The Game Stud

Poker Play

Positive Attitude

Poker Intimidated

Check Other Games

Betting Styles

Poker Bluff


Third Street

Poker Big Pairs

Middle Pairs

Low Pairs

Flush Draws

Straight Draws

Best of the Rest


Fourth Street

Force Out Hands

Poker Two Pair

Poker Big Pairs

Middle Small Pairs

Four Flushes

Ended Straight


Fifth Street

Playing Full House

Flushes Straights

Poker Trips

Poker Two Pair

Drawing Hands


Learning to play poker

Flush Draws

When I started playing stud, it was easy to get caught up in my own little world.  I would get dealt three suited cards and automatically be reaching for my chip pile, ready to throw out a dollar because surely the odds favor my getting my flush by the river right?

Well, not exactly.  So many players fall into the trap of believing that any three suited cards mean great odds for becoming five suited cards.  Actually, with three sired cards, odds are still against your making your flush.  So before you get the vision in your head of the dealer pushing a large pile of chips your way as you lay down your flush, take a few things into consideration.

Quality is Crucial

First ask yourself about the quality of your hand.  Yes, you may have three-to-a-flush, but are your cards a deuce, a 5 and a 7?  If that’s the case, your hand is not so exciting.  When we looked at pairs, we discussed the importance of a good kicker.  You cannot have tunnel vision and focus in just on making the flush – you must consider other possibilities for improvement as well.

Your best situation would be to have a jack, queen and king of the same suit, since that hand gives you a lot of ways to improve.  You may be thinking “straight flush,” here, but that isn’t very likely.  In fact, it’s so unlikely that the card room I go to gives out a free hat if you are fortunate enough to get one.  What’s more likely to happen with a jack, queen, and king of the same suit is that you’ll improve to a straight, a regular flush, or a solid Poker Two Pair.  Remember, with a three-flush, the bigger your cards are the better.  Of course, you are hoping to improve to a flush, but big cards give you other ways of improving your hand that might make it playable down the line even if you see other cards needed to improve your flush fall elsewhere.

Live Card Requirements

Second, as soon as you get your cards and see that you have three-to-a-flush, start looking around the board.  Count how many of your needed cards have been dealt as door cards to other players.  If you have three non-face cards and you see two of your needed suit gone, fold. If you have two cards that are 10 or higher, and only three (or fewer) cards of your needed suit are gone, you can stay in for a dollar to see a fourth card.

With any more than three of your needed cards gone, fold.  With three-to-a-flush, those three cards you hold may look pretty, but think about it.  Even if you have big cards, if four of your needed suit have been dealt, that leaves just six left in the deck (assuming they haven’t been dealt to other players).  Of those six cards, you need two to make your flush.  You may have a few big cards, but it’s not worth even another dollar to stay in and hope you’ll complete your flush.

The only time you can consider staying in for a dollar to see fourth street is if you have three suited cards in sequence.  In this situation, you have another out – drawing to a straight.  But, even here, when you’re thinking of  staying in, make sure that you’ve looked at the board and counted both how many cards in your needed suit have been dealt, and how many cards that would improve your three-straight are out there.  If more than two are dead, fold.

Never Raise!

When you do stay in with three suited cards, never raise.  It’s still a drawing hand, and you want as many people in the pot as possible to increase the pot odds in your favor.  Since the statistical odds are against your completing a flush, the more people there are in the pot to start our with the better, because you’ll be getting more value on your bet if you complete your hand as play progresses.  Raising would drive people out.  You want to do that with a big pair, because someone might outdraw you, but here, just call to keep in as many players as you can.

Quick Guide….
….To Low Pairs on Third Street:

  • CALL if you have a good kicker and live cards, and you’re confident that the pot will not be raised.  With low pairs, you want to stay in for as few chips as possible.
  • FOLD if someone has completed the betting, unless you know that player to be very loose – no need to start out from behind.  You also need to fold if one of your cards to improve to trips is dead or if you have a lousy kicker.


Sixth Street

Completed Solid Hands

Trips & Poker Two Pairs



Seventh Street

Calling Seventh Street

Quick Quiz

Final Thoughts

Final Thoughts

Keep Records

the Shaking Hand