Beginners Strategy



 

The similarity between Texas Holdem and Omaha Holdem leads some players to think they can apply the same strategies. Worse still, some players think that because they are getting four pocket cards they have twice the possibilities of making a winning hand. However, in Omaha Holdem you always have to consider that you must use two of your pocket cards, and only two, to make your hand. This means that although you have four pocket cards you will only have six possible hands that will come out of them.

This can work against you and actually prevent you from making some higher hands. For instance if you draw three or four cards of the same suit your chances of getting a flush are slim because you can only use two of those cards to make the flush. For beginners to Omaha Holdem there are some simple guidelines to get you going. These ideas apply to playing Limit Holdem, but not Omaha Hi/Lo.

Firstly, to win you are going to need a nut hand, that is to say, the best hand possible for the cards on the board. That means you need to take into consideration how many other hands there are that could beat the best that you can do. Because your opponents each have four pocket cards to work with you will see a lot of high hands in Omaha. And that means you need a high hand to win. Taking a chance with a mediocre hand is only going to get you into trouble. Flushes, straight flushes and four of a kind are common hands in Omaha and those are the hands you should be aiming for.

Take it easy with your raises during the preflop. Players tend to go past the flop more often in Omaha Holdem and there is not point in trying to scare them off by raising only to find you’ve got nothing to work with yourself.

There are mixed opinions on the effectiveness of bluffing in Omaha. Although bluffing an opponent is always a useful skill to have you must remember that in Omaha players expect to see high hands so anyone who goes past the river is probably looking at a pretty strong hand. Of course is you find yourself with a nut hand after the flop then make the most of it.

Keep an eye out for players who get drawn in by the pot. In Omaha players often look at the pot size instead of their hands and figure it is worth going to the river just to see if they can get lucky. The truth is that most hands are decided by the flop and that is when you should decide whether or not to call to stay in for a larger pot.

In short, the hands you want are flushes, straights, a full houses. Anything less is not worth fighting with. If you can’t see a strong winning hand following the flop then the chances it has already been beaten by one of your opponents.