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7 Card Stud Poker Rules


7 Card Stud Poker is another popular poker game played in the wild west as well as at poker rooms on the Internet.

I have been called upon to teach you 7 Card Stud rules as well as the rules for a variation called Stud 8 or Better.

I urge you to also read the official rules at the poker room where you plan to test your skills; their house rules may differ from those I am about to teach you.

A game of Stud Poker starts off with all players posting the "ante" to the pot. The ante is based on the size of the game.

7 Card Stud Teacher

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Round One - "Third Street"

After the antes have been placed, each player is dealt three cards (two "down" cards and one "up" card). The "up" card is also known as the "door card" or "Third Street". The lowest "up" card must start the action with a bet called the "Bring-In" bet. Each player is allowed one bet and three raises in each betting round.

Round Two - "Fourth Street"

After Round One, another card is dealt face-up to each player that still remains in the pot (those who didn't fold on "Third Street"). From "Fourth Street" on, the highest hand showing begins the action by checking or betting. If a pair is showing on "Fourth Street", players have the option to make a single or double bet. If a player makes a single/double bet, the other players may call, raise the single bet, raise the double bet or fold. In case of a double bet, only an equal amount can be raised (to the extent of the double bet).

Round Three - "Fifth Street"

Another card is now dealt face-up to those who remain in the pot. The value of each bet is now double of what was available in Rounds One and Two, and continues at this amount for the remaining betting rounds.

Round Four - "Sixth Street"

Another card is dealt face-up, and betting continues as above.

Round Five - "Seventh Street"

The final card is dealt face-down. The last card is also known as the "River Card" or "Seventh Street"

After the final round of betting, the best hand wins the pot. The pot may also be won by someone who bets without being called at any time during the hand. A player's "hand" is determined by using the best five of his seven cards.

The term "Cap" is used to describe the final raise in a round, since betting is then "Capped", and no one can make another Raise. Once Capped, players will have the option of Calling or Folding only.

Poker is typically played "table stakes", which means that only the chips in play at the beginning of each hand may be used throughout the hand. But the table stakes rule has an application called the "All-In" rule, which states that a player cannot be forced to forfeit a hand because the player does not have enough chips to call a bet. A player who does not have enough chips to call a bet is declared All-In. The player is eligible for the portion of the pot to the point of his final wager. All further action involving other players takes place in a "side pot", which is unavailable to the player who has already gone All-In. The side pot is then given to the next winning combination.

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Stud "8 or Better" Poker Rules

A popular variation of 7 Card Stud Poker is called Stud "8 or Better" Poker, which follows the same rules as for 7 Card Stud Poker, except that there are special rules after the final round of betting, called the "Showdown".

Stud Poker - The Showdown

The best high hand automatically wins half of the pot called the "High" side (it could also win the whole pot - see below). To win the "Low" side of the pot, however, a player must qualify (which is why the game is sometimes called "Omaha 8 or Better"). It takes a 5-card hand with different numerical values from Ace through eight (Ace being the lowest) to qualify for the "Low" half of the pot. The best "Low" hand is A, 2, 3, 4, 5 (also known as the "wheel" or "bicycle"). The winning "Low" hand goes to the player with the lowest high card. For example, a player with a 2,3,5,6,7 would have a better "Low" hand than someone with an A,2,4,5,8. If two or more players have the same high card, the player with the second lowest card in his hand wins the low side of the pot. Straights and flushes do NOT count against a player on the "Low" side. A player is permitted to use different (or the same) cards in his hand for the "High" side for the "Low" side.


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