Omaha Hi/Lo is a mixed version of Omaha Holdem, where two players can actually split the pot – the High Hand winner and the Low Hand winner. Omaha Hi/Lo has become one of the most popular games among professional poker players for its highly strategic game play. Keep reading to learn how to play Omaha Hi/Lo.
The object of Omaha Hi/Lo is to achieve the highest or lowest hand – or both - to win. Players will have 7 cards to work with to develop a 5 card poker hand. The player(s) with the highest and lowest hands split the pot. However, a player's hand must qualify to win the Low Hand (see Omaha Hi/Lo – The Low Hand below).
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The high hand in Omaha Hi/Lo is played exactly the same as traditional Omaha Holdem. The same standard poker hand ranks apply. The higher ranking hand wins half of the pot. If no player wins the low hand, the high hand wins the entire pot.
Here's where Omaha Hi/Lo gets interesting. Players may vie for half of the pot by achieving the lowest ranking poker hand. There are specific rules in low hand development, as well as qualifications to win the low half.
In order to qualify, the player's hand must have no card higher than an 8, and valid no combinations. Omaha Hi/Lo is often referred to as “8 or better”, as the player's low hand must have 8 or better (lower) to win.
The following rules apply to the low hand.
The best possible Omaha Low Hand is: A-2-3-4-5
This is an awesome hand because it will often win the High Hand as well, as a Straight.
Omaha Hi/Lo starts with the placement of Blind bets. Then each player is dealt 4 Hole Cards. After looking at their own hole cards, the first betting round begins.
The blind bets were already placed, so the player left of the BB has the option to call, raise or fold. Continuing left, each player has the same options. The blind bettors may call or raise by adding enough chips to their current blind bet. Once all players have acted, the hand continues.
Highest to lowest (applies to High Hand only)
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