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Knowing Your Way in Pot Limit Omaha Part 1: A Short Description of PLO

Pot Limit Omaha is a poker variant that is slowly gaining it’s much deserve fame in the world of poker. It’s been in the poker rooms of Europe and high stakes poker games for a long time and because of the accessibility of low stakes action in the Internet PLO is becoming a house hold name.

But prior to knowing the strategies needed to win PLO you need to know the idea behind the game and how it is dissimilar to other poker games.

1.Action is the word in PLO: you’ll receive four hole cards instead of two like in Hold ‘Em and the same five community cards. Due to this even the worst players can still have good playing cards and a decent pay-off. Those who have change games from Texas Hold ‘Em to PLO think that having a flush, a high pair and two pairs have a shot in winning just like in Hold ‘Em are mistakes. It’s rather hard to win in PLO. If they don’t play good Hold ‘Em poker, then they have a small probability to gain success in PLO.

2.Starting hands in PLO can be pretty close in value for all players and it would be unusual to gain a favorable hand pre-flop. Lots of people fail in PLO because of this: they have a complicated time going from pre-flop PLO to post-flop PLO. This is not to assume that Hold ‘Em lacks skill post-flop: but it is believe that you’ll have a better chances of winning in Hold ‘Em in the flop compared to PLO.

3.PLO is a battle of the nuts: if you don’t have the nuts or not drawing to have it then you will not have a shot into the pot. It’s not good to draw a second-nut flush in PLO and having a hand with no nuts are just back up cards. Having the nuts does not assure you to win the pot; someone might have better nuts that you have.

4.PLO is a fight of having the biggest draw, redraws, blocking cards and backup. How much draws can you get in PLO? There is a big probability that you’ll get 20 out straight draw – such as having a hand of 4589 on 67K flop – it means any 3, 4, 5, 8, 9 or Ten can make you hand which will be more favorable than a set of Kings. If you assume that you’ll also get a flush out of that then think what the possibilities would be! If you turn or flop a nut same as your opponents, but you have the option to redraw in order to gain a stronger hand. For example the flop shows TJQ and you have hole cards of AKQJ compared to your opponent’s AKT5 – then a redraw can make you hand into a full house if it hits!

These two terms go together –blocking and backup cards. They apply to draws that are not nuts and you have redraws that might get you a shot to the pot (backup) or may lessen the probability of success for your opponent (blocking).

One fine case of blocking cards would be having a good number of cards of the same suit which can block out your opponent’s chance of gaining a nut-flush in that suit. As for backup cards, you might receive a favorable response post-flop if you have a gut-shot straight and a top pair in a draw.

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