What is a ‘Steal Raise’?
A steal raise is a late raise in the round, sometimes made as a form of squeeze play, which is aimed at removing players from the table through increasing the stakes to much for their hand. It can act as a re-raise, or as a raise which follows a series of calls. Steal raises are so named because the player’s goal is to steal the pot through their bets, rather than their hand.
‘Steal Raise’ explained
In poker, players are aiming to have the best cards at the table, as this is a certain way to secure the pot for themselves. However, even a bad hand can win the pot if it is played correctly by the player. Poker players often use a technique called bluffing, which means to mislead players into believing a hand is weaker or stronger than it really is, and thus influencing their play decisions and their bets. A player with a less than great hand will want as few people as possible in the showdown if they are to have a chance at winning.
If a player attempts to steal raise, they have made a raise with the intention of claiming the pot for themselves – often applied as a form of bluff. The move is used by players who are seated in a late position – that is, they are sat in positions that act toward the end of the round. To attempt a steal raise, the player should make a late raise in the round and therefore require the final opponents to do the same. This can often induce a fold from other players, feeling they do not have cards high enough to risk matching that raise. It is often a form of bluff, designed to reduce the number of people competing for the pot, and therefore giving an average or weak hand the chance to ‘steal’ the win.