The Official Poker Rules

Poker is a card game in which players compete for an amount of money (called the pot) contributed by each player. Unlike most games and sports, poker has an official set of rules managed by a group called the Professional Tournament Directors Association or TDA. It is a group of managers for major live and online poker rooms, circuits, poker leagues or independent tournaments that meet every two years to standardize the rules.

A hand in poker starts with each player receiving two cards face down. Five community cards are dealt in stages: three in the center of the table (“the flop”), one additional card on top of that (“the turn”) and then a final card on the bottom of the deck (“the river”). Each player attempts to create a winning poker hand from their two hole cards and the five community cards by betting.

During a hand, players can call clock on other players if they believe the player has taken an unreasonable amount of time to act. This typically results in a floorperson coming to the table and giving the challenged player one minute to complete their action. If they fail to act within the time limit, their action is declared dead and their opponent takes control of the pot.

Ghosting is an issue that’s rife in the poker world right now. There have been allegations of several top poker pros ghosting their way to wins recently, such as David “Devplaza” Afework ghosting his girlfriend’s account to win a tournament at partypoker in 2017.