 4BB raise if he had 66 or 77 but he’s got a decent stack and maybe he’s just bloody minded and determined to see the flop?

Interesting play on the flop - he’s OOP and betting into the intial raiser. In fairness, I don’t think your preflop raise showed a lot of confidence in your hand so that may have encouraged him. You called his raise pretty quickly which should make him stop and think but he insta shoved on the turn. I’ll put him on QQQ, KKQQ and an outside chance of QQ77 or QQ66. KKxx would really surprise me. Without knowing more about the villain, I suppose we need to consider 666 and 777 in the background.

I don’t see aces helping you unless you’ve bribed the dealer :grin:

At the very least I’d be wanting 777 to call here.

If you’re really well bankrolled, calling with KK would be tempting but I’d still be worried about that bet on the flop.

At the end of the day, a habitual limper betting into me on the flop and shoving on the turn fills me with dread.


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Subbing so I can see the HH later on my computer. Can’t view them on my phone.

Breaking down the action for you:
6-handed ring game, blinds at 50K-100K. @aoeu is the effective stack with about 14.5M.
UTG (@Tiggy) limps.
@aoeu in the HJ bumps it up to 401K.
Action folds to @Tiggy, who calls.

Flop: 7h6sQd; pot at 947K after rake is taken out.
@Tiggy leads out with a half-pot bet of 476K.
@aoeu calls.

Turn: (7h6sQd)Ks; pot at 1.9M
@tiggy jams 13.8M.

I think it’s reasonable to call with two pair or better. You don’t have to call very frequently facing a 7x-pot shove in order to meet MDF.

My guess is that @tiggy was sitting on a set of sixes or sevens (3 combos of each), as bigger sets should have raised preflop, or possibly top two pair (9 combos). Maybe she was making a run at the pot with 89s (4 combos, one of which had a backdoor flush draw on the turn). But in general, I agree with OP, probably not the best play.

Vs maniacs you will need to call lighter than is comfortable. Strengthen your x/c range and let them blast off. You can make exploitative folds as well, so long as you are not overdoing it. It would not shock me at all if V was far weaker than people might think. The lead on the flop was more than likely nothing more than a probe bet as all value hands would play better as a x/r. It could easily have been any 6x or 7x hand (which would include K6s and K7s that turned 2 pair).

And that is why they make money. Get over the dread, accept the variance and call down light. DO NOT raise into their highly polarized ranges and isolate yourself against their value hands. Its not comfortable poker but it is highly profitable to play against these types of villains. Start with stronger ranges and commit yourself to calling and you will take their stack sooner or later. You will be shocked at how often your 2nd and 3rd pairs are good if there is any hint of a draw available on the board.

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My apologies for getting @Tiggy’s gender wrong! I’m obviously just a sexist pig who can’t conceive of ladies playing poker :frowning:

@1Warlock, many thanks for your advice. I know that I’m too conservative against a shove but I really needed this sort of discussion to bring it out in the open and decide to plug that leak! In my defense, it is only the habitual limpers that concern me. I’m reasonably comfortable with “normal” maniacs who open big, c-bet bigger and then shove.

I like your line of thought of including 6x and 7x in villains calling range. Those hands are probably within a limping range for, I expect, most people but I didn’t consider calling with them. I think that I don’t give limpers a wide enough calling range which feeds into the “dread” I feel when I’m bet into etc.

Question: Why wouldn’t a habitual limper just call a raise holding JJ+ or QJ+? The “habitual limping” part of it leads me to believe that she’s just not an aggressive player so calling rather than 3 betting makes sense to me. I’ve got a mate that does exactly this - he’ll limp nearly any 2 cards and call up to 10BB with anything playable. He’ll very rarely raise or 3 bet preflop.

My revised thoughts are: I think she hit on the flop or she’s holding a big pair. Going with your thoughts, @1Warlock, that the lead on the flop was a probe, she got her answer! OP probably doesn’t have the nuts but is comfortable with the flop cards.

Question: why would OP just call on the flop holding a set or top pair? Are the odds good enough to 3 bet big and try to take the pot immediately?

A king on the turn? If it hasn’t helped her hand, she has to know that it very easily could have helped @aoeu. I think it’d be a big move to shove with a small pair or less and hope for the best! If she did do that, she deserves to win the pot!

So, my new range for @Tiggy is: 2 pair+, JJ+. She must know that, if she’s not blocking, sets and high 2 pair are very realistic for @aoeu to hold here. So I think she’s confident that she’s already beaten any single pair giving her a revised range of 2 pair+, KK+.

I don’t know anything about MDF so I have to accept @WannabeCoder’s suggestion that any 2 pair would be good here. I’m not comfortable with that, to be honest, but that’s obviously a lack of knowledge on my part.

In my ignorance, I’d only be calling two pair with queens or kings. Calling with 666 is a coin flip for me but I’d happily go in with 777.

Question: I’m not familiar with “exploitative folds”. Is there a thread here or somewhere else that I can find out more?


