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Poker Strategy | Seven Card Stud

Seven Card Stud for Beginners - 6th Street

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The play on 6th street is the same as 5th street but there are a few situations that should be addressed separately. So many of your actions on 5th and 6th street rely on your read of your opponents' cards, but if you reach 6th street with more than two opponents, the pot odds usually dictate that you should call a single bet with any hand that could improve to the winner. Of course with multiple opponents there are more hands to beat you.

You've seen some more cards now, and with several opponents, the number of unknown, available cards may have been reduced again, but with only one card to come, the odds have probably gotten worse. Your flush draw, with 5 outs may be as bad as 5:1. To call a single bet, there needs to be 5 big bets in the pot. More importantly to call a raise, there must be 10 big bets in the pot. Always consider how the last card may have improved the hand of your opponent.

Made hands that stand to win: (Flushes, Straights, Full houses, etc.) BET OR RAISE. With straights, and flushes betting out is even more important. They will seldom improve and you don't want to allow your opponents to draw for free.

Trips, {5-Diamonds}{5-Hearts} {5-Spades} {8-Diamonds}{A-Hearts}{6-Spades}: If you started with trips or improved to trips you could still have the best hand. Your goal is to get as much money as possible in the pot. In some situations, slow playing might be a consideration, but in most cases a BET or Raise is always the best play.

• Considerations:
• VS a hand like: ?-? {Q-Hearts}{9-Diamonds}{J-Diamonds}{Q-Spades} you might consider slowing down a bit. One of the worst plays in poker is to chase a higher set of trips. It has a very negative EV. A paired door card should always send up warning signs. If you have been driving the betting, most players will probably check raise with the trips in this situation. Always be alert for increased aggressiveness. How did that card help him? He wants more money in the pot for a reason.
• VS a hand like: ?-? {Q-Hearts}{8-Hearts}{9-Hearts}{J-Clubs} and you are in a bit of a trick. Now he has strong straight and flush possibilities. If he showed strength on 3rd street, expect a pair. RAISE. If he has been passively calling, he was probably on a draw and the {J-Clubs} may have helped. This hand illustrates the importance of reading cards so well, let's take a bit and look closer at his possible hands.
{Q-Diamonds}-x {Q-Hearts} He would have probably raised on third street, and most players with this hand would have called a raise.
{A-Hearts}{3-Hearts} {Q-Hearts} Many players will always play flush draws even for multiple raises. In this case he should have already started betting or raising if he had the flush. If this is his holding, you are on the draw to the Full House.
{10-Spades}{J-Clubs} {Q-Hearts} or {9-Spades}{J-Clubs} {Q-Hearts} are the only straight draw hands that make sense. (Of course he could have 10 in the second hand and already holds the straight.) If he held the straight he should have become aggressive on 5th street or if he just hit, expect a bet or raise.

Biggest pair, {Q-Diamonds}{Q-Hearts} {8-Diamonds}{5-Hearts}{A-Clubs}{4-Clubs}, may still be the best hand against few opponents. BET or RAISE. Against many opponents a big pair no longer stands to be the best hand. Be prepared to fold if any of your opponents play back.

• Considerations:
• How many of your side cards are dead? Are the Aces still live? This may be the best hand but two pair would have a better chance of winning the hand at the river.
• VS. a paired door Card: ?-? {9-Diamonds}{8-Hearts}{9-Hearts}{K-Clubs} This hand would probably be first to act and should bet. A raise now may actually save you money. If they reraise, you can probably put them on trips. If they check raise, trips are probable.
• VS. a lower pair: ?-? {J-Spades}{A-Hearts}{8-Hearts}{8-Clubs} Many players will play any hand containing 2 face cards. If this player becomes aggressive there is a good possibility he already has two pair, and maybe Aces up. Based on your read of the player you should consider laying down your Queens, especially if there are no other Aces showing.

