Pot Limit Poker Strategy

Basic Pot Limit Omaha Strategy

He beat out nearly 2,500 players to win a World Series of Poker bracelet in the 2016 $565 pot-limit Omaha event for $190,328, and most recently took down the $10,000 pot-limit Omaha at Poker. Poker Guides For Beginners & Advanced Players ♠ Poker Strategy Poker Lessons Tutorials Tips & More. Become a Smarter Poker Player! Say hello to Pot Limit Omaha Poker! LHE is a fast game and rarely do people take more than 5 seconds to make any decision. Pot Limit Omaha does have a lot of things in common with its wildly successful cousin Hold’em. It is a community card game, which unlike the older popular forms of poker such as stud, allows for more frequent situations where the hands of players are closer aligned.

As with any game, there a variety of potentially successful approaches to PLO. However, if you are new to PLO, there are some guidelines that can help steer you out of trouble. We cover the differences between PLO and No-Limit Hold’em (NLH) elsewhere, but some of the guidelines below underscore how PLO plays differently from Hold’em. Understand that these guidelines are largely for use at your local casino/cardroom against mostly recreational players. These strategies are not intended for high stakes, professional play.

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Play Strong Starting Hands that Can Flop Multiple Strong Combinations

PLO hands benefit greatly by the capacity to hit multiple types of flops. While high pairs have value as in NLH, high pairs that share suitedness with other cards in your hand are even better. Middle to high runs of four cards that can make straights in multiple combinations, and even better, have suitedness are strong holdings. Below is a chart that provides a good starting ground in evaluating strong hands. If you are new to PLO, your starting hands should look a lot like these to put you in good position on the flop.

Indian casinos in northern california. Top 30 starting hands (all double suited):

1. A-A-K-K11. K-Q-J-1021. Q-Q-A-K
2. A-A-J-1012. K-K-10-1022. Q-Q-A-J
3. A-A-Q-Q13. K-K-A-Q23. Q-Q-A-10
4. A-A-J-J14. K-K-A-J24. Q-Q-K-J
5. A-A-10-1015. K-K-A-1025. Q-Q-K-10
6. A-A-9-916. K-K-Q-J26. Q-Q-J-10
7. A-A-x-x17. K-K-Q-1027. Q-Q-J-9
8. J-10-9-818. K-K-J-1028. Q-Q-9-9
9. K-K-Q-Q19. Q-Q-J-J29. J-J-10-10
10. K-K-J-J20. Q-Q-10-1030. J-J-10-9

Many players who start playing PLO look at their four cards and see infinite possibilities, no matter how weak the holding. Do not become the “any four cards” PLO fish.

Draw to the Nuts


Because most PLO pots are multiway, and possible combinations multiplicative, the hands that win in PLO are generally very strong. Very few single pairs take down pots – sets, nut flushes, and nut straights are typically the winning hands. Thus, if you are going to play a draw, make sure that draw is to the nuts. No Jack-high flushes or lower ends of straights. If you make your hand, let that made hand be the nuts.

Play in Position

NLH players will say “Yeah, that’s true of Hold’em too.” But in the draw-happy world of PLO, it is especially true. Being out of position, whether with a made hand or a speculative one, is very tricky. Even a strong hand can be very vulnerable out of position. The ability to watch betting unfold before your action will allow you to assess your hand’s potential compared with the likely made hands or likely draws that others may be betting.

Fold to Big Bets

The GTO professionals may wince at this, but there is much less bluffing in PLO than NLH. If you feel like your two pair is probably beat when you get raised, you’re likely right. If someone is playing like they have a strong hand, they probably do. Perhaps heads up there is greater room for bluffing, but multiway in PLO, people are very rarely “feigning strength”.

Pot Limit Omaha Strategy

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Rules of the Game

Pot Limit Omaha (PLO) is the second most popular poker game in the world. Ten years ago it was somewhat difficult to find a live game going outside of Europe but now many card rooms spread PLO regularly. While it will never surpass No Limit Hold’em (NLHE) in popularity it will only increase its market share as the years move forward. Everyday people are converting to PLO as their game of choice.

Poker Pot Note

It’s not hard to figure out why this is the case as PLO is an action game where all players get dealt four cards and possibilities abound. One caveat, however, is that you must use at least two of your hole cards in your final hand. In other words if you have A K J♠ J♣ you don’t have an ace high flush when the board shows four hearts. Also you do not have a full house if the board is K K♠ 5♣ 5 2. So if you are new to the game make sure you have these fundamentals firmly in mind before heading out to the tables as the game is enough intimidating on its own for inexperienced players.

