How to play 7 Card Stud Hi-Lo
7 Card Stud Hi-Lo is a poker game that combines the strategies and game play of 7 Card Stud and the possible split pot aspect of Omaha Hi-Lo. The same 7 Card Stud rules apply to 7 Card Stud Hi-Lo with the exception that the pot may be shared between a player holding the high (Hi) hand and a player holding the qualifying low (Lo) hand. A low hand must have a high card "8 or better" to qualify to be the low hand. That is, to be eligible to win the low, the highest card must be an 8 or lower. Upon a tie with the high card, the hand goes to the player with the next lowest high card. Any hand that is high card 9 or higher cannot qualify as a low hand. In 7 Card Stud Hi-Lo the same player can also win both pots for the Hi & Lo hand when there is no qualifying low hand. The straight ace to five is the best possible low hand with the straight four to eight being the worse possible qualifying low hand. The ace can be used as a high and low card in 7 Card Stud Hi-Lo. Straights and flushes are not considered when evaluating a low hand.
How to play 7 Card Stud Hi Lo
First Round - In 7 Card Stud Hi-Lo, a disc known as the dealer "button" serves to recognize which player sitting at the table is the dealer for that particular hand. After all players have placed their ante they receive their initial cards. The cards are dealt in a clockwise direction from the dealer button. Each player is dealt three cards (two of them face down and one face up). The player with the lowest face up card is known as the "bring-in" and must make a wager of half the small blind. (For example, in a $4-$8 game, the bring-in is $2). The other players then must decide to match this amount beginning clockwise from the bring-in. If two players are tied for the low card the card rankings are broken by suit, with the order being spades, hearts, diamonds and clubs (in descending order).
Second Round (Fourth Street) - Next, each player is dealt another face up card, known as "fourth street". In this round the first person to act is the player whose face up cards, comprise the highest poker value. This player may either check or bet. The bet amount is determined by the value of the face up cards on the table. If there is no pair exposed then the amount will be the small bet (For example, in a $4-$8 game, the bet is $4). However, if there is a face up pair then the amount is the big bet ($8 in the previous example).
Third Round (Fifth Street) - Each player is dealt a third face up card in this round, called "fifth street". Starting in this betting round and all subsequent betting rounds all wagers are in the big bet amounts (For example, in a $4-$8 game, the bet is $8). The first person to act is again the player whose face up cards, comprise the highest poker value.
Fourth Round (Sixth Street) –Each player is dealt a fourth face up card in this round, called "sixth street". The first person to act is again the player whose face up cards, comprise the highest poker value.
Fifth Round (Seventh Street) - Each player is dealt a seventh card called "seventh street" or the "river". This last card is dealt face down. The first person to act on the river is the player whose face up cards, comprise the highest poker value.
Showdown - If more than one player remains after the fifth round of betting is completed then there is a showdown and the last player to bet shows their cards first. If no one acted then the player whose face up cards, comprise the highest poker value shows their cards first. Players use five of their seven cards and the player with the best five-card stud poker hand wins the pot. The highest hand wins 50% of the pot and the lowest qualifying low hand wins 50% of the pot. If no low hand qualifies then the highest hand wins the entire pot. In the event of identical poker hands, the pot will be equally divided between the players with the best hands.
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