Liv Boeree is a tremendously successful, popular and multi-talented poker player with more than 3,000,000$ in tournament winnings and the EPT San Remo title under her belt. She's a model, a mean guitar player and an astrophysicist to boot which is a combination of occupations, skills, and talents that are not very easy to come by.
Liv is also a co-founder of the Raising for Effective Giving organization which as of January 2017 managed to raise over 2,000,000$ for its supported charities. She's one of the faces of the growing "Effective Altruism" movement that aims to make a difference by supporting charitable causes that have the most impact on the world.
Being Mindful of the Table Image
This is a very interesting hand (assuming you're able to look past Phil Hellmuth's awkward attempts at a conversation in the background) showcasing the fact that Liv Boeree is certainly no slouch at a live cash game table and she's capable of making dynamic, sophisticated adjustments based on recent history.
Her preflop open with 55 followed by a cbet with second pair, blockers and a bunch of backdoor equity look pretty standard. Turn is slightly more tricky, but still perfectly acceptable. Shaun Deeb is an aggressive player capable of floating the flop with a wide variety of different holdings and check/folding the turn against him would almost certainly be too weak. The river brings one of the worst cards in the deck for Boeree's range and folding would most likely be the best course of action against many opponents.
However, given the specific dynamic that we learned about in her commentary after the hand (and the fact that she's blocking a lot of straight combinations), she decided to make a very thin and impressive hero call.
Seizing the Opportunity
Continuing with the theme of aggressive adjustment in unusual situations we get this little gem of a hand. Just like in one famous High Stakes Poker hand involving Eli Elezra and Peter Eastgate, Boeree decided to capitalize on an unusual situation.
The confusion caused by the Spanish player's sloppy action made this a prime spot for a light squeeze by ensuring that there was a lot more dead money in the pot than it otherwise would be. Picking up on things like that is extremely important in a game of small edges and it's often what separates the good players from great ones.
Stack Management and the Power of Blockers
In order to become a successful tournament poker player, it's absolutely vital to learn how to use one's stack as an effective leverage and this hand is a real masterclass showcasing the concept of stack management.
QJs is a strong enough of a hand to open from just about any position in just about any stack to pot ratio. Flop cbet on a 6s8hTc is a no brainer given the amount of equity and backdoor outs. That being said, less experienced players would no doubt be tempted to just bomb the turn on a card bringing them one of the aforementioned backdoors.
Liv Boeree correctly recognized the fact that with the amount of chips left in her stack and the fact that she was blocking many Tx combos (and somewhat unlikely JJ-QQ), the unorthodox check/raise play should show a better expectation in the long run than a simple second barrel (especially if we take into account the fact that this play could lead to some real river headaches).
The Prisoners Golden Balls
Turns out that Liv had what it takes to win at a poker table long before her EPT success in 2010. Her appearance on a British daytime game show named "Golden Balls" showed us that she knew how to do some basic EV calculations, she was familiar with the concept of prisoner's dilemma and what's obviously a lot more important and impressive than that, she managed to showcased her bluffing ability without the poker chips or cards involved.
More Top Rated Content
- Creating An Off-Table Plan For Poker
- Procrastination and Poker
- How to Get in the Zone and Play Your Best Poker