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Old 05-28-2011, 05:54 AM   #1
CKBWoP
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Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

The sig other and I got into a discussion tonight re: WSOP open event women bracelet winners. This was prompted by a post by Todd Terry in MTTc re: Brandon Adams bet at even money that a women *would* win an open event bracelet this year. (See post here: https://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/sh...&postcount=175)

My initial reaction was that Brandon was likely on the wrong side of the bet given the historical performance of women in WSOP open events, but being the analytical geek that I am, I decided to crunch some numbers. (My hunch was based on a conversation I had with Short-Stacked Shamus last year about women winners in WSOP open events and his analysis thereof, which can be found here: http://hardboiledpoker.blogspot.com/...-and-wsop.html)

The list of WSOP open event women winners in the past 7 years (post-Moneymaker boom) is as follows:

Cyndy Violette (2004, $2,000 Seven-Card Stud/8)
Kathy Liebert (2004, $1,500 Limit HE Shootout)
Annie Duke (2004, $1,500 Omaha/8)
Katja Thater (2007, $1,500 Razz)
Annette Obrestad (2007, WSOP-E Main Event)
Vanessa Selbst (2008, $1,500 PLO)

(Sources: WSOP Media Guide, which can be found here - http://www.wsop.com/2011/2011-WSOP-Media-Guide.pdf and Short-Stacked Shamus' blog)

The total number of open event bracelets in the past 7 years (including WSOP-E) is 342.

The tricky part to the analysis is understanding how women's performance in WSOP open events compares to their % representation in open event fields.

If you make a general assumption about the % participation of women and assume equivalent skill sets, then the number of bracelets that women should have won in that time period based on % participation alone should be as follows:

2% - 6.84
3% - 10.26
4% - 13.68
5% - 17.1

If you use a very conservative estimate of women % participation, then it appears that women have been winning open event bracelets at a rate that is only slightly lower when compared to their % participation - 6 bracelets won when math would indicate 6.84 bracelets won assuming 2% participation.

If you assume a 2% participation rate in this year's WSOP, then women should theoretically win 1.2 bracelets based on the 2011 60-event schedule (55 WSOP and 5 WSOP-E). If you assume a 3% participation rate in this year's WSOP, then women should theoretically win 1.8 bracelets.

Once you factor in a potential increase in women's participation in WSOP events this year (tough to say based on overall increases in women's participation in poker + Black Friday), the increase in major wins in recent history from top female pros such as Vanessa Selbst, Liv Boeree, and Annette Obrestad, and the increase of other rising female stars such as Sandra Naujoks, Victoria Coren, and Xuan Liu, do you think that women have a better chance of winning a bracelet this year although there has been a lack of women open event bracelet winners in the past few years?

The downside, however, is that the smaller field events (high buy-ins or non-NLH events) tend to have a much lower % of woman participants. Based on the various WSOP prop pools discussed these days, people tend to value players who are strong in non-NLH big buy-in events as more likely to assist in final table / bracelet props.

Based on my analysis, I haven't decided if I still believe that Brandon Adams is on the bad side of his prop bet - I think it's very close.
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Old 05-28-2011, 05:58 AM   #2
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

Duh, forgot to add that we have a nice roster of women TWSS-ers who will be crushing the WSOP this year:

hotjenny314
katie75013
JamieAnn
crlana

etc. etc. etc.
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Old 05-28-2011, 06:05 AM   #3
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

It is really close.....
I would def have said pre 4/15 that Brandon would be on the correct side of this bet. The ladies definitely gained momentum in 2009-10, but 4/15 wiped out that progress, and so now I think we are pre-2009, meaning Brandon is on the wrong side of the bet.

I am not a star struck kinda gal, having grown up with NBA superstars as my buddies (When I was a kid, I was a ballgirl for the Houston Rockets during their championship years in the mid 90's), but I will say that Brandon Adams is on my list of cool people I would like to meet
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Old 05-28-2011, 06:20 AM   #4
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

I just had a Twitter exchange with BJ Nemeth re: this thread (http://twitter.com/#!/BJNemeth)

He said that women typically represent somewhere around 3.0 - 3.5% of starting fields, although that % drops off dramatically for $25k+ events. This is based on his coverage of WPTs / WSOPs since 2005.

Despite the major increase in overall WSOP participation in the past few years, BJ says that the 3.0 - 3.5% number has remained relatively constant since 2007.

Assuming a 3% participation number, that means that women should have won 10.26 bracelets in the past 7 years. Based on the 6 bracelet wins by women, that equates to 60% of expectation.

BJ also said that if he had to set a line on a woman winning an open WSOP bracelet, he'd say it was 3-to-2 against (i.e., 1 woman will win every 1.5 years).

