Wednesday, 23 April 2008

Get head on with Texas Holdem

If it’s your first time to play poker, be careful of which table you play in because it’s not unusual for one room or website to feature different poker variants. One poker version you should definitely take time to master is Texas Hold’em.

What is Texas Hold’em?
One of the most popular versions of poker, Texas Hold’em is a community poker version that’s played similar to Omaha High. A table playing Texas Hold’em will usually have 9 to 10 players because anything less could make the table "short handed".

Limit holdem, No Limit Holdem, and Pot Limit Holdem are some of the variations of holdem.

The Pre-Flop for Texas Hold’em
Similar to other poker versions, big and small blinds must be paid first. Each player then receives two cards, which are commonly referred to as hole or pocket cards. Unlike in Omaha High, there won’t be any need to share your hole cards with others on the table. Players can then call, raise, or fold, depending on how much they like their cards. Players may also re-raise whenever they wish. If no raises had occurred, the player posting the big blind may simply choose to ‘check’ for the dealer to proceed with the next round.

The Flop for Texas Hold’em
A dealer must first burn a card this means resigning a card out of play before dealing the first three cards that make up the flop. The player that posted the small blind earlier is now "under the gun" or UTG. This simply means that he’s in the position to initiate the betting round for the rest of the game. They can check, bet, or fold. Later on, they also have the option to raise the bet if they so wish.

The Turn for Texas Hold’em
Once the previous betting round has been concluded, the dealer will then burn yet another card before dealing one card to make up the Turn. This is the fourth of five community or board cards and which all players may use in combination with their pocket cards to make the best hand possible.

The River for Texas Hold’em
After one last card is burnt, the dealer proceeds to deal the last of the community cards. The River will initiate yet another round of betting, led as always by the player under the gun. If everyone in the table folds, the remaining player will win the pot by default. If you find yourself in this position, don’t muck your hand by dispensing with your cards without showing the others what your hand was.

The Final Showdown for Texas Hold’em
In the last round of the game, two players or more may be involved, depending on how many active hands still remain. Players will be asked to reveal their cards when the last bet has been placed. At this point, you should again be careful of mucking your hand or folding without meaning to. At times, however, mucking can also be beneficial if it lets you keep your playing style a secret. Upon comparing hands, the dealer will then declare the player with the best hand the winner.

Visit Poker Review website to play Texas Hold'em poker online.

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