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Does 3 of a Kind Beat 2 Pair? [Poker Hand Rankings]

Muhammad Hasnain


Muhammad Hasnain

Post Date

Dec 25, 2021

Does 3 of a Kind Beat 2 Pair


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Does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair? Simple answer – yes a three of a kind has a higher rank than 2 pairs, hence, it can beat 2 pairs. Poker hand rankings are not that hard to understand. However, if you are a beginner, it might take some time for you to get used to the ranks. To understand the hand rankings of poker especially Texas Hold’em, you will first need to learn the rules properly.

It is already a great sign that you are searching about how Poker works. This shows how serious you are about the game and it is appreciated. Poker being one of the casino games with the lowest house edge is an easy way to make money. However, it will take some time to master it to the point that you actually start getting decent income out of it.

Poker seems like an extremely complex game if you are not good at the fundamentals of it and missing even a single fundamental detail can cause you problems in getting forth in the game. Although learning the rules take no longer than an hour, it is difficult to memorize each and every one of them. Therefore, we present to you this guide to clear all your doubts about poker hand rankings and rules. Read every detail carefully so you do not make mistakes in the actual game.

How to Play Poker?

does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair

Learn how to play poker

In order to achieve a victory in a Poker game, you need to make the best hand out of the two cards that the dealer gives to you (hole cards) and the five cards open on the table (community cards).  The player who manages to make the best hand consisting of 5 cards will win. We will tell you shortly about the hand rankings and which card is the best. Learning the hand ranking will help you understand why does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair.

In poker, you either make the best hand or choose to bluff your way out. However, the latter option is riskier due to several reasons. After the dealer gives away two initial cards (Hole Cards) to every player on the table, five more cards are dealt face up. The face-up cards are what we call ‘Community cards’. Each player can freely pick those cards and gather up high-ranking cards with their hole cards to build a five-card poker hand.

Even if you are not having a better option you can always bluff your way out to make your opponent fold earlier. However, it requires quite the poker face to make people believe you. To win that round our top priority is to gather five cards and make the highest-ranking hand.

We can achieve this goal by making different combinations of hole cards and community cards. Otherwise, we can simply choose the cards served on the table if we can make a better hand with them. However, this scenario would be a little difficult to win as others would also try the same.

In this game, you can play with any strategy but of course, the player with strategy wins. If you think it best to bluff it out, then do it. If you making the best hand from a combination of hole cards and community cards is the way to win then be it. When all of the players except one folds the victory will go to the one remaining player on the stage. Hence, many people bluff their way out to win at poker.

Poker Rules

Let’s start with the poker rules because without knowing them you will not understand a thing that we tell you about the hand rankings and ranges. If you are a complete beginner, it might take as long as an hour to get a hold of the basics of poker in theory. On the other hand, if you already have some experience and are a little familiar with card games, it should not be too difficult for you to grasp the rules.

Poker Rounds

does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair

In pre-flop poker, round, you will check your cards hideously.

The first and most important thing to learn about poker is the betting rounds. Poker has four betting rounds in total. Here we will give you a brief explanation of all four rounds and what you need to do in those rounds.

First Round

The first one is the Preflop round. In the Pre-flop round, the dealer distributes two cards to every player on the table. After the player receives their cards, they check their cards in a way that no one else can see their cards and then choose what to do next. The players are given three choices: to call, bet, or fold. Remember that in Poker, every round is equally important. This means that you can not afford to mess up in any round.

Second Round

The second round is the “flop”. In the flop round after the elimination in the pre-flop round, the dealer opens three cards on the table. Any of the players can use these 5 cards to make the best hand. Players again have three options like check, bet, fold, or raise. The players have to choose wisely.

Third Round

The Turn is the third round of poker games such as Texas Hold’em. In this round, the dealer deals with one more community card what you can also call The Turn.

Fourth Round

In poker, the river round is the fourth and, in most cases, the last one. However, in rare situations, another round, known as the Showdown, is necessary. In the flop, turn, and river round, the dealer will ask you whether you believe your hand is stronger than your opponents. This is where you can do some bluffing and get others to fold. The showdown takes place when more than one player remains after the last betting round. To decide the winner, the remaining players reveal and compare their hands.

Poker Hand Rankings (Highest to Lowest)

In Texas Hold’em poker, the way to win is to make the hand with the highest ranking. Various poker games have different ranks in general. In this guide, we will only learn about the rankings of Texas Hold’em. The royal flush, straight flush, four of a kind, full house, flush, straight, three of a kind, two pair, one pair, and high card are listed in order from top to bottom.

Of course, expert poker knowledge is essential if you wish to play successfully in poker games. You may, however, utilize several poker cheating technologies that are both legal and safe to assist you. You can improve your winning odds by doing so. Enough talking now let’s take a look at what beats what in poker. It is recommended that you learn these rankings along with learning whether 3 of a kind beat 2 pair or not.

1. Royal Flush

does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair

A Clover Royal Flush

Royal Flush is the poker hand of the highest rank in Texas Hold’em. This hand includes five consecutive cards from a ten to an ace. Remember that for a Royal flush to form all 5 cards must be of the same suit. For example, 10, J, Q, K, and Ace of Spades. It is the rarest combination of Poker.

