Playing smart when holding a strong hand is an art only a few can pull off. Beginners and intermediates tend to get over-excited, causing them to bet erratically rather than maintain composure and maximize the moment. When playing online poker for real money, you will experience a lot of cautious players who are known to fold when they have the slightest inclination of opponents having stronger cards. The key is to be subtle.
As online poker hands go, trips flops are one of the rarest. Before the flop, there are 22,100 different (community card) possibilities – trips flops account for only 52. On average, you will encounter one approximately every 400 flops. This equates to a 1.35% chance, suggesting it can take multiple games before you see another. We discuss how to play trips flops most effectively.
What is a trips flop?
As hinted in the name, trips flops are when two cards of the same rank appear on the flop and match one of your hole (playing) cards. This results in a three-of-a-kind, poker’s seventh-strongest hand.
When this occurs, there’s a high likelihood that you have the strongest hand at that given moment. How you decide to bet from the flop can have a major influence on the number of chips involved at the end of the round.
How to play a trips flop
To avoid poverty traps in poker, it’s vital that you maximize your pots and bet smart. This involves utilizing a slow-play approach. If you bet aggressively, you risk your opponent’s folding and being left with only winning the blinds. Whereas, if you stay under the radar and let others do the betting for you, it allows for the pot to build as more players are active in the round.
Another factor to be cautious of is whether the board is wet or dry. A dry board is a good sign as it means there are few hand possibilities for opponents. Conversely, a wet board means there are plenty of hand combinations opponents may have. Remember, a three-of-a-kind is the seventh-strongest hand, meaning anything from a straight and above can beat you. Be sure that you’re constantly monitoring the community cards and identifying other possible hand combinations available – this can give you a good indicator of what others may have.
The odds of flopping each hand
From a pair to a royal flush, the chance of flopping a specific hand varies widely among the hand rankings. Although, with online poker tournaments usually lasting several hours, there’s always a possibility of witnessing a rare flop. If you consistently play poker online games, you will have experienced a few. Below showcases the odds of flopping each hand.
The odds of flopping a pair
During a game of Texas Hold’em poker, you will more often than not experience a pair on the flop. On average, you have a 29% chance of flopping a pair – the most likely hand to flop. A pair is when one of your hole cards matches a community card. For example, if you hold a 4 of clubs and a community card is a 4 of hearts.
The odds of flopping two pair
A drastic reduction from a pair, your chances of flopping a two pair is 2%. This corresponds to about 50-to-1 odds. A two pair occurs when there are two (separate) pairs between your cards and the community cards. For instance, if the flop produces a jack of hearts, 7 of clubs and king of clubs, and you hold a jack of clubs and king of spades.
The odds of flopping a three-of-a-kind
As previously mentioned, there is a 1.35% chance of trips flops – 74-to-1 odds. A three-of-a-kind is when three cards hold the same value between yours and the cards placed down by the dealer, such as if you hold a 6 of spades and 8 of hearts, and the flop is a 6 of clubs, 6 of hearts and queen of diamonds.
The odds of flopping a straight
A rare sight in the poker sphere, flopping a straight involves the three community cards and two hole cards connecting. For instance, 7 of hearts, 8 of hearts, 9 of clubs, 10 of diamonds, jack of spades. There is a 1.3% chance of this occurring, translating to 76-to-1 odds.
The odds of flopping a flush
Exactly like a straight, flopping a flush requires all community cards and hole cards to formulate the hand. A flush is when you have five cards of the same suit. For example, if the flop produced a 6 of clubs, jack of clubs and ace of clubs, while you carry a 2 of clubs and 7 of clubs. The chance of this happening is 0.8% – 118-to-1 odds.
The odds of flopping a full house
A full house is when your hole cards and community cards make up a double pair and a three-of-a-kind. So, if the flop included a 9 of hearts, 9 of spades and queen of clubs, while you hold a queen of spades and 9 of diamonds. This has a 0.98% likelihood of happening – 101-to-1 odds.
The odds of flopping a straight flush
With a 0.02% chance of happening, experiencing a straight flush on the flop is near impossible. This occurs when you have a straight that shares the same suit: 4–5–6–7–8 of diamonds.
The odds of flopping a royal flush
After years of playing online poker, some players will never experience a royal flush, albeit on the flop or river. There is a 0.005% chance of flopping a royal flush. This only occurs when you have the top five strongest cards in the same suit. For example, 10–jack–queen–king–ace of hearts.
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