Poker Is For Ladies, Too! Who Is the Best Female Poker Player, Though?

Hey there, fellow gamblers! Welcome to our blog! This post is especially for the ladies out there who love to gamble. We wanted to add something a little different to our website – we did some research and here you have it – we'll be talking about famous female poker players. We've gathered information about each one of them and we've prepared a top 5 chart to share which lady is the best of the best. There might be another surprise somewhere in the text below… Keep on reading!
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Poker and Lipstick – When Did It All Start?

It’s not something new and phenomenal that women play poker. For quite a long time this was considered a ‘man’s game’ only, but things started to change in the 1970s. This is the year when the World Series of Poker begins and when, slowly but surely, in 1977, the first ladies’ event was held, where there was a $100 Seven cards stud – won by Jackie McDaniels. From the 1980s forward, there were a lot of great ladies who have left their mark in poker history, like Vera Richmond and Barbara Enright. In 2005, pub poker was legalised in the UK, giving more female players to join in on the fun of the game. In 2007 was the first Women’s World Open, which was also aired on the telly in the UK. Nowadays, we can watch and support female players from all over the world on TV, live or on our mobile devices. So, we’ve had our short history lesson in this paragraph, now let’s move on to the top chart!

Top 5 Female Poker Players

Let’s start from last place and move on to the top. We will do our best to give you a little bit more information about each female player – a place of birth, big winnings and some interesting facts. Ready? Go!

5. Liv Boeree – $3,852,996

Olivia "Liv" Boeree Olivia ‘Liv’ Boeree is a 34-year-old poker player from Kent, who has two very prestige poker titles – she is a champion in both World Series of Poker and the 2010 European Poker Tour. This incredible woman is a poker player and an on-screen reporter at the WSOP and EPT and has had big winnings, equal to a total of over $3.57 million. She may be the youngest player on the list, but she has definitely earned her reputation and the title ‘Iron Maiden’! She has had a lot of winnings in her career so far, the biggest of which include her EPT Sanremo victory in 2010 and her performances at the World Series of Poker Main Events in Las Vegas and Cannes. Her latest big success is her 10th place at the 2017 PokerStars Festival in London, which makes her one of the best young poker players of all time. What an ambitious gal!

4. Vanessa Rousso – $3,554,327

Vanessa Rousso Vanessa Ashley Rousso is an American 36-year-old professional poker player and a well-known television personality. This lovely lady has been a poker player since she was a little girl. However, Rousso has a pretty colourful professional background, especially in high-school, where she was an active swimmer and softball player. She was also on the Dean’s list and she became an absolute pro in chess and Rubik’s Cube in college. Vanessa has attended and has won a lot of poker tournaments with winnings that total in more than $3million. She has also received the official status of Team PokerStars Pro, as PokerStars also sponsored her until 2015. According to other resources, Rousso has stopped playing professionally in 2013. However, as we mentioned above, this seems to be false news. Is she still playing, though? Whatever the case, she is still considered one of the top poker players of the decade!

3. Annie Duke – $4,270,549

Annie Duke Anne LaBarr Duke is an American professional poker player from LA. Born and raised in Concord, New Hampshire, Anne studied phycology and was awarded a National Science Foundation fellowship for her graduate studies. She was then preparing a dissertation on ‘syntactic bootstrapping’, however, a year before defending it, she left school. At the age of 22, she started playing Texas Hold’em and quickly dived into the game. With the help and encouragement of her brother, Anne started preparing to become a professional poker player. She entered tournaments at the 1994 WSOP in Las Vegas, where she won a total of $70,000. In 2004, she has taken down the WSOP Tournament of Champions for $2m and has even played against her brother, Howard Lederer. Nowadays, it is said that she stays away from live tournaments, yet, she still is amongst the best female poker players everyone is talking about.

2. Kathy Liebert – $6,236,222

Kathy Liebert Kathleen H. Liebert is number two in our chart. She is a 51-year-old professional poker player, also known as ‘PokerKat’. She has been a WSOP regular for nearly two decades, has made six World Poker Tour final tables and has a whole lot to brag about when it comes to her poker career. Her biggest accomplishments include her great game in 2002 at the Party Poker Cruise and her huge success at the WPT Championship Event in Atlantic city. Another great victory was hers in March 2009, where she won $550,000 at the WPT in San Jose. Liebert has also finished #19 in the top 50 of the 2017 WSOP, making her lifetime winnings equal a little more than $6million! She may not be the richest female poker player on the chart, but she sure is a true veteran in the industry and a role model for young female gamblers.

