Basic Rules and Winning Strategies to Win Seven Card Stud

Seven Card Stud is a variation of stud poker. Before the popularity of Texas Hold'em this was the most popular poker game in America.

     The Game starts with each player being dealt two cards face down and a third card face up. Sometimes the game is played with a starting bet called a bring in. The player with the lowest ranking up card pays the bring in. This is similar to an ante or blind bet in Texas Hold'em. The betting continues in clockwise order around the table. If a player is to stay in the hand, they must call the bet or raise. If more than one player has the lowest ranking up card then the tie is broken by suit. Spades is highest followed by hearts, clubs and diamonds. If there is no bring in, the highest ranking up card starts the round and they may check or raise. If two players have the same high up card, the one in clockwise order acts first.

     After the first round another up card is dealt to every remaining player from the dealers left. A card is burned before each round of cards are dealt. Once every player has two up cards, the player with the best poker hand will bet first.

     The second round is followed by a third up card and betting round, a fourth up card and betting and finally a down card and a fifth betting round. If there are players still involved by the fifth betting round a showdown will be necessary. With the showdown the player with the best 5 card hand out of the 7 they were dealt wins the pot. Since there are only 52 cards in the deck and each player is dealt up to 7 cards you may have to limit the game to 7 players depending on how many people stay in hands all the way to the showdown.

     I've included included in this section many useful strategies i have found while play seven card stud. This poker game is a high card game so many winning hands will probably be a high pair or two pair hand and not a straight, flush or higher poker hand. If you start with straight or flush draw make sure they are high cards or that you have other outs if you don't make your straight or flush hand. You should play high hands aggresively to thin out the players involved to give yourself a good chance to win the pot. Reversely you should slow play drawing hands like straights or flushes.

    The first four cards are very key in determining if you win the hand. If you have have large pair, a good two pair and there are no pairs on the board or a set you  have a great chance to win. If you haven't made anything by your fourth card, don't be stubborn know when to get out. Thgis tip will save you alot of grief and money.

You should always be studying your opponents especially during hands your not involved in. Look for tells and patterns in their play. Do they play in alot of hands? Do they bluff? Can they be bluffed? Watch out for a pair of up cards in your opponents hands. There is a good chance they have made a set. Pay close attention to the board, look out for dangerous overcards that can ruin your chances with winning the pot. Don't bother with 3 cards to low starights or small pairs these don't often hold up. The most important thing is to have fun playing and learn and get better as a player.

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carol roach
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Posted on Dec 10, 2009