Understanding relative hand strength in Pot-Limit Omaha

Bob
Published by:
Posted on 07/10/2020

Hand strength in PLO varies greatly compared to Texas Hold’em

While playing Pot-Limit Omaha (PLO), one of the biggest differences from other forms of poker is the importance that the relative hand strength has at all times. It plays an important role in PLO games, as much as the bet sizing and other dynamics do for No-Limit Hold’em. For instance, you could have a great flush and still consider if the best thing to do is to fold; that doesn’t happen in the majority of poker games.

Taking this into consideration, it becomes important for you to effectively determine not only the relative strength of your hand but also your opponent’s hand’s strength. The reason why is that, during PLO games, there is no reason to get excited about a full house if someone else has a much better hand.
This is one of the biggest mistakes PLO players make because they fail to pay attention to how the opponents are getting big hands, too.

By understanding relative strength, it also becomes important to known exactly when to stick to a decision. If you already know that your hand – a straight – is not good enough due to other major action going on at the table, make sure you step back as soon as possible, even if you are drawn to continue playing that hand. To let one go is actually one skill that people need to acquire.

Remember to always pay attention to what your opponents are doing; it is a mistake to be focused only on your game. The relative hand strength might be more useful to save you from losing huge pots more than to make you win; however, in the long run, making a good fold might bring more value due to the money you are saving. Understanding the relative hand strength will help you succeed in other aspects like chasing draws, having proper odds and making good folds because they are all deeply related.