Mistake in a big pot

One of the strategies I employ in NL Hold'em cash games is making small mistakes on purpose in small pots in exchange for others making big mistakes in big pots. Here's a hand in which I made a huge mistake, which cost me a lot in missed opportunity:

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Live game 1/2 NL $100

SB (seemingly lucky player who has over $300 in chips. While he seems lucky, he's not necessarily shown down garbage or less than the nuts thus far.).

BB (friend of SB, more solid player has over $200 in chips).

UTG (playing any two cards. Stuck to the table for over $600 at this point, has $85 in chips. Would love to isolate).

Late position player ($275 in chips. Seems to overplay draws quite a bit. Not very aggressive until the river).

Your's truly ($225 in chips and on the button).


UTG limps for $2
2 more limpers.
Late position raises to $12.
I call cleanly on the button with A ♣ 5 ♣.
The SB, BB, and UTG.
All others fold.

Pot contains roughly $50

4 handed, the flop comes: 3 ♣ , 10 ♥ , jack ♦

When I initially called with this hand, I was not so delusional that I thought I had the best hand. I was looking to get into a big pot, catch, and/or knock someone off the pot and take it down. I'd taken down several pots in position with aggressive play, betting with nothing. Sometimes, firing two barrells to get my point across.

SB & BB & UTG check. Late position (original raiser) - bets $25. I make the call cleanly, looking for a reason to pop it on the turn, or maybe a free card, for that matter.

The SB, BB, and UTG all call as well.

Pot now contains roughly $150.

Turn: 8 ♣

This card is good for me in that there's a flush draw on the board, of which I have the ace of clubs. It also presents a possible straight on the board.

The SB checks, BB bets out $20. UTG shoves allin for $43. Late position calls cleanly. I sit there and think. I KNOW I have the implied odds to call. I also have correct pot odds. I'm really worried about one of the blinds and the money they have behind. Too many people have bet out at this point, and I'm pretty convinced that someone has a straight, and/or a set, maybe even a flush draw. While the odds scream call, I fold. The BB calls after the SB folds.

The river is a Jack ♣ . This gives me the flush, however it also puts the possibility of quads or a bot on the board. The BB moves allin, and the late position calls. BB had AJ, SB had flush 9-7, UTG had pocket queens. It appears that had I stayed, I'd have had the nuts.

Opportunity missed. My mistake! Overall, it was a quite profitable session though.


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