Ranking of Poker Hands
First off, the ranks of the card numbers from the highest to the lowest are:
A, K, Q, J, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2
Here, the Ace is used as a high card; it can also be used as a low card when convenient (i.e., counts as 1).
The first thing you should know about Poker is how the hands are ranked. The following table lists these ranks from the highest to
the lowest with examples, and they should be memorized. The dimmed cards in the examples below represent the cards that do not play a
roll on the ranking; they are here just as space fillers.
|Hand Name and Description||Examples|
This hand actually shouldn't be treated separately since it
belongs to the Straight Flush group (seen next). It's uniqueness is only that it is the highest ranked poker hand.
A straight flush is made of five cards in sequence and all
of them of the same suit. In the case of two straight flushes during one hand, the one containing the highest card is the winner.
Our first example, K-Q-J-10-9 (all of spades), is the highest ranked poker hand next only to the Royal Flush.
The second example, 5-4-3-2-A (all of the same suit), is the lowest ranked Straight Flush. Note how the Ace is used as 1 in the second example.
|Four of a Kind
Often referred to as "quads", this hand consists of
four cards of the same rank. For example: A-A-A-A-*, which is the highest four of a kind. The lowest four of a kind are the 2's.
A full house consists of three of a kind and two of a
kind. For example, J-J-J-7-7. This would be called "Jacks full of sevens." The ranking within a Full House itself will be based
on the value of the three of a kind and then by the value of the pairs. For instance, J-J-J-7-7 is ranked higher than 10-10-10-K-K,
but lower than J-J-J-K-K.
A flush consists of five cards of the same suit. For example,
Q-9-6-4-2. Internal ranking of Flushes is determined by the highest card. If the highest cards are identical, then by the next highest,
and so on down the line. For instance, Q-9-6-4-2 is ranked lower than Q-9-6-5-2.
A straight consists of five cards of any suit in order.
For example, A-K-Q-J-10 and 5-4-3-2-A, which represent the highest and lowest Straights, respectively. Note how the Ace is used as
a high card above a king in the first example and as a low card below a 2 in the second example.
|Three of a Kind
Also called a "set" or "trips", these consist of three
cards of the same rank. For example, 7-7-7-*-*. Again, ranking is determined by the value of the trips.
This is just two pairs. The ranking within Two Pairs is determined first by
the highest pair, then, in case of a tie, by the other pair. For example, K-K-3-3-* is ranked higher than Q-Q-8-8-*, but lower than
This is just one pair. The ranking within One Pair is
determined first by the pair value, then, in case of a tie, by the the highest of the remaining cards (often called a "kicker").
In the event no player has a hand containing even One Pair,
the hand with the highest card will be ranked the highest. The rank of cards starting from highest is listed at the top of this page.