Copyright 2006 Full
May 29, 2006
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Poker Lesson: Fourth Street Decisions
in Seven Stud
Author: Keith Sexton
In an earlier article, Perry Friedman gave some
guidelines as to what you should be looking for at the start of
Stud hand. Perry concentrated on third street, when you make
your initial decision to proceed with the hand or not. For this
tip, I'd like to go further down the road and talk about fourth
When playing Stud, fourth street is the last of
the smaller betting rounds. On fifth street, the bets double,
so if you decide to play beyond fourth street, your investment
in the hand is going to be hefty.
On fourth street, I look to see if an opponent has
picked up a card that has a relation to the door card (the first
up card). If fourth street builds straight or flush possibilities
for my opponent, I'm likely to muck a lot of hands; if it appears
to be a complete blank, I'll usually continue.
For example, say one player open-raised with the
Qd as a door card, and I called with split 8s and a suited 6.
If he catches a total blank (something like the 2c) on fourth
street and bets, I'm likely to continue and see if fifth street
brings either of us any help. On the other hand, I will probably
dump the hand if my opponent catches anything between a Ten and
an Ace, and I don't improve.
I won't know for sure if a Ten, Jack, King or Ace
helps my opponent's hand, but at that point, his board presents
too many warning signs for me to continue. Many players will enter
pots when they start with three big cards, so any high card on
fourth street has the potential to make my opponent a big pair
or get him closer to a straight. Either way, my eights are pretty
Another sort of situation develops when I catch
two-pair on the turn. Say that I started with a split pair of
8s and a 6. My opponent open-raised with the Qd and I called.
The turn brings me another 6, giving me two pair. My opponent
catches a blank and bets.
In a spot like this, I think raising is a big mistake
because the two-pair is well hidden. If I raise on fourth street
and happen to catch a boat on fifth or sixth street, it will be
almost impossible for my opponent to continue with the hand after
my show of strength. He'll have to assume that I've hit and he'll
fold to a bet. If, however, I just call on the turn and then hit
a 6 later in that hand, my opponent may continue with his pair
Moving on to a third example, say I have Kings in
the hole with the 6d as my door card. Again, assume my opponent
open-raised while showing Qd on third street. In this spot I'm
likely to just call my opponent's raise on third street. If I
were to re-raise with a 6 as my door card, I'd be announcing that
I held a big pocket pair. My opponent would probably fold and
I wouldn't get any value out of a nice hand.
After I call the third-street raise, I'm hoping
that the turn brings a card like the 8d. If my opponent then leads
at the pot, I'll raise, hoping to give the impression that I'm
on a draw. Once my opponent has that impression, he'll probably
call my raise on fourth street. If fifth street appears to be
a blank, he'll probably call a bet there as well. I'll be building
a nice pot while holding a strong hand.
These are just a few situations you might run into
on fourth street. If you play your hand correctly at this point,
you stand to pick up some big bets on later streets when things
go well, and save some bets when things go south.
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