3 Betting In Razz – When To Three Bet and When Not To

PokerStars.com3 betting in Razz is by no means an absolute science, in fact the equity advantage you have on 3rd street even with A2|3 isn’t that big over weaker low draws such as 45|7 or 34|7 (in the previous example equity advantage pretty much means how far ahead you are).

That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be three betting in Razz it just means you have to do it with the absolute top of your range or have a good enough reason to warrant a 3 bet. This article will explain when to 3 bet in Razz and how you can adjust your 3 betting range (range being the hands you 3 bet with) depending on what situation you find yourself in.

Here are some considerations you must take into account when deciding to 3bet or not:

– How many players have acted before you and what their actions were
– How many players remain to act and what cards do they have visible
– What cards do I know have been folded already
– What is the position of the player I am 3 betting
– What are the tendencies of the original raiser, how do they play down the streets and what table image do they have

The list of considerations above should help you decide when to 3bet and when not to. For example if you hold 23|5 and the player under the gun has open raised with an ace door card and another player holding a 3 door card has called you shouldn’t be 3 betting your hand. Both other players are visibly stronger than you and the original raiser should have a premium hand given he has raised when first to act.

Don’t go 3 betting in Razz when you have A2|7 and a player with an 7 door card has opened the pot but there are still multiple players to act behind you with low door cards showing. The same goes if the players who’ve already folded have mucked a bunch of cards you need to complete your low hand.

You are free to three bet in Razz when you have a strong holding and a weak player has opened the pot, one you know to be inferior to you and one who plays badly down the streets. The same goes for players you know to be calling stations. Against players who fold too much you can open your 3 betting range and exploit there weakness. The same goes for players who fold too much on 4th or 5th street, push them about a bit on 3rd and force them off the pot after you have 3 bet winning you a bigger pot than if you’d have just called.

The lower stakes you play the more you should only be 3 betting in Razz when there is value to be had. Players are much more likely to call your 3 bet at the 4c/8c, 10c/20c and 25c/50c levels online than they are when you move up the stakes. This doesn’t mean there won’t be overly tight players at the lower limits it just means that there are less of them and there for less situations in which 3 betting light could be profitable.

Arguments do exist for never three betting in Razz. Some players believe that because your edge on 3rd street is so small the only thing you achieve by 3 betting is you give away the strength of your hand. Whilst this is true there are certainly spots in which you can exploit your opponents with a 3 bet they are just much more few and far between than a game such as no limit Holdem.

You can start 3 betting players you feel are stealing too much especially if you are between them and the bring in player and have a lower visible card than the opening raiser.

3 betting when playing Razz was something which I certainly struggled with when I first started playing. If you’re in the same kind of situation then I suggest you stick to 3 betting for value against poor opponents and three betting players who are obviously stealing to frequently. In the games at PokerStars most players aren’t paying enough attention to realise you are only 3 betting when you have a hand so you don’t need to worry too much about your 3 betting table image. In fact the Razz cash games at PokerStars are some of the weakest I’ve ever played in, much weaker than live Razz games that’s for sure.

Check out the Razz games and see what I mean at the Pokerstars website.

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