As you become a more experienced Razz poker player, you’ll need to adjust your strategy accordingly. In the beginner Razz poker strategy, we discussed the importance of Razz starting hand selection and observing the board to determine the strength and potential growth of your own hand. In this article, we’ll move onto to a slightly more complex, Intermediate Razz Poker Strategy, focusing on higher stakes and the art of deception. Note that poker players new to Razz Poker should start with the Beginners Razz Poker Strategy. There are three sections to suit all levels of Razz Poker players. Here are some links to more Razz poker strategy guides. Be sure to read the rules of Razz poker if you are not sure how to play.
- Beginners Razz poker strategy
- Advanced Razz poker Strategy
- Razz poker tournament strategy
- Razz poker sitngo strategy
- Best Razz poker sites
We strongly recommend following the Razz poker strategies in accordance to your experience level. Once you have incorporated the Beginners and Intermediate Razz Poker Strategies, only then should you move on to the Advanced level.
Intermediate Razz Poker Strategy – Increasing the Stakes
As a player’s Razz skills increase, they are usually inclined to play for higher stakes. If you do increase the stakes, make sure that you only move up one level. Do not jump from micro-limits of $.02/$.04 to $5/$10. The competition will be much tighter, and you are not yet ready to face this kind of action. By moving up slowly, one level at a time, mastering each along the way, you will find the adjustment much easier to handle.
Intermediate Razz Poker Strategy – The Art of Deception
Bluffs and Semi-Bluffs can be used at different intervals of the game. The effectiveness of each is generally determined by the board. Assuming you have increased from micro-limit stakes, these tactics become very useful. If you are playing micro-limits, avoid Straight Bluffing and only use the occasional Semi-Bluff. Never Bluff too often or you’ll find yourself being called at every turn.
Intermediate Razz Poker Strategy – Straight Bluffing
Straight Bluffing is when you force your opponents to Fold out early, even though you have a terrible hand. The best time to pull off a Straight Bluff is during or before the 5th Street. We’ll break down the best Bluffing maneuvers based on the current Street.
Bluffing on 3rd Street: There is only one good reason to Bluff on 3rd Street, and that is when your Open Card is a Wheel Card (A through 5), your Hole Cards do not fit into the Wheel, and all opponent’s are showing Face Cards. In this situation, Raise. It doesn’t matter that your Hole Cards are high; if your opponents have any intelligence at all, they will Fold. You only stand to gain the Ante and Bring-In Bets, but stealing forced bets is a great way to keep your stack on the rise.
Bluffing on 4th Street: If your Open Cards are both in the Wheel, and each of your opponents have at least one 9 or higher showing, Raise. Again, they will Fold if they are smart.
Bluffing on 5th Street: With three Open Cards of 6 and below (no Pairs, obviously), and your opponent showing two cards of 7 or higher, Raise and send them out of the hand.
Intermediate Razz Poker Strategy - Semi Bluffing
A Semi-Bluff is when you have a decent hand, but not a sure fire winner, and want to bring the hand to an end before your opponents improve. Bluffing in Razz poker is an important part of a well rounded strategy. On 6th and 7th Street, it is usually best to stick with Semi-Bluffs. At this point, your opponents have already invested a good deal of chips and will not be inclined to give them up without good reason. Also, you have 4 cards showing, so they have a pretty good idea of your holdings anyway. On the other hand you will also have a good idea of what they are holding so use this information when deciding if you should semi bluff.
Semi-Bluffing on 6th Street: The best time to Semi-Bluff is when your 6th Street is a scare card, like an Ace, 2 or 3, and at least two of your previous Open Cards are 6 or below. If your opponents are showing 2 or more high cards, you can adjust your Semi-Bluff strategy. So long as your Open Cards are lower than theirs, you have a pretty good shot at scaring them out.
Semi-Bluffing on 7th Street: This Semi-Bluff is much like the 6th Street, but with no scare card option since the 7th Street is generally dealt face down. Again, you’ll need at least three very low Open Cards, preferably on the Wheel. Be sure to observe the board and make sure your Open Cards are well below that of your opponents.
- For example, if your opponent is showing 4-K-9-6
- And you are showing 2-6-A-3
His lowest possible 5-card hand is 9 high, while yours is 6 high. Even if you have 3-A-K in the Hole (King High since the 3 and Ace paired), he doesn’t know this and will assume you have the better hand if you Raise. Assimilate this Intermediate Razz Poker Strategy into the Beginners Razz Poker Strategy, playing a tight but opportunistically deceptive game, and the chips will be practically magnetized to your stack.
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