Wondering what are the odds of a Royal Flush? Well, we can calculate that easily. Let’s learn how to do it. The poker pack has a total of 52 cards and a total of 2,598,960 possible combinations of five cards hands. Out of all these combinations, only 4 combinations can form a Royal Flush. Hence, we get the odds of 4/2,598,960 which is equal to 0.000001539.

2. Straight Flush

does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair

Straight Flush

A Straight flush is the hand of five consecutive cards with all cards of the same suit. For example, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10 of Hearts. This hand has the second-highest rank in Texas Hold’em. Just like we found the probability of making a Royal Flush, we can also find out the odds of getting a straight flush easily as well. All we need to know is that in how many ways can we form a Straight Flush.

There are 40 ways to make a Straight Flush hand. Now, to take out the odds we will divide the no. of ways the hand can form by the total no. of combinations of hands. Let us do the calculations for you: 40/2,598,960 = 0.00001539. Even as a beginner you can see that the probability of forming these two hands is very low. This is also one of the reasons that a 3 of a Kind can beat 2 Pair. We will get to that shortly.

3. Four of a Kind

does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair

4 of a kind

Thirdly, we have the Four of a Kind. This is a bit different from the above as this hand does not require the cards to be in a sequence or be consecutive. To form a Four of a Kind hand all you need is 4 cards of the same rank (number). In other words, it needs the same number card from all different suits. For example, 8 of hearts, 8 of clubs, 8 of spades, 8 of diamonds, and any other random card. The main thing that matters is that there must be any four cards of the same rank.

You can make a Four of a Kind from a 52 cards deck in 624 ways. The odds of getting the hand in a game is 624/2,598,960 = 0.000,240,1. This too has a low possibility of forming.

4. Full House

does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair

Full House

A Full House has a higher possibility of forming than the top 3 ranking cards. You can make a Full House by gathering any three cards of the same rank together with any two cards of the same rank, making a total of 5 cards. The suits do not matter much. However, a Full House can get a bit complex. If more than one player has the same hand (a full house), the player having the three same cards with the highest number will win. Note that the three same number has to be high.

For example, assume that a player has a hand consisting of 9, 9, 9, 5, and 5. On the other side, another player is having 5, 5, 5, 10, and 10. In such a case, the first player who has the three same cards of higher rank will win. You can see that the pair does not really have much influence on the game and getting high numbers may not get you a win. However, there are some exceptional cases that we will discuss in detail in another guide. Here we are learning all this to understand does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair.

The total number of ways in which a player can make a Full House is 3,744. Now, taking out the probability we can easily get the odds of forming a Full House. 3,744 divided by 2,598,960 is equal to 0.00144058. Looking at the number you might the odds are less but when compared to the higher ranking hands there is a much better chance of forming this hand than those.

5. Flush

does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair


On the fifth rank, we have a Flush. A Flush consists of any five cards of the same suit. The cards do not have to be consecutive or in any kind of sequence. When several people have a flush on the table, there is an easy way to determine the winner. The player who has the 5 cards with the highest will be the winner of the game. Let us consider a scenario to better understand this.

Imagine that there are two players left on the table. One has a hand consisting of, Ace, Jack, 8, 7, and 5 of spades. On the other side, another player has King, 10, 9, 5, and 3 of hearts. The former player will win as he has cards with a higher rank than the other player.

The probability of making a Flush is 5,108 divided by 2,598,960 which is equal to 0.001,965,4. See how the odds of forming a hand are increasing as their ranks get lower? This is how we determine what beats what in Poker.

6. Straight

does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair


Next, there is a Straight hand which includes any five consecutive cards of any suit. For this poker hand, there is no need for the suit of the cards to be the same. In a straight, Aces can either count as a high card or a low card depending on the player’s choice. For example, you can form a Straight with Ace, King, Queen, Jack, and 10, and also with 5, 4, 3, 2, Ace. Both are Straight hands of poker. However, the first one will be the winner if such two combinations were against each other.

There are 10,200 ways to form a Straight and to find the probability we will divide it by the total number of possible combinations which is 2,598,960. The odd of getting a Straight is 0.003,924,65.

7. 3 of a Kind

does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair

3 of a kind

Finally, we can now know does 3 of a Kind beat 2 Pair. If you have been reading this guide carefully from the start, you can already tell the answer. However, let us first learn what exactly is a 3 of a kind and how is it formed to strengthen our basic concepts of hand ranking in poker. A 3 of a Kind includes 3 cards of the same rank and two random cards. The suit of the cards does not matter in forming a three of a kind. It can be a 3 of spades, 3 of hearts, and 3 of diamonds. It can also be a 3 of diamonds, 3 of clover, and 3 of hearts.

When several people on the table have a 3 of a kind, the winner is determined by the rank of the cards. The player whose 3 same cards are of the highest rank will win the game. Let us take an example and assume a scenario. Imagine you have two deuces on the hand and one on the board. Taking those two deuces from the board you are going to have 3 of a kind.

