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CAUGHT BLUFFING When a bluff fails and everyone sees you get caught out it is not at all the disaster it may seem. In fact some experienced players taking on a new table of opponents actually like to be caught out bluffing once in a while. Think about it. If your fellow players form the view you like to bluff they’re far more likely to call you more often than they might in the more normal course of play. This is a huge advantage you can use when you have a premium hand not too long after your failed bluff.
If opponents pile in with bets after a few of your raises you’ll likely take down a juicy pot and all thanks to the previously failed bluff. Bluffing is a tool best kept sharp and used only moderately but it can work very effectively by stealing pots that you have no right to win and by misleading your opposition, as in the example previously mentioned. The trick with all bluffing is to keep the enemy guessing. Don’t overdo it but use it enough to cause confusion. If your opposition is confused by your play, you have the drop on them.
BLUFFING & POSITION
Readers of this column will know that we always extol the advantages of acting from late position where you have the good fortune of seeing how everyone else has acted. Bluffing however is actually better attempted from early position. If you bluff last after everyone has perhaps revealed relatively weak actions, your bluff will be mistrusted. Everyone will assume you’re just trying to steal the pot. If you come right out and bluff from first position they’re more likely to take your action seriously as you will have no idea how the rest of the table are going to play their hands.
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