Pot limit Omaha

What is PLO Poker?

In PLO poker, a player is dealt four face-down “hole” cards, and five more “community” cards are shared by the table. The objective is to make the best possible five-card hand using not more than two out of the three four cards, and three out of the five community cards. There are ten poker hands, ordered by sequence, suit and pairs, and ranked according to a hierarchy. This is a variant of poker in the same family as Texas Hold’em, belonging to the community card family.

How to play PLO Poker?

The aim of Pot Limit Omaha is to make the best possible combination of five cards, called a hand. Hands are combinations of cards made up of sequences, cards of a suit, and pairs, and ranked in a hierarchy from strongest to weakest. Four hole cards are dealt face-down to each player, and five shared community cards are revealed to the table across separate stages of betting.

Hands must be formed using exactly two hole cards and exactly three community cards, no more or no less for either. The first stage is called the pre-flop after the hole cards are dealt. The blinds begin the betting for the round, the small blind betting first and the big blind doubling the bet. Other players follow in turn. Three community cards are revealed in the “flop”, the fourth card in the “turn”, and the fifth in the “river”. Each stage is accompanied by a separate round of betting. The final stage is the showdown, where remaining players reveal their hands. The player with the best hand wins and takes the pot.

Rules of PLO Poker

Players must try to build the best-possible hand from the cards available. One of the key rules of Pot Limit Omaha is that players must use exactly two of the four cards dealt to them, and exactly three of the five community cards shared by the table. Any other combination of cards, for instance one hole card and two community cards, isn’t considered a valid hand. If all but one player folds before the showdown, the last one standing wins. Otherwise, the player with the highest-ranked hand at the showdown wins. If there’s a tie with two players holding the same hand, the player with the higher-ranked card (called the kicker) wins. The different betting options available to players are fold (surrender their cards and exit the hand), check (pass their turn without betting any chips), call (match the previous bet), or raise (increase the previous bet).

PLO poker follows a pot-limit betting structure. This means that a bet cannot exceed the size of the pot. The maximum possible raise is calculated as follows: the current size of the pot pot + the previous player’s bet + the amount required to call the previous player. For instance: if there is ₹50 in the pot, and the previous player called ₹20, the post size is calculated as ₹50 + ₹20 + ₹20 = ₹90. So the current player can raise by a maximum of ₹90.

Tips to Win PLO Poker

Remember, starting hands in PLO poker don’t hold the same value as in Hold’em. Hole cards containing a pair or sequence isn’t necessarily indicative of a strong hand post-flop. So try to avoid playing a small pair in the hope of drawing a full house; stronger hands are likely to be formed in the flop. Also don’t be misled by a low-rank straight or flush, because chances are that it can be beaten by higher ranking cards on the river. Bluffing won't give you much of an advantage in Pot Limit Omaha; players with strong hands will play on even if you call their bluff.


PLO is an abbreviation for Pot Limit Omaha. Pot-limit refers to the type of betting structure followed in the game, where a player’s bet cannot exceed the size of the pot. Hence, there is a cap on the maximum number of chips a player can raise on their turn.

Texas Hold’em is more popular among beginners, and is the most widely played variant of poker. PLO poker is a bit more difficult to master. There is a better chance of forming strong hands because of the extra hole cards dealt to each player. Because of this, players are less likely to fold and it requires paying careful attention to your opponents’ strategy. Pot Limit Omaha is generally considered more challenging than Texas Hold’em.

The key point to remember in PLO is that several combinations of hands are possible, given that each player is dealt four cards and can use two of these freely. So play it safe - don’t be misled by aces or pairs in your hole cards! While these might be considered strong starters in Hold’em, they won’t get you far in PLO.

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