Poker hands

Poker is a fairly easy game to master, but it is still difficult for some people to understand. In order to understand the logic of the game, one must first understand the basics and rules of poker. This implies knowing all the hands and their rankings. This is what will allow you to improve your analysis of poker. Find all the information on this subject in this article.

What is a poker hand?

A poker hand is a combination of cards held by each player after the cards have been dealt, the bets made and the showdown. It is the value of the hand that determines the winner of a poker game. A hand consists of five cards. When one player shows his hand, the other players can decide to show theirs as well (if they have a stronger hand) or simply fold (if their hand is weak).

Hand rankings

There are 10 classic poker hands that are ranked by how often they appear. Indeed, the rarer a hand is, the more powerful it is. Thus you have :

The royal straight flush

In poker, this is the strongest combination and is extremely rare. It is a five-card straight from 10 to Ace (10, J, Q, K, Ace) of the same suit (heart, spade, clubs or diamonds).

Straight flush

These are five consecutive cards of the same suit with a value lower than the Royal Flush straight. For example: cards 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 of clubs.

The Four of a Kind

A square is when you have four identical cards. For example, the Ace of each suit.

The full house

It is a five-card suit in which you have three identical cards and two more identical cards. In other words, you have a full house when you have, for example, three kings and two aces.

The suit

This is a very similar hand to a straight flush, with the only difference being that here the cards are not in sequence. So when you have 2, 4, 6, 8 and 10 of hearts for example, you have a flush.

Straight Flush

Straight is a sequence of five consecutive cards that are not of the same suit. So you can have 2 and 3 of spades, 4 of clubs, 5 of diamonds and 6 of hearts.

Three of a Kind

This is a sequence of three identical cards that are not of the same suit. For example, you can have three Aces: an Ace of spades, an Ace of hearts and an Ace of clubs.

The Double Pair

A double pair is the same as two identical cards next to two other identical cards. For example: two Aces and two 5s.

The Pair

You have a pair when you have two identical cards in your deck.

The high card

This is the name given to a game that does not have any of the combinations listed above. Here, the hand with the highest card(s) wins the game.

Starting and Folding Hands

The decision to play a hand or to discard it depends on several factors. In case you have one of the strongest combinations, it is obvious to play that hand. On the other hand, if you are not the first to play and your opponent has a stronger hand than you, it is best to fold the hand you have. In cases where you have a high card with powerful cards such as an Ace or a King, it is best to play it as a start.