The possibility of forming a three of a kind is not too less. The number of ways a 3 of a kind can form is 54,912. Hence, we can find the odds by dividing this number by the total combinations of hands in Poker. 54912 divided by 2598960 is equal to 0.021,128,45. There is a 2% chance of getting a 3 of a kind.

8. Two Pair

does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair

Two Pair

After three of a kind, we have two pairs. You can see that the two pair’s rank is below 3 of a kind. This means that a 3 of a kind does beat 2 pair. For Two Pair, we need any two cards of similar ranks and alongside two other cards of a similar rank with one random card. Just like the name suggests there have to be two pairs of cards to form this hand.

Let us consider a scenario in which two players having Two Pairs of poker hands are competing. One player has two aces and two fives with a complete hand and the opposite player has a pair of tens and two threes. The player with two pairs of Aces will still win because Aces have a higher rank than tens. The probability of getting a two pair is 123,552 divided by 2598960, which is equal to 0,047,539,02. Two pair has a 4% chance of forming.

9. One Pair

does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair

One Pair

With two pairs over, we have one pair. We can make this hand by having two cards of the same rank. For example, assume you have 2 cards one of Ace and one is a ten. The community cards are 5, 6, 4, 3, and Ace. You can take the ace to form a pair of Aces. Remember that no matter how high the ranks of the cards you have, if the rank of the hand is lower than the other, you will lose. On the other side, if the other player also has a pair, you can determine the player with the card ranking. For this scenario, having a pair of aces in your hand while the opponent holds pair of fives, will get you a win. You have an advantage over your opponent because you have pair of aces.

The probability of forming One Pair in Texas Hold’em poker is 0,422.569.03. You can find this by using the same formula as before. The number of ways a One Pair hand can form is 1,098,240.

10. High Card

Lastly, on the lowest rank, we have a High Card. This hand is formed when no other hand can be formed. The cards distributed to you are completely random in this case. When several people on the table have a high card, the dealer declares the winner by checking whose cards have a higher rank. let’s, for example, take a hand with 4 random number cards and Ace, and another hand with 4 random number cards and a King. The hand with the Ace will still win.

Can 3 of a Kind Beat Two Pair?

does 3 of a kind beat 2 pair

Bet chips on a poker table

Different kinds of poker have different hand rankings. In some types of poker 3 of a kind may beat two pair, but in some, it can not. Hence, it is hard to determine which poker you are playing. However, we can give you the answer for the most commonly played poker type, Texas Hold’em. The answer to does 3 of a Kind beat 2 Pair depends on the hand rankings. Since 3 of a Kind has a higher rank than 2 Pair, it can beat two pairs. Even if the pair is of Aces and three of kind is of 3 tens.

Explaining as if no one has any pair the player who has the highest card wins the match next hand is one pair where you have two same ranking cards. If players have the same hand as one pair then the pair with a higher card ranking wins. Some beginners often do mistakes thinking two pair is better than three of a kind, which is not true at all. Three of a kind always beats two pairs. Hence, having three cards of the same rank versus a two pair will get that victory for you.


Hopefully, now you know everything you need to know about Poker’s hand rankings and what beats what in poker. Do not be disheartened if you can not get the best hand as Poker is all about skills and an itsy bit of luck. All you need to do is learn how to play a bad hand and bluff your way out to win. If you think your luck is getting so bad that you are not even able to focus on honing your skills, you can always learn how to get rid of bad luck in gambling!

Poker takes a relatively long time to learn than other cards games, BUT it is completely worth it. Poker is the only casino game with the lowest house edge ever. Keep practicing and stay positive. You will get rich in no time!


What Beats a Straight in Poker?

In Texas Hold’em, there is a total of 10 ranks of hands that can be formed. The Straight comes in 6th place. The ranking is as follows:

  1. Royal Flush
  2. Straight Flush
  3. Four of a Kind
  4. Full House
  5. Flush
  6. Straight
  7. 3 of a Kind
  8. Two Pair
  9. One Pair
  10. High Card

You can see that a Royal Flush, Straight Flush, Four of a Kind, Full House, and a Flush can beat a Straight. To know what these hands are and how they are formed, read the “Poker Hand Ranking” section of the guide.

Does a three of a kind, Jacks, beat a pair of Aces?

Yes, according to the hand ranking in Poker. No matter how high the rank of a card is, if the rank of your hand is lower than the other hand, you will lose the game. The hand ranking matters more than card ranking. Since three of a kind has a higher rank than a pair of Aces, the hand with 3 of a kind will win. Card ranking only matters when two players have the same hand or when everyone on the table has a high card hand.

Which Hand Beats All Other Hands in Poker?

The best hand in poker which defeats all other hands is the Royal Flush. This hand is of the highest rank in many types of poker. The Royal Flush consists of an Ace, King, Queen, Jack, and 10 consecutively of the same suit. If it is of a different suit then it will be a Straight hand instead of a Royal Flush. There are only 4 ways of forming a Royal Flush and the odds of forming it is 0.000001539.

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