Players: 3 to 6 is ideal.
Card: Five cards all down.
Betting: Two rounds plus antes, bets tend to be relatively small.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR: Keep track of how many
Each player draws a card from the deck.
WHAT WINS: Usually a high pair or better.
Five-card draw, or draw poker, is one of the oldest games of poker, and it is unique in that the players have the opportunity to exchange cards or “draw” from the deck to try to improve their hands. So, if you do not like what you see, you can always try your luck with some new cards. In contrast to the stud games, the players see only cards in their hands. (But smart players will pay close attention to how many cards the other players cards after the first round of betting, and the betting patterns of their opponents.)
Before you open the game, the dealer must decide how many cards each player can make from the deck after the first round of betting. The standard limit of three. In some games, the player can make four cards if he keeps aces to be shown in the table.
After all put in their ante, the dealer deals five cards face down to each player.
Betting begins with the player to the left of the dealer. He may bet, check, or fold. Betting continues
clockwise around the table and each player has the opportunity to call, raise or fold. Some people play that you must have at least a pair of jacks to open the stakes in the five-card draw. If the player to the left of the dealer does not have a pair of jacks or higher, rate moves clockwise around the table until a player with a pair of jacks or better can open trade.
After the first round of betting, all remaining players (those who more than once) can be up to three new cards from the deck (sometimes four cards enabled, refer to the card). Player folds, he does not want, and then discusses the new maps from the upper deck. Of course, if the player does not want any card he can “stand still” and keep his hands he is holding.
Once all players have received their new cards, the second round of betting begins. As in the first round, the player closest to the left of the dealer and opens the betting moves clockwise around the table. After all bets have been made, the players show their hands – the player with the best hand wins the pot. (For more on the hands, see pages 10-12.)
Tips and Stratgey
About Traditionalists believe that to open the stakes in the five-card draw a player must have at least four cards to a flush, four-card straight or a high pair.
However, if the bet is a light, and you are holding a small pair, middle pair or two high cards, you can stay in for the next round. (High steam typically at least a pair of jacks, steam 7S, 8S, 9s or Los be regarded as a pair and the secondary pair 6c or less light couples).
O If trading higher in the first round and you do not keep at least a couple, there is a good chance that at least one player has at least top pair. This is especially true with a lot of players at the table. However, if players are betting high in the first round, it means power, regardless of the number of players. Your chances of drawing a hand to beat them small, so consider folding (or bluff), and not the pursuit of cards in the hope of improving your hand. You might get lucky on the draw, but in the long run, you will save a lot of money getting where you need to.
Ø If you are dealt a strong hand – high triple or better – to refrain from raising or opening with a big bet: You do not want to scare away any potential players. With a strong hand to play it cool in the first round and just call the bet. In some cases, a raise might work, if another player has already raised the rate of discovery.
O However, if you have top pair, consider making a fairly high rate. This is a strong hand, but, of course,
not invincible. By betting high you can push some of the players and improve your chances of winning the pot.
O This may seem obvious, but to improve your hand on the draw, you need something to attract K. So if you are holding a pair of kings, hold them and make three new cards. Players who keep their pair and draw three new cards have a 1 in 3.48 chance of improving his hands. (For more information about the likelihood of improving your hand, see pages 89 – 91.)
O In general, it is smart to build on what you have, not the pursuit of possible hands. For example, if you get your hands on an 8-9-1O-JJ, do not split a pair of jacks in the hope of coming to direct.
On coming to a flush draw or a straight four can pay off. However, going after a straight or three lines (three consecutive cards) or three-flush (three cards of the same suit) is risky at best. Smart players do not even try. Draw a straight line on the inside (see Glossary, page 106) has very little chance of success and is a common mistake beginners. Most professional players will tell you never to an inside straight draw.
On the draw, keep a close eye on how many cards the other players draw. Noting their draw, you will get some idea of the strength of their hands. In general, if they draw three cards, they are likely to keep a pair. If they make two, they have three of a kind or foolish to go after a straight or a flush. If they draw a card, they could have two pairs, or they may be trying to draw a straight or flush. Players can also stand still (not draw any cards). This means that they are holding a good hand, can be a full house, straight or flush. Or they may be a bluff.
O For deceivers five-card draw allows two chances to ply their fraud rates and a draw. Players try to bluff their opponents into thinking they have a strong hand, standing pat or drawing just one or two cards or not at all, and then raising the second round of betting.
Ø Try and identify any talks to other players when they pick up their new cards. You pick up any reaction when they received their new cards? Do they seem too eager to start the second round of betting?
Ø Another strategic ploy in the five-card draw is held for the “kicker.” Ultra-high kicker card you keep in drawing a couple. So, if you have a small pair, say a couple of 6S, you hold the highest card in the hope of getting top pair to go along with your small pair.
About Holding a kicker also resets your opponents. If you draw two cards to a low pair and high card, your opponents are left to wonder if you are holding three cards of the same rank.
O After the draw, notice how the players bet. If they bet aggressively or make a big raise, there is a good chance that they have improved their hand (or they are bluffing). If they check the bet or bets modest, they are likely to believe that their hand is good enough to win and play safely.
Ø By the second round, if you feel that your hand has all the chances to win, do not be afraid to aggressively. At this point, you want to increase the pot and make your opponents “pay” to see your hand.