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The player in question “Tiggy” is a tournament player. Do some investigation if you want to know more. I know she is rated highly in SnG rankings or maybe MTT. This tells a lot about a player & style of play. She isnt a ring game player.

Before analysing too much i think it was a good & easy fold. A “NIT” tournament player betting on the flop with a great hand & shoving the turn. Flopped 2 pair or set & at worst maybe AQQ. It sucks but it happens. Tiggy has 2 pair or trips probably. Q6 or Q7 suited 2 pair, or 66, 77 or QQ **set or maybe worst AQQ or QQ10 etc. The K doesnt change much. Only Tippy possibly losses to KQ, or unlikely KKK so she is betting.

There are a fair few hands for a nit to shove. Not just a nit tho. Some decent hands - good for a bluff/raise pre flop: Q6 or Q7 suited or 77, 66 - players too weak to take that stance - that could be raised occasionally.

Its an old RP poker saying. If they bet it they have it. Good/easy fold. Honestly i think you can easily outplay in other pots to worry about this one. Maybe AK can call, with top kicker. Againnst a player that plays passive & doesnt bluff i think there are better pots to play.

Summary: Tiggy has a great hand terribly played often. Massive pot to play. Weak/passive player bets the nuts often. Also try go for a raise sometimes to get a read. Raises can be tried on many hands to see how players respond & to gauge players strength Vs you. Based on this there is more information to make a decision. Also aggression & raises build big pots. You will win much more with good hands.


Really good point. So raising on flop stops or slows this probe. Also consider this is a nit, tight, passive player. Does she even probe?. Not sure ur deff of maniac but i wouldn’t classify Tiggy a maniac - more an average deep stacked tournament player. Calling flop, turn & river is different to calling ALL IN pot on flop.

I would consider Tiggys play fairly polarised. Probably bets back with the goods, calls or folds a raise depending on strength.

Looked at a few hands before I found this: https://www.replaypoker.com/hand/replay/584074228
Not exactly the same but close enough to provide clues as to leading ranges. Leads generally aren’t strength. In the posted hand, V could easily have had 9/8. Vs this player type, I am calling down really really light, if any draw is possible. The other option is to wait for a nutted hand and let them blast off into it. Pairs are usually more than enough to call down with though.

Why would you want to end the pot immediately? Its a pretty dry board and if you have a hand that doesn’t need much protection, keep building the pot. As I said earlier, raising into a polarized range isn’t a good idea. You let your opponent fold all their bluffs and continue with their strength.

This is a hand you normally wouldn’t fold vs the standard player but make an exception based on your opponent. For example, you hold the 4th nuts and on the river your opponent shoves his stack. You have never ever seen this player shove anything other than the absolute nuts and you’ve been playing with him for years. You just fold your hand here. You are exploiting your opponent by folding rather than paying him off because you know he never has less than the nuts. Vs a good player, who could have a combination of hands, you likely call but vs this player, you fold.

So just call with your entire continuing range when in position and let her blast off on her draws. Don’t dissuade people from over bluffing. When you go out to fish, if the fish try to jump in the boat, you don’t pick up an oar and try to knock them back in the water, do you?

I don’t know the player at all. I just based it off the 1 hand shown and the massive overbet on a turn card that should have been much better for the initial raiser. I don’t post specific recommendations on how to play vs any individual. The play in this hand seemed maniacal so I couched my advice in terms of how to play vs maniacal players in general.

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@1Warlock (Edit: This post need not be responded to thanks bc your previous post render much of this post redundant & sufficiently answered already especially by the hand you provided & analysis. I dont like to delete posts but consider it retracted. Thanks.)

Im not criticising, just probing and questioning. Here is my question, and its just repeating OPs question:

What would you do in this situation? What do you call with on the turn? And would you play the hand differently?

Also not to criticise Tiggy but donk betting on the flop? Deff looks like a probe bet but is it and/or how often? Almost always check to the aggressor and check raise bc its much more profitable. aoeu has to cbet 95% here i would guess. Unless either Tiggy or aoeu has a reputation for being a maniac aggressive bluffer or calling station I dont like the flop play.

I agree with OPs:

I dont think thats 100% accurate but is very often true on RP. I think that Tiggys shove on the turn is more often a donk value shove & rarely a donk semi/bluff or draw type of hand. I think Tiggy could have some 2pairs, sets, or even a badly played AK or AQ. Players often play weak pre flop & then bet on the flop when behind and continue to bet after a scare card but all in?

My Answer: Im folding on the turn with most hands possibly even AQQ but Im probably min raising for info & value on the flop with a few value hands like AQQ, A77 etc. Unless i know Tiggy to be an agressive maniac player & bluffer i dont think its profitable to call such a massive over pot turn bet.

Hands that cant fold or almost must call: 9s8s, Js10s, (nut straight & flush draw - IMO unlikely Tiggy holds blockers), flopped sets, KKQQ or KK two pair which has much better showdown value Vs donk bet weaker 2 pairs or AKK etc.

Slow play, min raising bets, check raising etc sets a good table image IMO and creates so much value in other spots that I think it more than negates a little lost value forcing bluffers to fold.

