What is a Straight Flush in Poker?

A Straight Flush represents the best and rarest combination of five cards. The hand consists of consecutive cards that share the same suit, with the very rare Royal Flush considered the best Straight Flush there is.

Straight Flush

Straight Flush

What Does a Straight Flush Look Like?

A Straight Flush is any hand where the cards have consecutive rankings and the same symbol (suit). Some examples include:

  1. Kicon-suit-spade, Qicon-suit-spade, Jicon-suit-spade, 10icon-suit-spade, 9icon-suit-spade

  2. 9icon-suit-heart, 8icon-suit-heart, 7icon-suit-heart, 6icon-suit-heart, 5icon-suit-heart

  3. Qicon-suit-club, Jicon-suit-club, 10icon-suit-club, 9icon-suit-club, 8icon-suit-club

  4. 5icon-suit-diamond, 4icon-suit-diamond, 3icon-suit-diamond, 2icon-suit-diamond, Aicon-suit-diamond

How Does a Straight Flush Rank?

A Straight Flush ranks as the top winning poker hand. In fact, a Straight Flush can only be beaten by another Straight Flush. The ranking is based on the highest card in the combination, so the best possible Straight Flush would be Ace-high (making it a Royal Flush).

What Beats a Straight Flush?

Rank

Hand Names

Example

Hand Description

1

Royal Flush

Royal Flush hand eg

10, Jack, Queen, King, Ace all in the same suit.

2

Straight Flush

straight flush hand eg

Five cards in a row, all in the same suit.

3

Four of a Kind

four of a kind hand eg

The same card in each of the four suits.

4

Full House

full house hand eg

A pair plus three of a kind in the same hand.

5

Flush

flush hand eg

Five cards, all in one suit, but not in numerical order.

6

Straight

straight hand eg

Five cards in numerical order, but not of the same suit.

7

Three of a Kind

three of a kind hand eg

Three of one card and two non-paired cards.

8

Two Pair

two pair hand eg

Two different pairings or sets of the same card in one hand.

9

One Pair

one pair hand eg

One pairing of the same card.

10

High Card

high card hand eg

No matching cards

Because Straight Flushes are ranked by the highest card in the combo, the hand 5icon-suit-heart, 6icon-suit-heart, 7icon-suit-heart, 8icon-suit-heart, 9icon-suit-heart (a 9-high Straight Flush) will lose to the hand 7icon-suit-heart, 8icon-suit-heart, 9icon-suit-heart, 10icon-suit-heart, Jackicon-suit-heart (a Jack-high Straight Flush).

The suit of the Straight Flush is irrelevant, unless used to break a tie (multiple Straight Flushes in different suits are only possible in non-flop games, in which case the ranking of suits, from best to worst, is spades, hearts, diamonds, then clubs).

The strongest hand in poker is called a Royal Straight Flush, or just a Royal Flush, and it is made out of 10, Jack, Queen, King, and Ace of a matching suit.

How Should You Play a Straight Flush in Texas Hold’em?

A Straight Flush is the second strongest hand you can get in poker. If you make it, you can be almost certain you have the best chance of winning that hand.

However, if you have the 'low end' of a Straight Flush, for example if you hold the 6icon-suit-heart on a board of 7icon-suit-heart, 8icon-suit-heart, 9icon-suit-heart, 10icon-suit-heart, there will exist the possibility that someone has the Jackicon-suit-heart for a higher Straight Flush. If you are using both of your hole cards to make your hand, you can usually be much more confident.

In a similar approach to playing a Royal Flush, make sure you don’t bet too high when attempting to lure opponents in to increase the pot. One thing you don’t want to do is scare them off.

Draw them in with value bets that keep building the pot but don’t frighten players away. The deeper you go into the hand, the bolder you can get with your betting to ensure you maximize the winnings on the hand.

Straight Flush Probabilities

By calculating the odds of making the hand, players can get an idea of how rare and valuable a Straight Flush is.

In this instance, we will focus on the odds of being dealt a Straight Flush on the flop, meaning a player will have five cards – their two hole cards and the three flop cards.

Number of ways to make the hand

(not including different suits)

Number of ways to make the hand

(including different suits)

Odds of getting a Straight

Flush

Probability of getting a Straight

Flush

9

36

1 / 72,192

0.00139%

The odds of being dealt the Straight Flush on the flop is only the tip of the iceberg. For more on odds, including the probability of winning any given hand on the flop, turn and/or river, have a play with our poker odds calculator.

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