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Pot Limit Omaha Hi-Lo Poker

Pot Limit Omaha Hi-Lo is a lot different from PL Omaha High. While with the latter, position is the key element of the game, with the former, it's starting hand selection that fulfills the same role. What you need to focus on is to act on hands which will be betable in later betting rounds.

Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo is not immensely popular in brick and mortar, or online casinos, because it is a game of pure poker skill above all. Weak players are overwhelmed quickly, and strong players will get stuck in a seemingly futile stalemate.

Online PL Omaha Hi-Lo is a different matter, however. There are quite a few online poker rooms that offer good PL Omaha games, and - because of the fact that the pool from which an online poker room draws its players is quite bottomless - there are always fish to prey on. If it weren't for these fish, the edges you could work with would be so small, that the game wouldn't be worth playing at all. Another factor that facilitates the existence of online PL Omaha H-L games is that there are set limits for how much a player can buy in. Usually good players buy in for huge amounts while the fish tend to stick to small stacks. Money hoewever, goes where there's more money in the first place, and this is exceptionally valid for PL Omaha H-L games. This levels the field a bit, allowing the fish a breath of fresh air and preventing sharks from putting a choke-hold on the game right from the get-go.
On top of it all, weak or weak-to-reasonable players have the tendency to overestimate their capabilities. They do that in pretty much every online poker game, but it is another prime factor that keeps PL Omaha H-L alive online.

If you decide to take your Omaha H-L game online, remember one thing: you are playing against people with a poor value-skills most of the time.

One thing you should definitely do differently in PL Omaha H-L than you would in Omaha Hi or limit H-L, is starting hand selection. You should play more hands in PL Omaha H-L, because of the value that even speculative hands have the potential to draw. Hands that you wouldn't normally play in Limit Omaha H-L become playable in PL Omaha H-L because of the action they generate. Whenever you see an A on the flop you should expect a lot of action. Most fish are usually so well accustomed to the Texas-Holdem hand-values that an A will almost certainly draw action from somebody who thinks AAA is a sure winner, and is willing to go all in on it.

The second thing you need to be aware of, is that winning Omaha strategy is completely different from winning TH strategy. While in TH you need to seek out small edges and continuously exploit them over a longer period of time, in PL Omaha H-L you do not want to work small edges. As a matter of fact, you do not even want to be in hands you can't go all in on if the situation requires it. You want to fold as soon as possible to minimize losses on weak hands and you want to generate as much action as possible on hands you know you can win.

If you decide to lay claim to a seemingly orphan pot by betting into it on the flop, and you get called, do not hesitate to fold. A reason to take a shot at such unclaimed pots, every now and then, is to keep your opponents in the mist. You do not want them to have a clear read on you every time you have a monster.

You should always take advantage of freerolling. Freerolling happens when you get a hand on the flop that your opponent won't be able to beat no matter what he gets on the turn and the river. In the same time he will have something too, something he believes is strong enough to go all in on. These hands are the ones weak players lose everything on.

Another important thing is that you recognize freeroll to bluff situations. These occur when you both have hands that will never be able to beat one another. In such situations you should wait till the river and then hit your opponent with a pot-size bet. If you're helped by the circumstances and the board texture too, he will fold. Even if he doesn't, you'll get a very important read on him ( as to whether he'll fold in the future under similar circumstances or not) for free.

ing is another interesting Omaha Hi-Lo phenomenon. Correctly recognizing such a situation, however, is much more difficult than anything we've discussed so far. An example of ing would be when there are 3 players left in the game, two of them have nut highs and the third has a low. You having a nut low and hitting the nut flush in the same time, is another example.

If you intend to become a good PL Omaha H-L player though, consider the following: this game is most probably not going to be extremely popular in the near or distant future. Online cardrooms will keep it alive because they have an endless supply of fish keeping it interesting for sharps, however, when there are no fish playing, the game pretty much kills itself.

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