As things stand about 10 per cent of poker players are women. One in ten of those avatars you see when you log into PokerStars are women. One person in ten at an event like the EPT is a woman. One in ten winners is a woman. Only, they’re not really.
Well they are, at least in terms of numbers. But when it comes to live events such as the EPT the numbers run a lot lower. Of the EPT Prague Main Event field just one per cent are women, of those only Ana Marquez remains in the last 61. Looking back through nearly ten seasons of results just three champions, Vicky Coren, Sandra Naujoks and Liv Boeree, weren’t men.
But there is one aspect of the game which today at least is dominated by “the fairer sex”, the tournament staff, led as they are by tournament director Theresa Nousiainen. Things have never run smoother.
Three events were ongoing at noon today–the Main Event, a pot-limit Omaha event and a hold’em contest, all of which are being directed by women. Presumably the men arrive for shifts later today, at which point swearing, fist fights and general bad behaviour will resume.
Coincidentally the figure of one per cent is also about the same as the number of players routinely referred to as being Harry Potter look-a-likes. If you’re male, in your early twenties, don’t need to shave yet and wear glasses, you’re bound to be compared with the boy wizard and pictured, photo-shopped, with a broom stick.
This time round though I think we have a player who leaves the others looking quite ordinary (David Vamplew you’re off the hook). Vit Blachut is that player, but it’s the way he plays that should be drawing more attention that to how he looks.
For one thing he has, without drama, worked his way through three days of fierce competition (without the use of sorcery) to a stack of 826,000 today. For another, he has the most unusual way of stacking chips–basically being that he doesn’t. They’re simply piled high in the poker equivalent of a teenager’s bedroom, with chips all over the place, stacked in 17s and 18s or not at all.
Stephen Bartley is a PokerStars Blog reporter.