You should Know More About Overpair!

Texas holdem poker tips for starting hand overpair

You opened your raise with Q♦Q♥ preflop, two opponents called, the flop was full of cards smaller than Q and QQ was still overpair, when you were about to bet, you remembered this article, what does it say about how to deal with this situation?

The actual fact is that you will be able to find out more about the actual situation.

The first of these is to make sure that you have a good idea of what you are doing

Let’s assume that the preflop caller has one opponent in the button and one in the big blind.

The flop is 10♥9♦5♠.

You should favor the overpair in this situation unless your opponent is a very amateurish kind of player who also loves to call, otherwise consider overcalling with overpair here.

The reasons behind the overcall are somewhat complicated, but mainly because the equity in the bottom pot is split evenly among the three players, which means your win rate is much lower than in a situation where your opponent has only one player.

When you bet, the pressure on your opponent’s defense is spread evenly over two people, meaning they won’t be forced to call your bet with a wide range, and once they do, they’re less likely to lose to QQ than they would be if they singled out the bottom pot. The odds of one of them holding a strong hand are naturally higher compared to a singleton bottom pool because there are two opponents.

With these factors in mind, the EV with an overpair bet and an overcall is much closer, and when we simulated this situation with the software, the software gave the following advice to pick the overcall 100% of the time (yellow = overcall).

The software calculated the expected value of the two options of overpairing with over in this situation and betting 66% of the bottom pool, and the EV of overpairing was also 0.1bb higher than betting.

What is the plan after the overcall?

This is not a very good question, as the answer depends on several factors, they include.

  • Opponent’s range
  • Whether the button bets or not
  • Whether the big blind calls the button bet or not
  • The structure of the hand

Generally speaking after the pass if an opponent bets, you should just pick the call and then make your decision on the next street after considering the above factors.

How do you play in unfavorable position facing a tight cold calling range holding overpairs?

Even some very strong players can make mistakes when dealing with this situation.

Suppose preflop you open-raise in middle position with A♦A♣ and a regular player calls on the button with a flop of J♥5♠3♣.

99% of players would immediately choose to bet here, and doing so is certainly not a negative EV move, but it’s not the highest EV strategy either.

The bad thing about choosing to bet is this: because even if your range contains more overpairs than your opponent’s, in total your range is still weaker than his, and his range is a tight range in which the percentage of dark threes will be higher than yours.

This means that if you use a very straightforward kind of strategy, that is, betting when you hold strong and listening hands and overcalling when you hold a medium strength hand, then your opponent can go for a raise in a very aggressive way when he counters your c-bet, and once he does that, you’ll be in a tough spot.

What is the plan after the pass?

The situation here is not as complicated as the first one, as you only have one opponent.

Unless the board is clearly contributing to a hand that is at least a straight, you should go with the over-raise, and if it is with a straight, then go with the over-call.

When you check, you will find that most opponents will play very aggressively to represent an overpowered hand, but will often fold on the river.

What happens when you are in a good position to play the big blind with overpairs and you hit an unfavorable flop?

An unfavorable flop is a straight like 9♠7♠5♥, T♠9♦ 8♥, 7♣5♥4♦.

Such a hand is more favorable to the big blind, who has more straights and deuces in his range than yours. Take the flop 9-7-5, where the GTO software will overcall with overpairs at a very high frequency (in the case of middle vs. big blind):.

As you can see from the chart, the overpair rate is higher with AA than KK, and higher with KK than QQ, and QQ’s overpair rate is higher than JJ and TT on this type of hand.

The reason for this is determined by the vulnerability of the overpairs themselves. If you take AA, the deck will not be countered by the strength of any pair no matter what comes out, so there is the least danger of passing with them.

On the other hand, there are 4 cards that can cover KK, 8 cards that can cover QQ, and 12 cards that can cover JJ… So when holding these overpairs, the betting rate is higher than AA, but as a rule you should still consider picking overcards because their absolute hand power itself is very strong.

If you run into the kind of opponent who is very observant and skilled, he/she will make it very difficult for you if you bet with overpairs on such a straight side, and if the overcall rate is too low, then he can raise his raise rate to make it very difficult for you, after all, he has many more nut cards in his range than you do on such a side.

What is the plan after the overcall?

After the check, go the over-call route, and do the same on the turn. Even if the turn card deals a fourth straight card, most of the time you can go over-call; if the turn card doesn’t deal a fourth straight card, and you call and get to the river, unless the river card is a fourth straight card, you can still go over-call in other cases.


When you get used to overpairing in these situations, you will slowly find yourself more comfortable with these situations and less likely to be emptied of chips by a hidden two-pair+ hand for an overpair.

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