Texas Holdem | Beginners Guide to the Betting Rounds

If you have decided that you want to play online poker, then Texas Holdem Poker is definitely the right choice. Not only is Texas Holdem the most popular, and frequently played, of the online poker games, it also involves less study than the other common variations, Omaha and Stud poker, in order to learn to play at a basic level. It is imperative, if you are just starting out, to pick one form of the game and stick to it, so that you can learn it thoroughly. Not only that, it pays to stick to one poker room, initially at least, and one particular game, so you can become familiar with the structures of the betting rounds.

A hand of Texas Holdem Poker starts with the two players to the immediate left of the dealer placing initial bets known as the blinds.

The small blind, posted by the player to dealer's left, is calculated as half of the small limit for the game.

The big blind, posted by the player on his left, is twice as large, being exactly equal to the small limit.

After the initial posting of the blinds, each player is dealt two face down hole cards. These cards are never seen by the other players, except when the final reckoning is done to see who has won the pot. Even then, most of the hole cards often remain unseen.

The betting rounds proper start after the hole cards are dealt, with what is usually known as pre-flop. The pre-flop starts with the next player, the one to the left of the second player to post a blind. During these betting rounds players can fold, raise or call. In a fixed or structured limit game, which are the sort that a beginner should be starting with, the game is known by a pair of figures, for example a $1/$2 game. The first number is the maximum amount that can be bet at this pre-flop stage, or on the flop of the cards.

After the initial round of betting, comes the flop of the cards. In Texas Holdem Poker the dealer flips three cards face up onto the table. These cards are used in combination with the hole cards, remember each individual player can only see his own hole cards, to form the hands that will decide the outcome of the hand. After the flop, there is another round of betting. This time the first player to bet will be the player who posted the small blind, seated to the dealer's left.

Following this round of betting the dealer will flip another card onto the table, face up as before, which now gives each player a choice of any five from six cards to form their poker hand. This card is called the 'turn card'. Another round of betting now ensues, at double the limits of the previous rounds, hence the two figure quoted in the type of game. After this betting round, the final card is placed face up on the table. This is known as the 'river card,' after which there will be one further round of betting.

At the end of this round, the showdown occurs, and the player with the best hand will win the pot.



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