Ruling! #8 – An Abandoned Pot

By Kelli Mix | August 17, 2009

The Scenario

While playing in a poker tournament, three players were all-in. Player A held 5c6c, Player B held jsjd, and Player C held adkc. The flop came acksjh, at which point Player A said, “I can’t win,” and left the tournament table. The turn came the 2c and the river the 9c – leaving Player A with the winning hand. Who should get the pot?


Kelli’s Ruling

This is considered an abandoned pot, but since cards speak, Player A does still win the pot. You should not award the pot to a losing hand, even if the winner has walked off. The chips should be pushed to his vacant seat and blinded off in the same fashion as if the player left unexpectedly for an emergency. If Player A returns, he can actually continue playing his stack. If this situation occurred in a live action game, the floorperson should rack and remove the chips from the table and follow the state’s gaming commission rules for abandoned winnings.

By Kelli Mix

Kelli is the author of the 'Game Day Poker Almanac - Official Rules of Poker'. She lives in Carrollton, Georgia, where she is the state director for the Poker Players Alliance.


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