Playing in the World Series of Poker Main Event can be long and tumultuous grind with many tough decisions and interesting spots. Adam Junglen, also known as “AJunglen7,” talked to PokerNews about two hands he played in this year’s Main Event, and this is Part 2. To view Part 1, check the PokerNews Strategy tab for that article and more.
Blinds: 250-500 with a 100 ante
Junglen’s Stack: 80,000
Opponent’s Stack: 23,000
- Putting pressure on shorter stacks
- Floating against thinking players
Preflop and Flop Action: Junglen opens on the button to 1,300 with . Both blinds call. The flop comes ace-jack-four with one spade. The small blind leads out for 1,300 and the big blind folds. Junglen calls.
I basically flop the nuts [laughs]. I have two backdoor straight draws and a backdoor flush draw. There aren't too many hands I can imagine him leading out with for that amount and into this pot, for value. If he had an ace, I assumed he'd check it to me because I'd most likely bet. He could maybe have a hand like four-five or four-three, or bottom pair with backdoor straight draw outs or just nothing, or he could just be taking a stab at it. There is a chance my king-high is good. There's a chance I backdoor into a good hand, but my plan was to take away the pot without showdown. That’s why I just called. I knew I had backdoor draws, and I also knew I could put pressure on him because he started the hand with 25,000. Turn and river bets start to get big.
Turn Action: The turn was an offsuit six. The small blind checked, and Junglen checked.
I decided to check behind because I would play an ace that way.
River Action: The river was a seven. The small blind checked, and Junglen bet 2,800. The small blind folded and Junglen won the pot.
I went with 2,800 because I think he calls that just as often as he calls 3,600. I thought that it was the smallest bet I could get away robbing him with. He folded and that worked out well. He had about 20,000 left. Even though the pot was pretty substantial at that point, 2,800 was a large part of his stack. He was getting about five-to-one to call, which is why live poker is so much different than online. You have to have a feel for players.
So you go into the turn with the plan of trying to take the pot away from him. Why did you decide on a river bet instead of on the turn?
Checking back the turn sort of gives credibility to my hand because it's a way ahead or way behind situation, and he's a thinking player so he knows that. I would definitely give a free card on the turn with an ace to control the size of the pot. When he led out 1,300 into around 5,000 on the flop, I put him on a marginal hand. Maybe bottom pair with backdoor draws like king-queen or king-ten, or middle pair with like jack-nine, jack-ten, or queen-jack. I know he's also capable of occasionally showing up with a monster, like a set or top two, but that would definitely be rare in my opinion. He was a young, thinking, solid online player and knows just that because I didn't raise him on the flop, that doesn't mean I can't have an ace there.
What would you have done if you had turned some more equity with a straight and/or flush draw going into the river?
Do I bet if I turn a draw? At that point in the hand, I believe my opponent had around 20,000 left and I had around 80,000. There was like 8,000 in the middle. I'd consider betting if I turned a wheel draw plus a flush draw, but even then I'd check back a good portion of the time. I was confident my opponent was giving up on the river, so why risk getting check raised all-in on the turn? Especially considering if you do make a backdoor draw, it will be very well disguised.
That's why this hand was so interesting to me. I was checking back the turn to rep the ace, which sounds like an oxymoron to check behind with top pair. Players are getting smarter so you have to adjust.
So if this was an amateur, would you have just bet the turn when he checked?
If it was an amateur, I probably would have just raised the flop.