Edit: raising is good IMO but shoving will probably fold a lot of hands often winning many small pots but will always get called by better hands like sets. Also good TAGs will often read it as a bluff & make good calls. A bad move when 140BB deep stacked.

Personally i think playing playing playing 98, J10 offsuit is gambling way too much & losing too much. Only positive is you dont lose to many hands with a straight on river - bc a full house is impossible - & only lose to a flush. Calling a pot turn bet or even raising could be profitable & possibly exploitable especially if you think you can value bet the river & get called often or even get an occasional fold.

Im probably calling almost certainly with Js10s & 9s8s but I do think its an ok/good fold against a nit type player who often has nutty hands or might possibly even have unlikely outs like: AsJs, AsQs or As10s.


Your analysis makes a lot of sense & that hand is very telling although not exactly the same. Leads are weak: great point & that cannot be ignored. Your calling braver (OP first hand) here and making more money than me.

The first OP hand lead on flop was nonsensical & 50% bet, not showing a great deal of strength.

Im still not sure what hands Tiggy would shove bluff with on the turn. Tiggy seems like many players attracted to any suited cards possibly.

Have to admit Im deff wrong about Tiggy being a nit, based on you analysis & that hand shown. Edit: and Tiggy certainly is more than capable of bluffing!

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

Tiggy (she) is no nit, thats for sure. Just look @ past performance in RTC and other promotions, not to mention many many LBs. Tiggy is a dangerous player, and is more than capable of playing both elite rings, and any MTT or promo format.

Untill I see 250 hands a player played, or 20 posts on how they would do something, or even what they complain about… 1 failed attempt @ a bluff, in a hand review, isn’t gonna sway how I perceive them as a player.


Accurate assessment. TBF my assumptions were fairly inaccurate. Also nits do well in MTT - its not necessarily always a negative label or criticism - keep that in mind. I can tell from a few badly played hands Tiggy isnt a nit nor typical tourney player. A player that is more than capabable of gambling for sure.

I’m still on the fence about the best play against Tiggy in this situation. I still feel strongly she has a nutty hand or big draw.

P.S. No idea what RTC or LBs is…

ReplayTeamChampionships = RTC
Leaderboards = LBs

Tiggy is definitely not a NIT. She is one of the toughest players I’ve played on this site, no matter what the format or game. She is also a good friend. Hard to say if you should have called here, because Tiggy has no fear. She can read people, bluff or she can have the nuts. Whether or not you decide to call should be determined by how good your hand is. Personally, unless I had the nut flush draw or pocket kings, I would fold, but she knows me as well as I know her, so she may have played it differently against me :slight_smile:


Lets forget about the actual hand and specific villain. This is all about exploitative poker and how we adjust to actions/frequencies of other players. @Sassy_Sarah has it pretty much nailed - observe your opponents. It doesn’t take very many hands for you to begin to adjust properly. See a few showdowns and review the actions on each street. In general you will find people are wildly unbalanced and will play the same types of hands similarly almost every time. Some people will raise all their nut flush draws (some on flop and some on turn). Some people will only bet with TP or better. Some will take stabs whenever they sense weakness and some are pot controllers who are deathly afraid of playing big pots without the stone cold nuts.

Almost every player we face has patterns that can be picked up on relatively quickly. Make notes that you can reference whenever you play against someone and the patterns will emerge. Our jobs as poker players is to recognize what people are doing in any given situation and adjust our play to best exploit that. Vs some players, calling down with a good 2nd pair is more than enough. Vs others, your top pair is never good. Observe, adjust, repeat as necessary.

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Hello Tiggy here :slight_smile: Do you want me to tell you what I had and the reasoning for the shove, it may surprise some the answer but for those who know me will get it ?

And great analysis by all I think this will help my game :slight_smile:
@Sassy_Sarah @bahia7 thank you for your support and kind words as always and you will definitely get the answer and it will make you laugh


I’d love to hear your thoughts, if you don’t mind sharing them.

Yes! I’m dying to know what you had. I floated with AK by the way. I figured that a call on the flop usually means I have a strong hand, and I could pick up the pot if you checked a later street. I decided to float with AK in particular because of the backdoor draws and overcards.


so a bit of background first, I have been playing poker for just 2 years ans since playing have learned so much, when i started playing here it was the 500 MTT bankroll builders and oh my all in and all in its all i knew for a few months. I am an MTT girl who also likes to play the full variety of other games, the like of bahia and raven have shown me patience is key and sassy has taught me how to be tactical. I can be erratic and i do change my style of play in MTTs often depending on the players and what mood I am in

Ring games freak me out and I am not good at then at all, I am the first to admit that but I love a challenge and always go back for more (which i shouldn’t :slight_smile: I cant seem to apply my knowledge to them and I ignore the logical moves

I am to fearless for my own good both here and in my private life, but I would not change that as that is me.

So this is what I had and why I did what I did

I had Q 10 spades

Why I did it: GIn and Tonic

Would I do it again - hmmm depends prob not now but keep the gin flowing who knows