In poker, a steal is a kind of bluff. It is a raise in a round of poker on an inferior hand, with the purpose of showing strength and coercing players with superior hands to fold. Steals are most appropriate late in a hand when a number of players have already folded, or when there are only a few players in the game. The steal, known as an “ante steal” or a “blind steal,” will not win large amounts of money, but can accumulate a decent take over time if the player to the left of the stealer doesn’t contest the steals.
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The steal is a move used primarily by an aggressive player, often with a number of chips already won. If the steal is not successful, and the opposing player does not back down, the stealer is looking at a loss. Repeated steals are not advisable when playing at a table with experienced players, because an experienced player will notice the pattern and raise a defense against the act. That player may reraise against the stealer to call his bluff and to build the ante, leading the stealing player to lose more than was originally at stake. A stealing play, therefore should be used sparingly to avoid detection.
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