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How Omaha Poker Is Played

May 13, 2008
In online poker, there is no doubt that the Texas hold-em poker is still considered the most popular. But it probably would not hold that spot for long, as Omaha hold-em is steadily gaining ground in the poker popularity contest. You'll find many respectable poker rooms and other live dealer casinos offering the Omaha Poker version.

Omaha hold-em, or simply Omaha, is the game of choice of a lot of poker players because it is perceived that the mathematical probabilities that poker nerds look forward to computing are more obvious there. Also, because these probabilities are more apparent, Omaha is said to be more of a game of wits than a game of chance.

Another characteristic that makes Omaha distinct from the other kinds of poker games is that in Omaha, it is not always the player with the highest hand who wins the pot. The object of Omaha is to come up with both the highest and the lowest hand. The two players who got the highest and the lowest hand respectively get to split the pot. In some cases, two or more players tie in having the highest and lowest hand, and so they split the pot amongst themselves. Of course it is entirely possible for just the player with the highest hand to get the whole pot to him/herself.

There are, however, restrictions as to how a hand of cards can be considered a low hand. First, the highest card in the hand should have a value not bigger than eight. Second, the five cards making up the hand should all be unpaired.

In addition, in Omaha, a player makes up his/her hand, be it the highest or the lowest, using exactly two of his/her four hole cards and exactly three of the five community cards.

Here is how Omaha is played, step by step:

1. The dealer deals out the four hole cards to each player one at a time. Once all the players have their cards, an initial round of betting is made. The person to the left of the dealer makes the small blind and the one to his/her left makes the big blind. The other players can then check the big blind, raise it, or fold.

2. After this first betting round is done, the dealer draws out the first three community cards, also called the flop. Another betting round happens, with players raising, checking or folding. Afterwards, the dealer draws the fourth community card, called the turn, which is then followed by another betting round with the subsequent raising, checking or folding. The same happens with the fifth community card, also known as the river.

3. The showdown happens among the players who have not folded after the river is placed down. Again, the players use exactly two of the hole cards and exactly three of the community cards. The players with the highest and the lowest hand win the pot and split it among themselves. If there are no hands that qualified for the lowest hand, then the player who got the highest hand gets to have the pot entirely to him/herself.
About the Author
Dan writes original informative articles about promoting online live casinos that feature live roulette as well as other conventional online casinos. You can learn to promote the live roulette without spending a lot of money.
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