Turn Your Hand Up

The simplest way to improve your results in poker is to turn your hand face up at the end of the hand when you have been called. If you are ashamed of what you are playing then maybe you need to turn a few more hands face up and turn that shame into an improved poker strategy. I am already getting ready for the people who think they know poker to tell me all the reasons why they do not want to reveal their hand. The first and only argument is that they choose not to give away free information. I am sure this is a good argument against better than average players. Trust me when I tell you that very few if any players can recall more than about a hundred hands you played at the end of a session. If you turned over every called hand for the rest of your life I doubt it would cost you more than a couple bets over the course of your life.

Why should you turn over your called hands? Simply put it is what you are supposed to do. Secondly, players overlook their hand all the time and muck the winning hand. Phil Ivey did it during the 2009 WSOP Main Event on television no less. Phil being the best poker player on the planet Earth means that we have all done it a time or two. Usually when you muck a winner you have simply overlooked your hand or the board. I myself have done it hand the hand recovered by the dealer because I had tabled it face up before deciding I was beat and mucking the winning hand. If the hand was turned up on the table and the dealer read it there is no way for the player to kill the hand. Yes that is a poker lesson.

Just today at the 2010 WSOP in the Omaha 8 or better a hand came down with three players and one player got all-in pre-flop. Because there was side action between the other two players the all-in player was not required to turn the hand up. After the river when the two players showed for the side pot the all-in player threw his cards face down toward the muck saying that he was beat. The dealer grabbed the cards and turned them face up as required in every all-in situation. You know what comes next! The player had the best hand and was awarded the main pot and is not in fact out of the tournament. Not only did he overlook his hand it was for his tournament life and there was absolutely no reason not to turn the hand over. People overlook hands particularly in Omaha and there is no real penalty for turning the hand face up and letting the dealer decide who won.

There are many ways to lose money at poker but being stubborn is not one that you should exercise. Go ahead call me crazy and all that, I am a big boy and I can take it. I am sure Ivey wants that pot and if you were able to magically find out how many times you threw away the best hand I am sure you would be alarmed and want that money back. Just turn the cards face up the dealer will tell you what you have.


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