Basic Strategy

Starting hand selection is incredibly important; mediocre starting hands tend to build mediocre holdings and the second best hand can cost you a lot of money. There is no place ticket in PLO; the second best hand always loses the most money.

Pot Limit Omaha Poker Strategy

The premium hands have both nut potential and have all four cards working together such as A K Q♠ J♣, A A J♠ T♠, and K Q J♣ T♣. These hands play very well heads-up or multi-way but obviously hands like this do not grow on trees. Port perry casino dinner specials. Hands like A 9 8♠ 7♣, T 9 8♠ 6♣, and Q Q♠ T♠ 9♣ are also quite good because you tend to either hit a favorable flop and when you don’t you are usually able to get out without committing too many of your troops.

This is not a split pot game so run downs with no gaps and at least one suit down to around 8♠ 7♠ 6 5♣ has a lot of value in this game. It is important, however, to not overrate any rundowns lower this this because you are beginning to run into the danger of continually running into higher straights. Being suited at least once is important because when you share a nut straight with someone else it can give you the highly desired free-roll. If someone happens to hold a higher flush draw then you suits act as blocking defense.

Pot-limit Omaha Poker The Big Play Strategy Pdf

Pot Limit Omaha is too complicated of a game to get too in depth here but here are some quick warnings that new players should heed so they can learn the game without paying too high of a tuition:

  • In a multi-way pot you always want to be drawing to the nuts. For example, drawing to a jack high flush with five players in the pot is a recipe for disaster.
  • Beware of medium and low pairs and the sets that they make. You will run into higher sets more often than you think and they are big time money losers. Starting hands with them should most often be folded, although there are exceptions such as A A 2♣ 2♠ and T 9 8♠ 8♣. If you happen to flop a set of deuces or eights with either of these hands you must be aware that you could be in peril. Certainly you do not have to automatically fold but recognize that your hand is not as strong as it is in NLHE.
  • Straight draws even with those with many outs (i.e. wraps) are severely devalued when there are two suits on board. You can call a bet, but if you if raise that can allow a player with a set, two pair and a flush draw, or a flush draw that shares some of your straight outs to reopen the betting and your holding fares very badly against such hands.
  • Do not overvalue dry aces (e.g A A♠ 7 3♣) and put too much money into the pot pre-flop especially when stacks are deep. If you give away the fact that you have aces you allow your opponents to more or less play perfectly against you. Of course if you have premium aces you should escalate the pot for value but make sure other hands without aces are in your range.
  • Many new players are enamored with the “Bare Ace Bluff”. This is the play where you only have one ace of a suit when there are three more on board and play too aggressively every time in the hopes of getting everyone to fold because they can’t have the nuts. This play should be made on occasion but overdoing can be very costly as many players are on guard for such a play and hate to be bluffed out.
  • Many beginning resources go out of their way to tell you that hands with big pairs and nothing much else such as K K♠ 5 4♣ are unplayable because your hand is not working together. While it is true that this holding is far from a premium holding you should definitely try and see a flop unless the pot is raised and re-raised and it costs too much as a relative portion of your stack to consider calling. Top set is a premium hand with which you typically have both the best hand and the best draw which is the best situation in poker. In raised pots you can sometimes stack an opponent who commits too much money with a lesser hand and can’t give it up.

Further Learning

Pot Limit Poker: The Big Play Strategy by Jeff Hwang, (Rating 10/10) – This book is an excellent resource on learning how to best approach live full ring PLO games. In addition, it also has excellent beginning material on Pot Limit and Limit Omaha Eight or Better.
Advanced Pot-Limit Omaha Volume I, Volume II, and Volume III by Jeff Hwang, (Rating 7/10) – These books are also highly valuable because they have some nuggets of very good information and have an immense amount of examples yet they appear to have a few shortcomings. In many examples Jeff advocates calling re-raises too much with dominated hands especially out of position. In other situations he is also putting in too much money with very marginal hands in an attempt to isolate or is calling too wide pre-flop in an attempt to play “small ball”. Often you will end up in a three way pot with a very marginal hand and while position does help it’s often the case you are up against two better hands.
Mastering Pot-Limit Omaha: The Modern Aggressive Approach by Herbert Okolowitz and Wladmir Taschner (Rating 8/10) – If online PLO is your game then this resource is for you. Great information and advice for those that play the more aggressive and advanced online games that tend to feature six-handed play.