Friday night is finally here and you’ve had a rubbish week at work, but the weekend has arrived. You stand up from behind your desk, wish your work colleagues a ‘Good Weekend’ and head home. After a shower and a change of clothes, you head to the pizza shop to pick up a couple of large ones with ‘the lot’ on the top, pick up some beers and head round to Jimmy’s. The last Friday of each month is poker night and all of your friends will be there. First it’s drinks and a chat over pizza and then the real fun starts.

There’s nothing better than getting together with a bunch of friends and family to play poker at home. The times are almost gone when the family sits around the table to play Trivial Pursuit and more and more people are being drawn into less social interests.

Jimmy has his own poker table and at the end of every month his friends and family get together to play Poker, catch up with each other and have a great time.


The relaxed environment and being in familiar surroundings takes the pressure off. Being with friends means that if you get something wrong or mess up, then nobody will mind.

These types of games are good to familiarise yourself with the game concepts and have fun in the process. The only problem is that because of this relaxed environment and the fact that everybody can get away with messing around a bit, some people may not take it seriously enough to allow good game play and once the alcohol gets flowing, there will be no hope.


Holiday periods such as Easter, Christmas and New Year are a great way of getting people together to play poker.

In actual fact, the writing of this book was inspired by wanting to arrange a home poker match between family and friends, but nobody was familiar with playing poker. By writing down the basics and handing it out among friends in ample time, I would ensure that our Christmas get together would go ahead.

I have even witnessed poker being played after a funeral where people could get together and share their thoughts, views and sorrows over a game or two.


One of the best ways, in my opinion, is to play poker online. The variety of games and the large scale of buy-in amounts now makes it affordable for everyone. Most of the time it’s cheaper to stay at home and play poker all evening than it is to go out for the night on the tiles.

For the beginner, playing poker online can be a daunting concept, but it’s an excellent place to cement your understanding and increase both your skill and knowledge. It is very straight forward and you don’t even have to play, as you can sit and watch others as they battle it out at the table. You can even play for free using ‘play money’ that you are given when you sign-up for your poker account.


Wouldn’t you like to be known as the ‘Poker Player’ of your family or social circle and the one that always seems to win?

Playing once a month or so round friends is a great way to catch up, but your newly acquired skills will not improve very quickly. In order to hone your skills and learn to play poker like a pro, you will need more practice.

In my world the way to become excellent at any new skill is three-fold:

  1. 1)  Learn the basics & learn the rules.
  2. 2)  Practice your skills by using those skills in a non- pressured environment until you reach a stage where you don’t have to think too much about what you are doing and you are familiar with the strategies.
  3. 3)  Finally, go up against people that are better that you. You will not improve by going up against people less skilled or who are at the same level as you are.

As far as the first one goes, this book will give you the basics. Once you understand these, set yourself up an account with an online casino or poker room and play some of the low-level Sit & Go tournaments, with the betting structure as low as $0.015-$0.020 you can play literally for pocket-change. There is no reason not too.

As your experience and skill increases, your online account will get bigger and you can enter the higher-priced games.

You can then go to your friends next poker night and clean up!


Getting started is easy and straight-forward. In order to play Texas Hold ’em online, you will first need to download and install the casino or poker room’s software on your computer. This software is generally supplied free of charge and full instructions will be given as to how to install.

Once installed, you can then set up an account and play. Each casino will have their own procedure that needs to be followed.


A lot of casino’s these days offer to match your initial account deposit up to a certain amount. This can be great for getting started and if you have say $200 to credit your account with, then they will match this giving you a total of $400 to play with.

This is generally only for your first deposit though, so don’t go expecting this for every subsequent deposit you make.

A whole host of other offers are available for new and existing players. These are constantly changing, so keep on the lookout for new offers.


Regular competitions are held online, giving you the chance to win a prize fund, a holiday or even a place at the final table in the next world event. Get practising as see if you can become one of the next world poker champions.


There are now what seems like hundreds and thousands of online poker rooms and casinos and trying to choose a good one can be daunting when you first start to look at what’s out there.

We have put together a small list of places where you can get started. It is important that you choose one that suits you and that you can get along with and the way to find this out is to download and install each poker room’s software and try it out. You don’t need any money to sign-up and you will be given some “play money” so that you can have a dabble and see if it’s the right software for you.

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