What is The Counting Cards Technique in Poker?

What is The Counting Cards Technique in Poker?

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Poker is a game of intelligence and street-smartness. The need of the hour is to be one step ahead of your opponent as much as possible so that you can take home the pot money. Counting cards in poker is one skill that will help you in this path. So, here is a comprehensive guide on how to count cards in poker.

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What is card counting?

Counting cards is a term given to determine the odds of the card game based on the cards dealt to a player. This term is also referred to as Card Reading. Counting cards is primarily done for blackjack but can also be done for other card games. With a good card counting technique, players can bet high and low, after calculating their odds of winning a game. Counting cards also provides the players the ability to change their decisions rapidly and on the go while playing the game. This is primarily done by tracking how many cards of a certain suit are left in the main deck and altering one’s decisions based on that information. Counting cards in poker and counting cards in other card games are quite different. There are different techniques to use and different ways to calculate the winning odds.

Counting cards, poker and other card games also have a bad name in the gambling world. A lot of platforms look down upon counting cards. Poker, blackjack and other card games are games which have a lot of scope for counting cards. Poker, for example, has one of the easier ways of counting cards. Poker, as a game, is based on odds and to calculate those winning odds, one should have the knowledge of counting cards. Poker, like blackjack, has many ways of counting cards. Poker, with its many variations, gives birth to a lot of ways to count cards but there are times when it is not easy to practice counting cards.
Poker has a lot of different draws. Many of them have good odds and many of them have bad odds. Learn about the umbrella holding counting cards, poker, blackjack, etc. with this article and get ready to start counting cards poker player!

How does card counting cards in poker work?

Most card counting techniques are designed for blackjack. In blackjack, we have to pay attention to the cards being dealt to us and to the dealer so that we can keep a track of all the cards left in the deck and make our move accordingly. We have to use a similar approach in poker as well. To start counting cards in poker, the player needs to learn how to track the number of cards left in the deck.

Let’s take a poker table situation. Let’s say that there is a 6 of hearts, a 7 of hearts and an 8 of hearts open on the flop on the poker table. You have an Ace of diamonds and a 5 of hearts. The first thing to notice is that there are 4 hearts, two in your hand and two on the table. This means that we only need one more heart to have a flush. We can also make a good hand combination with an Ace or a 9. This is what we wait for on the turn. There are 9 hearts left in the deck, and a chance of a 9 or an Ace on the turn. These are pretty weak odds and we cannot rely on them. With these calculations, we have 12 good outs.

Accelerating the Calculations

One of the main techniques to start counting cards in poker is by calculating the odds. With the first example, we took out time in calculating the odds. But, in a game, there will not be much time to do so. By memorizing this table, you can easily calculate the odds by the type of hand that gets dealt to you.

Type of Hand Odds
Flush Draw (FD) 9 Outs
Open Ended Straight Draw (OESD) 8 Outs
Gutshot Straight Draw 4 Outs
2 Overcards 6 Outs
1 Overcard 3 Outs
Bottom Pair 5 Outs to 2 pairs
OESD and FD 15 Outs

·         Flush Draw - A flush draw is a hand with 4 cards of the same suit. For example, Ace (a) of diamonds, King (K) of Diamonds, Three (3) of Diamonds and Eight (8) of Diamonds. With 9 Outs, a player with this hand combination in a game of Texas Hold’em has a 34.97 percent chance to flush the hand provided 2 more cards come, and a 19.56 percent chance if only 1 card comes.

·         Open Ended Straight Draw - An Open Ended Straight Draw is when two cards, one at either end, are needed to make a straight.

·         Gutshot Straight Draw - A Gutshot Straight Draw or an Inside Straight Draw is a hand in which if we combine the 4 cards there are with a fifth card, it results in a straight. We get only 4 Outs with this draw.

·         Overcards - An overcard refers to a community card on a flop that is ranked higher than a pair in a player’s hand.

·         Bottom Pair - A bottom pair is when the lowest card to turn up on the flop is used to make a pair with a card in a player’s hand.

These terms are important to know to start counting cards in poker.

Calculating the Pot

To start counting cards in poker, calculating the pots is very important. With the odds that are on our side, we get the ability to calculate the pot and how much we can make with the hand we are dealt. Knowing about the Rule of 4 and 2 can help us calculate our odds of winning the pot. Two things to know before using this rule are:

·   If we are on the flop, we need to multiply 4 and our winning odds to calculate the pot

·    If we are on the turn, we need to multiply 2 and our winning odds to calculate the pot.

Taking our hearts example, we can calculate pot by multiplying our winning odds, 12 with 4. This gives us a 48 percent chance to get an Ace on the river. This is a rough estimate that can help us in making decisions on the table and in making our move. This rule only gives us an estimate to help us start counting cards in poker and make our decision.

Another aspect of counting cards in poker is tainted outs. We also need to keep an eye out for tainted outs. Going back to our hearts example, we have a good number of outs, an open ended straight draw and a flush draw. There is a good amount of chance that we do not get the Ace or the 9 that we were hoping for, resulting in a tainted out. With a clean out, we will win the game and be declared winners.

Counting cards is very complex. To understand how to start counting cards in poker, we need to understand how the game works and figure out the math in our head while the game is going on. We can use some techniques to figure out how to count cards in a game like poker, but our chances of winning are not increased or decreased by much.

With this, you have enough knowledge to start counting cards in poker in a way that can help you win big money. Download the GetMega App to play poker and win money.

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About The  

Kanchan Sharma
Kanchan Sharma

Kanchan Sharma started her career as a learning designer at an MNC while pursuing poker as a hobby. However, she soon pivoted to becoming a professional MTT (Multi Table Tournaments) player. She is currently a leading player, who has taken the male dominated poker world by storm. During her stint as a poker player, she has bagged many titles including India Online Poker Championship (IOPC) for Rs. 17,98,906, Winter Celebration Series for Rs. 6,62,500 and has final tabled multiple tournaments. She continually seeks to improve her poker game and work on her mindset to win the WSOP title soon. Her journey from being a recreational player to a poker pro is inspiring for many people out there.

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