Poker is a game of people, but it’s also a game of statistics. A good poker player has to be able to calculate the basic odds on the fly, as the hand progresses. Most of your decisions will be based on these odds, so it’s a skill you need to acquire if you expect to win on a regular basis.
If there were 50 cards in a deck, each card would have a 2% chance of being the next card dealt. Since there are 52 cards in a standard deck, each card actually has a 1.923% chance of being the next card dealt, but we can use 2% as our rule of thumb because its pretty close and we have to do this math fast… in our heads.
Let’s say you are playing Texas Holdem and your hole cards are both hearts. The flop comes, and you see that 2 of the 3 cards in the flop are hearts. You know that there are 13 hearts in a deck, and you have seen 4 of them (the 2 in your hand and the 2 in the flop), so you can determine that there are 9 more hearts unaccounted for. (13-4=9). With 9 “outs” and each one being 2%, you can easily determine that you have an 18% chance of making your flush on the turn, which is the next card which will be dealt.
If you miss your flush on the turn, you will have about an 18% chance of catching a heart on the river. These aren’t the actual odds, of course, but they are close enough that we can use them to help us figure out what we should do. The idea is to learn a system which is fast, easy, and gives you fairly accurate results that you can actually use in a game.
If you flop 2 pair, what are the odds of you making a full house on the next card?
Since there are 4 of each denomination, and you have seen 2 of them, there must be 2 cards of the same value as each of your pairs, or 4 cards that will make your full house. Since each card has about a 2% chance of being dealt next, you have roughly an 8% chance of making your boat on the turn, and about an 8% chance of making it on the river.
Let’s assume you have seen the flop, and have an open-ended straight draw. What are the chances that the next card will complete your straight?
Since there are 2 denominations that will make your straight, and there are 4 cards of each denomination unaccounted for, 8 cards will make your straight. The approximate odds of one of them coming on the next card are thus 16%.
By learning this simple rule of thumb, you won’t have to memorize tables of odds. You should be able to calculate your rough odds in your head, on the fly, like a real poker player. But before playing in the actual game, it is advisable to do some practice first. But if you don’t have anyone to play with, you don’t have to worry because there are online poker games where you can play poker without leaving the comfort of your home. 99poker.id is one of the popular online poker games.