Pre Flop Hand Selection

Pre flop hand selection in Omaha is very different from Texas Hold’em. The fact that you are dealt four cards as opposed to just two adds an entirely new dynamic to the game. Many players will play far too many hands when they are playing Omaha. Amateur Omaha players overvalue their hands quite frequently. While pocket aces and pocket kings are certainly considered strong starting hands in Omaha, they do not have nearly as much showdown value as they do in Hold’em. Hands like suited connectors will do very well in Omaha. The potential for a hand like 7s 8s Td Jd is incredible. This hand would be called “double suited” because it has two suited cards in both spades and diamonds. Not only does this hand make hitting a flush relatively easy, but there are plenty of opportunities for straights. 7s 8s Td Jd would be behind pocket aces or pocket kings pre flop in Omaha, but not by much. How you play the hand post flop will also help the value of this type of hand.

Pocket Pairs

Pocket pairs in Omaha have a lot of pre flop value because they have a chance at turning into sets on the flop. The ideal pocket pair type hand in Omaha would be a double suited hand with two pairs. For example, a hand like 8s 8d Js Jd would be a great double suited hand with a few pairs. The double suitedness of the hand will serve as a backup plan for the times where you don’t make a set. The ability to make a set is only the tip of the iceberg, though. A set has a lot of value in Omaha, sure, but a Full House will be much more powerful. You will have the opportunity to stack your opponent if the flop comes 8 6 6 and your opponent is holding A 6 2 7. They will think that that their trips with top kicker is good when in reality they will be crushed.

Poor Starting Hands in Omaha

Hands that are weak in Omaha would include random ace type hands without much potential for a huge hand. In Omaha you will rarely take down a decent sized pot with just top pair, so playing hands that only have top pair potential is rather useless. A hand like As Qd 7h 9c may seem like it is decent at the surface just because of the A Q, but it really doesn’t have much value at all. If you flop an ace there is still a good chance that you will be behind. Low connector type hands will generally have limited potential as well. Even if small connectors make a straight they can still not be the best hand. The low end of a hand, be it a straight or a flush, will often be behind in Omaha.