Suited Success: Calculating Your Chances of a Flush in Poker

By David Huber
May 26, 2024

Making a flush in poker can be one of the most thrilling experiences a player can experience, especially when it happens to be a royal flush.

Being able to combine five suited cards to make a flush is a somewhat rare occurrence in popular games like Texas Hold’em. However, in games such as Omaha and Seven Card Stud, it is a bit easier to complete a five card flush.

Not surprisingly, the more forgiving odds of making a flush in Omaha and Seven Card Stud mean that the hand has less value in these poker variants.

In this article, we’ll answer a few key questions related to flush odds, the odds of getting a flush with two suited cards, and how this hand can represent everything from the “stone cold nuts” to something that should be folded without question.


Flush Odds and Poker Hand Rankings

Looking down at two suited cards in a preflop scenario when playing community card games can mean you have the potential to make a great hand at showdown.

If your two suited cards are connected (or almost connected), the possibility of showing down a straight flush exists.

But what are the odds of a flush with two suited cards? 

If we take a look at our poker hand rankings chart, we know that a flush is one of the higher ranked five-card hands. And if we add two suited hole cards into the mix, our odds greatly improve: with the chances of making a five-card flush by showdown around six percent.

So basically, every time you have two suited cards in Texas Hold’em, you have a roughly 1-in-17 chance of having a flush at showdown (if you choose to go to showdown every single hand).

While your chances of eventually making a flush with two suited hole cards may seem slim, the odds of any player making a flush in Texas Hold’em — prior to hole cards being dealt — is around 1-in-500.

After all, at least three community cards must be of the same suit in order for a flush to be possible at all in hold’em games.

When Should I Raise a Flush Hand?

If you find yourself on the river in Texas Hold’em, and if you are holding the best possible hand (which happens to be a flush), then you’ll want to be raising and check-raising exclusively.

The only exception to this would be in a multi-way river scenario in which you are calling behind an original bettor in hopes that one or more players behind you will raise the action.


PLAYER 1: x-x
PLAYER 2: x-x
PLAYER 3: x-x
PLAYER 4: Qs-3s (button)


Player 4 has the best possible hand on the river (Spade Flush: A-K-Q-7-3), and is guaranteed to win the pot outright as long as Player 4 doesn’t fold.

If the action is checked to Player 4 on the river in this hand, Player 4 should bet. Player 4 should also re-raise the action in almost all situations, but could possibly justify a call if the table is especially loose and there is a strong possibility that one of the other remaining players could re-raise.

If Player 1 and Player 2 fold, then Player 4’s decision is to bet if checked to, and to raise or re-raise if possible.

In fact, many card rooms that spread Texas Hold’em actually prohibit a player with the best possible hand from calling if he or she is the last player to act on the river. The reason for this rule is to thwart potential collusion that could occur between players who remain in the hand.

When Should I Fold a Flush Hand?

In Texas Hold’em, there are circumstances in which a player might find an obvious fold, despite having made a flush on the river or previous streets.

Let’s take a look at the following sample hand as an example.

PLAYER 1: x-x
PLAYER 2: x-x
PLAYER 3: 6s-5s (button)


Assuming the action is taking place after the King of Spades was dealt on the Turn, Player 3 might come to the conclusion that a Spade Flush (K-Q-J-T-7) is a hand that should be tossed into the muck.

Let’s say Player 1 leads out with a bet on the Turn, and that Player 2 either calls or raises that bet. Does Player 3 really want to remain in the hand?

All the opponents need in this scenario to show down a superior hand is the Ace of Spades (which would be a Royal Flush), the Nine of Spades (which would be a Straight Flush), the Eight of Spades, or the Seven of Spades.

What’s more, there still another card to be dealt during the River betting phase, so Player 3 could possibly face more unwanted action from opponents on the River — regardless of which card is dealt (with the exception of the Ace of Spades).

Of course, if the Ace of Spades (1:46 odds to Player 3 after the Turn) is dealt on the River, then all three players would make the best possible hand, a Royal Flush: Spades, and the pot would be chopped accordingly.

But any other card would leave one or more players on the River vulnerable to having to call down a bet against a player who is already holding the best possible hand on the Turn.

When Can A Flush Hand Be Confusing to Identify?

If you’re new to the game of Omaha, there’s one very clear rule you’ll want to memorize as soon as possible: each five-card hand must utilize two hole cards and three community board cards. No exceptions!

A completely new player to Omaha might make a rookie mistake of believing a flush hand has been made, which in reality, the player does not have a five-card flush hand to show down.

Let’s take the above example and shift it to Omaha play.

PLAYER 1: x-x
PLAYER 2: x-x
PLAYER 3: As-8c-6d-2h (button)


In Texas Hold’em, Player 3 would be delighted to look down at his or her hole cards and see the Ace of Spades, as it would mean Player 3 has made a Royal Flush on the Turn.

However, in this sample Omaha hand, Player 3 does NOT have a Royal Flush! In face, Player 3 doesn’t have any flush at all!

