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Game Type Intro/Overview & Rules

5-Card “Low ball” overview and rules

5-Card Stud (“Low Ball”)
“Dealer’s Choice” variants: roll your own, hole-card wild, follow the queen, 2-7, etc.
Similar to 5-Stud High with following exceptions:
Lowest hand wins (no “8 or better” qualifier)
Straights and flushes DO NOT count as a high hand
Highest door card (suits–low to high: CDHS): forced “Bring-in” or “Complete”
Starting Hands (see 5-card low probabilities)
A-5 (the “Wheel”) is the nuts, but highly unlikely (0.0394%)
Any non-pair (50.7%) is often best when short-handed
T-high or better (i.e. lower) happens only ~10%
Position (low-hand opens from 3rd Street to River)
Odds and Outs Calculations (5-Stud calculators)

5-Card Stud: Hi(gh)

The Basics

Hand Ranking (same as above)
Multiple “Dealer’s Choice” variants: roll your own, high or low Chicago, hole-card wild, follow the queen, etc.
Antes (~10% to 50% of the limit): may also be played with blinds as in Hold’em
5 “streets”: 4-bet cap per street (4th and 5th street may be with “big bets”)
Action begins on 2nd Street: 1 down, 1 “door card” up
Low card bring-in (suits–low to high: CDHS)
Bring-In size: ~25% to 50% of the small bet
3rd and 4th streets: both dealt up
5th street (the river): dealt either up or down
Position: high-hand opens from 3rd Street to River
Minimum stack size per table: at least 17 big bets: 25bb recommendation
Capped each round = 4xsb on 2nd & 3rd, 4xbb on 4th & 5th = 16 big bets
Table stakes: Match big stack (see 6max Hold’em bankroll management)

Table/Player Analysis
2nd Street (5-Card Stud Push Calculator)
Starting Hands (any pair, Ax, any 2 higher than opponents’ doors – TP is king!)
Probability of being dealt any pair in 2 cards is 5.88%, 16 to 1 against.
Ascertaining Villain’s Hole-Card Calculator

3rd Street
Heads-up or up-pair: “double-net” option on 3rd street (option to “double-raise”)
Odds & Outs Calculations (5-Stud Runner-Runner Calculator): flush/straight?

4th Street: big bets (2x the small bet)
Odds and Outs Calculations (5-Stud: 1-Card “Draw” calculator)

5th Street: (see Ascertaining Villain’s Hole-Card Calculator

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General Strategic Considerations

Player Types: Statistics (see poker-strategy blog for details)

Table buy-in recommendations
Fixed Limit Stud: 25 bets recommended … 17 bets minimum stack size
Pot Limit or No Limit: match the table’s big stack if you have an edge, or buy in for the average to get your feet wet (see 6-max Texas Hold’em Bankroll Management)


General Statistics

5-Card Hands: Low

5-Card LOW Hands # LOW Hands in 5 Cards Probability (as a %) Odds Against
5-high 1,024 0.039% 2537.1 : 1
6-high 5,120 0.197% 506.6 : 1
7-high 15,360 0.591% 168.2 : 1
8-high 35,840 1.380% 71.5 : 1
9-high 71,680 2.760% 35.2 : 1
10-high 129,024 4.960% 19.2 : 1
Jack-high 215,040 8.270% 11.1 : 1
Queen-high 337,920 13.000% 6.7 : 1
King-high 506,880 19.500% 4.1 : 1
Total 1,317,888 50.697%


Starting-Hands Ranges




Post-Flop Play




Recommended Reading

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Starting-Hands Recommendations (“ranges”)

Full-Ring (i.e. 7-10 players) Starting Hands Recommendations


6-Max Starting Hands Recommendations


Heads-Up Starting Hands Recommendations


See the poker-strategy blog and of course in the Essential Poker Knowledge videos for additional details and clarification on the following content.

Additional Resources


Other Useful Tools for Maximizing Your Profit


Strategy Recap and What’s to Come for Our Members