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The Basics of Poker


Poker is a game of betting that requires both skill and luck. The goal is to have a better hand than your opponents. Usually this means having a good set of cards, but sometimes a player’s tenacity triumphs over the strength of their opponents’ hands. The most common poker hands are pairs, three of a kind, four of a kind, flushes, and straights. A pair is two matching cards, three of a kind are four cards of the same rank, a flush is five consecutive cards of one suit, and a straight is five cards in sequence but from different suits.

After the players receive their two hole cards, a round of betting begins. The first players to act put in a mandatory bet into the pot called blinds. This is done to encourage betting and create a large pool of money from which the best hand will win.

Once the bets have been placed, the dealer reveals 5 community cards on the table. Then the players make a final hand from their two personal cards and the 5 community cards.

A player’s winning hand must contain a higher ranking card than the losing hand. If the hands are identical, card for card, then they tie and share the pot.