Hero Call – Trust Your Gut

Hero Call

The Definition of a Hero Call

A hero call is basically when a poker player makes a very marginal call for the last bet in a round of poker. It is usually greeted by annoyance by the player trying to get the player to fold and gasps from other players at the table. A hero call relies on gut instinct and a good read more than anything else. The fact the term has been given “hero” implies the rarity and brave nature of the play.

Example Hand

It’s $3/$6 at the casino. A wild player opens to $20 from late position and we call in the big blind with:

The flop comes:

We check call $25.


We check call $60 with the turned flush draw and inside straight draw.


You miss and check. Your opponent fires again for $200. You make the call with king high.

How to Make a Hero Call

In the example above, you notice something smells fishy by the river. It’s possible he has a 4-5 or a full house but the sizing of his bet and your understanding of how he plays makes you think he either has the nuts or nothing.
In order to make the call, you need to have be brave and not care what your opponents think. Trust your gut, you’d be surprised how often it is right. Most of the time, logical reasoning, intuition and even a poker tell will lead you to making a call as in your head you know “this player doesn’t have it”.

Hero Call

Potential Problems With a Hero Call

There are a few things to consider when making the call. Make sure your hand, whilst always a bluff catcher, has enough value to make a call. If it is not strong enough to win by showdown, you need to bet or re raise it! In the example hand above, it’s entirely possible that the opponent could be bluffing with K-Q. How annoying would that be? Often, a hero call will be with bottom pair or similar, but you’d be surprised how often a player makes the call, deserves to win but the other player rakes in the pot, almost apologetically after getting found out.

Beginner Texas Hold’em Question

What is the difference between a hero call and a bad call?

Hero CallMaking a marginal call with sound logic and expert hand reading to make a brave and correct call.
Bad CallMaking a marginal call with no reasoning, pure stubbornness and an unwillingness to fold.

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Narciso Baldo is the Director and Head Coach of Texas Hold'em Questions. He has been playing poker for over 16 years. After spending many years as a professional, he now runs UK poker training site Texas Hold'em Questions. Narciso regularly writes poker articles sharing tips, strategy, news and experience with gambling enthusiasts. Narciso also writes for reputable gambling portal Casino City Times, (bio here). Contact: info@texasholdemquestions.com