Remember one of the golden rules of Omaha: three cards from the board and two hole cards. Nothing more, nothing less.

The best possible five-card Omaha hand that Player 3 can make in this scenario is an Ace-high nothing: A-K-Q-J-8.

Player 3 should probably be folding this hand preflop in Omaha, but at the very least, Player 3 should definitely not contribute any more to the pot on or after the Turn.

There’s another thing to keep in mind about Omaha flush draws: if you look down at four unsuited hole cards, you know immediately — before the flop — that it will be impossible for you to make a flush at any point in the hand.

The As-8c-6d-2h hand that Player 3 has in this example means that no two hole cards are suited.

And since all Omaha players must use exactly two hole cards and three community board cards to make the best possible five-card hand at showdown, we know that four unsuited hole cards make a flush impossible.

If you’re playing Omaha 8 (also known as Omaha Hi/Lo), this same rule applies to the “high” portion of each hand. You’ll never make a flush for your “high” hand if all four of your hole cards are unsuited.

Meanwhile, suits don’t come into play at all when determining which “low” hand wins at showdown.

What is the Difference Between Suited and Double Suited in Omaha?

Double suited hands are extremely strong in Omaha.

In fact, the very best Omaha “high” starting hand that you can possess is a double suited A-A-K-K. For example: Ah-Ac-Kh-Kc.

In Omaha Hi/Lo, the best possible starting hand is a double suited A-A-3-2. For example: Ad-As-3s-2d.

These types of hands will give any player a leg up on the competition preflop, and will increase the odds of making a top flush at some point in the hand.

When you have two separate suits (and only two suits) among the four hole cards you are dealt when playing Omaha, your starting hand is considered to be double suited.

A double suited starting hand in Omaha is far more powerful than having all four cards of the same suit, or having only two hole cards that share the same suit.

An A-A-3-2 double suited starting hand in Omaha will provide a player with an excellent chance of “scooping” the pot at showdown if a low hand is possible.

Flush Possibilities: Double Suited Hole Cards Sample Hand

Omaha 8 or Better (Hi/Lo)

PLAYER 1: Ad-As-3s-2d
PLAYERS 2-9: x-x-x-x

If the action is nine-handed preflop and the game is being played in a Fixed Limit ring table format, Player 1 is going to want to increase the pot and see a flop regardless of the betting action that occurs.

Player 1 definitely is never folding the above Omaha starting hand preflop in an Omaha cash game.


Although Player 1 can only make a One Pair hand after this flop is dealt (A-A-K-8-6), this is a great board for Player 1 to justify continuing with the hand.

For starters, any 7, any 5, or any 4 Turn card will instantly give Player 1 the guaranteed best “low” hand possible, regardless of what card is subsequently dealt on the river. That’s because Player 1 has all Omaha “low” counterfeits covered via the A-2-3.

In addition to this, any Diamond on the Turn would instantly give Player 1 the top flush, and as long as that Diamond is not specifically the King of Diamonds, Player 1 would possess the nut flush on the Turn.

Any Spade dealt on the Turn would give Player 1 two separate draws to the top flush, while still covering any low hand possibilities.


With the action now on the Turn, Player 1 now possesses the best possible Omaha “low” hand and is guaranteed to — at the very least — tie with one or more players for the best “low” hand regardless of which card is dealt face-up on the River.

Any Spade dealt on the River (except the 8 of Spades or 6 of Spades) would give Player 1 the best possible “high” and “low” hands.

The same can be said for any Diamond (except the King of Diamonds or Four of Diamonds).


Player 1 has now made a Diamond Flush: A-T-8-6-2 on the River and will win the “high” portion of this Omaha hand outright.

Player 1 also has the best possible “low” hand, which is 8-6-4-2-A.

This means that — at the very worst — Player 1 will win exactly 50% of the pot at showdown with the nut flush, while being guaranteed to “scoop” (or chop) the low portion of the hand.

READ MORE: The Difference Between Poker and Texas Hold’em.

Four-Colored Decks for Identifying Flushes

Online poker rooms often allow players to select from various poker table themes and digital poker decks.

These features shouldn’t be of any concern to players, as they are usually customized in a way that doesn’t infringe on the gameplay experience each player enjoys.

In other words, one or more players at your table may be seeing a four-colored poker deck while you may see only two colors of cards.

4 color deck

The great thing about a four-colored poker deck is that is makes identifying a flush much easier for certain poker players who are colorblind.

With this said, it’s still very rare to see a live casino poker game or tournament using anything other than the standard, traditional two-colored deck of red and black.

Either way, the colors of the suits on poker cards shouldn’t take away from one’s enjoyment when at the poker tables, and making a flush can put you in a very strong position depending on which cards are showing face-up.



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David Huber poker author
Written By.

David Huber

David Huber has been involved in the poker industry for close to two decades: initially as a professional online poker player and later as an editor, consultant, writer, and forum manager. Known as “dhubermex” online, David’s poker-related work has been heavily published across numerous websites since 2004.

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