TWO PAIR—two cards of one rank in combination with two cards of a different rank. This is a very common hand in Hold'em and illustrates a concept discussed earlier— the kicker. Suppose the board shows K, K, 3, 7, 5. You hold J, 3 and another player holds a 10, 3. Both of you have two pair, Ks and 3s, but you win, since your J-kicker beats the 10-kicker. As mentioned before, it is possible for the top kicker to appear on the board, in which case, the pot is split. Suppose for the same pocket cards, the board showed, K, K, 3, 7, A. Both of you have Ks and 3s with an Ace kicker. Your Jack does not get to play and the pot is split. When comparing hands with two pair, the top pair determines who wins. Which brings us to another important concept in Hold'em—the overcard. Suppose you have K,Q in the pocket and the board comes up K, 3, 3, Q, A. The Ace on the board is an overcard to your King. Your hand is two pair, Kings and Queens, but you lose to anyone holding a single Ace in the pocket, since they also have two pair (Aces and threes).

Two Pair Example

7 of Spades 5 of Spades 5 of Diamonds Ace of Spades King of Diamonds
7 of Clubs Jack of Spades      


seven of hearts Queen of Spades      

In the above example the best five cards play. Both players have two pair sevens and fives with an ace. It is irrelevant that player 2's queen is higher than player 1's jack since all players own the community cards

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High Card