Playing Suited Connectors In No-Limit Hold’em

Niko | July 14, 2009

Suited connectors are a very interesting starting hand in no limit Texas Hold’em because they are not very strong at first, but with the right community cards they can complete some of the best hands in poker such as a straight, a flush or even a straight flush. The majority of the time you won’t hit the flop and you’ll have to throw the suited connectors away, but the rare times that you do make solid hands you can often take down big pots. This article will investigate the best situations for playing your suited connectors including the changes you should make depending on your stack size. We will also tell you why you shouldn’t get attached to your hand if your suited connectors make top pair or even two pair on the flop.

Playing Suited Connectors Pre-Flop

If your stack is small relative to the blinds or to your opponents it makes it much less advantageous for you to play suited connectors. The reason you play suited connectors is to win a big pot and you can only win as many chips as you or your opponent has. It is also important to note that the majority of the time you will be throwing away your suited connectors after the flop so you want the risk to reward ratio to be advantageous for you to play your suited connectors pre-flop. With a short stack you should usually fold your suited connectors pre-flop. The only time you can really justify calling is if you are in late position in a limped pot. If you do find yourself in a hand and you flop a straight draw or a flush draw it is often a good move to push in if you are short stacked. You will often pick up the pot right here and if you do get a caller you won’t be too far behind. It is very difficult to play suited connectors with a short stack, but if you are able to see a flop for the right price, make sure you are the aggressor post-flop if you improve your hand.

Playing Suited ConnectorsIf you pick up suited connectors with a bigger stack you have many more options. You can limp or raise pre-flop from many positions in poker. You should change up your play with the suited connectors to keep your opponents unaware of what you are holding. If you are in late position and the pot has been raised, you need to take into account the size of the raise, the number of opponents remaining and the size of your opponents’ stacks. Suited connectors are a great starting hand when there are a lot of players to the flop. This is because if you make your hand you likely have the best of it regardless of how many opponents there are remaining. Also, the bigger your opponents stacks, the more chips you can win from them if you manage to hit the nuts. If there aren’t many players in the hand it’s often smart to bet out if you get a piece of the flop, such as 4 to a flush or a gut shot straight draw. This semi-bluff will often take down the pot right away and even if your opponent makes the call the pot will be larger for if you do make your hand. If there are a lot of players you can either check it in hopes of seeing another card or make a small bet to build the pot. When you have a big stack suited connectors are a great starting hand because there are a lot more ways to play the hand and there is the possibility of winning a very large pot.

Playing Suited Connectors Post-Flop

The biggest mistake playing suited connectors often occurs when you make the wrong hand. This “wrong hand” would be middle pair, top pair or even two pair. These hands are really quite easy to beat and even if you do have the two pair is the best hand it won’t win you a big pot. You need to remember that you are playing the suited connectors in the hopes of making a straight or a flush. If you find yourself in a big pot with just two pair you are very likely behind. If you make two pair you should definitely bet out at the pot, but if you get re-raised or the pot gets too large don’t be afraid to lay the hand down.

Suited connectors are great for winning big pots because they are hard to detect and they can often make some of the [url href=http://www.playfreepoker.org/rules/hand-rankings/ ]best hands in poker[/url] such as a flush or a straight. However, it’s important to remember that you can only win a big pot if you have a lot of chips. For this reason you should rarely play suited connectors with a short stack. Suited connectors are a fun hand to play, but it’s important to remember that it is rare to make the hand you are hoping for, so you should throw them away if the price isn’t right.