How strong is ace-king as a starting hand in Texas hold’em poker?
Ace-king – often known as ‘Big Slick, if suited, and ‘Big Ugly’, if not – is a strong, and therefore favourite, starting hand in Texas hold’em poker. Ace-king is, of course, a ‘drawing hand’ or, in other words, a hand that has the potential to become very strong indeed, but needs to hit the board in order to do so. Nevertheless, before the first three community cards, collectively known as ‘the flop’, are dealt, ace-king can be considered likely to win against any non-paired hand. The probability of ace-king beating, say, ace-queen is 71.62%. Indeed, even against any pair less than a pair of kings, the odds of winning with ace-king in the hole are still roughly 50:50.
Paired aces or kings are more problematic; paired aces reduce the probability of ace-king winning to just 5.86%, while paired kings reduce the probability to 29.74%. So, while ace-king is, no doubt, a valuable hand in Texas hold’em poker, its real value needs to be considered in the context of the position of the holder, the number of players in the game and their playing styles. Granted that ace-king will almost certainly lose if it fails to hit the board, it may be judicious to play the hand passively – that is, as a typical drawing hand – if you are facing, say, four or more opponents, but to play the hand aggressively in a heads up situation. If you fancy yourself as a poker pro in the making, the casino site list https://newcasinostar.co.uk/ is a great starting point, on your way proving your credentials!
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