# Non-standard poker hand

Non-standard hands usually appear in games using wild cards or bugs. A badugi is any hand which consists of four unpaired cards, each a different suit. In Low Poker, a wild card can be used to represent a card of a rank not already present in the player's hand. Dogs and cats rank above straights and below Straight Flush houses. Standard poker rules do, however, specify a hierarchy of suits:

## Standard Poker Hand Ranking

Between hands in the same category the rank of the individual cards decides which is better, as described in more detail below. In games where a player has more than five cards and selects five to form a poker hand, the remaining cards do not play any part in the ranking. Poker ranks are always based on five cards only, and if these cards are equal the hands are equal, irrespective of the ranks of any unused cards.

Some readers may wonder why one would ever need to compare say two threes of a kind of equal rank. This obviously cannot arise in basic draw poker, but such comparisons are needed in poker games using shared community cards, such as Texas Hold'em, in poker games with wild cards, and in other card games using poker combinations. If there are no wild cards, this is the highest type of poker hand: Between two straight flushes, the one containing the higher top card is higher.

An ace can be counted as low, so 5- 4- 3- 2- A is a straight flush, but its top card is the five, not the ace, so it is the lowest type of straight flush. The cards in a straight flush cannot "turn the corner": Four cards of the same rank - such as four queens.

The fifth card, known as the kicker, can be anything. This combination is sometimes known as " quads ", and in some parts of Europe it is called a " poker ", though this term for it is unknown in English. Between two fours of a kind, the one with the higher set of four cards is higher - so A is beaten by If two or more players have four of a kind of the same rank, the rank of the kicker decides.

For example in Texas Hold'em with J- J- J- J- 9 on the table available to all players , a player holding K-7 beats a player holding Q since the king beats the queen.

If one player holds and another holds they split the pot, since the 9 kicker makes the best hand for both of them. If one player holds A- 2 and another holds A- K they also split the pot because both have an ace kicker. This combination, sometimes known as a boat , consists of three cards of one rank and two cards of another rank - for example three sevens and two tens colloquially known as "sevens full of tens" or "sevens on tens".

When comparing full houses, the rank of the three cards determines which is higher. For example beats A-A. If the threes of a kind are equal, the rank of the pairs decides.

Five cards of the same suit. When comparing two flushes, the highest card determines which is higher. If the highest cards are equal then the second highest card is compared; if those are equal too, then the third highest card, and so on.

For example K- J- 9- 3- 2 beats K- J- 7- 6- 5 because the nine beats the seven. If all five cards are equal, the flushes are equal. Five cards of mixed suits in sequence - for example Q- J- 9- 8. When comparing two sequences, the one with the higher ranking top card is better. Three cards of the same rank plus two unequal cards. This combination is also known as Triplets or Trips. When comparing two threes of a kind the rank of the three equal cards determines which is higher.

If the sets of three are of equal rank, then the higher of the two remaining cards in each hand are compared, and if those are equal, the lower odd card is compared. So for example beats K-5 , which beats Q-9 , which beats Q A pair consists of two cards of equal rank. In a hand with two pairs, the two pairs are of different ranks otherwise you would have four of a kind , and there is an odd card to make the hand up to five cards.

When comparing hands with two pairs, the hand with the highest pair wins, irrespective of the rank of the other cards - so J-J beats because the jacks beat the tens. If the higher pairs are equal, the lower pairs are compared, so that for example beats K.

Finally, if both pairs are the same, the odd cards are compared, so Q-Q beats Q-Q A hand with two cards of equal rank and three cards which are different from these and from each other. When comparing two such hands, the hand with the higher pair is better - so for example beats A-K-Q. If the pairs are equal, compare the highest ranking odd cards from each hand; if these are equal compare the second highest odd card, and if these are equal too compare the lowest odd cards.

Five cards which do not form any of the combinations listed above. This combination is often called High Card and sometimes No Pair.

The cards must all be of different ranks, not consecutive, and contain at least two different suits. When comparing two such hands, the one with the better highest card wins. If the highest cards are equal the second cards are compared; if they are equal too the third cards are compared, and so on.

So A-J beats A because the jack beats the ten. There are several poker variations in which the lowest hand wins: There are also "high-low" variants in which the pot is split between the highest and the lowest hand.

