In poker, how does Lo work in Omaha Hi-Lo?

Some poker games, like Omaha Hi-Lo, can be complicated. Here is how the “lo” works for Omaha Hi-Lo.

There are many variations of poker online. Some are more popular than others. Some are more confusing than others, too. The rules of the different poker games can be hard to understand and especially hard to follow when you are in the middle of a hand. It’s important to be well-versed in whatever kind of game you are playing before you sit down at a table (or click on one) so that you are not left in the dust when the dealing’s done.


Omaha Hi-Lo is one of those card games that people are often confused by. It has a strange name, and the betting rules are not simple. It’s an interesting game because the worst hand can take some of the pot, which is not a very common thing when it comes to card games. The other name of Omaha Hi-Low is Omaha Eight or Better, which makes more sense. The eight is a very important factor when it comes to figuring out how to play and what purpose the low hand has.


The best low hand, also called the nut, you can get is The Wheel. For Omaha Hi-Lo, the lowest possible hand is Ace, 2, 3, 4, and 5. There is no concern with suits for the low hand. The qualifying low is the hand that is the highest of the hands below eight. Therefore, the worst qualifying hand you can have is 4, 5, 6, 7, 8.


For the “low” hands, whatever the highest card is, in fact, the worst card to have. Therefore, if your low hand is made up of cards lower than 8, but also has an 8, then that hand will be the worst lowest hand. If someone else has the highest number as a 7 or lower, then that hand will win. If by chance the highest card in each hand is the same, then we move down the list to the next highest, and so on. One of the keys is that to have a winning low hand, you cannot have a repeat of any card. Each card must be a different value, otherwise, you cannot qualify.


Hopefully, that clears up some of the confusion with regards to the “lo” part of Omaha Hi-Lo. It can seem complicated, but after a time you should get more comfortable with the concepts. Now when you go to play, you will be better prepared to win your game.

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