Setmining

  • Setmining is a strategic move to passively entering the pot or defending to a 3bet preflop with a low to medium pocket pair in an attempt to hit a set on the flop.
    Setmining is a strategic move that can be found even in the earliest poker literature and books.
    The goal is to see the flop as cheap as possible against a strong range in order to hit a set on the flop (12% of the time on average). The play is taking into account that due to the opponents strong range there are a lot of implied odds if the player hits the set, in order to make the call profitable preflop.

    Old literature and books employ a hit or miss strategy where you only put money into the pot if you made your set but fold if you missed.
    While this strategy has worked well in the past and is still working against weaker opponents, a strong villain might see through a setmine call and be less hesitant betting their hands or more hesitant calling off the value raises. In that case the implied odds significantly drop and with considering the rake too the play can become minus EV. Especially with low pairs that suffer from getting "oversetted", which means that the opponent flops a higher set.

    Rule of thumb: The better your opponents handreading skills are, the less implieds a setmining strategy has and the more "oversetting" issues become relevant.

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