Hi Lo Qualify Poker - Omaha Hi Lo Rules, Strategy, How
to Play Tips
principles and how-to-play strategies for Omaha High Low Poker
shown here are those generally agreed to and recommended by the
experts for bet limit games. An understanding of these basics
is needed for all levels of competitive play. Solid intermediate
and expert level poker normally require study of the more advanced
game tactics and considerable hours of online or actual card
room playing experience.
Omaha High Low Poker - 2 to 10 Players, Rules
hand splits the pot with the lowest qualifying low hand || Players
MUST use TWO of their hole cards combined with three from the board
to make their highest and lowest hands. Any two of the players
four cards can be used for high, and any two can be used for low || To
qualify for the low half of the pot, the low hand must be 8,7,6,5,4
or lower || Ace plays both high and
low || Three raise limit per round || Cards
Distribution and Betting Procedure
$2/$4 Limit Omaha High Low with a double blind.
At casino Omaha tables, a round plastic marker called the dealer "button" is
placed in front of the player who would be dealing if a house dealer
were not provided. The button is moved one seat clockwise after
each game and the card distribution and betting starts to the left
of that position. Each player is dealt four cards face down. Then,
a total of five community cards are dealt face up in the center
of the table in three betting segments (3-1-1). After all the cards
are dealt the players make the best hand that they can by combining
any two of their two hole cards with any three of the five community
cards. Using the illustration above, a player holding a jack and
a four would end up with a full house, jacks over fours. If he
is also holding a six and an ace, he would have a qualifying low
hand of 8,6,5,4,A.
. . The betting procedure goes like this: (1.) Before
each player is dealt four down cards, the player at the immediate
left of the button, called the "Small Blind" is forced
to bet $1 (half the minimum bet). Then the player to his left
and two seats to the left of the button, called the"Big
Blind", is forced to bet $2. Each player is then dealt
a four card hand. Then the player at the left of the big blind
is first to act and he must either call the big blind's $2
bet, raise, or fold his hand. Continuing in turn clockwise,
all the players around the table either call, raise or fold.
When the betting gets back around to the small blind, he or
she can fold and lose only the half minimum bet of $1 placed
earlier, call the amount necessary to get up to the betting
level or raise $2 if there is a raise left. The big blind is
then the last to act before any cards are turned up in the
middle. The blinds are played in the first round only( 2.) The
dealer turns three cards up in the center of the table. This
is the "Flop". As always, after the flop, the player
at the left of the button is first to act. There are no more
forced bets and the players can all check around if they want
to. Bets right after the flop are at the $2 minimum bet level. (3.) Now
comes the "Turn" card with more betting that now
goes to the $4 level. (4.) Finally
the last, or "River" card is turned up. The last
$4 betting round takes place. The players still in the contest
reveal their hole cards and the highest hand wins the pot or
splits with the lowest qualifying low hand. Of course, the
ideal result is to win the high end with no split or have the
cards to win both ways.
to Play Omaha Hi Lo
In Omaha High-Low the high hand winner must split the pot with
the player with the best qualifying low hand. There is always a
high hand winner but not always a low. For your hand to qualify
for low, it must have five denominations no higher than an eight.
Any two of your your four down cards are played for high and any
two are played for low. Players must play exactly two out of their
hands for each direction. Aces are played both high and low. Straights
and flushes do not disqualify a hand for low, so a player ending
with 5 4 3 2 A would have an unbeatable low hand and a 5 high straight
to play for high. A player with this hand would have a good chance
of winning both ways. He or she could also have another high hand
better than the straight
most important thing to keep in mind in
split pot games is the big profit difference between winning half
the pot and "scooping" it all. -
It is a lot more than just twice as much. . Scooping the pot usually
builds a healthy addition to your stack of chips. Getting half
usually puts you barely ahead of where you were before you started
playing the hand. Expert Omaha Hi Lo players only play starting
hands, like those recommended here, that have a good chance of
winning both ways. Omaha is a game of "nuts". With so
many players with so many cards, finding so many reasons to play,
a final hand with a fairly good high and a fairly good low can
easily get clobbered by better hands both ways. So after the flop
or maybe the turn, if it looks like you don't have an almost certain
winner for one end and a decent shot at the other, or the best
high hand with no qualifying low probable, you should usually fold
up and wait for the next hand.
Low Frequencies", Odds Page)
(5 4 3 2 A). Can be played as the lowest possible hand, or a straight
for high, or both.
SUITED PLAYER HAND (S) - Two of the players four
cards of the same suit.
