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Omaha Poker - The New Texas Holdem?

By: Matthew Smith

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Could Omaha poker become as popular as Texas Holdem? Although Omaha is hardly new it is gaining a lot of popularity on the Internet recently as people become tired of the Texas Holdem craze and want to find an alternative.

Omaha as a game is very similar to Texas Holdem poker except that you get dealt four cards instead of two. Five cards are dealt out on the table and bets are placed in the same way as Texas Holdem, first with the cards in your hand, then after three cards have been dealt out. Another betting round after the forth card and a final round of betting after the final card has been dealt. The difference with Omaha is that you must use two cards from your hand and three cards from the five community cards.

Having the additional two cards in your hand to choose from makes a huge difference in the quality of the hands. Straights and Flushes are a lot more common and this is usually the minimum hand that you should bet with. If three of the community cards are all the same suit then it is extremely likely that someone has a flush. If you have anything else you should only continue with extreme caution. This is even more the case when you play with more players. This is also the case if three cards could make a straight.

In a ten player table it is also likely that if you have a run or a flush, someone else around the table will also have one. This is great if you have the highest possible flush or straight. However if you have a flush with two low cards it is likely that you will lose.

Full Houses are also very common. If you have a flush or straight and there is a pair on the table, then you need to realise that there is a very good chance you will lose to a full house by the time the five cards have been dealt. It can be frustrating to fold a straight or flush but you will have to do it quite often to succeed at Omaha.

Four of a kind is also shown more than you would think. As you have four cards in your hand you will get a pair in your hand frequently. If you play in a ten player game then a total of forty-five cards will be in use. So you need to always be aware of what the best possible hand is.

Finally the straight flush is still very unlikely but do expect to see it every couple of hours. With this in mind never play Omaha with your entire stack as you will get called all in. This is a lot more common than Texas Holdem. This can lead to some huge stacks and being wiped out entirely!

With this in mind have a go at Omaha and see if you think it could take over from Texas Holdem. But play with caution and only bet with the best hands!

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Matthew Smith has been playing poker online for many years with great success and now offers his expert advice to help new players succeed in the world of free poker money.

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