Explanation of Inside Straight Draw

An inside straight draw also known as a “gutshot” is a straight draw where the card required to complete our straight appears in the middle of the structure. For example, we hold 6, 7, 9, and T, and require the Eight in order to complete our straight. We are hence relying on one specific card to come, which is generally unlikely. 

Inside straight draws are hence less value than “open ended straight draws’. An open ended straight draw is where the cards required to complete our straight appear on the outside of our structure. For example, we hold 6, 7, 8 and 9. In this instance, any Ten or Five will complete our straight. We are hence roughly twice as likely to complete an open ended straight draw as opposed to an inside straight draw or gutshot. 

Board: KT5
Hand: AJ

Here is an example of an inside straight draw in Hold’em. Only the Queen will complete the straight.

Example of Inside Straight Draw used in a sentence -> We called the preflop 3bet and flopped an inside straight draw.

How to Use Inside Straight Draw as Part of Your Poker Strategy

The correct strategy for playing gutshots is naturally linked to the exact variant of poker we are playing. Here are some general strategic principles however -

1. Is our gutshot to the nuts? Gutshots to the nuts are always stronger than non-nut gutshots. Non-nut gutshots run the risk of being dominated when they complete.

2. If we play our gutshot aggressively, can we expect to generate a decent amount of fold-equity? Even draws with very few outs like to play aggressively if they can generate folds. 

3. In Hold’em, is our gutshot formulated using one or both of our hole-cards? Two-card gutshots are always better than one-card gutshots. 

4. In Omaha, does our gutshot have additional draws to go with it? Naked gutshots in Omaha are garbage, even if they are drawing to the nuts.

5. In Draw and Stud variants, what is the absolute strength of our gutshot if it hits? The higher the top card of the straight, the more valuable the straight draw.

What is the Difference Between an Inside Straight Draw and a Gutshot?

There is no difference. Inside straight draw is simply another name for gutshot. The term gutshot is used far more commonly than inside straight draw however. An inside straight draw has four outs and is different from the ‘outside’ straight draw which has eight outs. 

How Often Does an Inside Straight Draw Hit by the Turn in Poker?

Going from flop to turn in Hold’em an inside straight draw will hit around 8.5% of the time or one in 11.8%. It hits slightly more often going from turn to river because there will now be one less card in the deck that is not an out. 

How Often Does an Inside Straight Draw Hit by the River in Poker?

Going from the turn to river in Hold’em an inside straight will hit around 8.7% of the time or one in 11.5. Going from the flop to river in Hold’em an inside straight draw will hit around 16.5% of the time or one in 6.1.

What is the Correct Strategy for an Inside Straight Draw in Poker?

Inside straight draws (or gutshots) often make good hands for semi bluffing so they are great candidates for playing aggressively, especially if their outs are to the nuts. Facing aggression with gutshots is tougher since they don’t hit very often. While a good gutshot should rarely fold the flop it frequently has to give up on the turn if not getting the right price. 

How Many Outs Does an Inside Straight Draw Have in Poker?

An inside straight draw is most commonly known as a gutshot and has four outs. It’s close relative the outside straight draw is more commonly known as the open ended straight draw and has eight outs.

See Also 

Gutshot, Open-ended Straight Draw, Draw, Equity, Hold’em, Omaha, Stud, Fold

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