To win the pot in Texas Hold’em, the player must have the highest five-card combination at the end to collect the pot.
At the start of every hand, each player is dealt two “hole” cards face down with the ability to use the cards in the middle known as community cards. The community cards are dealt face up enabling everyone at the table to see what their best possible five card hand is.
Three betting choices exist after the betting begins. Players can either fold, call or raise. If a player doesn’t like their hole cards, they fold. If the player decides to “call” then the size of the current bet required is matched. If the player opts to “raise”, then the size of the bet is increased.
Calling or raising is the only way to stay in the game. After everyone has the opportunity to bet or fold, the three community cards are dealt. This is called the “flop”. The first player to act may “check”, without wagering any more money and still be considered an active player in the game. The first player can also bet. Once a bet is initiated, all other players must fold, call, or raise to stay in the game, including those who have initially checked.
After betting has ceased, a fourth card, called the “turn” card is dealt and another round of betting ensues. The “river” is the final card dealt which gives players the opportunity for one last round of betting.
If there is a “showdown”, with two or more remaining players, all the hole cards are shown and the best hand wins. If a tie occurs the pot is split.