The check raise is one of the most powerful moves in No Limit Texas Hold’em.
It strikes fear into the hearts of your opponents, allows you to mix up your game through deception and keeps players guessing.
In order to maximize your winnings using this move, it is important to use it in various situations and not just when you have a strong hand.
Most amateur players make the mistake of utilizing the check raise only when they hold a monster hand and want to get all their money into the middle. This is something that opponents will notice and if you don’t mix it up, you will no longer get paid off when you use this move.
If you are not sure about other good opportunities to use this strong move, don’t worry.
We can help you play better poker and win more money from your opponents by adding an effective check raise to your arsenal.
The Top 5 Reasons to Check Raise:
1. For Value: This is the most popular reason for check raising. Most opponents will use a flop or turn check raise when they hold a monster hand such as a set and are hoping to get their money all in.
2. Semi-Bluff: A great time to check raise is when you are holding a strong draw such as a nut flush draw or open ended straight draw. Using a check raise gives you a great chance to win the pot immediately without needing to see another card and if you do get called, you now have the opportunity to hit your draw and win a massive pot. You can also push the turn or river if you miss and play this hand as though you are playing a monster.
3. To Trap Opponents and Build a Massive Pot Multi-Way:This move can be used in a large multi-way pot where you flop a monster hand or have a big draw from early position and you expect a lot of action to take place after you check.
4. To Keep an Opponent in Line: A pre-flop raiser who continuation bets every flop can run over you if the cards are not falling your way. One or two well timed check raises may slow him down and discourage him from continually attacking every flop. Good flops to check raise would be low connected flops or low boards that most likely missed his hand.
5. To Beat Weak Players: There are many tight players that fear a check raise like the plague and will always assume that you have a monster when you use it. These are great opponents to pick up extra pots from. Be careful not to overdo it and remember that if they play back at you finally, they probably have a real hand.
The check raise is a powerful tool but should only be used selectively and with restraint.
Overdoing it can you get you in big trouble as it builds a huge pot and you will be out of position.
Check raise sizing is important especially if you are check raise bluffing. Remember that if the goal is to have your opponent fold, a large check raise to end the hand immediately is best. A small check raise may give him odds to call and put you in a very bad spot if you don’t have a hand.
The check raise is a great tool to add to your arsenal of moves. Balance your use of this move and remember that in poker, timing is everything.