What is ‘Whipsaw’?
Whipsaw is a casino term and refers to a style of play that involves players adopting an aggressive style of play by both betting and raising either side of a calling player. The calling player then becomes a ‘squeezed player’ and is effectively being ‘whipsawed’ simply by being sandwiched between two players trying to out-bet each other. If a player finds themselves being whipsawed, they have to decide whether to continue calling or stop betting and let the players seated either side of them to compete amongst themselves.
Sometimes players will resort to unorthodox methods to try and scoop the pot, this could mean teaming up with other players on the table in an attempt to whipsaw an opponent. Although collusion isn’t something experienced players tend to do, there are still plenty of players that are more than willing to share information regarding their hands so that they can split the pot. If a player is unlucky enough to be sat in-between two players who have made such an agreement, they will have to use their experience and remain calm if they don’t want to find themselves whipsawed.
Unless a player remains vigilant and studies their opponents’ playing strategy, they could end up being sandwiched which could see them making an early exit from the table. Experienced players tend to advise adopting a conservative approach by not getting involved with large bets unless the sandwiched player is holding a particularly strong hand. If they are holding a strong hand, they could turn the situation to their advantage simply by calling the bets only to reveal a stronger hand after the river. On other occasions, most advice tends to state that a player has to ensure that their poker face is as strong as possible, that way the opponents who have colluded to sandwich the player will have less chance of taking advantage. It’s much harder to whipsaw a player who gives little away than one who has a much more obvious playing strategy.