The Rules of Razz
Razz or Seven Card Stud Low is a poker game where players are dealt seven cards and the winner is the player with the lowest five card hand. In this case, unlike in Omaha Hi-Lo there is no need to comply with the requirement of "eight or better" to win.
Three importants things to remember about Razz Poker
First of all, you need to remember four simple rules that will help you better understand this kind of low poker.
- Ace – is always low
- In this game, straights and flushes do not count
- Pairs hurt you a lot
When comparing hands suited cards have no significance.
In this form of poker hands work on the California" system of low hand rankings. The lower your cards, the stronger your hand. In this game straights and flushes are ignored and the best low card is an ace. That is why the strongest hand in Razz is "the nuts" or the "wheel": 5♥,4♠,3♣,2♦,A♠.
It is important to remember that you should avoid duplicating cards as they count only once. For example, if you hold Q♦,8♣,8♥,5♠,5♥ 3♣,3♦ you have Q♦,8♣,5♠,3♣,3♦ that will be beaten by any five unpaired cards.
Ranking of unpaired low hands is always determined by the highest card (out of five) to the lowest. Thus, the combination 9♣,8♥,6♦,4♦,A♠ can be called "nine-low" because the Nine is the highest card.
Action and betting streets
Start the game and antes
Ante - a mandatory bid, made by all players at the table. In fact, this is a fee to participate in the hand. Once all players have put up an ante the deal begins
Pay no attention to the name; this is the beginning of a hand, in which each player is dealt three cards: two face down and one face up. This is followed by a round of betting, which begins with the player who has the highest up card. He must make a mandatory bet "bring-in". The turn then passes to the next player at the table clockwise.
If two players have the worst high card, then bring in is decided by suit. The highest (worst) suit is: spades (X♠), followed by hearts (X♥), diamonds (X♦) and clubs (X♣). If your worst card is 8♠, and your opponent has 8♥, then you are the bring in.
At this stage, each player receives another card face up. But the player with the strongest (lowest) open hand is first to speak. Then bidding process continues clockwise.
On fifth street Everyone is dealt another card face up. Here again the player with the strongest board opens. For example, a player with a board of 4♦6♣9♠ (nine-high) will go before the player with 2♥5♥J♠ (Jack high). This player can check or bet.
Again, each player receives another exposed card and then betting is started by the one whose open cards are the strongest (lowest).
Seventh Street (River)
At this point, each player receives a final card. Again, betting is opened by the player with the strongest board. After the final round of betting, all remaining players show and compare their hands.
Showdown to determine the winner
The player who made the last bet if first to open. If on seventh street there was no bet, the player in first position shows first and so on clockwise. The winner is the player with the best low five-card hand. If several players have the same winning hand, the pot is split between them. Then a new hand is dealt.
Features in Razz at a table for 8 players
If you play Razz for a table for 8 players, it is quite rare, but it can happen that all players stay in until seventh street and there are not enough cards in the deck (52) to give one to each player. In this case, the dealer places one card face up and this acts as a common card.