Through television, Texas Hold’em poker has managed to find its way to people’s living room and into the “kitchen tables” of amateur poker players. The result is a poker explosion that has everyone curious about how Texas Hold’em is played.
There are two types of Texas Hold’em player. One is the no-limit Texas Hold’em and this is the type that you most often see on television shows like ESPN’s broadcast of the World Series of Poker. The other type, the low-limit Texas Hold’em poker is designed for players who are just beginning to learn the game.
Most low-limit Texas Hold’em games have a betting structure of $2/4, $3/6, or $4/8. These kinds of Texas Hold’em betting structures can be found mostly in online gamerooms.
The Basics of Texas Hold’em
In Texas Hold’em, each player is given two initial cards, called the pocket cards. The players will match up these cards with the five community cards which are dealt later on the board in order to create a Texas Hold’em poker hand. The one with the best hand wins the game.
Suppose we use the Texas Hold’em betting structure of $2/4 where you have a limit of $2 for each of the first 2 rounds. At the last 2 rounds, your bet limit increases to $4. Your raise or your bet depends on the limit set for that round.
The Game Flow of Texas Hold’em
Texas Hold’em starts with two “blind” bets. The player who is immediately to the left of the dealer posts the small blind, which is half the minimum bet that was set before the start of the game. The player next to him will then place the big blind which is equivalent to the minimum bet. The third player to the left of the dealer will now start the first betting round.
In Texas Hold’em, the first betting round ends with the player who made the small blind. The player who posted the big blind can either raise or “check” the bet if the player before him made a call. In Texas Hold’em, to check means to pass up the chance of making a bet.
After the last player makes his move, the new dealer (the player with the dealer button – in this case the small blind player since Texas Hold’em follows the clockwise movement) will now deal the first 3 cards face up. This stage in Texas Hold’em is called the flop. The second betting round begins and still at $2.
When the flop is completed, the dealer turns up a fourth card called the turn. Following the Texas Hold’em betting rules, the bet is now at $4. After the fourth round, the dealer will turn the fifth and final community card face up. This card is called the Texas Hold’em river.
After the river is completed, the players will now have enough cards to begin forming their Texas Hold’em hand. The player with the best Texas Hold’em hand wins the pot.