A Complete Guide to Poker Hands

by Tim | Nov 24, 2021

A Complete Guide to Poker Hands

It’s essential that you understand the common poker-hand rankings that are used in the most popular forms of the game. Just as your blackjack strategy will impact your success in live blackjack, knowing the relative strengths of different hands in poker will make or break your game.

These poker hand rankings will help you determine which hand is best, and they are uniform across many poker games, such as Texas Hold’em, Omaha, and 3-Card Poker. If you’re serious about winning poker games, then knowing your poker hands is the first place that you need to start.

In this blog, we are going to take a look at the power ranking of poker hands from highest to lowest.

Practice makes perfect

Before we get into our poker hand guide, we just wanted to encourage you to practice everything that you learn before you play. At The Phone Casino, we are passionate about responsible play, and it’s always a good idea to use your free daily spins to practice before you get started. 

This doesn’t just apply to poker, either! Try out free online roulette, mobile slots with no deposit, and demos to ensure that you know what you are doing before putting down wagers in online casino games.

Poker hand rankings

These are the poker hand rankings used for the most popular games, from strongest to weakest.

Royal flush

They don’t call it a royal flush for nothing! This is the creme de la creme of poker hands. It’s the top of the pops; the hand that beats all others and sits upon the throne of poker rankings. Simply put, a royal flush is the best possible hand that you can get in a poker game. It includes five consecutive cards of the same suit in order of 10, J, Q, K, and A.

Straight flush

A straight flush poker hand of hearts on a table.

Next up, we have the straight flush, which is the second-best hand that you can get in a poker game. This is any five cards of the same suit in sequential values that are not a royal flush. For example, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 of diamonds. A straight flush can only be beaten by a royal flush or another straight flush that has higher-ranking cards.

Four of a kind

A four of a kind hand is when you have the same card in the four different suits, for example, four Queens of spades, clubs, hearts, and diamonds. The five-card hand is then completed by the highest card in your hand or the others on the table. 

Full house

We then get to the full house hand. This is when you have a hand consisting of the same card in three different suits (three of a kind), such as 5 of diamonds, hearts, and spades, as well as a pair of same-rank cards in two different suits, such as 7 in hearts and diamonds. If there is more than one player with a full house hand, then the player who has the cards of the highest value three of a kind cards wins.

Flush

That brings us to the flush. This hand has five cards of the same suit of different values in any order, for example, a 2, 5, 9, 6, and Q of clubs. If two players hold a flush, then the player who has the flush with the highest valued card has the winning hand.

Straight

A straight hand is the next highest hand, and it consists of five cards in consecutive values in more than one suit, so you could have 2 of clubs, 3 of diamonds, 4 of clubs, 5 of hearts, and 6 of hearts. In this instance, an Ace can be used as either high (above a King) or low (below a 2) to complete a hand. However, it cannot be used as both high and low in the same hand.

Three of a kind

A three of a kind poker hand with three Kings, a 5 and a 7 on a table.

A three of a kind hand is one that contains three equally ranked cards from three different suits, for example, King of diamonds, hearts, and clubs. The two highest available cards other than these three are then used to complete your hand.

Two pairs

Two pairs is the third-lowest ranking in poker. This hand consists of two different sets of two cards that are of the same rank, for example, a pair of 3s and a pair of Kings. The hand is completed by the highest-ranking card that remains.

Pair

A pair of cards is the second-lowest ranking hand in poker. This is when you hold a pair of same-ranked cards in different suits, such as 2 in hearts and clubs. The remainder of your hand is then formed from the three highest-ranking cards that you have available.

High card

Despite its name, a high card hand is actually the lowest ranking of all poker hands. If you are unable to make any of the other hands, then the highest card that you have will be your “best hand.”

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