6 decks, S17, DAS, No Surrender, Peek | ||||||||||

Estimated casino edge for these rules: 0.44 % | ||||||||||

Dealer Upcard | ||||||||||

Your Hand |
2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | A |

A,7 | S | D | D | D | D | S | S | H | H | H |

We now arrive at the most controversial hand in blackjack, the A-7. Here’s the problem. Basic strategy, which is based on billions of hands of computer simulations, shows us the right way to play A-7. And yet you will find yourself surrounded 99% of the time by loser players who do not play A-7 correctly. If you do what losers do, you will get the financial results that losers get. Ignore the masses, grit your teeth, and win more by using Basic Strategy. To help convince you of the proper play, here are the long-run win/loss rates on total wagers placed:

Stand A-7 vs dealer 2. Standing wins 12%, doubling wins slightly less, hitting wins 6%.

Double A-7 vs dealer 3. Doubling wins 18%, standing wins 15%, hitting wins 9%

Double A-7 vs dealer 4. Doubling wins 25%, standing wins 18%, hitting wins 12%

Double A-7 vs dealer 5. Doubling wins 30%, standing wins 20%, hitting wins 15%

Double A-7 vs dealer 6. Doubling wins 38%, standing wins 28%, hitting wins 24%

Stand A-7 vs dealer 7. Standing wins 40%, doubling wins 22%, hitting wins 17%

Stand A-7 vs dealer 8. Standing wins 11%, hitting wins 4%, doubling loses 3%

Hit A-7 vs dealer 9. Hitting loses 10%, standing loses 18%, doubling loses 29%

Hit A-7 vs dealer 10. Hitting loses 14%, standing loses 18%, doubling loses 24%

Hit A-7 vs dealer A. Hitting loses 9%, standing loses 10%, doubling loses 36%

Common Loser Mistakes:

- Failing to hit A-7 vs dealer 9, 10, A. The Losers think “I got eighteen…that’s pretty good.” The Advantage Player thinks “I got eight or eighteen against a strong dealer upcard. It’s a loser hand in the long run, but I should hit this and hope to improve my hand and lose less”. Sometimes she pulls a miracle A, 2, or 3, or a multi-card 19, 20, or 21 making herself look like a magician.

- Failing to double down A-7 vs dealer 3 to 6. The losers think “if I double, I might wreck this great eighteen end up with a stiff total that I cannot improve”. The Advantage Player thinks “I got a chance to make more money. Let’s double down.”

Did You Know..?

- The double down decisions for A-7 and A-6 are identical = double against dealer’s 3 through 6.

- Advantage Players identify one another by how they play A-7. Actually, Casinos also identify APs that way. Some dealers will actually shout out “doubling soft eighteen” to the pit to identify you as an AP. I consider it a badge of honour, but that’s just me…I don’t care what the pit thinks as long as I keep getting the money.

- There is an Advanced Strategy that calls for doubling down A-7 vs Dealer 2. If you see someone do it, she might be a strong AP winning a lot from casinos.