All about Five Card Stud
Five Card Stud poker is easily one of the most classic poker games that’s also a huge favourite of the poker veterans throughout the world. Although you may find this game at very few online and off-line casinos, it’s a huge favourite in private poker environments. There’s plenty of tradition going behind the Five Card Stud poker game, as it was the game which influenced the creation of the present-day hits like Omaha and Texas hold ‘em poker.

The objective of the game
The players’ main objective in Five Card Stud poker is to win the money collected in the jackpot (at the middle of the poker table). They can accomplish this in two different ways: by betting aggressively, scaring everyone into giving in, or by creating the best possible five card poker hand, and taking the game to the showdown stage.
It’s always recommended to maximise your bets if you get a good hand. This can help you maximise your winnings and minimise your losses (whenever you get bad hands).

The structure of the game
The game of Five Card Stud poker is normally played at a dedicated poker table with around nine players. All players at the table are required to place a certain forced bet amount, referred to as the ante. This ante bet makes sure that there’s a certain minimum amount of money to play for in the pot.
Majority of the five card draw games feature a fixed limit betting structure, however, some offline or online casino establishments such as Bet365 casino may also provide players Five Card Stud poker games based on no limit and pot limit structures as well.
The different Five Card Stud poker tables can be identified through the betting stakes displayed on them. For instance, a table offering a £ 5 / £ 10 fixed limit Five Card Stud game features a small bet or the lower betting limit of £ 5 (used in the first two betting rounds) and a big bet or higher betting limit of £ 10 (used in the last two betting rounds).

The rules of Five Card Stud poker
Let’s now delve into the rules of Five Card Stud poker and understand how the game is laid out for the players, and how it is played by everyone.

Shuffling and dealing of cards
The game begins with every player placing an ante bet into the pot. As explained above, this ante bet is a small forced bet meant to create the basic pot. It’s normally 1/5 to 1/10 of the small bet amount of the table. To give you an example, if you’re playing the £ 5 / £ 10 fixed limit Five Card Stud, the ante bet can be between 50p to £ 1. Once all the players have placed their ante bets, the dealer deals one facedown and one face up card to everyone, starting from the first player to his/her left, and then in clockwise direction.

About the bring-in
Once the first two cards have been dealt to the players, the person in possession of the lowest-value face up card needs to place a bring-in bet, which is another type of forced bet. In case two players get the same lowest value face up cards, the placement of bring-in bet is decided based on the suit rankings, with diamonds being the highest, then clubs, then hearts and then spades.

The first betting round
Post the placement of the bring-in bet, the betting process proceeds in clockwise direction around the table. Every player gets the option of:
- Equalling or calling the bring-in,
- Completing the bet (by raising its value to the small bet) or
- Folding his/her cards.

It should be noted that in fixed limit Five Card Stud games, you can have a maximum of three raises after the placement of the initial bet. That’s also the reason why the third and final raise is referred to as the ‘cap,’ and no other players are allowed to make any more raises after that.

Third Street or the second betting round
Once the first betting round is concluded, every player still in the game is dealt another face up card by the dealer. The betting process starts with the player who gets the best hand of the two face up cards dealt at this point. In this round, the starting player can either check or bet. The play then moves in clockwise direction from and every subsequent player can then either fold his/her cards or call the highest bet.

Fourth Street or the third betting round
One more face up card is dealt by the dealer to every player still in the game, followed by another betting round starting from the player who makes the best three card (face up cards) hand on the table. This player can either check or bet, followed by every other player opting to either fold or call the highest bet amount.

Fifth Street or fourth betting round
In the fourth betting round, another face up and final card is dealt to all the active players in the hand. So, at this point every player still in the game is in possession of four up cards and one down card. A betting round follows and if two or more players stay in the hand, the game heads into the showdown stage. The best five card poker hand wins the pot.

Two or more players can go all the way into the showdown round. The players flip up their five card hands in this round and the best hand takes the amount in the pot. The hand rankings used are the same that are applicable in general poker. They are:

Hand ranking   /   Hand   /   Example
No. 1   /   Straight flush   /   10 J Q K A belonging to the same suit
No. 2   /   Four of a Kind   /   K K K K 3
No. 3   /   Full House   /   10 10 10 Q Q
No. 4   /   Flush   /   A 6 7 10 J of the same suit
No. 5   /   Straight   /   4 5 6 7 8 of different suits
No. 6   /   Three of a Kind   /   7 7 7 J Q
No. 7   /   Two Pair   /   8 8 J J Q
No. 8   /   One Pair   /   Q Q A 7 5
No. 9   /   High Card   /   A Q 10 7 2

Fixed limit and pot limit betting structures
Even though pot limit and fixed limit Five Card Stud poker games seem quite similar, their betting structures are very different from each other. When playing a fixed limit Five Card Stud game, you play with a pretty rigid betting rule, which decided the extent and timing of your bets.
On the other hand, when playing pot limit Five Card Stud games, the betting amount can at max be the same as the pot size. Apart from that, there are no other restrictions in the pot limit version.
In fixed limit five card poker game, you can have no more than four bets in every round, that is a normal bet, a raise, a re-raise and finally a cap. Once the third raise or cap has been placed, no one is allowed to place any more bets. However, in the pot limit games, you can have as many bets and raises as you like.

Where can you enjoy Five Card Stud poker?
One of the best online casino environments where you can look up the Five Card Stud poker game is the Bet365 casino. Furthermore, you can also carry out online/off-line research and discover more places to play this entertaining and thrilling poker variant.

About the history of the game
Five Card Stud poker is easily the oldest Stud poker game. Its origins actually lie in the Civil War era of America. The game was hugely popular among the soldiers who’d use it for passing their time in war camps. It waned in popularity since then, and witnessed an amazing resurgence during the 70s when it was incorporated in the World Series of Poker (WSOP) tournament.
Five Card Stud poker featured as a side event in the 1971 to 1974 WSOP events, all of which were won by someone known as Bill Boyd. Bill won $ 80,000 in total, which was a huge sum of money at that time! Post the 1974 WSOP event, the game was dropped from the WSOP calendar owing to its waning popularity.
Apart from the World Series of poker events, the Five Card Stud game also featured in a highly popular poker based movie titled, ‘The Cincinnati Kid.’ It was the preferred game of ‘The Man’ and ‘The Kid’ during their final showdown. Five Card Stud poker lost out on popularity since that time and can only be found in a handful of casinos of the modern era. In fact, if you’re keen on playing this game, you must look it up in some reputed online casino, for instance the likes of Bet365 casino.
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Some popular variants of Five Card Stud poker
The conventional Five Card Stud poker involves four face up cards and one hole card, making it simple enough for even new poker players to study the strength of their opponents’ hands. Such transparency cuts out the uncertainty element by a great amount, which is pretty high in other poker variants like Omaha and Texas hold ‘em.

Many variants of Five Card Stud poker were introduced to increase this uncertainty element, increasing the number of hole cards in the game and introducing a Hi-Lo Split. Some of the popular variants of Five Card Stud are Canadian or Scandinavian stud, high / low, two down - three up, three down - two up, one down - three up - one down, Mexican stud, Telesina and Asian Five Card Stud. Let’s briefly go through couple of them:

Canadian Stud: This Five Card Stud poker variant is played exactly like the original game, however, with two more hand rankings. Firstly, four card straights are considered a poker hand, and are ranked higher than pairs. Furthermore, four card flushes are also considered valid poker hands, ranked higher than four card straights, but lower than two pairs.

Two down – three up: This one’s also same as the normal stud, differing only in the manner that it has first two cards as facedown cards and the next three as face up.