Despite smaller pocket pairs having the ability to be quite a profitable poker starting hand there are many people who lose a lot to small pocket pairs because they have no idea how to play them and end up misplaying them.
The reason that small pocket pairs can be so valuable is that they give you the chance to hit a hidden monster hand, for example if you have pocket threes and another 3 appears on the flop you have three of a kind that nobody will suspect you to have. This gives you the chance to win a huge pot – particularly if another player is betting big with a pair of aces for example.
On average you will hit a third card of the same kind one in every eight times you hold a pocket pair. For this very reason make sure that you do not invest too much into the pot pre-flop and then become committed to it.
If, however you miss your trips then you shouldn’t assume the whole hand is lost. If you are only against one other player it’s often easy to steal the pot with a simple raise. This is particularly effective if there is a dry flop (a flop in which there are no draws).
In summary you should always value your pocket pairs, don’t overplay them but try to limp in and see the flop because that one in eight times that you do hit trips – you should be able to milk a lot of chips out of the pot.