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The game play in five-card draw poker

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five-card draw pokerThe dealer deals the cards one by one, in principle, in the sense of clockwise. It begins with his left, and he takes last. When each player received five cards, all can pick them up and take note. So start the bet.

A betting round

The betting principle is simple: To stay in the game, all players must have wagered the same total bid value (except in some situations), but everyone can raise on the bet of his opponents . The betting is completed as soon as everyone has bet the same bid (no one has raised), or all but one have folded.

Each player must keep track of what he has already bet, and what remains to bet to reach the level of the current bid, depending on the bidding history. These accounts should be carefully monitored, particularly during on-auctions, the amounts to be added by each player to “call” can result from a complex history.

Betting is started by the first player left of the dealer. During a betting round, each player still in the game can, in turn, choose as a possibility before the opening:

  • Check: if no bid has yet been made in the round, the player can stay in the game by giving the word to the next player without betting anything. NB: Before the opening, the “fold” does not exist; a player who “fold” (by abuse of language) indicates that it plays “check.”
  • Open, it is the first to make a bet. He announced his set saying “I opened up so much,” and instead putting the bet in the center of the table. This bet is called the opening.

In the room variants, when the last player of the tour announcement “check”, it is said that he gets a free card, since the next dealt card costs him no bet.

These bets do not exist in the games with blind, since in this case, the small blind (while retaining the privilege of speaking last, or raise) is considered the opener, the opening being the amount of the blind.

Once a player has opened the possibilities are:

  • Fold: the player leaves his card in the middle of the table (not visible) and does not play until the next deal. NB: it is possible to fold after opening. After opening, a player may only bet up to the bet, or fold; a player who said fold (by abuse of language) indicates that it is check.
  • Call or see: the player complete the bet with his chips, so put in the pot (in total) an amount equal to the last bid. The player rather say “call” the first round of betting, and “see” the second. NB: If his stake is less than the amount needed to reach the last bid, it can stay in the game provided to bet all the chips he has: then it is said he is all-in.
  • Raise: the player in position to “call” may increase bids, and bet the pot (in total it up) an amount higher than the last bid. A raise after the first raise is a reraise. It is not possible to raise the amount of its own auction: if all the players in the game called, the betting round is over.
  • All-in: the player does not have enough chips to call up all of what remains. This allows him to participate in the current bidding without raising, whatever raises, as if he decided to “call” each time. If he loses, it is eliminated and lose his stack. If he wins, he wins the bets of other players only up to his stack, the rest of the auction is won by the player with the second best hand (and so on, in case of multiple ”all-in”). A player may also make all-in on a raise or a re-raise.

The betting round ends when all players have either bet the same amount, or have folded.

Note: In principle, it is played with what is on the table only. It is not possible to buy additional chips during an auction.


The dealer asks each player still in the game (starting on the left) the number of cards he wishes to exchange. Each player in turn announces the number of cards he folds, rejecting them (face on the table) before receiving the new ones. The dealer collects all the folded cards.

A player who exchanges no card is “served”, if not he can ask for “a card”, “two-card” or sometimes “three cards”.

It is possible to exchange four cards, but only one person per round has the right to do so: if a player has asked for four cards, it is no longer possible to do so. In this case, the dealer gives three cards, and will give the fourth only after everyone was served (if the applicant of four cards is the last to be served, the dealer gives him three cards, “flaming” the next by putting it in the package, and deals the latest). In five-card draw poker, the exchange of more than three cards only makes sense for the games with “blind” when a player has bet without watching his hand and discover a completely empty hand. In some poker variations in room, it can be allowed to change the whole hand.

Second betting round

The second round takes place following the same rules as the first.

End of betting rounds

The game ends when:

  • there remains a single player in the game who wins the pot without having to show his hand.
  • there is no more betting round. Then follows the showdown, phase in which the hands of the remaining players are compared to determine the holder of the best. In case of a tie, the pot is split equally among the winners.

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