How To Check Raise The Flop
In order to check raise on the flop you need to be in early position and a player in later position must have put in some action pre flop. A good example of this is when you are raised in the small or big blind by a player in late position. You know that many players will almost always raise in late position if there has not been any raise in front of them. So even if you are holding a premium hand, you just call the flop and conceal the strength of your hand. After the flop, being in early position, you check to the raiser and he bets. Now is a good time to check raise if you have a good hand or if you think you have just seen a continuation bet following a position raise. Doing this can switch control of the future play of the hand to you. If you are just called then on the next street you need to either follow up with a bet or set up another check raise.
Advantages of check raising the flop
The main advantage of check raising the flop is that this is a very strong move and may just take the pot down for you right there or with your next bet on the Turn.
Disadvantages of check raising the flop
If the player that you just check raised on the flop is holding a strong hand then you may get re-raised. This might even happen if the other player does not have a strong hand as long as he is an aggressive player. When this happens you are put in the position to decide if you are going to call the 3 bet, make it a 4 bet, or just throw you hand away. To make this decision you will need to consider your own hand and the remaining cards to come, your previous experience with the other player and the possible range of hands that you put him on, and the texture of the board.
Check raising with a good hand
When you check raise with a good hand you are doing this to build the pot. You have to make the decision whether check raising on the flop is better than check raising on the following street. If you believe that the other player is just being aggressive and betting his position rather than the quality of his hand then you might want to just call and put off the check raise until the next street. This would give you the opportunity to gain an extra bet or two. Also if this is a no limit game then the Turn bet is usually much larger than the Flop bet.
Check raising without a good hand or on a draw
As stated earlier in this article, check raising is a very strong move. Check raising on the flop is a very good way to buy a hand against an aggressive player that made a position raise and a continuation bet. You need to use your previous experience with this other player to help you determine if he is more likely playing his position or playing his hand. The texture of the Flop should also be a consideration because if the Flop is all small cards without straight of flush possibilities then the other player probably did not improver his hand and since you only called from the small or big blind pre flop, you could be representing that you have two pair or a set of small cards.