A brave bluff is one of the most beautiful things poker has to offer. One single good move is often enough to win a pot against a mediocre hand.
In our video of the week we’ll see what happens when two stubborn players clash in a hand that doesn’t have any showdown value -- and where the regular laws of poker don’t seem to count anymore.
The Umbrella Institution of All Poker
We’re at the highly remunerated invitational tournament of the International Federation of Poker (IFP) that took place in London in 2011.
During the late stages of the poker boom the IFP hosted a $500,000 tournament. The IFP tried to be the umbrella institution of all poker organizations and it didn’t follow any financial goals.
It was the first time famous players like Sandra Naujoks, Vicky Coren and Raul Mestre represented the IFP. Sadly, it was also the last time.
This tournament and the whole event would have probably been forgotten by now if it hadn’t been for one incredible hand.
The Long Goodbye
Pre-flop this looks like just another hand. Mestre raises from the hijack with nothing but all the players are deep as it’s still early so he doesn’t risk very much.
Everybody folds around to Coren in the big blind sitting with 9-6s. She calls, but when the flop hits you expect this hand to be over very quickly.
The flop is A♥ T♦ 2♣ and there’s nothing in it for her. What you expect now is for Coren to check, Mestre to bet, Coren to fold, hand over.
That couldn’t be more wrong. Instead what follows is one of the longest bluffs in poker history.
It starts with a check-raise by Coren, who has nothing, followed by a call by Mestre, who also has nothing. Coren bets with just a flush draw and Mestre raises with just a gutshot.
Eventually Coren has no chips and nothing left to take it one step further. It doesn’t look like Mestre has much either. By the way it was Mestre who beat Coren heads-up to win the tournament and $250,000. It pays off to be brave in poker.