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How to Play 2-7 Triple Draw Poker

Get an edge with these quick tips and basic strategies

Played with 5 hole cards, 2-7 Triple Draw is, as the name indicates, a draw game with a total of 3 draws.

2-7 Triple Draw is one of the rare breeds of poker games where the worst hand wins. So if you have a tendency to never get good cards, this game should be right up your alley.

Thought to be invented in the 1990's, this lowball variant of 5-card draw poker was introduced to online poker in 2002 and to the World Series of Poker in 2004.

2-7 Triple Draw Poker
Game ComplexityIntermediate
TypeLowball Draw Poker

Gameplay of 2-7 Triple Draw Poker

  • Setting Up

    Setting Up

    • You'll need: a button, small & big blinds (similar to Texas Hold'em).
    • Deal each player 5 cards, face down.
    • Use a limit betting structure (such as $3/$6)
  • Action

    The Action

    • Action starts to the left of the big blind. You may fold, call or raise.
    • After the 1st betting round, draw 0-5 cards. Then betting resumes to the left of the button.
    • A total of three draws occur.
  • Who's the Winner?

    Determining a Winner

    • Worst possible hand wins, so the best hand is the wheel: 2-3-4-5-7, offsuit.
    • Note: straights and flushes DO count against you in this game, and aces play as high only.
    • The player with the worst hand scoops the pot.  In the event of a tie, the pot is split.

Basic Strategies of 2-7 Triple Draw Poker

  • Pre-Draw

    Like most poker games with a button, position is a big factor in 2-7 Triple Draw.

    Knowing how many cards your opponent draws before you is key to formulating your strategy. 

    Consider adjusting the number of cards you draw based on your opponent's play.

  • Drawing

    As a general rule, you should fold if you must draw more than 2 cards in the early drawing rounds.

    Never draw 3 cards on the first draw, unless you get a free draw or you start with exactly 2 and 7 in your hand

    Think about folding if you must draw more than 1 card in the later drawing rounds.

  • Betting

    Betting takes place before the first draw and after each draw. If you draw fewer cards than your opponent, you can generally bet out before the next draw.

    There is no such thing as slow-playing a big hand since your opponent will see how many cards you take before the next betting round.

What You Need to Know About 2-7 Triple Draw Starting Hands

  •  Good Starting Hands

    Play these hands in all positions (and for a raise):

    • All pat hands of 9 or better
    • All 4-card hands of 8 or better.
    • All 3-card hands containing wheel cards.
  •  Poor Starting Hands

    Never play these hands: 

    • All hands with three cards valued 8 or above (except for hands containing exactly a 2 and a 7).
    • All hands with 0 or 1 wheel cards (2-3-4-5-7).
  •  Marginal Starting Hands

    Play these hands cheaply:

    • All two card hands containing exactly a 2 and a 7.
  •  Positional Hands

    Play in late position when folded to you:

    • On the button and hand contains two wheel cards and an 8 (occasionally a 9 depending on the blinds)
    • In the small blind play any three card hands containing two wheel cards and an 8 or 9

Do's and Don'ts for Better 2-7 Triple Draw Play

  • Never Limp Early

    Because position is so important, you should never limp into a pot in early position.

  • Try Getting Heads-up

    Playing heads-up pots in position is important. Try to reduce the number of players to two by 3-betting hands early.

  • Don't Bluff

    Bluffing (also called snowing) should be reserved for advanced players, and even then, rarely used. This is good advice for all limit-type-games.

Famous 2-7 Poker Hands

  • 2-7 Single Draw Poker : Action from the 2004 WSOP

    Big name players including Barry Greenstein, Howard Lederer, and Chris Ferguson play at the 2004 final table of the WSOP Kansas City Lowball event.  

    This Video Contains:

    1. Ferguson doubles up an amateur, "Jesus heals another cripple".
    2. Standard banter among the big names.
    3. A brief history of 2-7 Triple Draw.
  • 2-7 Triple Draw Poker : Action from a High Stakes Cash Game

    Big name players including Gus Hansen, and Tom Dwan play a $1500/$3000 limit 2-7 cash game on the old Full Tilt.  

    This Video Contains:  

    1. Pots in excess of $30,000 USD.  
    2. Multiple hands which contain all 3 draws.
    3. Note: This video has no sound.

Where Can I Play 2-7 Triple Draw Online?