Continuation Bet – A bet made by a player as a continuation of their bet on a previous betting round.
Often, when you bet in a poker game, it is also correct to bet on the next available betting round. This is called a
“continuation bet,” because you are continuing to bet the hand. There are many reasons why continuation bets are so common.
One reason is that checking after betting on the previous round is a sign of weakness, and is often an indication a player
cannot call. So, quite frequently, if you check in this spot you will be bet off your hand. This is especially true in
pot limit and
no limit games. In these games a player will commonly
make a small to medium sized continuation bet in order to protect against being bet off their hand. This is called a “break bet,”
because the player who makes it is trying to “put on the breaks” (slow the action) by betting.
There is another reason for the prevalence of continuation bets. As the hand progresses, the pot tends to grow and the field
of competitors tends to thin. This provides incentive to bet because of a favorable change in the risk/reward scenario
(more money, fewer players in the pot). A continuation bet can also disguise your hand. If you had semi-bluffed or bet a draw
on the previous round, a continuation bet can represent a completed hand. This means that even if you miss your draw it is often
correct to keep betting. With all of these factors in play, there is a natural tendency for players to continue betting once they start.
Of course the other players in the game know that there will be a lot of continuation bets made with weak hands. They will look for
tells from the player as he is making the bet,
and will try to evaluate the strength of his hand. If they sense weakness they may try to raise and steal the pot (possibly with
a continuation bet of their own).
Usage: Continuation Bet on the Turn
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