Favourite and Underdog

In poker, when your chance of winning the pot is mathematically more than your opponent, you will be a favorite. Otherwise when you have a hand that does not have the better chance of winning, you will be an underdog. For example in a heads-up Texas hold'em poker match, if you are holding and your opponent has , you will statistically win nearly 60% of the times and lose 40% of the times, so you are a 60:40 or 1.5:1 favourite to win and your opponent is an underdog.

Sometimes, you will be in a situation where neither you nor your opponent is an underdog because you will both win nearly half the time. For example, in the confrontation of AK-suited versus pocket deuces (22) in Texas hold'em poker, each player has roughly a 50% chance of winning. This situation is called a coin flip.

Of course, being the favourite or underdog doesn't necessarily mean that you will win or lose the hand but it is always good to know the math behind your action.


The best hand in a heads-up Texas hold'em match

Pocket aces is the best hand in Texas Holde'em poker. It is a favourite against 1224 out of all 1,225 possible hands that your opponent may have and ties with one hand (which is the other pocket aces). It is a 18:1 favourite against A9-offsuit and a 3:1 favourite against 56-suited.
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The worst hand in a heads-up Texas hold'em match

The worst hand in a heads-up match in Texas hold'em poker is 23-off-suit. It is only a favourite against 2 out of 1225 hands (for example, is a favourite against and ). It ties with 3 hands and is an underdog against 1220 remaining hands. It is interesting that 23-off-suit is a 1:12 underdog against pocket threes (33) while it is a 1:7 underdog against pocket aces.
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Check out here to see the favourite and underdog hands against any hand in Texas hold'em poker heads-up matches.

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