Five Card Draw Rules – Learn How to Play 5 Card Draw8 min read

What is five card draw and the best way to play?

The five card draw is considered the original game of poker and it is quite easy to play. It has become one of the games that people love to play at their house or a party. For anyone who is not aware of the game and does not know how to play, the simplicity of the rules has made it an easier variation of the game to start with. This game is one of the most famous and also the earliest forms of poker that is found on record. Also, it is one of the most classic poker games in the world.

With the five card draw game, players are given a complete hand that can only be seen by them. Also, this game consists of an opportunity where they have the option to improve the game by replacing the cards. The game is very simple with two rounds of betting. This game cannot be found in brick and mortar casinos but you can get plenty of this game online. If you have never played before and are eager to learn more about the game, go through the full article.

Five Card Draw Rules

If you are a novice and want to know about the rules of poker, go through the steps.

  • Know about the hand ranks 

This is the first and the most important step you must know before entering into the game of five card draw. If you are new to the game, you must know about the ranking of the hands before anything else. Here are the hand ranks starting from the highest.

  • Five of a kind (while playing with a wild card)
  • Royal Flush
  • Straight Flush
  • Four of a kind
  • Full house
  • Flush
  • Straight
  • Three of a kind
  • Two pair
  • One Pair
  • High card or nothing
  • Understand everything about blind and ante games

While beginning any round of five card draw, there are only two variants. One is ante and the other one is blind. This is a matter of personal preference of which one do you or your friends want to choose.

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In blind games, the person sitting to the left of the dealer is considered the ‘small blind’. They put up a bet which is mostly of a very small amount or of an amount which is less than that of a ‘big blind’. The big blind sits on the left side of the small blind. Both the blinds place the bet before any hands are dealt. If anyone wants to play after the hand is dealt, he will have to match the amount of the big blind.

In ante games, all the players need to put a certain amount into the pot to deal with cards. This may also in turn discourage folding.

  • Learn the process of checking, calling, folding, and raising

After the dealer is done with dealing you your five cards, and now it’s your turn. You will have three options to go for: call, raise and fold. Each player has their own strategy to do this. However, these are described below:

  • Checking is a form of betting 0. If there are no best places, you can go for this option. But in case someone places a bet, you have no option but to call, raise, or fold.
  • Calling refers to the process of matching the bet that is already on the table. If everyone has put a fixed amount of money to play, you also put the same amount in the pot and this is calling.
  • Raising refers to the process of increasing the amount of money from your side on the pot. If the player puts 20 cents each and you put in 25 cents, this means that you have raised the bet by 5 cents. Now in order to be in the game, other players need to match your bet or call.
  • Folding is equivalent to quitting the game. If you want to go out of the game, all you need to do is throw the face of your cards down on the table, and you are finished for that round. You will win no money but may lose some amount of money.

  • Examine the wild cards

This is a great game where an extra surprise comes on your way when you play with extra wild cards. One thing you must make sure of before starting the game is that every player playing the game must agree to the usage of wild cards. If you are ready to play with wild cards, make sure to check if there is any kind of restrictions on it. This is also called a bug. A joker in the deck may not finish a flush or straight and also may not represent an ace. Hence, it cannot just be any random number a player picks.

  • Limit yourself

If you want to exercise some control over the amount of money on the table, you will need to have a certain limit over yourself. This can not only prevent the other players to lose less amount of money and also prevent a big spender to bully others and take everything away. 

  • Convince everyone to play lowball

There will be a time when everyone’s hand will stop spending. In such a case, playing lowball is the best option as there you can get hold of the lowest hand possible. So if you notice everyone going out of the table or checking, switching to the lowball option is the best. In lowball, usually, aces transform to the lower one because they remain high most of the time. The flushes and straights are not counted. Hence, the worst possible hand you can end up in can be A-2-3-4-5. Here, you will have no pairs and 5 will be the highest card.

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Five Card Draw Rules

The sequence of Five Card Draw Game

Now you know everything about the rules of five card draw which are simple and also straightforward. The sequence of the game is as follows:

  • Each player is provided with 5 cards.
  • The first round of bets are placed
  • The players can discard the cards they do not want and takes new cards.
  • Second rounds of bets are placed
  • The round of betting starts with the first live player at the left of the dealer.
  • The player having the best hand takes the plot

Calculations associated with five card draw

Here is a mathematical chart along with the chances of being dealt strong hands before the drawing round.

  • Royal Flush <0.001%
  • Four of a kind 0.02%
  • Straight Flush (excluding the royal flush) <0.002%
  • Straight (excluding the straight flush and royal flush) 0.39%
  • Full house 0.14%
  • Flush (not including straight flush and royal flush) 0.20%
  • Two Pair 4.75%
  • One Pair 42.30%
  • Three of a kind 2.11%
  • High card/ No pair 50.10%

Few Tips To Remember While Playing Five Card Draw

When you know everything about the rules and it’s time to play, you must know some quick tips before playing in order to keep up with the game and achieve a good outcome. Here are some quick tips that can help you to get closer to earning more money from the game of five card draw.

  • Be careful with hand selection

Learn all the hand ranks properly and be very careful while you start hand selection. Weak hands are a symbol of losing the match and so avoid getting involved in weak hands.

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Five card draw
Five card draw


  • Pay attention

Be attentive and very serious while playing. It is very important to pay attention to what your opponents or other players are doing. Make sure to notice how many cards have they discarded during the draw round. Every small detail is very important when you play cards.

  • Maintain a poker face

While playing poker, it is very important to maintain a poker face in order to make your opponents try their level best to read your gesture and understand your cards. Try to keep your body and face unreadable as much as you can. You can also try to fake out your expression which is also a great way. Always remember that there is no room for any kind of feelings in poker.

  • Stay away from fancy bluffs

It is useless to hem and haw in this game. If you are still eager to do so, you can hem and haw only while placing your bets just as everyone needs a minute to surround their game totally around the game. But doing this in every round is like wasting everyone’s time. The game becomes more interesting when it continues.


Now it is safe to say that you have a good understanding of the rules of five card draw. Learning about the variations of poker is always fun. With the help of online poker games, you can always play this game on your phone anytime you want. But always remember that you must put in the amount of money that you can afford to lose.

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