How To Play Pocket Queens.
March 14, 2009
In no limit hold’em pocket queens are always a very strong hand pre-flop, but there are many cards that could hit on the flop and quickly turn queens into the second best. This article will take a look at how you should play your queens before and after the flop.
Pocket Queens Prefer Fewer Opponents
Pocket queens are usually the best hand prior to the flop, but the types of hands that opponents are likely to play makes the queens very vulnerable after the flop. A lot of players like to play hands with aces or kings, which puts the queens in a lot of danger the flop comes in your opponents favor. For this reason you should raise aggressively with your queens pre-flop to try to eliminate as many opponents as possible, hopefully isolating one opponent. If you have the opportunity pre-flop you should definitely re-raise, as you will still likely have the best hand and this will be an even further deterrent for other players with mediocre aces or kings to enter the pot.
How to Play the Flop
The best scenario on the flop would be hitting a set. In this case you are almost guaranteed to have the best hand. However, this is very unlikely so we won’t look at it too much. Instead let’s look at a much more likely scenario that is also very beneficial to pocket queens. This would be if the flop came and the pocket queens was an over pair. In this case it is very likely that you have the best hand because it would be a very strange play for your opponent to flat call a raise with aces or kings pre-flop.
On the other hand if an ace or king comes on the flop there is a chance that your queens are no longer good. If you are first to act it is probably good to put in a continuation bet because if your opponent did miss the flop and maybe has the king when an ace hit the flop you will likely win the pot right there because your opponent could easily put you on the ace. The trouble comes when you put in this continuation bet and you are re-raised by your opponent or if your opponent makes a big raise when he is first to act. In these situations the right play would likely be to fold. When you have the opportunity you should be betting the pocket queens no matter what hits on the flop because the majority of the time they will still be good.
In conclusion pocket queens are a very strong hand in no limit hold’em especially pre-flop. You should aggressively raise your queens pre-flop as this will help eliminate weak aces and kings, both of which could hurt you after the flop. Also, by raising pre-flop you are able to represent an ace if one does hit the flop and hopefully pick up the pot right then. If you are raised or re-raised on an ace high or king high flop it is usually the right move to fold. It’s important to remember that even though pocket queens are a very strong hand in no limit hold’em they are also quite easy to draw out on and you should be willing to lay them down when you feel you are beat.
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