Poker is an international game, enjoyed in virtually every country where card games are played. Its roots go back nearly 1,000 years, and some historians believe it originated in a domino-card game played by an ancient Chinese emperor.
In poker, each player is dealt a complete hand and is allowed to bet in one round. Players may then raise and re-raise.
During a betting interval, each player must place the number of chips required to make his total contribution to the pot at least equal to the amount that was placed by the player before him. When all players have placed their chips in the pot, a showdown occurs and the highest-ranking poker hand takes the pot.
A poker hand is made up of five cards. The five-card hands include straights (five cards in sequence, with no particular suit), flushes (five cards of the same suit) and three of a kind (three cards of one rank, plus two cards of another).
Poker is usually played by a group of people around a table. The first player, known as the dealer, deals the cards.
The cards are then turned over face-up to the other players. When the action begins, each player is in what’s called ‘early position’ and play proceeds clockwise from there.
Players are encouraged to use their strategy and play with the best possible poker hands, but it’s important to be able to read your opponent’s actions as well. Watch their movement, their facial expressions and how they manage the chips in the pot.