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Poker Hand Rankings

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Article Summary: Learning the proper ranking of “poker hands” is a vital component in becoming a solid poker player. This article provides a full overview of what you need to know when starting out learning to play.

One of the most important fundamentals of learning to play poker online is getting a thorough understanding of poker hand rankings since you’ll obviously need to know what hand beats what while your playing the game.  If you are just starting out, it’s a good idea to commit the hands and their respective values to memory so you’ll never get confused in a game and make bets based on the wrong hand.  On this page you will find an illustration of poker hand rankings (below) as well as comprehensive descriptions of each hand and how its formed during play.

Holdem Hands

Royal Flush: A Royal Flush is the absolute best hand you can get in poker and consists of consecutive 10, Jack, Queen, King and Ace of the same suit, it can be any suit but must be these specific cards.

Straight Flush: A Straight Flush is the 2nd highest hand in a poker game and is 5 consecutive cards of the same suit that are not the Royal Flush cards, for example 3,4,5,6,7 of diamonds is a Straight Flush.

Four of a Kind: Getting Four of a Kind in poker games means that you hand contains one card plus four other cards that are the same, for example getting Ace, 8, 8, 8, 8 would mean you have Four of a Kind.

Full House: A Full House is a hand that is comprised of a pair and three of a kind, so for example say that you were dealt Ace, Ace, King, King, King, this would mean you had a Full House in your hand.

Flush: When you get a Flush it means that your hand has cards that are all the same suit which are unordered, if the hand was ordered and the same suit you would have a Straight Flush.

Straight: A Straight is a hand of 5 consecutive unsuited cards so for example if you were dealt a range such as 7, 8, 9, 10, Jack you would have a Straight which is the 6th best hand you can get in poker games.

Three of a Kind: When you get Three of a Kind in your hand this would mean that you have 2 unpaired cards and three cards that are the same, for example King, 10, 3, 3, 3 would be a 3 of a Kind hand.

Two Pair: In order to have Two Pair you hand must be comprised of a single card plus 2 sets of pairs for example getting Ace, 10, 10, 2, 2 would mean that you have two pair which is the 8th best hand in poker.

One Pair: Getting a One Pair hand means that you have three unmatched cards and one pair of cards for example the following hand would represent One Pair, 10, 10, 3, Jack, King and is the 9th best hand possible.

No Pair: As you’ve probably figured out by now, having No Pair means that you have 5 cards that are unmatched and unsuited, for example 10, Jack, 2, 6, Ace would be a No Pair hand and is the lowest hand.

Determining High Hands

Now that we’ve covered the actual hand rankings and how they are dealt, it’s time to cover another important subject when it comes to values of poker hands which is determining who wins when you have the same type of hand.  For example say that you got to the end of a hand and when you turned your cards over you and the other player both had full houses, how do you determine who has won? The answer is basically it comes down to the high hand which basically means the hand which contains higher value cards keeping in mind that 2 is the lowest card and Ace is the highest card.  For simplicities sake let’s outline a few examples below to show you who would win in each particular showdown to give you a solid overview of how high hand works.

Example One: The first player has a full house with 10, 10, 10, Jack, Jack and the second player holds a full house with 10, 10, 10, Ace, Ace.  In this case, the 2nd player would win the hand even though both players have a full house as the second players hand is higher than the first since he has the pair of aces over the jacks.

Example Two: Say that the first player has 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 of Diamonds and the second player has 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 of spades.  In this case, both players have straight flushes however player one wins since their hand is a higher straight flush with 5-9 whereas the second player has 2-6 contained in their hand.

Example Three: For our last example, let’s say that player one had 2, Jack, 8, 4, 6 of hearts and player two had 3, Ace, King, 9, 5 of hearts – both players have a flush but player two has higher cards that the first player and in this example would win, when it comes to flushes the highest card in the flush wins the hand.

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