What is Super-Bluff?
A ‘super-bluff’ is a bluff made by a player with a very weak hand, which succeeds against a far stronger one. A bluff is a misleading action by a player, made to influence the betting actions and card decisions of their opponents. The informal term ‘super-bluff’ is often used after the cards are revealed, if it is shown that the victory by the bluffing player was particularly impressive.
In poker, players battle against each other for control of the pot. Winning the pot is straightforward if you hold the royal flush – an unbeatable hand – as all you need to do is stay in the game. When the cards are revealed, no other hand can possibly beat what you hold, and no matter what strategies are applied by the other players, you can have confidence in your hand. However, anything but this best hand has a chance of being beaten by another player – even by a weaker hand.
If a player holds a poor hand but wants to try for the pot anyway, they can bluff their way through the game. This means to act in a misleading way, suggesting through their decisions, body language and betting that they hold different cards or that they intend to play a different way. A player might be able to intimidate a stronger hand than theirs into folding by betting high and acting as though they hold the high flush, thereby ‘stealing’ the pot with a ‘super-bluff’.
Super-bluff refers to a particularly bold bluff, from a player with a very weak hand – for example, a 3-5-7-K-K high pair – against a very strong hand like the 10-J-Q-K-A offsuit straight. If the player who holds the king pair can convince the player with a straight hand to fold – and take the pot in the process – then they have pulled off the ‘super-bluff’ technique successfully.