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Clarkmeister Theorem

Clarkmeister theorem is named after the user Clarkmeister, who posted it on poker forum 2 + 2 in 2004. After intensive discussion among professionals this theoretical statement received the right to life.

Clarkmeister theorem review

This theorem allows to take pots with the help of bluff and by beating the opponent with a stronger flush out of the pot. To understand the point of this theorem, it is enough to put yourself in your opponent’s shoes.

Statement of the theorem

If you play heads-up and on the river there appears the 4th card of the same suit and you are to act first – bet.

Clarkmeister theorem works under the following conditions:

  • you play heads-up;
  • you are out of position;
  • you place a big bet.

Four suited cards can force your opponent to question the strength of his cards. Action out of position gives you a big advantage, but the important point still is the determination of the bet size. Backing your action with a big bet often forces the opponent to fold even with a weak flush (or without it), and small bet weakens the bluff. With a bet of less than ½ pot probability of a fold equity is under a question. If you want Clarkmeister theorem to work for you, do not be afraid to place a big bet (at least ¾ of pot).

If a player, who is to act first, is familiar with the style of the opponent’s game, the effectiveness of the theorem application increases. At this he should be cautious when betting against the experienced opponent – having a strong hand, he may try to take advantage of the situation. In the game against 2 or more opponents, probability of a successfully bluff, under Clarkmeister theorem, is very small.

Clarkmeister theorem example

Player A holds a king of clubs and the jack of clubs.

Player B raises, player A defends blind by a call.

On the flop, there are 10 of hearts, 7 of hearts and 5 of hearts.

Player A checks, player B also checks.

On the turn there comes queen of diamonds. Player A checks again, player B bets.

River brings 8 of hearts, and as a result player A can apply Clarkmeister theorem.

1000 chips constitute the pot. If player A makes donk bet, player B is very likely to fold, and player A will take the pot.

Application of the theorem makes it possible to turn your hand into a bluff. If you suspect that your hand on the river is obviously stronger than the opponent’s hand, there is no need to bluff. In this case, it is advisable to play in another way to get maximum value.