Small pair with a good kicker, {2-Spades}{2-Diamonds} {K-Hearts}{8-Diamonds}{10-Hearts}{7-Spades} since you have represented a pair of kings, you might choose to continue the bluff but it is very high risk, unless you have a very good read on your opponent.

• Considerations:
• Remember you would have folded this hand to a bet on 3rd street. You probably don't want to put more money in the pot now, on 6th street, with only one card to come.
• This was a very speculative hand to start with. Although you would like to see one more card, if your cards are still live, you should probably fold to significant action.

2 small pair, {8-Diamonds}{5-Hearts} {8-Spades}{10-Clubs}{5-Diamonds} this is a very marginal hand and for the beginner should probably be abandoned to a single bet. You really have only a bluff catcher if you fail to catch the Full House on the river.

4 cards to a Flush, {K-Diamonds}{Q-Diamonds} {3-Diamonds}{8-Hearts}{5-Diamonds}: With 4 cards to a flush you are probably in the hand to the end. A flush will usually win and at this point and you probably get the proper odds to call.

• Considerations: (The same as 5th Street.)
• If 5 or more of your flush cards are dead, consider folding.
• If you are drawing against a higher flush like ?-? {A-Clubs}{8-Clubs}{K-Clubs}{2-Hearts}, you should consider folding unless the pot is LARGE. (You are getting good pot odds.)
• If one of your opponents has trips, FOLD, unless the pot is huge, and there are many players. You really don't want to be trapped in a raising war with a draw. This is a Hold'em example but it can occur in stud too.
• Your flush draw should also be abandoned if the pot is small and you are heads up against a single opponent.

You are probably not getting the pot odds for a call. Typically the pot should be 5 or 6 big bets before you make the call.

4 cards to a medium straight {8-Diamonds}{7-Clubs} {6-Hearts}{Q-Hearts}{5-Diamonds}{K-Spades}: (8 high,) Like the 4 flush, you will probably be in the hand until the river, but the list of situations where you should consider folding is expanded:

• Considerations: (Unless the pot is very large)
• If more than 5 of your outs are dead, FOLD, to a bet.
• Note: an inside, gut shot straight, {8-Diamonds}{9-Clubs} {6-Hearts}{Q-Hearts}{5-Diamonds}{2-Spades}: is not a straight draw.
• Fold if someone is drawing to a flush with higher cards, ?-? {A-Clubs}{8-Clubs}{J-Clubs}{2-Clubs}
• Fold if someone is drawing to higher straight, ?-? {9-Hearts}{8-Clubs}{10-Diamonds}{K-Clubs}
Like the flush your straight draw should be abandoned if the pot is small and you are heads up against the bettor.

Again, unlike Hold'em where you only see your two card hand, by 6th street, you have seen, your 2 down cards, the door card of every player. The 3, 4, or 5, cards of the players still in on 5th street and the 4 cards of the players still in on this street, 6th. If the game is 8 handed, you usually know 23 cards by 6th street that leaves about half the deck, 29 cards, unknown. Remember to adjust your odds. Drawing hands usually go to the river if they have a high potential for winning if they hit, but often you may find your self drawing dead or to the second best hand. The real key here is to determine/guess what your opponents down cards are. To do that, ask yourself these questions. (Remember to take into the account all of the exposed cards.)

• What 3 cards would he call with on 3rd street? Most players have some standards and they are usually similar to those in Part 1 of this tutorial. Loose players simply play more, dry high card hands. If he called a bet on 3rd street you can usually restrict those holdings some.

• Did 4th street help? If so, how did it help? Did he call a bet or raise.
• How did 5th street help his hand?

These questions should allow you to narrow down his possible holdings to only 2 or 3 different hands. With a little practice you will find that you can put him on a specific hand with high confidence. This is a major difference from Hold ‘em.

There are usually several free games available at Full Tilt and Poker Stars.

The River is next. View 5th Street - 4th Street - 7 Card Stud for Beginners.

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