The debacle of running it 2x in SSNL and the struggles of straddling

Don’t get it twisted now because I love the option to run it twice when it’s available but I hate how the subject is discussed with such disdain in live poker rooms. Literally not a day goes by when someone doesn’t voice their incorrect/worthless opinion on running it twice.

Fish: “Yeah man I like never run it twice, that’s so lame

Fun-player: “Yeah and I especially don’t get why people run it twice when they are ahead in the hand… don’t they want to win!? Sure I’ll give you twice the chance to hit your draw! so dumb

LOLREG/Troll: “I just embrace the variance and gamble-it-up


O.K. so some people never run it twice that’s up to them and they wear this ‘hardcore’ badge proudly- that’s fantastic I like these people because you know what to expect and it speeds the game up when it’s time for the 2x? decision.

For myself?

I always let my opponent decide whether they want to run it once or twice against me and I’ll usually steer them in the direction of twice by saying something like “run it twice if you want mate? You choose….” and they pretty much always go for the 2x option immediately as I give them a easy out! And if they are a never-ran-it-twice-badass they will say ‘no’ from the off.

This is easy, fast and lets the opponents save face because you are first to offer the option of 2x.

O.K. so why do I like running it twice so much!?

  1. You encourage other people to do the same when they have an option to 2x creating a potential pandemic on the table.
  2. You (almost) always get to see BOTH hands in a run-it-twice scenario to learn more about how both your opponents play strong hands/ draws.
  3. The sweat of running two boards with exposed hands for a big pot with a live rail is arguably one of the funnest things that can happen in poker.
  4. If you are seen as someone who always runs it twice then it encourages ACTION.

Let me explain,

If a fun-player sees that you always run it twice then nothing is going to stop them jamming in all of their flush draws in 400bb+ pots because they know you will run it twice with them (and he’s bound to hit that draw on one board right!? heh) But if  you never run it twice he’s going to play far more timid against you and the pots will never get as large. This is the exact opposite of what you want!

Make sense?

Sometimes I wish that running it 2x never existed however because it creates some of the most strung-out, time-wasting and awkward moments at the poker table whereby there is this huge stigma that running it twice is really uncool. If you are playing poker to look cool you’ve missed the point. So when a player is talking about how running it twice is lame and then they later get an option to run it twice it wastes so much time because they don’t want to back on their word by running it 2x so there’s ALWAYS a long slow consideration for the players feeling that they need to wait a while before agreeing to see two boards”errrmmm ahhhh hmmmm ahh go on then”. Listen guys please stop wasting everyone’s time.

Now here’s another annoying thing about live poker and it is the straddles. Now again I must stress it’s not the straddles themselves that are annoying its how they are perceived again with this weird anti-stigma (is that a word?) …no….  then the honour of being ‘cool’ again.

And why is it always the BB who turns to his left smirks and says “straddle?” to UTG to start that particular peer-pressure-fuelled  and annoying conversation.


Actually I do hate straddles a bit to be honest and it’s for the same reason as above they discourage action.

People play low stakes poker because they want to see lots of cheap flops and straddles throw a spanner in the works. A fun-player would have no problem making a raise in the CO with J3s for £8 in a £1/£2 but they would never make a 4x open to £20 with the same hand if there was a straddle because it’s gone past their pain-threshold and causes them to tighten up. They also defend the blinds and RFI’s much tighter too which makes the table less profitable.


What do you think?

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