Poker Hand Rankings

by David Burke - Wednesday, March 10th, 2021 1:34

poker hand ranks cheat sheet
Poker hand rankings - cheat sheet / beginners guide

Do you know What “the nuts” is in poker, and what makes a good poker hand? Do you know which hands you should fold pre-flop, and which order hands are ranked in poker games?

To answer these questions (and many more), we have put together this detailed poker cheat sheet for beginners, in order to help you avoid making costly mistakes in a home game, live tournament, or if playing online poker games.

Here is a list of poker hand rankings from highest to lowest:

Poker Hand Ranks – Best to Worst

Poker hands from highest to lowest – Top 10 Texas Hold ’em poker hands

  1. Royal flush
    T J Q K A
    This hand is comprised of broadway cards (cards that can work together to make an ace high straight) – but all in the same suit (spades, or clubs, or diamonds, or hearts). Many players never see a royal flush in a lifetime of play – it’s that rare! When you have a royal flush you have the absolute “NUTS” (best possible poker hand) regardless of whatever your opponents have.
  2. Straight Flush
    2 3 4 5 6
    Five consecutive cards of the same suit. Your hand must be all clubs, or all diamonds, or all spades, or all hearts.
  3. Four of a Kind (A.K.A. “Quads”)
    6 6 6 6 X x
    The third best hand you can hit in poker, four cards of the same rank is known as “quads”. If at showdown your opponent also has the same quads (e.g. by playing the board) – the pot will be awarded to whoever has the highest kicker card (a kicker card is a holecard that isn’t used to make your 5 card showdown), or the pot will be split between the players at showdown if they use the same kicker (which may be on the board)
  4. Full House
    9 9 9 3 3
    A full house is a five card hand comprised of a pair and 3 of a kind, combined. The suits of the cards are not relevant in a full house. This strong poker hand is also referred to as a “Boat” of “Full Boat”.
  5. Flush
    8 A 9 T K
    A poker hand where all five cards are of the same suit. In this example, our hand an Ace High Flush – as the highest card making up our poker hand is the Ace of spades. The only flush that beats this hand is a straight flush.
  6. Straight
    4 5 6 7 8
    A straight is a consecutive run of five cards – which are not all of the same suit (otherwise, that would be a flush hand).
  7. 3 of a kind
    2 2 2 9 7
    Three of a kind in poker is having a hand containing three cards of the same rank, and any other non-pair. Three of a kind is also known sometimes referred to “trips” – if only one card from your hole-cards is used to make 3-of a kind (using a pair from the community cards on the board). Effectively there is no difference.
  8. Two Pair
    A A Q Q 3
    In this example the player has a Aces and a pair of Queens- two pairs, with a three “kicker” card.
  9. Pair
    K K 4 9 3
    In this example the player has a pair of kings.
  10. High Card
    A 7 2 9 6
    Sometimes in poker you won’t hit a pair – or your opponent might not hit a pair. In this case both players will play their highest hole-card – (in this case an Ace high). If your opponent has a smaller “no-pair” high hand at showdown (like King high), you win the pot.

(Cool HTML poker-hands created via our free poker hands plugin for WordPress)

Poker Cheat Sheet

Some poker facts to get you started:

How do “Suits” work in Poker ?

The game of poker uses 52 cards, 12 cards of each suit – spades (♠), clubs (♣), hearts (), diamonds ().
Aces can act as a low-card (representing a card with an equivalent value of 1) or a high-card (ace).

What Poker Variants are there?

The most popular poker game is Texas hold’em.  There are a number of other variants of poker, including 7 card stud, pot-limit Omaha (PLO), limit hold’em, Omaha hi-lo split (also known as Omaha 8), short-deck hold’em (AKA 6+ hold’em).

What are the hand rankings in poker?

One of the fundamentals you need to understand in poker is how a winning hand is determined, and which hands beat which other hands. Sometimes a pot will be split between multiple players in the case of a tie.

In most poker variants (including Texas Hold’em) your poker hand ranking at showdown is comprised of your best 5 cards (in hold’em, usually 2 cards from your hand will be used in conjunction with three community cards from what’s dealt out on the board).

The more statistically unlikely hands are the strongest in poker – the best possible hand is known as a “Royal Flush”. Straights are full houses are more difficult to hit than pairs and sets, so they are ranked higher on the poker hand ranking table.

David Burke

An iGaming industry veteran with a background in Poker, David covers the latest news from the world of poker, sports, casino, and interesting gaming industry news.