June, 2013 - In Seven Card Stud Hi Lo there are many different considerations you need to make regarding starting hand selection. Most importantly among these considerations is the amount of opponents you are going to be up against. Some Stud Hi Lo hands play well in multi way situations while others play best heads up or against just a few opponents. This article will give you an idea of what starting hands are best to play in each situation. I play a lot of Razz poker so it is easy to over-value low hands at times. It is important to remember that the high hand always wins. Starting off with a pair is much better than 2-3-4. When you have a solid high hand and there are a few other players that appear to be going after a low hand you should always play extra aggressively. This article will teach you about the best 7 Card Stud Hi Lo starting hands and some basic hand odds.
These are all powerful hands because they represent a good chance of making both a strong high hand and a strong low hand. These are hands that you will normally want to play kind of slow. Wait to see how the hand develops and then get aggressive on fifth street.
The key to a hand like this is to know when to fold if you don’t improve. Stick with a hand like this until fifth street and if you haven’t improved to a solid low hand or one card draw to a low or at least aces up for a high hand, then you should probably let it go. Also look out for other good low draws.
This is the type of hand where you will want to try and eliminate players as it plays best in heads up or short handed situations. Look to have a good draw or a hand made by fifth street.
This is a good starting hand but you need to improve right away to keep playing with it. If you don’t improve by fourth street, try to find a reason to fold. If board conditions are good, consider going one more card to see if you can make a hand.
This is another hand where you are trying to eliminate players and get to a heads up situation. You want to eliminate weak low hands and persuade the players drawing to a high hand to fold. Play this hand aggressively from the start.
One of the other important considerations for Seven Card stud Hi Lo is not necessarily which starting hands to play, but which ones to avoid. There are some hands that simply don’t play well in high low and you want to avoid them. Here is a list of starting hands to stay away from:
Unconnected low cards
Pairs of nines or tens
Any hand with an eight can be trouble, make sure you have some other good cards. Combinations of low and high cards that are unpaired and have no real chance of improving to anything decent.
Three of a kind is an excellent starting hand in Seven Card stud Hi Lo as well as regular Seven stud poker. In Hi Lo the hand is particularly strong if you have aces. Generally speaking you will want to be aggressive right away with anything but aces. With aces you can afford to slow play a bit. This hands plays well in all situations.
Many new Stud Hi Lo players want to know about the odds of receiving this hand or that hand on the flop/deal, 4th street, 5th street, 5th street and 6th street, Due to the complexity of Stud 8/b poker I cannot give you the exact odds for some of these. If you are in a hand with 6 other players and you want to know the odds of catching a full house on 6th Street it is highly likely that one of the players will be showing one or more of your cards so the odds will be quite different. With this in mind I will provide some basic odds on some common situations. The odds of getting a pair on the flop in Stud HL or any of the 7 Stud poker games is 1 out of 5. Three of a kind on your first three cards is going to happen .23% of the time, around 1 out of 450. Three suited cards on the flop will happen a little less than getting a pair; 1 out of 5.5. Three cards in order, like 7-8-9, will happen about once out of every 6 hands.
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