Omaha Poker Strategy: The Turn

Playing the turn is critical to winning in Omaha poker. Learn the best strategies for getting ahead in this betting round.

In pot-limit Omaha, the turn has the power to make or break a player’s drawing hand, perhaps more than it does in any other hold ’em poker game. Creating a workable Omaha poker strategy that uses the turn effectively is key to a player’s success, second only to hand selection. So what can you do at the turn to make a decent hand playable?

Learn To Read The Board’s Texture
This is takes practice and work — you’ve got to learn how to effectively read the board and calculate the possible draws and made hands along with the odds of each improving. Then you’ll have to look at your own cards and then re-evaluate what you’ve been playing with. If the board hits certain cards, are you going to be running behind the best selection? What outs do you have?

This isn’t an innate skill for the vast majority of Omaha poker players and it takes time. I recommend playing in free online poker games until you really learn how to evaluate the board.

Learn To Read Your Opponents
This is where things get even more tricky. Once you’re able to read the board and compare your cards to what’s out there, you’re going to have to be able to formulate at least an idea of what your opponents are attempting to build. Mind you, they’re trying to do the same thing at the same time and this is where poker is different from any other game that involves cards.

If you’re on a draw that can give you a flush and a straight draw and have been betting pretty heavily, your opponents are likely to think that you’re on a really strong hand like a big set. Just like you’re using the texture of the board and your opponent’s betting patterns to figure out what they’re likely to have, they’re doing the same thing to you.

Be Honest With Your Hand
If you feel like you’re not running with the best hand in Omaha, it means you’re probably not running with the best hand and are likely to get beaten. We’ve mentioned before how Omaha is truly a game of the nuts, and it’s one of those things you want to keep in mind before throwing chips in on a pot. Focusing on good value betting and learn to let go of hands that aren’t going to win and you’re going to get more out of the game and especially the turn, when money gets serious.