The Basics of Poker


In the game of poker, there are several basic hand combinations. The strongest of these is a full house, which consists of five cards of the same suit. However, in the event that a player has only a few cards of the same rank, a weaker hand might be advantageous. If the player holds such a hand, he may fold his cards. Alternatively, he may decide to keep them and try to beat the other players.

It is not known when poker was invented, but it was first played in 1829 by Joseph Cowell. The game began with four players betting on whose hand had the highest value. R.F. Foster and Hoyle described a game of poker in the United States in 1837. In this version, each player was dealt five cards from a deck of 20. The popularity of the game spread rapidly, and shortly after it was introduced, a 52-card deck was invented.

A straight flush is a very good hand to have in poker. It comprises five cards of the same rank, but the ace can be either high or low. A straight flush, if it contains three Aces in a row, is called a royal flush. Similarly, an ace-high straight flush is called a royal flush. Once the ace-high straight flush is paired with a pair of any other cards of the same rank, the player has won the pot.