1. Vanessa Selbst – $11,851,382

Vanessa Selbst - The Female High Stakes Poker Player Vanessa K. Selbst is the ultimate female poker champion known in the gambling world! She is the proud owner of three World Series of Poker bracelets and has over $11million in earnings. V. Selbst, originally from Brooklyn, attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for a year, transferred and graduated at the Yale Law School and was head of the Yale Queer-Straight Alliance. Moving back to her poker career, this fierce woman has won main events at different tournaments and has built a name for herself for the past 12 years. According to our resources, Selbst officially stepped away from the professional scene in January 2018. Many speculated what was the exact reason and later on in July, she spoke out in an interview, where she also talked about the Twitter debate, she was involved in. From what we could understand, the professional player was just tired of being in the spotlight and has decided to end her career and opt for a simpler life with her partner.

For your convenience, we’ve prepared a table with the main information about these amazing female players:

Name First Game Career Nickname
Vanessa Selbst 2006 World Series, Las Vegas 2006-2018 V. Selbst
Kathy Liebert 2002 Party Poker Million Event 2002 – 2017/18 PokerKat
Annie Duke 1994 World Series of Poker 1994 – 2017/18 The Duchess of Poker
Vanessa Rousso 2005 No-Limit Hold’em Summer Series 2005 – Present Pokerness
Liv Boeree 2005 Ultimatepoker.com Showdown 2005 – Present Iron Maiden

We’ve previously mentioned a few names from the past that have left their mark in gambling history. We think that it’s more than fair to pay a tribute to the very first female poker player that has changed the way people gamble…by letting the gals get rolling. Want to learn more about this iconic figure? Here we go!

The Master of Poker – Barbara Enright

Okay, so there is no evidence that there were medieval female players slaying the game, but this diva is definitely a legend in the field. We’re talking about Barbara Enright – an American pro poker player, that has had passion for poker since she was a child. Can you imagine a 4-year-old little girl, playing a five-card draw against her older brother? Yup, that’s her!

Barbara Enright - The Legend Barbara started playing in card rooms in 1976, while she was also working a few jobs to support her family. But it turned out that she felt better when playing poker, on top of that, she also earned more money than any of her full-time jobs. And, this is where (why) her career started building up slowly and gradually.

This wonderful lady has had a lot of success while building her career, but there is one accomplishment that stands out and gives her the title of the First Female Poker Player. Enright was the only woman that made a WSOP Main Event Final table in 1995! She is also the first woman who has won 3 WSOP bracelets.

Learned something new about all these awesome ladies? We’ve also mentioned the nicknames of some of them, but we found some more, which are very interesting ones of other poker ladies that will grab your attention. Let’s see!

Interesting Female Players’ Nicknames

We’ve tried our best to gather the most bizarre ones plus a short explanation on why they’re called that way. Check them out!

  1. Annie Duke, known as ‘The Duchess of Poker’ – in an interview, Annie shared that someone else gave her that nickname and, if it was up to her, she would just be Annie Duke. Duke is the last name of her ex-husband, however, she decided to keep it, as it seemed to be a cool name for a poker player.
  2. Annete Oberstad, known as ‘The Huntress’ – a very unique and a little bit of a kinky nickname that belongs to this young female poker player. Some speculate that this nickname has been given to her by producers or someone else, but, sadly, we couldn’t find anything specific about it.
  3. Sandra Naujoks, known as ‘Black Mamba’ – now that’s a name! As far as we know, this nickname acts as a tribute to her pet snake.
  4. Victoria Coren, known as ‘Teacup’ – in an interview, she shares that this is her nickname because she drinks a lot of tea during poker. The name was chosen by the audience via a tv competition when she needed a nickname for an upcoming tournament.

Poker Ladies Rule!

That’s the end of our blog post. Hope you’ve enjoyed it and that you’ve learned something new about the best female poker players. Let us know on our social media what would you like our next blog post to be about. Famous poker dogs, maybe? Stay tuned. Thank you so much for stopping by our blog and until next time!

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