Odds of winning against 1, 2, 3, or 4 random hands

by ~ October 26th, 2007. Filed under: General poker strategy, Personal key entries, Philosophy and approach.


* Modified November 27th, 2010 *

I saw a site which sells a preflop poker hand odds calculator. Its a hand-held calculator, and “keeps you from cluttering you screen while you play”, or something like that.

Here’s my preflop hand calculator.

(Click to view proper size)

Pairs are listed on the left, then Ace-high hands, King-high hands, across to Jacks, then underneath the Jacks are Ten high hands, and back the other way. My version also does not clutter your screen if you print it out and have it by your keyboard. Do not tape to the front of your monitor unless you want it to clutter your screen. 🙂

Be aware that this chart (or the expensive calculator as well!) is only useful in certain situations. Most commonly, late in a SnG when the blinds are getting higher and you have to decide whether or not to steal or possibly to push. Sitting in the SB, 5 handed, folded to you, you and the BB have 12 BBs, you hold Q8s, 58% chance of winning against an unknown hand, push.

The other possible situation is perhaps in the SB in ring games, folded to you, and you want to consider how good your hand is relative to the BB, but then you need to consider some of the aspects listed here.

If you’re not familiar with this chart or some version of it, take a look at how even the top pairs and especially AKs/o and AQs/o fare against 1, then 2, then 3 random hands. And these are just random hands, not raise-calling hands like TT but any hand at all, which is exactly what the BB and SB might have if you don’t raise preflop. This is one of the reasons why you raise AK and AQ in position preflop.

There. This is another of my contributions to the anti-commercialism of the internet. I’ve made other such contributions in areas where I have much more experience, but listing them here would serve to uncloak my anonymity. This information is not unique, and you can find other versions throughout the internet, but I like this compact format.

Video demostrating starting poker hands – Video recorded at Full Tilt, demostrating starting hands to play!

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5 Responses to Odds of winning against 1, 2, 3, or 4 random hands

  1. Shane

    Hello, thanks for the great information above, I have found this very useful. I have been wondering about the percentage chances against larger numbers other that four people. Obviously they will decrease but by how much? Is there a formula that you work with in order to come up with these figures?

  2. PokerAnon

    Thanks for reading.

    You know, I’m not sure how I did this any longer. It was done originally on a spreadsheet, but now is just a graphic file.

    Apparently is a popular post. For some reason, people like to look at this chart, but I really can’t see it’s use beyond 2 or 3 random hands. This shouldn’t be used to determine what hands to play preflop at a full table of 9 players; there are all kinds of starting hand charts for that. This chart assumes all hands are all in and does not take into consideration how well any of these hands play postflop.

    This chart really should only be used to evaluate whether to raise when there are only a few players left (ie. in the small blind with everyone else folded) or what chances you have when you push all in late in a tournament situation.

    If you want to build a complete chart for yourself, it’s possible that I built this chart from feeding data into a program called “Pokerstove“. Search the internet for it; it’s a program I recommend as it will give you odds for any given hand against any given hand OR RANGE OF HANDS, which is even more important. In other words, you can say I have AT, what are my chances against one player that I think may be raising into me with any pair plus big Aces and it will give you stats.

    Good luck!

  3. Becci Yang

    Hi there…I am big time poker fan and thanks for sharing your cool poker related posts with us…! I

  4. johnycarl

    i love to read poker blog posts and just to keep myself updated about different poker tournaments or satellites or room reviews, especially if they are written by some professional poker player…

  5. Ross Deruso

    Well I definitely enjoyed studying it. This tip provided by you is very useful for correct planning.

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