How to Know the Hand Rankings When Playing Poker


While the game of poker has a history that is often clouded with apocryphal tales, there are a number of common elements that have remained constant. The word “poker” probably comes from a version of the game from 17th century France. It evolved to become poque in German and later a new version of primero. Eventually, poker was introduced to North America by French settlers. Despite its history, it is now one of the most popular card games in the world.

Basic rules

The basic rules of poker are the same for all card games, no matter the type. The dealer will pass a set number of cards to each player, either all at once, in sets, or in the community card pile. Players have three options when they receive a card: fold, check, or raise. When all players have bet, they may choose to fold. In this case, the previous bet is equal to the amount of the bet made by the other players.

Hand rankings

Knowing the hand rankings when playing poker can give you an edge over your opponents. It can help you make better decisions, identify strong hands, and choose the best cards for your next hand. It is not necessary to memorize the rankings to play poker, but knowing them will make your game better and increase your winnings. Here are some important hand rankings:

Betting phases

Different poker players have different betting strategies during the different betting phases. In some cases, players might stay in a hand even though the odds are not in their favor. In other cases, players may choose to call all bets on several streets. Regardless of the strategy, it is important to remember that betting phases are long or short depending on the game rules. In general, players should raise their bets at least once every five to seven streets.


When is it better to raise a poker hand? A top pair or better hand is the best time to raise your hand. In middle position, the best hand to raise is the one that is currently in the range. Raise your hand to maximize your profit and position yourself as a favorite. You can also raise your hand to make sure that it is the best one in the range. Regardless of your position, you should consider raising a poker hand when the situation calls.


Knowing when to fold when playing poker is as critical as playing the right hand. Too often, players get too caught up in their pretty hand and forget about the other range of players in the game. They are curious about their opponents’ hands and feel the urge to play sheriff and fight for the money they have invested on previous betting streets. This can be costly and leave them in a tight spot. However, folding can help you preserve your bankroll.


A gutshot in poker is a drawing hand that requires a specific card in order to improve. For example, a player holding the high card 5-6 might flop a K89, needing a 7 on the turn or river to complete their straight. It’s also known as a backdoor straight. In order to make this hand profitable, the player will need two appropriate cards on the turn and river. However, the chances of success are much better than with a standard straight draw.