“Straight Poker? Ace-high Flush? How many cards for a straight in poker?” These are baffling doubts that those new to the game of fortune and skill often have running in the back of their mind. Trying your hand at learning the game before ever trying it at the table for real money is absolutely necessary. However, it could be overly daunting for someone with no previous experience whatsoever, and that is where we step-in to make things simpler.
Poker is one of those games where it is just as sophisticated as it looks and sounds like for someone who is not familiar with the game. With the full range of poker variations and the end number of possibilities coupled with all the calculations, probabilities and strategies, poker could definitely be too much to digest in a day or two. However, if there is one such aspect of the game of cards that poker novices must know before anything else, then that is the poker hand ranking itself. Players often indulge in playing the most popular form of the game – Texas Hold’em. Here, as with many other such game types, 10 poker hand rankings are used to determine the winner. Higher the poker hand ranking, the higher the opportunity to win the pot.
What is the Straight Poker Hand?
Royal Flush, Straight Flush, Four of a Kind (Quad), Full House, Flush, Straight, Three of a Kind, Two Pair, One Pair, and the High Card- all make up the 10 distinct poker hand rankings out of which the straight poker hand ranks at number six which makes it a hand in the middle. It isn’t the strongest, but it is far from the weakest. A Straight poker combination consists of a five-card poker hand having five cards in a sequence regardless of the suit. If you somehow end up with five cards in a sequence from the same suit, then you have yourself a rare and strong straight flush that is bound to win you the pot more often than not.
How is the Straight Poker Hand formed?
Imagine that you’re playing a game of No-Limit Texas Hold’em through the Spartan Poker app. You are dealt with a 5 of Spades and a 6 of Diamonds in the big blind. You decide to check when the unraised action reaches your position.
The flop turns out to give you a 7 of Spades, 8 of Diamonds, and a 9 of Clubs. This automatically gives you the 9-high straight considering the two cards you already had and the one that the flop gave. Your hand now reads 5s-6d-7s-8d-9c.
This puts you in a strong position at the table, and that is how you make the straight poker hand in an actual game.
How to Play Straight Poker?
Now that you know what the straight hand in poker is, where it ranks and how it is formed, it is time to learn some tips and tricks as to how you can use this underdog combination to win the prize. These are general straight poker rules to help you play with more confidence during your next round.
Keep Your Options Open
Poker is never about sticking to a plan; it is always about the moves you make in the spur of the moment. You must judge for yourself to know if in that particular game, forming the straight hand is what will win you the pot. You must see if there is an opportunity to make a better hand, such as a flush and if opponents are targeting it. In such a scenario, it would be best to drop the straight and go for the flush. Bottom line here is that you must consider the odds to gain the pot more than you consider the odds to make a hand that you are after. If there is a flush draw available and you can make it with better cards than your opponents, then go for the nuts. Never be rigid, always be flexible.
A Conservative Game plan Works Fine
Approaching the end of the game, flush draws almost always work in your favor, but that isn’t necessarily the case with straights. It is to be noted that you are more likely to have a flush draw than a straight one, which means the shove tends to be with overcards to the board for the most part leading to nearly 14 outs on most occasions. However, holding straight draws, you may have weaker hole cards. Therefore, a conservative approach should serve you well unless you feel you can push favorably, leading to a semi-bluff.
You will be the last to act and get to have an idea of what price you should expect your draw to be at with the game getting stacked pretty deep. It is advised to check if you are fortunate enough to have a free card if you only called during the preflop round. If you do, however, have to face a bet, then you must have some understanding of the pot and the odds at stake. Long story short, try not to add more money to the prize pool than the chances you have of owning the winning poker hand.
Go Big on the Flop
By calling a raise while at the late position with cards like 5-6 you could end up with something like a 4-5-7 combination at the flop. This gives you the chance to have an open-ended straight draw along with a pair. If someone holds an Ace and a King, you now have an 80% advantage. Against pocket aces, those odds come down to 45%, but they’re still good to win. If you get your chips to the middle and force other players to bring their best with your aggression, then you are always a favorite whether you play these big flops fast or slow depending on the situation.
Most players get excited about seeing a particular draw, and they tend to make unnecessary assumptions by getting overwhelmed. You cannot decide that your straight poker hand will be the one to win because you don’t see a flush or a full house on the table. If you hold a straight, but it is of the lowest possible rank, then there is every possibility for your opponent to wind you up pretty quickly by playing a stronger hand early-on. You mustn't be afraid to value-bet in a circumstance where your opponent does not show aggression. But it would help if you did not let that be a factor to snap-call at a big river bet or raise with no consideration of your hand and the table situation because it could cost you a lot.
Having the right poker card and knowing when to use it is the ultimate trait of a poker champion. We hope you now know how to use the straight hand ranking efficiently. This isn’t the rarest, it isn’t the toughest, but it can be a silent killer if used in the ways we told you about. We have plenty of such informative blogs and articles for which we suggest you surf through Spartan Poker if you are just getting started with poker. By downloading our app and registering for our lucrative poker tournaments, you only get closer to being a real poker Acer. So, join Spartan if you haven’t already and kick-start your journey to the summit of the poker universe by playing against the finest worldwide in the variation of your choosing.