Poker – Sport For The Masses
All around the world, debate rages on as to whether poker is a sport or a game. Here is what we have to say on this interesting argument. Poker is often referred to as a sport nowadays. And really, it’s a sport rather than a game. Calling it a game conjures up images of relaxed fun, rolling the dice and leaving winning up to chance. And that’s not the case we have here.
Poker is a family of card games involving betting and individual play, whereby the winner is determined by the ranks and combinations of their cards, some of which remain hidden until the end of the game. Poker games vary in the number of cards dealt, the number of shared or “community” cards and the number of cards that remain hidden.
Poker’s popularity experienced an unprecedented spike at the beginning of the 21st century, largely because of the introduction of online poker and hole-card cameras, which turned the game into a spectator sport. Not only could viewers now follow the action and drama of the game on television, they could also play the game in the comfort of their own home.
Poker has gained in popularity since the beginning of the twentieth century, and has gone from being primarily a recreational activity confined to small groups of enthusiasts, to a widely popular spectator activity with international audiences and multi-million dollar tournament prizes.
The following are poker hands, from best to worst:
Straight flush: Five cards of the same suit in sequence (if those five are A, K, Q, J, 10; it is a Royal Flush)
Four of a kind: Four cards of the same rank and any one other card
Full house: Three cards of one rank and two of another
Flush: Five cards of the same suit
Straight: Five cards in sequence (for example, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8)
Three of a kind: Three cards of the same rank
Two pair: Two cards of one rank and two cards of another
One pair: Two cards of the same rank
High card: If no one has a pair, the highest card wins
Five card draw
Five card stud
Seven card stud