The Impact of Edge Sorting

The casino gambling world is an endless battle between the house and the players. On one hand the house (which always has an edge) wants to keep winning and walking away with players stake and on the other hand, players are constantly looking for ways to beat the house.

In the casino gambling game of Blackjack there are some Blackjack strategy and live Blackjack playing techniques (legal and illegal) that can be mastered by players over time. One of such illegal techniques that can be placed in the same category as card counting is “Edge Sorting”.


Though this casino playing technique has been in use by players of card games like live Blackjack and Baccarat for a very long time now, many modern casinos had never even heard about it.

It was Crockfords Club in London that raised the alarm when the American prolific high stakes gambler, Phil Ivey was caught using the technique which won him £7.6 million from a £1 million stake. The casino gave him his stake but refused to release his winnings as a result of illegal Blackjack strategy used. 

Edge Sorting: An Illegal Blackjack Strategy And Live Blackjack Technique

Whether you are playing Live Blackjack online or at a casino, the Blackjack rules are basically one and the same. Your objective as a player is to beat the house by having a hand comprising of card values adding up to “21” which is a “Blackjack”. With a Blackjack, you will beat the dealer. However, this is not the only way to beat the house, once your hand is better than that of the dealer and your card values are not more than “21”, you will be declared a winner.

The rules may be clear to both online Blackjack and casino Blackjack players, but that doesn’t stop players trying out different Blackjack strategy and live Blackjack techniques to beat the house. Edge Sorting is one illegal way that players try to beat the house.

How does Edge Sorting work?

As mentioned earlier, Edge Sorting is not a new phenomenon. It is just that it is a very difficult Blackjack strategy and a playing skill to both learn and implement in a real-life setting. This technique is even harder for casinos to spot and players can make use of this illegal technique without the casino being aware until it is too late and even then the casino may still not realise they have been played.

This technique relies on the ability of players to spot those cards that were already rotated. The player looks for very minuscule tell-tale signs to suggest the rotation of cards and then categorise those cards into “good cards” and “bad cards”. This way players would be able to predict with some degree of certainty what type of card would be dealt next and if such a card would be of benefit or not. If the card is of benefit to the player, he/she will then up their stakes to take advantage of this and beat the house in the process.

To use this technique, players would have to have a very acute sense of sight, as they have to look at the back of the playing cards in a deck in order to spot a change in the pattern of the card even if it is a very minute change. It is this change in the pattern of the playing cards that professional edge sorters are looking for in order to turn the house edge completely around and into their own gambling edge.

Even though you might have mastered the delicate art of spotting differences in the patterns on the back of playing cards which gives you an indication that the cards have been rotated. You will still need a dealer who will permit the turning over of playing cards as well as allowing you to maintain the use of a particular deck of cards for consecutive Blackjack games.

Once you have understood which cards are which, you will know when to “hit” or “sit” during a particular round. It is possible for players to have an 18% edge over the house when they play a game of Blackjack. However, as a Blackjack strategy and a Blackjack technique, Edge Sorting is outlawed by casinos, so don’t get caught!


Name: The Impact of Edge Sorting
Author: Helen Stratford
Published Date: 28/06/2019