Intermediate Strategy

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Identifying your winning hand is only half the story in Razz poker. You also need to know how to play your hand and how to bet on it as each round progresses.

If you do the sensible thing and only play strong hands then most of the time you will fold on 3rd street. When you do get a hand that you can work with then don’t be timid. Raise on 3rd street and try to scare off the players limping along with weak hands. In particular if your opponents are showing low door cards but only calling try and take them out with a raise. In Razz the pot already has the antes in it, so even if you miss out on some addition to the pot in later rounds from opponents who are forced to fold late, you are still cashing in. Antes add up over time so collect them and be happy. A great way to steal the antes is if everyone after the bring-in folds. Put in a raise and you must just get a fold in response giving you the pot.

Fourth street is a make or break stage in each round. You won’t to be committed to your plan by then because on 5th street the minimum bet will double and a mistake there could be much more costly. Play careful attention to your opponent’s cards and whether or not they just drew high cards or low. The higher the better because it means that your hand hasn’t changed much relative to their hands. Of course if you see that anyone else’s hand has improved but yours didn’t then fold unless you are holding a sure winner. There is no point in hoping to improve your hand on expensive 5th to 7th streets.

By the time you get to 5th street you should be looking at a winning hand. But how can you tell if an opponent is also showing low cards? Raise and see what happens. If you raise is met with aggression then take good look at what is showing. If there possible hands that can beat yours fold and wait for the next round to make your big win. In short if you have a three card low hand when you hit 4th street and that didn’t improve on 5th street but neither did anyone else’s then fold your hand. If you improved to a four card low hand or no one else made any gains then keep going till 6th street.

Sixth and seventh street all about whether or not you are holding a low hand. If you are, bet and raise. If you aren’t call only if you can see some dead cards on the table or in folded hands. Otherwise fold.

Playing this tight strategy of betting hard on your strong hands but sitting out the weaker ones is a well proven method of enjoying more winning pots. In many cases you will scare of the opposition before you even get to 7th street.