Don’t Make a Habit of Cold-Calling

February 20, 2013 by  
Filed under Angus Dunnington, News, Poker School

No Limit: Don’t Make a Habit of Cold-Calling

The purpose of what follows is to serve as a warning against the folly of cold-calling but, as is so often the case, it should be pointed out that there are, of course, times when calling a raise is a feasible play.

We’re dealing primarily with short-handed games here because it’s easy to keep drifting into passivity and losing out in the marginal, difficult situations that are best avoided, but cold-calling tends not to be a good idea in full table games, either (at least the ‘upside’ with more players involved is that we should be able to get better odds).

Once again the general ‘rule’ that, out of the three options available to us when facing a raise,

either re-raising or folding tend to be more appropriate responses than merely (cold-) calling. Folding is easy(!), while re-raising has the advantage of winning the occasional pot right there as well as putting us in the driving seat – and putting the opponent under pressure instead of ourselves.

Depending on what strength of hand we’re calling with, the problem with this rather passive strategy can be two-fold in that not only are we obligingly surrendering the initiative to the opposition, but there is a danger of doing so while dominated. And to compound the problem, too many players make this mistake pre-flop which, from a psychological viewpoint, can subsequently lead to feeling they should commit further to the cause if they connect with the flop, in turn leading to potentially serious trouble. It’s bad enough wasting money through careless, thoughtless cold calling and then having to surrender the pot having missed the flop, but could be disastrous with typically problematic hands like KTo and QJo, ‘hitting’ and being dominated through to the river.

Clearly, these bad scenarios are going to far outnumber those times when we hit and win. Keep this in mind when you next find yourself on the verge of automatically cold-calling!

Good luck at the tables!

Angus Dunnington (AngusD at the tables)
32Red Poker Ambassador

Comments

One Response to “Don’t Make a Habit of Cold-Calling”
  1. We’re running a €32 Blog Freeroll on Thursday 21st February at 5:30pm (UK time) – the password to enter is the 32nd word in this article.

    You can find the game in the 32Red Poker lobby under Scheduled Tournaments > Freeroll, good luck 🙂

Speak Your Mind

Tell us what you're thinking...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!

You must be logged in to post a comment.