What is an Inside Straight Flush?
The inside refers to a card missing from within the set, rather than a card which could complete the straight from either end – this would be known as an ‘outside straight flush‘.
Inside Straight Flush Explained
In poker, a ‘straight‘ means a set of cards (usually five in total) which run in consecutive order with no gaps – for example, 4-5-6-7-8.
A ‘flush‘ is a set of cards which all have the same suit in common, such as 2♣-4♣-7♣-J♣-K♣.
Therefore, a ‘straight flush’ is a hand of cards which run in numerical order, and which also share a suit – for example, 3♥-4♥-5♥-6♥-7♥. A straight flush is one of the best poker hands a player can hold; the highest straight flush, a suited 10-J-Q-K-A set, is usually unbeatable.
If a player refers to an ‘inside straight flush’, they mean they hold a hand with most of the parts of a straight flush – but with one or more parts missing from the middle. The hand 3-4-6-7 is an inside straight hand – the five is needed to complete the straight.
If all the cards have the same suit, for example spades, then only the 5♠ will complete this ‘inside straight flush’. The term is used to differentiate from an ‘outside straight flush’ – the same situation, but where the card required is missing from either end of the set. In the hand 4♦-5♦-6♦-7♦, the player could complete a straight flush with two cards – the 3 or the 8 of diamonds. An inside straight flush is harder to complete, as there are less ‘outs‘ or chances to find a winning card.