How To Play 5 Card Stud
Wednesday, 28. April 2010

The game of 5 Card Stud is very rarely played these days and has pretty much been relegated to a more social game; although, players will find that certain online poker rooms such as Bodog Poker will have tables available. 5 Card Stud is very similar to 7 Card Stud in the basic rules and structure of the game.

The Game
As was mentioned, 5 Card Stud is very similar to 7 Card Stud in structure. Players are dealt one pocket card (face down) and one door card (face up) in the first round, one door card in the second round, one door card in the third round and one door card in the fourth and final round for a total of 5 cards. The player making the best 5 card poker hand takes the pot.

5 Card Stud is made up of four betting rounds. For the first two betting rounds, players make bets in increments of the lower limit up to 3x the amount of the lower limit. For the second two betting rounds, players make bets in increments of the upper limit up to 3x the amount of the higher limit. Let us take the example of a game with $1/$2 limits. For the first two betting rounds, players may place bets in increments of $1 and can only raise to a maximum of $3 for each of the two betting rounds. For the second two betting rounds, players may place bets in increments of $2 and can only raise to a maximum of $6 for each of the last two betting rounds.

The Ante And The Bring-In
The action opens with all players posting an ante. The ante is a mandatory bet that all players at the table must post before the cards are even dealt. The purpose of the ante is to sweeten the pot a bit as well as prevent players from playing too conservatively as the ante will slowly drain the tight player’s bankroll.

Once the antes are posted, the dealer proceeds to deal one pocket card and one door card. The player with the lowest valued door card posts the bring-in bet. The bring-in is a mandatory initial bet and most commonly has a value of half the lower stake amount; although, the player posting the bring-in bet may raise the amount to the full lower limit stake.

After the bring-in bet is made, the action moves to the player to the bring-in players left and continues in a clockwise fashion. Players may call, raise or fold to the bring-in bet. If the bring-in player opened with a bring in bet with half the value of the low stake then the first active player must complete the bring-in bet or, in other words, raise the bring-in bet to the value of the lower limit. If the bring-in player posted a bring-in of the lower stake then the next active player may either call or raise. All players active after this first round of betting move on to Third Street.

Third Street
All players active after this first round of betting are dealt a door card known as Third Street. Third Street betting opens with the player showing the best hand with their exposed door cards. In the event that a player is showing a pair in their two door cards, they may chose to double the betting limit. In a game with $1/$2 limits, the player may chose to raise the betting limit for that particular betting round from $1 to $2. Otherwise, the betting limit for Third Street bets would be the lower betting limit, $1 in a game with $1/$2 limits.

Fourth Street
Once Third Street betting is concluded, the dealer deals each of the players another door card known as Fourth Street; their fourth card. Fourth Street betting opens with the player showing the best hand with their three exposed door cards. The betting limit for Fourth Street betting is the higher limit, $2 in a game with $1/$2 limits.

The River
Once Fourth Street betting is concluded, the dealer deals each of the players a fifth and final card face up known as the River. The last betting round opens with the player showing the best hand with their four exposed door cards. The betting limit for the final round of betting is the higher limit, $2 in a game with $1/$2 limits.

Showdown
Once the last round of betting comes to an end, all of the remaining players move to the Showdown. The last player to either bet or raise in the final round of betting shows their hand first. If all of the players called through the final round of betting then the player closest to the dealer’s left show’s their hand first. Each player thereafter in a clockwise fashion will have the option to either turn their one pocket card and expose their hand or muck it. The player holding the best hand wins the pot.

Visit Bodog Poker and check out their lineup of 5 Card Stud games.

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