Straight Draw - Pot Limit Omaha
Part 2.1: On the Flop - Straight Draw
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Straight: We are assuming that you have the nut straight draw or are drawing to the nuts. Playing a straight correctly is one of the keys to making a lot of money or losing a lot of money. It is very very easy to get outdrawn on a straight nut draw if you have no backup. By backup I mean, cards to make a flush or even to make a better straight. In Omaha you can even have the nut straight draw, trips at the same time and also the flush draw. This is the ideal situation in terms of not getting outdrawn.
Let me give you an example of the perfect hand with backup cards.
Your hand (Hand 1):
In this scenario, You have the nut straight and even if a Jack or a King hits the board you will still have the nut straight. Also you have the nut-flush draw. This is a perfect scenario, and a hand that I wouldn't hesitate to go all-in with.
Here is an example of a hand with no backup.
Your hand (Hand 2)
In this scenario, you have the nut straight however there are no backup cards like a straight draw, flush draw or a full house draw. Therefore if someone shares the nut straight with you but has the better hand (as above) and they raise your bets then the best that you can do is fold as you will only be splitting the pot with the person anyway (in the best case scenario).
If you have these two hands pitted against each other on the flop then hand 2 cannot win. The best case scenario for hand 2 is picking up half the pot. However hand 2 only has a 47.52% chance of splitting the pot, whilst hand 1 has a 52.48% chance of winning the pot outright and a 47.52% chance of splitting.
On the button:
If, no one has bet before you: At this point I would urge on the side of caution. If I do not have any backup like the flush draw or the higher straight draw then I would check it in a long handed game. If the game is loose however I would raise for something like half the pot. The problem with betting here is that I do not want to get raised! If a raise comes then chances are that I will have to lay the hand down. However if I have good backup cards then I would bet about half the pot. I want the bet to look as if it is a 'tester' bet. If someone thinks I am just testing they might raise me. At which point I should be able to raise them all in knowing that I am ahead with the extra backup cards.
If, someone has bet before you: If someone has bet before me for anything above half the pot then I will flat call if I only have a nut straight with no backup cards. However with backup cards I will raise if it is a loose game. In a tight game I will flat call it to not let on to the fact that I have a made straight and try and extract more value from the pot.
Middle Position: Holding Hand1 I would raise for about half the pot to try and get some value in the pot. Holding hand 2 I would raise for the entire pot. I want to either take the pot down there and then. If someone raises my bet I know I am in trouble and I will get out of there. If I were to only raise for half the pot and someone raises into me then I won't really know exactly where I am at if someone was to come over the top.
Under the Gun: Same play as in middle position.
Drawing to a nut Flush
On the button: If, no one has bet before you: I like to play this aggressive. I would raise the pot. If someone calls they wont really know what you are drawing to and a straight very often catches people out.
If, someone has bet before you: Now here it depends on how loose the game is and how much the person has bet for. I would give it a raise if I am confident my opponent is not holding trips. If I am positive my opponent is holding trips then I will flat call and hope to get value out of the pot later.
Middle Position: Raise, at least half the pot. If not more. Enough said.
Under the Gun: Raise, Raise, Raise. You need to find out where you are at in the game and also you will be representing trips when you actually have a secret hand that is likely to take down a large pot if they fall for it!
House Draw and
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