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Omaha Poker Rules

Omaha Poker Rules

Omaha poker is played in fixed limit Omaha and pot limit Omaha. Each Omaha poker variant takes on the same rules and the difference comes in the different betting structures. Omaha is played similar to hold’em, with the difference of getting dealt four down cards instead of two. Then the hand is made by using exactly two of your four hole cards plus the community cards to make the best five-card hand.

The Blinds

At the start of the game, blinds are posted by the two players to the left of the dealer button. This player doesn’t actually deal the cards unless it’s a home game. The left seat closest to the button places half the smallest bet and the second player to the left of the button places the smallest bet. These are the mandatory small and big blind bets to start building the pot pre-flop. The button moves in a clockwise direction at the start of every new hand just like in hold’em.

Next, every player is dealt four cards face down, dealing starts at the small blind position and proceeds clockwise until every player has been dealt cards.

Then the first betting round starts with the player to the left of the big blind (known as the under the gun position) and continues clockwise around to the big blind. Each player has the option to call or raise, and the size of the raise depends on whether the game is limit or pot limit.

The Flop

After the first betting round is complete three cards (known as the flop) will be dealt on the center of the table. These are called community cards because every player can use them in combination with their four hole cards to make the best hand. Then the second betting round starts and action is now on the active player closest to the left of the button. The player may check, bet or fold and play continues clockwise until all bets are called.

The Turn

The dealer then turns over another community card (known as the turn) and another betting round begins with the player to the left of the button. The player’s options are to check, bet or fold.

The River

When the betting round is finished the final community card is turned over (known as the river) and the last betting round commences. starting with the active player to the left of the dealer button. The same betting options are available for this round of betting.

The Showdown

Once all bets on the river are finished the remaining player with the best five-card hand wins the pot. If more than one player shares the same winning hand at showdown then the pot will be divided equally among those players.

Omaha Poker Betting Rules

The Omaha poker rules remain the same for fixed limit and pot limit Omaha with the exception of these betting differences.

Fixed Limit Omaha

In limit Omaha the betting is limited to the small bet of the game during pre-flop and flop betting rounds. If you are playing a $5/$10 fixed limit omaha game the small bet would be $5 and a raise could only be in increments of $5. During the turn and river betting rounds the betting limit is doubled to the small bet. So $10 would be the minimum bet and a raise would be $10 a total bet $20. After a bet, raise, re-raise betting is capped after four bets until the next betting round.

Pot Limit Omaha

In pot limit Omaha the small and big blind are posted and the minimum bet is the same as the big blind, while the maximum bet is the size of the pot which including all bets currently on the table. There is no cap on the number of raises allowed. This game plays similar to pot limit hold’em, with the exception that there are more hole cards for each player to make a hand.

Ranking of hands

1. Royal flush (the best hand possible in Omaha: A-K-Q-J-10, all of the same suit.)

2. Straight flush (the second best hand in the game: 8-7-6-5-4, all of the same suit.)

3. Four-of-a-kind (the best four-of-a-kind hand: A-A-A-A-K)

4. Full house (the best full house hand: A-A-A-K-K)

5. Flush (the best flush hand: any Ace-high flush)

6. Straight (the best straight hand: A-K-Q-J-T)

7. Three-of-a-kind (the best three-of-a-kind hand: A-A-A-K-Q)

8. Two-pair (the best two-pair hand: A-A-K-K-Q)

9. One-pair (the best one-pair hand: A-A-K-Q-J)

10. No-pair (the best high hand: A-K-Q-J-9)

Omaha Hi/Lo (aka Omaha 8 or better)

This version of Omaha uses the same standard rules but is a split pot game, meaning half the pot goes to the best high hand and the other half of the pot goes to the best low hand. Hands that qualify for the high pot are standard poker hands (royal flush being the best) while the low pot needs at worst an 8 with 5 distinct cards with no pairs to qualify for the pot. With aces considered for the low hand, it means the best low hand is 5-4-3-2-A, also known as a wheel. When playing a low pot, flushes and straights are not considered. If there is no possible low hand then the whole pot goes to the high winner.

Here are examples of low hands in Omaha Hi/Lo:

6-4-3-2-A (six high)

7-6-4-3-A (seven high)

8-7-5-3-2 (eight high)

Both limit and pot limit Omaha 8 or better play the same as limit and pot limit Omaha high games. The only difference being the opportunity to win the low part of the pot as well as high. In Omaha hi/lo however, you can also play no limit. Rules and blinds are treated the same as it would be in pot limit Omaha.

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