Ante Stealing in Seven Card Stud

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Ante Stealing in Seven Card Stud

Seven card stud is a game with very different strategies from Texas hold'em. If you are most familiar with Texas hold'em, you may find yourself in some confusing waters when switching to seven card stud. However if you can learn and master seven card stud, you can often find some very profitable games, for example at Full Tilt Poker. Once you gain some stud experience, you may even find it more fun and profitable than Texas hold'em.

An important aspect of seven card stud is ante stealing. Since there are no antes in a cash hold'em game, this is clearly not an issue. However every hand of seven card stud contains an ante from each player and a bring in, and you are robbing yourself of substantial value if you don't occasionally scoop up some of these pots.

Generally if you are successful with your steal attempt around a third of the time, you will show a profit. You should be trying to steal when you have a high card showing and other players are not showing very high cards. An ace is a good card to steal with, as is a king or a queen if they are the highest card showing, especially if other players are showing duplicate or low cards. If you are to steal with a high card that is not the highest, you should at least have some decent hole cards, as some of your equity comes from when you actually get lucky and win the hand. In addition, stealing with a high card gives you fold equity when you pair that high card, since most opponents will put you on three of a kind and release their hands.

Stealing with an ace gives you an added advantage in that when you really have paired your ace, you can bet without giving away the strength of your hand, assuming opponents have seen you bet with just the bare ace. Keep in mind that if someone else is showing an ace, opponents may be more likely to call you, thinking the poker odds on you bluffing are better or at the very least, that it will be difficult for you to improve.

You will have to adjust your stealing frequency to the table where you are playing. Against loose players, you will steal less frequently, against tight players, steal more. A brief amount of observation of your opponents and their tendencies should give you sufficient information about how often to try to steal. You should also keep yourself updated on the current trends by reading Seven Card Stud threads on your preferred poker forum.

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