How To Play Poker
Poker Rules and Basic Strategies
To understand more about poker rules please refer to our Play Texas Hold’em guide. From there you will gain a basic understanding of poker and be able to understand the other variations available through SetantaBet. For some valuable tips poker players starting out may find this article of good use. You will find that all of these pages together will form a comprehensive and understandable basic poker guide.
Texas Hold 'Em Poker players need to be able to read their opponents, ascertaining when they are bluffing and then they really have a solid hand. But learning some basic strategies and general rules will enable you to stay in the game and further your understanding of the game.
Evaluating Your Cards
A general rule is that you should fold all hands unless you have a pair or both cards are less than 10 in face value.
If you are still in the hand with lesser cards then you may want to pay a small amount of chips to see if the flop offers any improvement. But always be careful. The odds of improving a low ranking hand is always against you, so try to avoid wasting chips on these low potential cards.
And it is worth mentioning that many of your hands will be unsuitable for play and it is very much a game of patience waiting for the playable hand to come. So be patient.
Often the flop will offer you little or no assistance in improving your hand. Only play on if you really feel your hand has a genuine chance of beating all others still in the pot. Otherwise, you should always fold.
If you're first to bet after the flop, don't be afraid to check. This can work to your advantage in two ways. First, if your hand is on the weak side, you might be able to see one more card without having to put more into the pot. Second, if your hand is strong, you could convince an opponent or two that it's weaker than it really is.
Fourth Street and Fifth Street
Also known as The Turn and The River, respectively, the fourth and fifth community cards give you two more chances to either get out of the pot before you lose even more money -- or increase your winnings. At this point, it's likely there will only be one or two other players still in the pot with you. The best advice here is to be cautious.
After fourth street, don't stay in the pot hoping for a straight or flush, unless you can do so on a check (that is, without putting more chips into the pot). Although there will be times when you would have drawn the straight or flush, they will be outweighed by the times you wouldn't. Don’t ever be too proud to fold your hand if you feel your opponent is likely to have a stronger one.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind when you are playing at the tables.
- Always be aware of what the best hand on the table could be.
- It is better to play fewer hands but to bet and raise when you do.
- Remember that even top hole cards are beatable. If you can see from the community cards that a lot of other hands can beat your pair of Aces, then fold.
- With two suited hole cards you will still only catch a flush 6% of the time.
- Avoid bluffing until you really know the game well.
- Don’t overrate a small pair. Fold if a higher card comes and everyone is betting.
- Don’t overrate high cards either. A King – 6, even suited, is a weak starting hand.
- Look for fuller tables with lots of players.
- Stick to smaller stakes tables for a long time. Try not to get cocky!
- Relax and have fun.