Texas Hold'em Poker Starting Hands

Badugi hand rankings are somewhat related to the Ace to Five rankings; like in Ace to Five, an ace always plays as a low card. Frequently asked questions and answers about playing poker at PokerStars. That is to say, is of the same value as when playing preflop, while and are also of equivalent value. LP unraised pot When To Call: Implied odds refer to the potential winnings for that hand versus the amount you need to make the next call meaning that even though you are dealt a less than satisfactory hand you still have a chance at a decent hand as the game goes on.

Guide to Texas Hold'em Starting Hands

With Folds or Calls in Front

These categories of non-paired hands are created by thinking about straight-making possibilities affected by connectedness and flush-making possibilties affected by suitedness. So, too, do you have a better chance of making a flush with suited hole cards than with non-suited hole cards. We like keeping these groups in mind, as hands with big cards like an ace or king can connect with flops to make big pairs. In any case, you can see how these criteria for making categories can help when it comes to building those starting hand charts.

And in fact most of those charts feature a similar ordering of hands, with Such as the flop. Or other factors — including how your opponents are playing their hands — that can quickly affect the value of your starting hands.

In poker you want to be wary about becoming too reliant on those pretty starting hand charts. They can be great for indicating which hands might be worth playing and which should be thrown away , but troublesome if allowed to outweigh all of the other important factors that arise as a hand plays out. They also can be a big help when picking up other games, too, like pot-limit Omaha or the various stud games, if only to get an early idea what hands tend to play better than others.

But for many such charts ultimately are only themselves a way to get started, before the experience of playing helps players more instinctively recognize both hand groupings and how hands tend to compare in terms of profitability.

You might think that starting hand strategy in poker is all about getting big cards and winning with them, but that's only half the story. The other half of the story is avoiding getting yourself into situations where you call down with weak cards.

If you've played poker already, you'll probably nod your head in agreement when you hear this situation:. You're in the Big Blind and you catch top pair on the flop with a weak kicker. A player bets, and you call the flop with your top pair. The player bets both the turn and river, and you call again even when you really don't want to.

When you turn your cards over, you find to your dismay that your opponent has a bigger kicker and wins the pot. You've just been out-kicked! This happens all the time and the key is to let it happen to your opponents - not you! Always remember this fundamental principle to poker: The statistics are based on ,, pair of pocket cards dealt at the real money tables.

The unit for EV is average profit in big bets. If you are looking for help on the different poker hand rankings, such as if a flush beats a straight, or two pair beats three of a kind, then visit our Poker Hand Rankings page instead. Visit our partners for online poker strategy tips and poker strategy for playing internet poker.

If players have the same highest pair, highest second pair wins. If both players have two identical pairs, highest side card wins. Two cards of a matching rank, and three unrelated side cards. If players have the same pair, the highest side card wins, and if necessary, the second-highest and third-highest side card can be used to break the tie. Any hand that does not qualify under a category listed above.

Highest card wins, and if necessary, the second-highest, third-highest, fourth-highest and smallest card can be used to break the tie. Note that suits are irrelevant for Ace to Five low.

Please also note that the value of a five-card low hand starts with the top card, and goes down from there. The lower second-highest ranking card wins the pot. Thus 6,4,3,2,A defeats 6,5,4,2,A. If necessary, the third-highest, fourth-highest and fifth-highest cards in the hand can be used to break the tie. In practice, an ace always plays as a high card in Deuce to Seven so A,5,4,3,2 is an ace high, not a straight.

Straights and flushes count against your hand in Deuce to Seven. Any five unpaired, unconnected cards of different suits, with the highest card being a seven. The lower second card wins the pot. Any five unpaired, unconnected cards of different suits, with the highest card being an eight. Any five unpaired, unconnected cards of different suits, with the highest card being a nine.

Any five unpaired, unconnected cards of different suits, with the highest card being a ten. The above are just examples of hands that may come up in play — the lowest hand will always win the pot in Deuce to Seven, even if it is a pair or worse!

Badugi does not use traditional poker hand rankings and it takes some practice to learn how to correctly read the hands. Badugi hand rankings are somewhat related to the Ace to Five rankings; like in Ace to Five, an ace always plays as a low card. However, unlike Ace to Five, each card in your hand must be a different suit and a different rank, in order to count.

Badugi hands consist of four cards, instead of the usual five. Because of this it is impossible to make a five-card straight, and having four cards in sequence does not hurt your hand. Remember, if you have cards of the same suit, only one of them counts, and if you have pairs, only one of them counts. A badugi is any hand which consists of four unpaired cards, each a different suit.

If necessary, the third-highest and fourth-highest cards in the hand can be used to break the tie.

Understanding poker card strength