Poker is a card game played by two or more players. It is a game of chance and skill with the possibility of great reward. As with life, it is not always the best player who wins, sometimes a players tenacity and courage beats even the best hands.

All players must first ‘ante’ something, typically a small amount of money (amount varies by game). Once the antes are placed in the pot, cards are dealt. Each player must then decide whether to play or fold. The highest hand wins the pot.

The game is usually played using a standard 52 card English deck (some games add jokers or other wild cards). A deck is shuffled and cut by the player to the left of the dealer, who then deals out five cards to each player.

Once the initial five cards are dealt, there is a round of betting with the player to the left of the dealer. After this, another three cards are dealt face up on the table, known as the flop. There is another round of betting and then a final card is revealed on the table, this is called the river.

A winning poker hand consists of five cards in sequence; the highest card wins (ace, king, queen, jack, ten, nine, eight, seven, six, four, three and deuce). The suits are different and there is no ranking, except that the ace can link with any of the other cards to form straights and flushes.