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  • Gareth James

Maximising Value in Bounty Tournaments Part 3


During my live Twitch stream for Party Poker on Wednesday, which you can watch here I ran deep in the $55 Big Brawl II. I was 2/21, in the money, and feeling confident about a run to the final table.

Then an interesting hand came up:

The Button opens to 15,840 at 3.5k/7k and I 3-bet to 56,000 with AQo, which was about 3.5x his open. I like this sizing as it forces him to put more money in by calling or just going ahead and shoving. I tend to make my 3-bets out of position 3-4x the original raise depending on the effective stack size. As he was 40bb deep I chose 3.5x as a good number.

He then jams.


We're getting 1.54:1 so we need 39% equity to make a call here.

Here's how our hand stacks up against various ranges:

Versus 22+,AJs+,AQo+ we have 41.23%

Versus 55+,AQ+ we have 38.71%

Versus JJ-55,AQs+,AQo+ (where he does something other than jam with QQ+) we have 41.61%

So if he's shoving the tightest of these ranges then we have a marginally losing call.

However, in bounty tournaments, the bounty adds an extra chip value to the size of the pot. His bounty was $115 at this point which was 4.6x the original bounty of $25. Now given we start with 30,000 chips, the value of the bounty is worked out as follows:

4.6 x 30,000 / 2 = 69,000

Where 4.6 is the multiple of the bounty, 30,000 is the starting stack and the 2 represents the fact that we only win half the bounty if we eliminate this player (and half goes on our head).

So now rather than there being 339,739 chips in the middle to win, there is effectively 339,739 + 69,000 = 408,739.

It's still costing us 220,039 chips to call, but the equity we need is much less:

408,739 / 220,039 = 1.86

1.86:1 = 35% equity

So now we can feel very confident about calling in this situation, even if he has the tighter 55+,AQ+ range. If you want to take your studying of these kinds of spots one step further then you should try to guess which other hands you can call with in this situation, then compare your guess to the answer by using a tool like Equilab or Odds Oracle.

Which other hands have 35% equity or more versus 55+,AQ+?

The answer may surprise you.

66+,A9s+,K9s+,Q9s+,J9s+,T9s,AQo+,KJo+

If calling with J9s or KJo for 40bb in this spot comes as a surprise to you then I definitely recommend spending some time working these calculations out. Bounty tournaments are some of the softest online and given that the bounties are worth more than cashes until you get very deep, it makes sense to know exactly which hands you can call with in this unique format.

For those of you who like results, the Button had 55 and we didn't win the flip.

Good luck, go grab some bounties!


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