What are ‘Triplets’?
‘Triplets’ is poker slang for any set of three cards with a matching value. This ‘three of a kind’ hand is one of the stronger hands possible in a game of poker; triplets outrank high cards, pairs and two pair hands in straight battles for the pot.
A set of three cards can also be bettered with a fourth, and triple sets are part of the hand needed for a full house.
In poker, players aim to create certain sets of cards in their hand through various actions at the table, including discarding cards in favour of fresh ones or through the revealing of shared community cards which players can use to better their personal cards.
These sets include combinations of matching suits, consecutive numbers and matching numbers, and the different winning combinations are ranked according to standard poker rules.
If a player refers to holding ‘triplets’, they mean that they had three cards of the same value. This is a strong hand which beats pairs and even two pair hands, though it would be bettered with a straight, full house, quads or a flush. However, the triple hand is also a hand with room for improvement: triplets along with a pair makes a full house, which ranks above the standard straight and flush hands. Additionally, a player can find the fourth card to join their triple set, and this makes the four of a kind hand which is better than a full house, but falls just below the consecutive flush hands – the straight flush and the royal flush.
If a player refers to ‘natural triplets’ in a wildcard game, they mean that they held three cards of matching value without using and wildcards to complete the set. If wildcards are in play, triplets plus a wildcard is a four of a kind hand.