7 Card Stud Poker
Seven Card Stud Poker Rules and Strategy Tips
The basic objectives and strategies for 7 Card Stud Poker shown here
are those generally agreed to and recommended by the experts on flat
limit games. An understanding of these basics is needed for all levels
of competitive play. Solid intermediate and expert level poker usually
requires extensive study of the more advanced game tactics and
considerable hours of actual casino or online playing experience.
7 Card Stud Poker - Game Rules
Highest hand wins || Ace plays both high and low for straights || Three raise limit per round || Cards speak
7 Card Stud - Card Distribution and Betting Procedure
Example: $2/$4 Seven Card Stud games.
After all players have anted $.25 or so,
1. ) Each player is dealt two cards face down and one face up. The
player with the lowest up card makes an forced bet of either $1 half
minimum bet or $2 full bet (player's choice) to start the game. The
rest of the players, in clockwise order, either call the opening bet,
raise it, or not call and "fold" their hands back to the dealer.
2. ) All get a fourth card face up followed by a round of $2 betting.
From this round on, the player with the highest up card(s) is always
first to check or bet.
( 3. ) After the fifth card is dealt face up, the minimum bet goes to $4.
( 4. ) The sixth card is dealt face up and there is another round of $4 betting.
5. ) The seventh and last card is dealt face down and followed by the
final round of $4 betting. The dealer then determines the highest hand
and awards the pot.
Seven Card Stud Strategy
Card Stud is a HIGH card game. More winning hands are decided by the
highest pair of two pair or just the highest pair, than by straights,
flushes and other big hands. So if you start with a straight or flush
draw, it should have at least two high cards or at least one card that
is higher than anything up on the board. These draw hands and low pair
starting hands need to improve or turn a high pair quickly to justify
continued play. Any time your high hand is beaten on the board, fold,
unless you think you still have the best draw hand. Fast play early
high hands ( that could win without improvement) to thin out the
competition. Slow play draw hands to keep other players in to increase
the pot odds in case you hit.
HIGH CARDS - 10 thru A .
LOW CARDS - 2 thru 9
SPLIT PAIR - Starting hand with one of your pair cards down and the other up.
CONCEALED PAIR - Starting hand with both of your pair cards in the hole and your side card kicker up.
DOOR CARD - The exposed upcard of a starting hand.
DEAD CARDS - Cards that have been revealed and no longer in the deck.
FAST PLAY - Bet, raise and re-raise to get as many other players out as possible.
SLOW PLAY - Just check and call along to keep other players in the game and increase the pot odds.
CHECK-FOLD - Check when you can and fold if you are bet into. Gladly accept all free cards offered. Playable Starting Hands:
HIGH TRIPS - (AAA down to 101010). Fast play these. Your opponents will put you on a high pair.
LOW TRIPS - (999 down to 222). Slow play until your 5th street bet. Keep 'em guessing.
HIGH PAIR -
(AA, KK, QQ, JJ, 1010). Fast play these, split or concealed, if they
are not overcarded on the board. Try to narrow the field and play fast
until threatened by a higher hand.
LOW PAIR/ High Kicker -
Slow play split or concealed low pairs with a kicker that is higher
than any upcard on the board. Fold this hand if two or more of your key
cards are dead. Check-fold if you don't get trips or two pair on the
CONCEALED LOW PAIR/ No High Kicker - Slow
play for trips on 4th street. Fold if one or both of your pair cards
are dead. Check-fold if you don't make trips or two pair on the next
HIGH OVERCARDS - Two or three
high cards that are higher than anything on the board. Slow play and
check-fold if they don't make a high pair on the next card.
HIGH 3 CARD FLUSH - (2h
10h Kh). Must have at least two high cards. Fold if three or more cards
of your suit are dead. Slow play and check-fold if you don't make a
four card flush or a high pair on the next card.
HIGH 3 CARD STRAIGHT - (9 10 J ) to Q K A). Slow play and check-fold if you don't make a four card straight or a high pair on the next card.
ANY 3 CARDS TO A STRAIGHT FLUSH -
(5d 7d 9d). Fold if four or more of your key straight and flush cards
are dead. Slow play and check-fold if you don't make any four cards to
a straight or a four card flush.
you start with a high pair, fast play to eliminate as many players as
possible. Slow play starting draw hands like three to a straight or a
flush. You want to keep other players in to build the pot odds.
Slow play starting trips until the fifth card. You want some players around with this powerful starting hand.
Usually don't begin with a small pair unless they are concealed or your sidecard can beat the board .
Try not to play three to a low straight or a low flush.
Watch the board closely for key cards that can seriously diminish your
chances of making a good hand and for opponents hands that look
dangerous. Play cautiously and fold out early if it looks like the tide
is turning against you.
Beware of the paired door card. If an opponent is playing a pair in his
starting hand, and pairs his door card (first upcard), the odds are two
out of three that the door card is part of his pair. A paired door card
presents a strong possibility that the holder has a dangerous set of
Unless you are playing a strong draw hand, usually fold if your
complete hand is beaten on the board by an opponent's upcards.
Try to find reasons to fold both your starting hands and those that
develop on the later streets. Look for a dead card in the denomination
that you need and for two or three dead cards in the suit that you are
drawing to. Look for too much strong competition developing for the
winning hand. When you can't find reasons to fold, you can then proceed
Study your opponents, especially when you are not playing hands and can
pay careful attention. Do they find more hands to play than they fold?
Do they bluff? Can they be bluffed? Do they have any "tells" (give away
mannerisms) that disclose information about their hands etc.
Get caught bluffing once in a while. It is a way to vary your play and
not be too predictable. You win pots that you don't deserve when your
bluff works. You lose a few chips when it doesn't work but it will get
you calls from weaker hands down the line when you are really strong
and need the action.
The first four cards are the major key to winning at Seven Card Stud
games. If your starting hands develop according to plan, you can be a
strong favorite to win. If they don't, you get out early and escape the
expensive second best experience. The three card starting hands
recommended above are those with the best chance of producing a
dominant four card hand. Good four card hands that are carefully played
don't always win but they win a lot more than the others.