Don’t worry, even the greatest poker players in the world get stumped - and regularly. The question of what you should do next crops up more frequently than a mole rat in a fairground attraction with a plastic hammer.
To help you figure it all out, here are three variables for you to consider when you are trying to figure out what to do next in a poker tournament.
Hand Ranges: A range of hands is a number of likely card combinations a poker player is holding in a game of poker. A range is not expressed as a number, such as 1, 2 or 3; it is expressed as a series of card combinations, like AA, KK, QQ or 78s.
A hand range is predicted based on a series of variables such as player type, game dynamic, position, and history.
Pot Equity: Pot equity is the term used to define how much money you stand to win - or lose - in a particular hand, if the same situation presented itself over a large sample of hands.
Fold Equity: Fold equity is the likelihood that you will win the hand without showdown i.e. you manage to force your opponent to fold a better hand.
All three of these factors allow you to determine what course of action to take in a game of poker, based on your expected value in the hand.
Once you understand your opponents likely range of hands and how much pot and fold equity you have, then you can complete the analysis with a little bit of maths to determine what your next course of action should be.
Theoretically, if you always make the correct mathematical decision, over the long run, you should fall on the winning side of the poker line.