DOUBLE SUITED PLAYER HAND (DS) - Two of the players
cards of one suit and two of another suit.
SET - Three of a kind with two of the three in your
hand. (One in your hand and two on the board is "trips".)
NUT HAND - An unbeatable high or low hand. Sometimes called
FLOP, TURN. RIVER - The community cards in the order of
distribution. See top illustration.
SCOOP - Win both high and low ends of the pot or win it
all with a high hand when there is no low.
FAST PLAY - Bet, raise and re-raise to get as many other
players out as possible.
SLOW PLAY - Just check or call along to keep other players
in the game and increase the pot odds.
CHECK-FOLD - Check when you can and fold if you have to
call a bet made in front of you.
CARDS - A,
K, Q, J, 10
MIDDLE CARDS - 9, 8, 7
LOW CARDS - 6,
5, 4, 3, 2, A . . (even though eights and sevens may
be used as low hand qualifiers)
Starting Hands These should be
automatically folded without any further consideration:
Quads - (including) A A A A
Trip Threes thru Trip Kings - 333X - KKKX
Lowest Card is 4 thru 9 paired or unpaired - ie: 4567, 67QQ,
47JK, 88KK, 9TJQ etc.
STARTING HANDS The
best possible starting hand is AA23(DS). . . The
other starting hands below are randomly listed rather than
in power order.
non-suited, suited, paired, and unpaired hands unless
> Trip Aces and
a 2 or 3
- AAA2, AAA3
> Pair of
Aces and Two Low Cards - ie: AA23,
AA44, AA35, AA26, AA66 etc.
> A,2 and Anything - A2XX
> A,3 and Two
Low Cards - ie: A346, A355, A356, A335 etc.
- Any two cards suited unless otherwise noted. Double suited
better but not necessary.
Aces and a 4 or 5 Suited - AcAA4c,
> Trip Dueces
and Ace Suited - 2h22Ah
> Pair of Aces
and Two High Cards Suited - ie: AhAXhX,
and Two Low Cards Suited - ie: 233c6c,
Suited to Anything - AcXXXc
> Two High Pair Double
Suited - ie: KhKdQhQd, TcTsJcJs etc.
Unpaired Low Cards - ie: 2c4s5c6s, 3d4h5h6d
Remember that you only play to scoop the pot,
so after the flop, if your high hand is
not a certain winner and will probably have to
split with the low, or if you are playing for
low and don't have a decent shot at the high
hand, usually check/fold and get out early.
Slow play most Omaha hands. It is very difficult
to run players off in this game and early raises
are risky unless you know you can't lose.
Usually avoid playing middle suited connectors. Hands
like 8h 9h that are often very playable in Holdem
and Omaha high, are bad news in high-low split.
To make the high end of a straight, you have to
catch the cards that will also qualify low hands.
To play these you also need a suited ace or an
Don't overbet A2, A3 and 2 3 nut lows. These are often
shared with another player and you can end up getting "quartered".
In other words, if there are two playing the same nut low
and one going high, you are in a situation where every bet
you make contributes 1/3 to the pot that will only pay you
1/4 back. You do better if you can check around. Fast play
in this situation only makes you money if there are three
or more other players with either high or losing low hands.
Watch out for
uniform flops, like 8 7 6, they can easily
turn into straights that can overtake your high
pair trips, or other good hand.
of Suited Flops that can make a completed
flush. In this case, you should usually hold
the nut in that suit, or have trips or two pair
that can fill up.
Check the raisers chips. Players that are
close to all-in often rush the betting just to
get all their chips in a sink-or-swim last hand.
your opponents, especially when you are not
playing hands and can pay careful attention. Do
they find more hands to play than they fold? Do
they bluff? Can they be bluffed? Do they have any "tells" (give
away mannerisms) that disclose information about
their hands etc.
Get caught bluffing once in a while. It is a way to
vary your play and not be too predictable. You win pots that
you don't deserve when your bluff works. You lose a few chips
when it doesn't work but it will get you calls from weaker
hands down the line when you are really strong and need the
Pay very close attention to your cards. Omaha High
Low hands can get confusing and it is sometimes easy to think
you have a nut hand winner when you don't, or have the best
possible hand and not realize it. Be careful to avoid these
fun and GOOD LUCK!
recent years, Omaha High/Low has become the second or third most
popular poker game behind Texas Holdem. Because of that, most
of the major poker rooms offer a good spread of Omaha Hi Lo games
to play but the number of these games in progress hardly ever
comes close to Texas Holdem. . Because of the popularity of this
poker room with online players, you can always find lots of Omaha
High Low/8 ring games and tournaments.
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