Bad Play of the Day

by , May 30, 2008 | 10:43 pm

A player in a hand against Kathy Liebert made a royal flush on the turn … he claims he didn’t realize it, which seems believable when he was last to act and checked on the river.

The player was issued a warning, because at the WSOP it’s against the rules to check the nuts when you’re last to act on the river.

(This rule is new to me … makes sense-ish. But am curious what happens if, say, I have the nuts, am first to act, bet, the next guy raises, and I just call. Will see if I can find out the answer to this in the next half hour month.)

5 Comments to “Bad Play of the Day”

  1. Short-Stacked Shamus

    I believe you’d be treated the same way there, Dan. The rule applies to whomever is last to act, I think.

  2. DanM

    OK, so now the question becomes … have you ever seen a guy (usually oldish) check the nuts when in a pot with a lady?

    Apparently everyone who witnessed the Kathy Liebert guy all believe he just didn’t realize he had it. I had never heard the rule before … but I think it makes total sense. Doesn’t really penalize the honest mistake, yet puts a stop to anything nefarious.

  3. Gabe

    I’ve seen similar in my home game when the royal flush just called a bet on the river then turned his cards over. We had to tell him what he had.

  4. Kajagugu

    Rule was instated last year I think. And Shamus is right. Last to act can’t call with the absolute mortal nuts.

  5. Bundas

    Here is what the Tournament Directors say: Checking The Nuts

    The situation: The bubble is fast approaching in a major tournament. Three players contest a pot post flop. The board reads Queens of clubs, Jack of clubs, two of diamonds. Player A makes a sizable bet (about a third of his stack), Player B with a similar stack flat calls and player C passes. The turn card pairs the Queen, both players check. The river card is the 10 of clubs and both players check. Player A has the other two Queens for quad Queens and player B who was last to act has Ace of clubs and King of clubs for a Royal Flush. Player A is dating player B’s sister. How do you rule?

    Matt Savage – Matt:
    This has actually happened before and I would actually at this point issue a penalty, I would not eliminate this player from the tournament but the penalty that I would give would be a little out of the ordinary generally in something of an infraction like this. The player did not have the nuts, OK…

    The last player in line did have the nuts when he checked, correct? (JB Yes)

    So if the last player in line had the nuts I would probably issue somewhere in the neighborhood of a 40 minute penalty and only because the player may have overlooked it and I cant be sure with the fields that we have today that somebody wouldn’t overlook it however I think it’s the responsibility of the player to know what they have in their hand, again he did have the nuts he’s going to win the pot but he probably would spend the next 40 minutes on a penalty. Would I do anything to Player A who checked quad Queens? Unfortunately no because he could be check raising.

    Thomas Kremser – Thomas:
    If I can prove the hands and know about the situation, I would rule a penalty for soft play against both players. 20 minutes away from the table!

    Jack – Jack:
    Obvious collusion with soft play. I would issue each player a 20 minute penalty.

    Liam Flood – Liam:
    There’s nothing you can do about it. The player with the royal flush didn’t know the other player had 4 queens. If he doesn’t want to knock him out he doesn’t have to. There is an old old rule in poker that you can’t bet a royal flush, you can only call with it. The player with the royal flush probably thought he wasn’t going to get a call anyway.

    Mel – Mel:
    Where did you dig these questions!! Lol Soft playing is not allowed in any tournament. I would give them both 20min penalties and tell them both that that was their last strike, next strike they are out. Pot awarded to Royal Flush
    The thing is that also they could have checked to induce a bet which didn’t happen but when the Royal Flush and Quads hit betting should have happened.

    Marty Wilson – Marty:
    I’ve give him a penalty, I’d penalise him for 20 minutes, it’s blatant cheating.

    The Verdict:

    Soft playing your opponent in a poker tournament is cheating. It is the responsibility of each and every player to play each hand for their own gain. By soft playing a relative or friend and particularly by not knocking them out you are cheating every player that is left in the event. It should certainly be punished but it can sometimes be hard to police.

    The majority of our TDs here are in agreement. The player with the royal flush should be awarded the pot. There is a possibility that he had misread his hand but a 20 minute penalty would be a fair outcome. Repeat offenses should result in more severe penalties and ultimate disqualification.

    It is harder however with the player who had quad queens. Matt says he wouldn’t penalize him as he could be check raising whereas Thomas, Jack and Mel would give him a time penalty. This is interesting because there is an argument that player A’s hand shouldn’t matter. He is either colluding or he isn’t – his hand is immaterial. At the very least he should get a verbal warning and the TD in charge should keep a close eye on him.