5 Card Draw

5 Card DrawWhere to Play 5 Card Draw

Five Card Draw is a classic poker variant most popular in the 19th century. You can find many 5 Card Draw poker sites even today though.

Texas Hold’em is by far the most played poker type in the world right now, but this title used to belong to 5 Card Draw back in the day. The game is also called Cantrell draw and stands for the simplest poker variant. It is also an ideal poker variant for beginner players who are just learning to play poker. It’s a rarity to witness this game being played on live poker tournaments nowadays. 5 Card Draw poker sites, however, often organize online venues that you can participate in.

How to Play 5 Card Draw / Game Rules

The game is played with a standard 52-card deck and involves 2 to 6 players. Before the cards are dealt, each player must chip in with the predetermined amount called the “ante”. The antes usually go up as the game progresses, and sometimes the timer will determine when their value increases.

Each player is then dealt a total of five cards, one card at a time. The goal of the game is to have the highest ranking hand among all players or to simply be the only player that didn’t fold his hand. The hands are ranked in the following way:

  • High card – The lowest ranking hand which includes no combinations. If two or more players have a high card, the player with the highest ranking card wins. Cards are ranked with Ace being the highest, and the 2 being the lowest.
  • One pair – Two cards with the same rank.
  • Two pair – Two different pairs of the same ranked cards.
  • Three of a kind – Three cards with the same rank.
  • Straight – Five cards in sequence (for example: 7, 8, 9, 10, J). The Ace can be used as the highest or the lowest card in the straight (A, 2, 3, 4, 5 or 10, J, Q, K, A).
  • Flush – Five cards that are in the same suit.
  • Full house – One pair + three of a kind. If two or more players have a full house, a player with the best three of a kind wins the pot.
  • Four of a kind – Four cards of the same rank.
  • Straight flush – The highest ranking hand which represents all five cards that are in sequence and of the same suit.

If two or more players get the same hand rank, a high card (the kicker) is used to break the tie. So for example, if two players have a straight, the player with a higher card in the straight wins. If two players have the same pair, the highest of their remaining cards in a hand decides the winner.

Once the cards are dealt the first betting round can begin. The first in action is the player seated left of the dealer. He can either bet or check, thus passing the action to the next player. If the first player chooses to bet, then the next player must meet his bet, raise to a higher amount, or fold. If all players check in turn, another ante is added to the pot and the betting round repeats. The first betting round is concluded once all the players that haven’t decided to fold agree on the same bet.

After the first betting round is completed, each player gets to replace their unwanted cards. They can choose to replace as many cars as they want, except if the game is played with six players – in such situation, the maximum number of replaced cards can be three. A player can also choose to not replace any of their cards (preferably if they already have a full house or a straight).The dealer then deals more cards so each player can again have a total of 5 cards in a hand.

Once the new cards are dealt, the new betting round begins. The rules of this betting round are exactly the same as in the first betting round. Once the bets are concluded, players show their hands to each other, and the best hand takes the pot. If it happens so that two players have the exact same hand rank with no kickers breaking the tie, the winning pot will be split in half.

5 Card Draw Tips and Strategy

Five Card Draw poker is a game that combines luck, skill, and math. The best way to learn how to play this poker variant is through practice. Nevertheless, there are a couple of useful tips that every beginner should know about when playing 5 Card Draw at top poker sites.

Draw Decisions

You always need to know how many cards you should replace after the first betting round. If you already have a pair, you should usually discard the other three cards and increase your chances of getting three of a kind. If you already have three of a kind, replace two cards and hope for quads or a full house. Go for straight and flush hands only if you are one card away from getting those hands. The chances of drawing two sequence cards or two cards of the same suit are really low. If you have nothing, you should fold. But if you are desperate to play in that situation, you should only keep the high card that’s Jack or above. In other cases, replace all cards.

Watch Your Opponents Moves

By seeing how many cards your opponents are discarding, you can easily make presumptions as to what hand combinations they’re hoping for. By replacing four or five cards, it’s likely that a player has nothing and hopes to have some luck on the flop. Replacing three cards will usually mean that they have a pair and hope to make it into trips. Replacing two cards can usually mean that a player already has three of a kind, but beginner players can also “fish” here for straight or flush hands, going against the odds. One card discards usually means a player has two-pair hoping for a full house, or he is one card away from a flush or a straight. No card replacements might mean a player is already set with a strong combination, although it can also be used as a big bluff.

5 Card Draw History

Five Card Draw is one of the earliest variations of poker, and it was particularly popular in the 19th-century United States. If you take a closer look, you will notice this poker variant was played in many classic Western movies [1]. It used to be the game of cowboys, miners, and outlaws played in saloons and on riverboats.

The early rules were somewhat different though. There was only a single betting round conducted while the cards were still face down. Also, the deck consisted of only 20 cards (all suits from 10 to Ace) and there were very few possible combinations. A full 52-card deck as well as the flush and straight hands were added to the game later. Five-card Draw is a forgotten classic that is not nearly as popular as some other poker variations. Given that there are numerous 5 Card Draw poker sites available online, it’s no wonder a great number of poker enthusiasts still enjoy playing the game.

Frequently Asked Questions About 5 Card Draw

Where can I play 5 Card Draw poker?
Are there other forms of Draw poker?

Where can I play 5 Card Draw poker?

Five-card Draw is considered an outdated variant of poker. However, some top poker and casino websites have this game on offer so refer to our list if you wish to play online.

Are there other forms of Draw poker?

Yes, there are several other forms of Draw poker. There’s a 7 Card Draw where players get seven cards instead of five, 2-7 draws where the lowest hand wins, and an Asian variant of draw poker called Badugi.