Omaha High-Low Poker Rules

Omaha Hi-Lo (8 or Better)

Omaha Hi-Lo is a popular variant of Omaha poker that is played online and throughout the world. The basic rules and procedures for Omaha Hi-Lo are the same as for Texas Hold'em, but there are some major differences that make it the popular, action packed game that it is.

Like Omaha high, players are dealt four cards face down. Also, like Omaha Hi, a player must use two and only two cards from their hole cards to make their hand. However, Omaha 8 or Better is a high-low game, so players can use two different cards (or the same two cards) to make their high and their low hand.

In hi-lo games, the pot is split between a high hand and a low hand. However, in order for a low pot to "qualify" there must be three different cards, eight or lower, out of the five community cards. The best low hand is considered the lowest, with A2345 being the best possible low, and 87654 being the worst qualifying low. In Omaha, an ace counts for both high and low; it is the highest ranked card for high, and also the lowest ranked card for low. If there are not three different cards eight or lower, than there is only the high pot to be concerned with. In order for a player to complete a qualifying low hand, he must use two cards eight or lower from his hand, to go with the three from the board, and those cards he plays from his hand must not pair the ones from the board.

An example would be a player is dealt A A 2 5. The board is 3 4 8 9 K. The player would play his lowest two card, in this case an ace and a 2, and uses the boards 3 4 and 8, and make the low hand 8432A. Remember, you must use two cards from your hand, so he could not play the 5. For his high hand, he would play his pair of aces, and have the hand AAK98 for high.

Straights and flushes do not count against you in making a low hand, so the hand A2345 is both the best possible lo, and also a straight and can win both sides of the pot.

Sometimes there are two or more of the same hand for one side of the pot or the other. This most often occurs for low, but can also occur for high when people have the same straight or same full house. If 2 or more people have the same lo hand (or high hand) the low half of the pot is divided equally among the low hands.

If, when splitting the pot between the high and the low, there is an odd amount of chips, the extra chip is awarded to the winner of the high pot.

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