Razz Poker

Razz is the lowball version of seven card stud. I love this game. It's fun and potentially profitable if you can follow a few tips and tricks!

Stud low-ball tips and tricks

Have you ever played Razz? Basically, it's stud-lowball. Just like in stud, seven cards are dealt, three down and four up. The object of the game is to make the lowest possible hand. Aces are low so an A,2,3,4,5 (wheel) is the nuts in razz. Flushes or straights don't count! You don't want pairs or anything over an eight if you can help it. The best five cards wins.

Yes, that's razz down and dirty. Why do I love razz? Well, because you have to be good at reading the board. You also need a smattering of card and common sense. With a few tips and tricks you can be a winning razz player in no small part due to the fact that most people who play razz, especially online, play it so poorly. Of course, not all online sites even offer razz, which is a bummer to me, but PokerStars and Party Poker are places that definitely do have it!

Here are five tips you can use to make your razz game a profitable one:

  1. Start with three small cards. Under eight is best. If you have a nine in your hand and everyone on the board is showing a bigger card, then it's probably okay to play that nine. Of course, the biggest hand does have to make the bring in bet so if it's you, try to see a cheap fourth card. Otherwise, fold!
  2. Read the board. You have to look at the cards that are face up on the board. If you have an A,2,3,Q,6,J and the board has lots of little cards on it, chances are you aren't going to make your hand on the last street. You have to be aware of what's out there which includes what you're waiting for and what your opponents could be possibly waiting on.
  3. Throw away hands that contain pairs or two or even three high cards. What's the point? You can't win with 'em. This isn't regular stud or hi-low.
  4. The low hand is decided counting backwards. For example, if you have a 9,6,5,4,A and I have a 7,5,4,3,2 I win because my biggest card is a seven and yours is a nine. It doesn't matter that you have the lowest, low card of an ace.
  5. Don't chase draws. This is pretty common advice for all forms of poker. If, by the fifth card, you don't have the lowest low, get the heck out of the hand as soon as someone bets.

So go and play and use this new knowledge to make money at Razz Poker!

Other poker pros

We are working on adding more stories about Ilari, so bear with us please. Two other very colorful Full Tilt high stakes poker pros are Gus Hansen and Patrik Antonius, check their bios too.

Daniel Cates

Daniel Cates is already a legend among online poker players, as in just a few years he has risen to the top of high stakes heads-up tables, challenging everyone including Phil Ivey himself.


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