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Texas Holdem Poker - Starting Hands

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How to play your starting hands:

In Texas Holdem as well as in most other poker variants there is a huge importance that is attached to position! If you are in a position that is to the right of the dealer (meaning that you have posted the blinds) then you are considered to be in the worst starting position. However as you go around the table then the better position you are in (the dealer position is the most powerful). The reason why it is good to be late is that you get to see the actions of the players around the table before you make your bet. For example if you have a Q8 suited and you are in an early position if you call, and then are re-raised then chances are that you will have to fold as you know that you are probably behind.

Position gives you power. The later position that you are in then the more power that you have when you raise. If you have hit a really good hand then you get to see the entire table take an action and then you get to make a decision on how much you want to raise by.

Then when it comes to seeing the flop then the same applies. If you hit an Ace whilst holding AQ or AJ and everyone checks around to you or only raise slightly then you are in a strong position to re-raise. If you were in an early position then you are just asking for trouble if you raise with the AJ as you will most likely get a re-raise from AQ or AK and hence have wasted your money.

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So this brings me onto the actual starting hands.

In Texas Holdem there are only 169 combinations of possible starting hands. Below are listed the top 50%, through the rest away when you see it. Not worth your while playing with!

There are four categories of starting hand in Texas Holdem:

Top 10 hands, Strongest! These are the top10 hands, you can re-raise with these in any position (also the top10 possible starting hands).

AA, KK, QQ, JJ, AKs, AQs, AJs, KQs, KJs, AK

Strong hands: These are the hands that you can re-raise with in middle or late position, or just call with in early position.

TT, 99, 88, ATs, A9s, KTs, QJs, QTs, JTs, AQ, KQ

Medium Strength: With these hands you can call if you are in the middle or late positions.

77, 66, 55, 44, 33, 22, A8s, A7s, A6s, A5s, A4s, A3s, A2s, K9s, K8s, K7s, Q9s, Q8s, J9s, J8s, T9s, T8s, AJ, AT, KJ, KT, QJ, QT, JT, 98s, 87s

Not amazing but you can still call. Here you should only call, preferably in late position.

K6s, K5s, K4s, K3s, K2s, Q7s, Q6s, Q5s, Q4s, Q3s, Q2s, J7s, J6s, J5s, T7s, T6s, A9, K9, Q9, J9, T9, (7s, 96s, 86s, 85s, 76s, 75s, 65s, 64s, 54s, 53s, 43s

So that is it! Play your top hands. Push the people limping in, out of the pot if you have a strong or ultra hand! Play your position to it's maximum and you will do alright.

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