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Starting Hand Selection in Texas Hold'em

The two hole cards which are dealt at the start of each hand are referred as Starting Hands. Poker is certainly a game of probability and maths and you can definitely win the game just with proven stats of starting hands. There are three foremost groups of Poker hands which are considered best among poker players. There will always be some differences on which starting hands are really best but these leading starting hands are mutually preferred among them:

AA, KK

Aces, as the name suggests, are the best starting hand any player can get followed by King. These are indeed primary players in Hold’em. You might need to be little cautious while playing against multiple opponents. For example, while playing kings you can lose to anyone who has an Ace in their starting hand if an Ace falls on the flop. You might get a feeling of luck with these strong hands but they are surely not indomitable.

AK, JJ, QQs

You can always look for raising with Queens and Jacks and can make the most out of the game by playing with these cards strongly. It will be very rare that these cards will fall into a player holding Aces or Kings. Next is the Big slick commonly known as Ace-King and can be referred as Super slick when suited. This hand can easily rule other poker hand rankings like AT, AJ, AQ and so on.

KQ, AJ, AQ, AK, TTs

You can indeed raise pre-flop with any of these hands mentioned above. It is primarily included in a strong bunch. You need to be careful with hands like KQ where you can easily fold to a re-raise. We have already discussed the strength of AK but hands like AJ, AQ are also counted in powerful hands.

Suited Cards

Suited cards are certainly worth playing but you don’t have to play them just because they are suited. It is always better to start with suited cards than unsuited cards but don’t fall into the trap of playing them pointlessly.

Kicker Factor

The kicker is referred to as smaller of two cards you have. Let’s say you play a hand having an Ace with any other cards like 4. This hand can literally cost you a lot of money and tournament also. Go slow with Ace junk until you learn everything about Ace Junk.

Table Conditions

This is the most unreliable factor to consider while playing poker. It totally depends on the situation and there are no rules on the fold, raise or call. A Starting hand is a totally complex subject as it is totally reliant upon the situation. Let’s discuss some significant states here-

Number of Opponents

This is the most important factor to consider and can completely change the philosophy of starting hands. Let say you have a starting hand like KJ which is a strong hand if played against fewer players but can be weak when played against a full table of players.

Position

Your position plays an important role in the poker game and can decide on which starting hands you should play to win the game. If you are the last to act in the game then there could not be more fortunate than this, as you already know how your opponents have acted and can certainly take the best decision in starting hands. 

If a Pot is raised or not

It is again an important factor to consider while selecting poker hands order. You should play with a strong hand if there has been a re-raise and a raise before you act. If the pot has been raised by a player, then your starting hand selection should change accordingly. Obviously, you cannot totally rely on this as it also depends on the qualities of other players as well.

We won’t suggest you any magic routes to win a poker game as we would rather appreciate the winning through experiences. You will begin to try a different range of starting hands with practices and you can always be bit cautious or play with best hands only if you are in qualm anytime. Never ever fall into the trap of playing any two cards. Don’t plump your betting strategy by the picture or suited cards as you really need to be selective about the hands you are dealt.

Read 2313 times Last modified on Thursday, 08 December 2016 16:37