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Free Poker Guide to How to Play a Pair of Tens

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Have you ever played a pair of tens with a weaker kicker? Well, not many of us have, but it’s an important hand nonetheless. You only have a pair, but there’s some flush potential on the board. You’re at a showdown with two pairs, so you have about a 35% chance of making the best hand. But you’re the underdog. That means you have to win by more than just beating the dealer.

Then what should you do when you have a small pair? Well, that depends on several factors. What is your position? Are you in early, middle or late? What kind of hand do you have? What does this hand give you? What opportunities are there for converting your pair into a big hand?

If you’re in early position, you should throw away your small pair. You have no advantage in the hand and there’s a good chance the someone to your left will bet substantially. (Why wouldn’t they, they have a pair of tens!) You only have 2 outs left.

In middle to late position, you may want to see the flop and discard a smallish pair. With a medium pocket pair, you have possibilities for a big hand. (In late position, you can call with small pairs.) But you also have the distinct possibility of losing a small chip stack (especially in middle to late position) and being out of the nagapoker tournament.

If you’re out of position, you’re in a difficult place to get back out of. You only have 2 outs left. And if you bet, your opponent may have a better hand than you’re pair. It’s worth it to throw in the two cards before the flop, though. Especially, if you have some outs after the flop, you can get them out of the hand.

A pair of tens is a hand worth raising. You, however, have to decide whether to raise or not. In most cases you’re going to want to raise. In fact, you should raise in most cases. But this is not a put out there just to take all the chips. You’re doing this to win the pot. Raise and try to win the pot. Be aggressive.

If you have a lot of people in the pot, and particularly if there are several limpers, those limpers may scare your opponents off. Why? Probably because you may have a very strong hand.

Variation: When you have a medium pocket pair, you want to raise with it. Why? Because your opponents are less likely to have better hands than you. If several people have called and you alone have the dealer button, and you have 5-6-7 and heads up, you release 8-9-10 before the flop. And if you have a medium pocket pair against one other player, yeah, you definitely want to raise.

Variation: Same as before, if several people have limped in, and you have a medium pocket pair. Forget about calling. Might as well raise.

General rule of thumb: Boost your hands when in the blinds. When everyone checks, you raise with the best hand. Why? Cause you might get the chance to steal the blinds before the flop. Stealing the blinds before the flop is one of the great ways to boost your stack. And when you do get the chance to take the blinds to the flop, get the most out of it.

  • Big Blind: The table minimum bet.
  • Big Slick: Pocket Rockets
  • Big Chick: Pocket Aces
  • Cash Carousel: Good hands that are short stacked. Carousel is a good hand. (See glossary.com)
  • Closed Board:336 different cards that haven’t been revealed.
  • Compotherapy: counseling sessions with a group.
  • Cuckoo: cemic depletion
  • Dealer Button: dealer button: means to the table that the dealer in turn can deal the cards.
  • Dice: tablets made of stone that weigned for denomination writing. Smaller dice were once called “dices”
  • Dime: A chip with a face value of 10 cents.
  • Down Under: Queensland, Australia.
  • Early Bird: Pre-flop betting.
  • Era of the mobility: The nineteenth century.
  • Fair to Odd: odds held by the house in games of chance.
  • Fasten Up: Prepare to play fast.
  • Forced Bet: forced bet: ‘t raise, don’t fold, etc…
  • Formulated in Numbers: Having the numbers marked on a betting ticket in a consecutive order.
  • Full House: Three of a Kind with a Pair.