Texas Hold ’em poker is one of the most popular card games in the world. If you want to learn one style of poker, Texas Hold ‘em should be it. Whether you’re playing for pennies with your friends or playing for high stakes in a casino, Texas Hold ‘em is a classic game with simple rules. One thing you must know is the hand rankings. Then you will know if you are winning or losing a hand. To check them out look at the winning hands section. That is the goal of Texas Hold’em, to have the best five card hand and beat the other players, or to be clever and to bluff them into thinking your hand is the best one. Either way you are the winner.
To begin the game, each player is dealt two cards, known as hole cards. It’s vital that you not let the other players have any idea what cards you hold, regardless of whether they make a good or a bad hand.
Texas Hold ‘em is a community card poker game. That means the players share a set of cards in the center of the table that can be used to form each player’s hand. Over the course of the game, the dealer will place five community cards on the table.
First Round of Betting
Texas Hold ‘em typically doesn’t require antes from all players. But to make sure that the game is interesting, in each round two players are forced to bet. These players are called the “big blind” and “small blind.” The small blind is always the player to the left of dealer, and the big blind is the player to the left of the small blind. The big blind bets the full starting bet, and the small blind bets half of the value of the starting bet. Each round, the big blind, small blind, and dealer all shift one player clockwise around the table.
After the hole cards are dealt, the betting starts with the player to the left of the big blind. Moving clockwise, each player can either call, fold, or raise. Calling means matching the current betting amount. Folding means declining to bet and withdrawing from the round; raising is increasing the bet. All players must bet the same amount to stay in the game.
After each player has either met the minimum bet or folded, the dealer places the first three community cards in the center of the table. This is known as the “flop.” At this point, the players can begin to determine whether they are likely to have a good hand. For example, if one of your hole card is an ace and one of the first three community cards is an ace, then you are in a good position to develop a decent hand.
Another round of betting commences. This time the players also have the option to “check.” If you check, you remain in the game without increasing the bet. If every player chooses to check, then no additional money is added to the pot and the next round begins.
If at least one player chooses to bet, all other players must either call or fold. Players can also raise if they are confident in their hands. Betting continues until each player has bet the same amount. Even if you have a good hand, it’s not necessarily a good idea to bet highly right after the flop, since it might scare other players into folding rather than betting, meaning that you won’t have as large of a pot to win as you might have with more moderate betting.
Tip: Even if you don’t feel good about your hand, never fold if you have the option of checking. You don’t have anything to lose by checking, and you might just get lucky with the last two community cards.
Once all players have chosen to either fold or continue the game, the dealer places a fourth card in the center. This is called the “turn.” This is an opportunity to reevaluate your chances of having a good hand. If you don’t have anything decent by this point in the game, you are unlikely to have a good hand, since only one more card will be played. For example, if you are hoping for a straight and need a Jack, your chances of getting one in the final round are only 4/46, or 8.6%.
On the other hand, if the turn has given you a good hand, this is the right time to start to raise the stakes. The round of betting works exactly the same as the last round of betting. All players must either check, fold, call, or raise. By the end of the round, all players have bet the same amount.
The dealer places a final community card in the center. This one is called the “river.” This is your last opportunity to build your hand. If you don’t have a good hand at this point, your only options are to fold or try to bluff the other players into folding.
After the last card is dealt, a final round of betting commences. Often, players who have good hands will raise the betting more substantially in order to push the other players to bet more, which will raise the value of the possible winnings. Like the previous rounds, betting continues until all players have either matched the current bet or have “gone all-in”—which means betting all of your remaining chips.
Once betting has ended, the remaining players reveal their hole cards. Whoever has the strongest hand wins the pot. If two players tie, they split the pot.
If all players but one fold before the showdown, the final player automatically wins the pot. The winner can then choose whether to reveal their hole cards or keep them concealed. They may choose to reveal a good hand to prove that they were not bluffing, or they may choose to reveal a terrible hand in order to frustrate the other players. Conversely, they might choose to conceal their hand to keep opponents guessing about their strategy.
After the showdown, that round ends and the next round begins. The big blind, little blind, and dealer all shift one player to the left, and the next set of hole cards are dealt.
Now that you now know what happens when you sit down at the table, you need to learn the winning poker hands. And when you have learnt them, click here for poker strategy.
This site is all about Texas Holdem Poker, click here if you want to play Omaha poker,