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What Is A Straight Flush In A Poker Game?

A Straight Flush is a five-card hand containing five sequential cards, all of the same suit. Certain named hands--such as the Royal Flush or the Wheel--are actually Straight Flushes that have earned nicknames.

How to Get a Straight Flush

Most poker games don't have all five cards dealt at once, so you'll usually make a Straight Flush by having two or three of the cards and chasing a draw to get the rest in a later round of betting.

Straight Flush Draws

It can be tempting to bet it all on a Straight Flush draw, because, hey, even if you don't hit the big hand, you've got other outs: a Straight or a Flush. But be careful--if you have a Straight Flush draw with low cards (such as the 3, 5, 6, and 7 of Hearts), you might get beat by someone else with a stronger flush--you might even get beat by someone with a stronger straight. And of course, the draw just might not hit. Never over-invest in a draw, even the very best kind.

Playing a Straight Flush

Most of the time, the Straight Flush will be the nut hand: you've probably got everyone else beat. This means you need to build the pot by betting in a way that gets calls. Maybe you play slowly, or maybe you bet big to look like you're bluffing.

But of course, Straight Flushes aren't invincible: just like with Straights, you might end up with the ass-end, and lose to someone with the higher Straight Flush.

Ranking Straight Flushes

Straight Flushes are ranked like Straights: whoever has the higher straight wins. So, a Straight Flush to the 8 (4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 of Spades) beats a Straight Flush to the 6 (2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 of Spades).

Two players with a Straight Flush to the same high card will split the pot. There's no tie-breaker between suits.