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Flop Strategy

Flop Strategy in Pot Limit Omaha (PLO)

Learn how to spot the best hands, Position, bet sizing in Omaha, some general strategy tips and how to play draws.

Omaha is a Flop Game

A good starting hand selection before the flop and a suitable flop strategy are key factors to win at PLO. The decisions we make on the turn and river have a secondary role, since at that point of the hand at least one player will be all-in or committed to the pot by his previous bets. 

Pot Limit Omaha is a game filled with action, especially on the flop. From this point on, you can bet all your chips in just a few steps and it is not uncommon to do so.  

Just like in Texas Hold'em, the flop is the first moment when anyone can have a made 5 card hand, and also when the strength of a draw can be measured. The strength of your hand changes dramatically from street to street in Omaha, but never so much as on the flop. We can use our 4 hole cards to make 6 different hand combinations (instead of the single hand we can make in Texas Hold'em).

Example:

We have . We can make 6 different combinations of playable hands on the flop:
If we hit the flop we will have a made hand or strong draws or, even better, a mixture of both. However, if we don't hit the flop, the hand quickly loses its value. Here, a flop is so dangerous that we will fold to any raise. For most players this is a reason to keep the pot small before the flop and then, if they make good hands, bet them hard.

The flop brings important information about how many outs will improve our hand or, on the contrary, develop our opponents hands. This information should help us to effectively choose our actions.

The Nuts

It has been said that there are only two hands in Pot Limit Omaha. There is the nuts, or the best possible hand on board, and then there is everything else. While extreme, this is a helpful thought to keep in mind when learning the game. The best possible hand wins a large percentage of pots in PLO, and most of the big ones. Always be aware of what the nuts are on every street, and avoid drawing to hands that could still finish second best.

Position

Position is an important concept in all forms of poker, but particularly so in Pot Limit Omaha.  You must extract value when you have the best hand, and this is a far easier task from late or last position. Furthermore, the dynamics in an Omaha hand can change dramatically throughout the streets, and the information you will gain by acting after your opponents cannot be over emphasized. Be extremely selective with the hands you play in early position, and conversely save your speculative plays for when you are last to act.

Bet sizing   

In Pot Limit Omaha, it is useful to get as much money in the pot as possible while you have the best hand. Even strong hands are vulnerable in Omaha, and a small bet will often give your opponents good value to call. If you are going to bet, a good rule of thumb is to bet at least 2/3 of the total pot size.  Open Full Lesson
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