A low hand with no combination is normally described by naming its highest card - for example would be described as "8-down" or "8-low". It first sight it might be assumed that in low poker the hands rank in the reverse order to their ranking in normal high poker, but this is not quite the case. There are several different ways to rank low hands, depending on how aces are treated and whether straights and flushes are counted. This seems to be the most popular system. Straights and flushes do not count, and Aces are always low.

The best hand is therefore A , even if the cards are all in one suit. Note that when comparing hands, the highest card is compared first, just as in standard poker. So for example is better than A because the 6 is lower than the 7.

The best hand containing a pair is A-A This version is sometimes called "California Lowball". When this form of low poker is played as part of a high-low split variant, there is sometimes a condition that a hand must be " eight or better " to qualify to win the low part of the pot.

In this case a hand must consist of five unequal cards, all 8 or lower, to qualify for low. The worst such hand is The hands rank in almost the same order as in standard poker, with straights and flushes counting and the lowest hand wins. The difference from normal poker is that Aces are always high , so that A is not a straight, but ranks between K-Q-J and A The best hand in this form is in mixed suits, hence the name "deuce to seven".

The next best is , then , , , , , , , , etc. The highest card is always compared first, so for example is better than even though the latter contains a 2, because the 6 is lower than the 7. The best hand containing a pair is , but this would be beaten by A-K-Q-J-9 - the worst "high card" hand. This version is sometimes called "Kansas City Lowball".

Many home poker players play that straights and flushes count, but that aces can be counted as low. In this version A is a bad hand because it is a straight, so the best low hand is A. There are a couple of issues around the treatment of aces in this variant. It is likely that some players would disagree with both the above rulings, preferring to count A-K-Q-J as a straight and in some cases considering A-A to be the highest pair rather than the lowest.

It would be wise to check that you agree on these details before playing ace-to-six low poker with unfamiliar opponents. Note that in games where more than five cards are available, the player is free to select whichever cards make the lowest hand.

For example a player in Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo 8 or Better whose cards are A can omit the 10 and one of the 6's to create a qualifying hand for low. A wild card card that can be used to substitute for a card that the holder needs to make up a hand.

In some variants one or more jokers are added to the pack to act as wild cards. In others, one or more cards of the card pack may be designated as wild - for example all the twos "deuces wild" or the jacks of hearts and spades "one-eyed jacks wild", since these are the only two jacks shown in profile in Anglo-American decks.

This approach is not entirely consistent, since five of a kind - five cards of equal rank - must necessarily include one duplicate card, since there are only four suits.

The only practical effect of the rule against duplicates is to prevent the formation of a "double ace flush". An additional category, five of a kind, is introduced when using one or more wild cards.

The fewer hands a category contains, the higher its rank. It ranks above a straight flush but is only possible when using one or more wild cards, as there are only four cards of each rank in a standard card deck. Each five of a kind is ranked by the rank of its quintuplet. Under high rules, an ace can rank either high e. There are 40 possible straight flush hands and 10 distinct ranks of straight flush under high rules when using a standard card deck.

It ranks below a straight flush and above a full house. There are possible four of a kind hands and distinct ranks of four of a kind when using a standard card deck. There are 3, possible full house hands and distinct ranks of full house when using a standard card deck. There are 5, possible flush hands and 1, distinct ranks of flush under high rules when using a standard card deck. It ranks below a flush and above three of a kind. There are 10, possible straight hands and 10 distinct ranks of straight under high rules when using a standard card deck.

It ranks below a straight and above two pair. There are 54, possible three of a kind hands and distinct ranks of three of a kind when using a standard card deck.

In community card games, such as Texas hold 'em, three of a kind is called a set only when it comprises a pocket pair and a third card on the board. There are , possible two pair hands and distinct ranks of two pair when using a standard card deck. It ranks below two pair and above high card.

There are 1,, possible one pair hands and 2, distinct ranks of one pair when using a standard card deck.

There are 1,, possible high cards hands and 1, distinct ranks of high card hand under high rules when using a standard card deck. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other uses, see Straight flush disambiguation. The Poker Player's Bible. Poker for Dummies, Mini Edition. United States of America: The Theory of Poker. The Intelligent Guide to Texas Hold'em. Retrieved 12 July The Everyday Guide to Recreational Poker. What I Know about Poker: Retrieved 13 July