Poker is fast becoming the richest card game on the planet. Every year that goes by sees more and more cash prizes won by the best players. The biggest tournaments in the world attract the most skilled poker experts. The World Series of Poker events showcase the most prestigious poker games.
The most profitable wins in WSOP contests offer winners millions of dollars. The potential for huge wins has led to organizations creating tournaments for the 100 million global poker players.
Anyone who is a fan of movies knows all about the glamour of the casino on screen. Poker is a big part of the allure of casino-style gaming. But to be truly successful at the game, a player needs to know what to look out for and aim for.
The best Poker hands to look for
The best players need to know exactly what poker hands are worth and how best to play them. Poker is a game of skill and chance. The luck of the draw heightens the chance aspect. A hand of cards is the selection of up to 5 cards that a player is dealt out. The strength of the poker hand is decided by the various combinations that can be made. The player needs to make important decisions about what hand is best to pursue.
Here are the strongest hands in Poker:
Originally called a full hand and sometimes known as a full boat, a full house is a hand that has three cards of one suit and two of another. If another player matches a full house with a full house, it is graded first on the score of its trio and then on the pair. So, for example, a 7 of diamonds, 7 of spades, and 7 of clubs with a 5 of spades and 5 of hearts would rank better than a 4 of hearts, 4 of clubs, 4 of diamonds with a 6 of diamonds, and 6 of clubs.
A straight flush is a hand that contains five cards, all of the same suit ranked in sequence. This could be a run such as Queen, Jack, 10, 9, and 8 of Spades. If two players both have a straight flush at the end of a round, it will be the hand with the highest card that wins.
The highest possible straight flush is often known as a ‘Royal Flush.’ The Royal Flush is a straight flush that begins with the Ace card and then takes all of the royal cards and the 10 of a single suit. So, the sequence would be Ace, King, Queen, Jack, 10 of diamonds (or whichever suit).
A flush is a hand with five non-consecutive cards of the same suit. As with the more valuable flushes, the suit itself is of no value. The rank of the cards only comes into play if facing off against another hand made up with a flush. In that case, it is the hand with the highest card that wins. So, Ace, Queen, 9, 7, and 3 of diamonds would beat a flush of 10, 8, 7, 5, 4 of clubs.
Four of a Kind
A four of a kind hand includes four cards of one suit. The suit itself is not the determining factor when two four-of-a-kind hands compete against each other. If that is the case, the winner will be the score of the quadruplet in hand. So, four Queens of hearts and 10 clubs would rank higher than four 8’s of diamonds and a Jack of spades.
How to Get the Best Hands in Poker
The aim of the game in Poker is to win the pot of bets made by the players at the table. To do this, a player makes a bet hoping – or giving the impression – that they have the best hand. To get off to the best start in many poker variations, it is a good idea to make a sound judgment on the cards dealt. While there is always a strong element of chance in the different possible outcomes, there are certain things a player can be aware of. Higher cards are generally stronger than lower numerical cards. Royal cards are also good to look out for, as are any consecutive runs of at least three cards. Pairs of numbers and three or fours of a single suit can also be valuable.
Psychology is key to the gameplay of the most successful poker players. Even when they have succeeded in securing one of the best possible hands, the best players are masterful at not revealing it. Players who show that they have a good hand might be excited about it and fail to conceal their emotions. This could be detrimental to their progress later in the game as rivals could have them marked as easy to read.
Bluffing is another integral part of winning at poker. It can sometimes be advantageous to a layer to try to convince the table that their hand is better than it really is. This can help to continue the betting and force a loss of confidence in competitors who might think they cannot compete with the apparently stronger hand.
Poker is a game with many variations, but the fundamentals of making sound decisions based on the strength of a hand remain in place. Players can improve their chances of a successful game at the table by taking note of exactly what to look out for.