eXceptional Poker Tip: Look at Board Texture Before Continuation Betting

Evaluating board texture is key to successful continuation betting.
 
There are a number of important factors to consider when deciding when to c-bet on the flop if you missed. Among the most important of these is the texture of the board.
 
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A flop of K7♠2 is much less likely to hit an opponent’s range than KQ9♠ . The former is relatively dry (meaning it has not hit your opponent’s range very hard), while the latter is wet (meaning it’s more likely to have connected with your opponent’s cards).
 
You have to always remember why you’re c-betting in poker. It’s almost always to either to get a worse hand to call, or to get a better hand to fold. When you miss the flop and you’re considering c-betting, it’s to get better hands to fold. Factor in your opponent’s hand range with the board texture, and then decide why you’re considering c-betting. If you can’t come up with a good answer, don’t bet.
 
Bottom Line: Look At Board Texture Before Continuation Betting

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4 thoughts on “eXceptional Poker Tip: Look at Board Texture Before Continuation Betting

  1. Hi Bug, late in the original pokerbug blog you posted that we should be cbetting a lot if we are the pre flop aggressor. Does the Xpoker post above dial that back a little?

    Is a high %cbet a good or bad meta game stat? I’m a bit in both camps on this one, that it makes you harder to read and disguises strong hands but with missing 2/3 flops it can’t possibly be true so easily reraised against. What are your thoughts?

    • Hi Rob, good question. I think that my old pokerbug recommendation of c-betting an average of 75% of the time (and betting around 65% of the pot when you do) is still a valid number. This 75% figure, of course, goes up or down depending on a number of factors; it’s really just an average. As you point out, if Hero was the preflop aggressor, he should be more inclined to bet than not. Similarly, the more opponents there are in the hand, the less likely Hero should be to bet. In this X-Tip above, I’m pointing out that board texture needs to be considered, too. The wetter the board, the less likely you should C-bet, and the drier the board, the more likely you should C-bet. It’s all about Fold Equity, which has all these factors rolled into them.

      Back when I used a HUD (I play on Bovada, so alas no HUD), I used Villain’s Cbet stat a lot to determine whether I bluff-reraise them or not on flops. If you have enough data, I think it’s a good stat to use.