The best poker players are great hand readers. They correctly ascertain their opponents’ range and then make the correct strategy adjustments based on their read. One component of that equation is determining if your opponent has a “capped range,” one that’s highly unlikely to contain high-strength hands.

Say you’re effectively 200+ BB deep, with an opponent you read to have JJ+ or AK on an 8h7s3c board. You know the strongest portion of your opponent’s range is one-pair and that’s a situation you can exploit. Will he call off his stack off with one pair in the current situation? If not, you have a feasible bluffing opportunity. Additionally, since you know he doesn’t have super strong hands in his range to call big bets, you should size your value-bets accordingly.

The point being that, if you can effectively take the strong hands out of your opponent’s range, you can adjust your strategies to exploit that change. If you’re planning a bluff, you will no longer be faced with the chance that you’ll run into those strong hands, thereby significantly increasing your chances of success. Along similar lines, since you know he can’t call a big bet with a strong hand, your value bets with your strong hands should be sized to maximize your EV against his medium-low strength calling range.

When you read an opponent’s range to be capped, you have some exploitable opportunities. That said; make sure you include your opponent’s texture into the equation before pulling the trigger. Some opponents won’t ever lay down their overpair and that would require a differing exploiting strategy, one that requires you not to bluff and to value bet larger.

Reading and exploiting these situations correctly will improve your edge. And with that improved edge, your stack will flourish.

 

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