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Seven Card Stud
Rules for Poker

Seven Card Stud has enjoyed a long history of popularity among avid Poker players. Across the United States Seven Card Stud remained the most popular variation of the open handed game right up until the 1980s when it was overtaken by Texas Hold'em. Seven Card Stud is an open variation of Poker, where four out of the seven cards a player receives are in plain view of opponents.

Number of Players

Seven Card Stud is best played with 5 to 8 players, any more and the cards might just run out if everyone stays in.

The Cards

Standard deck of 52 cards. Cards rank A, K, Q, J, 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 and A where Ace can be counted as one, ranking below 2 or as high, ranking above King.

Deal and Play

At the start of the deal, each player adds an ante to the pot. Beginning with the player to the Dealer’s left, each player is dealt two cards face down and one card face up so that each player ends up with a hand that looks like this:

The two face down cards are known as the players’ ‘hole cards’. Each player looks at their hole cards but reveals them to no-one else.

The Bring In – Third Street

The player showing the lowest ranking up card pays the ‘bring in’, which is considered the opening bet, and betting after that proceeds in a clockwise direction, going round the table.

The ‘bring in’ bet is typically lower than the agreed minimum bet, and subsequent players only have the option to match the bet or fold – they cannot raise. If two or more players show equally ranked low cards, then the tie is broken by suit which from high to low is ♥, ♠, ♦ and ♣. Thus if there were two players showing say 2♥ and the other a 2♦, then the 2♦ would be considered the lower card.

Fourth Street

Betting complete, the Dealer then burns the top card of the deck, and deals to each player another card face up on the table in front of them – fourth street. Another betting round commences starting with the player showing the best Poker hand, and proceeds in the normal clockwise direction around the table. Since there are not yet 5 cards showing, this means that no straights, flushes or full houses can be counted for this purpose – only high card or pairs. The players’ options are to check, bet, raise or fold.

Fifth Street

Betting complete, the Dealer then burns the top card of the deck and deals to each player another card face up on the table in front of them – fifth street. Again, this is followed by another betting round commencing with the player showing the best Poker hand.

Sixth Street, Seventh Street

Betting complete, the Dealer then burns the top card of the deck, and deals to each player another card face up on the table in front of them – sixth street. This is followed by another round of betting, commencing with the player showing the best Poker hand.

And after this, the Dealer burns the top card of the deck and the seventh and final card is dealt to each player, face down, called the “Down Card”.

The Showdown

After a final betting round, the surviving players show their hole cards and make their best 5 card Poker hand from any of the 7 cards they have received. The player with the highest ranking hand wins the pot. If two or more players declare equally ranking hands, then the win goes to the one with the highest high card. If this does not resolve the tie, then the tied players split the pot evenly between them.


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