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How to play Five Card Draw Poker

Play Five card draw poker

Five Card Draw is one of the oldest known variations of poker. The game can be played with between two and five players. Betting in Five Card Draw consists of an initial Ante, followed by two rounds of betting. Each player in a game of Draw receives five cards face down, and may discard or draw up to five cards after the first betting round. The player with the highest five-card poker hand at showdown wins the pot.

The rules of 5 Card Draw are similar to the rules of Holdem. The game is played as follows:

  1. A small dealer button identifies one player as the dealer. The dealer button moves one spot clockwise after every hand.
  2. Before any cards are dealt, players must post any mandatory bets, known as ‘blinds’ or ‘antes’.After the mandatory blinds and/or antes are posted, each player is dealt five cards face down.
    1. In Draw, the player directly to the left of the dealer must post the ‘small blind’.
    2. The player two spots left of the dealer must post the ‘big blind’.
    3. The small blind is most often smaller than the big blind, usually exactly half.
  3. A betting round begins, beginning with the player to the left of the big blind. This player is said to be ‘under the gun’. As in every other form of poker, players can choose to check, fold, bet or call as appropriate throughout the round of betting.
  4. After the first round of betting, players have the option of discarding up to 5 cards, and exchanging them for new ones. It is not mandatory that players discard and exchange- it is strictly optional. If a player chooses to keep all of his original cards, this is known as ‘staying’.
  5. After each player has discarded and exchanged his desired amount of cards, a second and final round of betting begins. The action starts once again with the player under the gun.
  6. Once the final round of betting is complete, any remaining players must show down their hands. As in all other forms of poker, the player with the best five-card poker hand wins the pot. If two players show down identical hands, they must split the pot.
  7. Once the pot has been transferred to the winner, the dealer button is moved one spot clockwise, and a new hand may begin.