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The Basics of Poker

The Basics of Poker


Poker is a game of skill that is played with cards and chips. It is a popular card game around the world, and has been around for over 200 years. There are many different forms of the game, but all share some common elements.

The Basics

Poker uses a 52-card deck, with jokers added to make the game faster and easier to play. A single deck is used in games with less than 10 players, while two packs are used in most club and professional poker tournaments.

The cards are dealt face up, with the first dealer assembling the cards and then placing them to the left. The dealer then takes the shuffled deck and deals cards in turn.

Betting is a fundamental aspect of poker, and a good player must be able to read other players’ betting behavior and understand their tells (eye movements, idiosyncrasies, hand gestures etc.). A good player will be able to determine the strength of their opponent’s hands, and will also be able to see when it is appropriate to raise or call.


One of the mistakes that new poker players make is to get tunnel vision when it comes to their own hand. Instead, they should concentrate on the range of possible hands their opponent has and try to work out how likely they are to beat them.

This is especially true for premium pairs like pocket aces. These hands can be easily beaten by a flopped set or some other unconnected board.