Hmmmmm . . .
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Old 05-28-2011, 08:13 AM   #5
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

% chance of winning = 100 - [(1 - X/100])^60]*100

where X is the % of women playing.

This assumes that the field is uniform and it is random chance to win a bracelet. Unless the field is only 1% of women, the odds are over 50% for a woman to win one.

So let's look at the assumption. My opinion is that the average woman player is better than the average male player at the WSOP. There are more men who hold sufficient wealth to afford to play at the WSOP than women. Therefore, the talent distribution curve will be more lopsided towards the weak end for men than women.

I'd say it was a good bet.
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Old 05-28-2011, 11:38 AM   #6
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

The bet did not include WSOPE events FWIW. Thanks for posting this analysis, was going to do it myself but now I don't have to .
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Old 05-28-2011, 01:02 PM   #7
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

Quote:
Originally Posted by Todd Terry View Post
The bet did not include WSOPE events FWIW. Thanks for posting this analysis, was going to do it myself but now I don't have to .
Excluding WSOP-E, there were 326 WSOP open event bracelets awarded in the past 7 years, with 5 women winners.
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Old 05-28-2011, 03:07 PM   #8
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

Quote:
Originally Posted by CKBWoP View Post
Despite the major increase in overall WSOP participation in the past few years, BJ says that the 3.0 - 3.5% number has remained relatively constant since 2007.

Assuming a 3% participation number, that means that women should have won 10.26 bracelets in the past 7 years.
You should probably only use the past 4.
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Old 05-28-2011, 04:41 PM   #9
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

Quote:
Originally Posted by costanza_g View Post
You should probably only use the past 4.
2007 - 2010 stats:

Including WSOP-E: 228 open event bracelets, 3 wins by women (Obrestad, Thater, Selbst)

Excluding WSOP-E: 212 open event bracelets, 2 wins by women (Thater, Selbst)

Last edited by CKBWoP; 05-28-2011 at 04:53 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 05-28-2011, 04:56 PM   #10
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

Quote:
Originally Posted by Todd Terry View Post
The bet did not include WSOPE events FWIW. Thanks for posting this analysis, was going to do it myself but now I don't have to .
I really feel like we have "arrived" now that Todd Terry has posted in TWSS!!!
Please come back often and talk to us!!
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Old 05-28-2011, 06:51 PM   #11
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

I feel like an important factor in any bracelet bet where you are betting on a relative small percentage of the field (country, gender, age group, whatever) that is often overlooked is how many of the players that will play (and are able to perform well) in the big buy-in mixed games events that dosen't get very many runners.
I can't really think of any players besides Vanessa who is likely to put in a lot of volume in the specialist 10k events and the 50k 8-game (how may female players did that get last year?). Not saying she is the only women who can play the mixed game but I doubt someone like Jennifer Harman is gonna put up a lot of volume and I don't think Xuan is gonna play a lot of the 10k+ events.

Also it seems really weird to me to use the phrase "mained relatively constant" when it's based on such an absurdly swingy thing.

Last edited by mement_mori; 05-28-2011 at 06:51 PM. Reason: but wouldnt bet against it!
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Old 05-28-2011, 07:20 PM   #12
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

Quote:
Originally Posted by mement_mori View Post
I feel like an important factor in any bracelet bet where you are betting on a relative small percentage of the field (country, gender, age group, whatever) that is often overlooked is how many of the players that will play (and are able to perform well) in the big buy-in mixed games events that dosen't get very many runners.
Perhaps that point is part of the explanation for this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by CKBWoP View Post
Assuming a 3% participation number, that means that women should have won 10.26 bracelets in the past 7 years. Based on the 6 bracelet wins by women, that equates to 60% of expectation.
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Old 05-28-2011, 07:20 PM   #13
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

Yay! Mickey you finally posted

Last edited by katie75013; 05-28-2011 at 07:22 PM. Reason: pretty sure you're crushing this year, btw
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Old 05-28-2011, 09:04 PM   #14
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

Quote:
Originally Posted by mement_mori View Post
I feel like an important factor in any bracelet bet where you are betting on a relative small percentage of the field (country, gender, age group, whatever) that is often overlooked is how many of the players that will play (and are able to perform well) in the big buy-in mixed games events that dosen't get very many runners.
I agree and mentioned as much at the end of the OP.


Quote:
Originally Posted by mement_mori View Post
Also it seems really weird to me to use the phrase "mained relatively constant" when it's based on such an absurdly swingy thing.
I was quoting BJ Nemeth's language here. Without trying to put words into his mouth, when he's done a physical count of women participants in WPTs/WSOPs, the % representation of women has been in the 3.0 - 3.5% range for most events (except $25k+ buy-ins) since 2007. That indicates to me that although poker has grown overall in the past few years, growth in women's participation in open events is at the same rate as growth in men's participation in open events.

Last edited by CKBWoP; 05-28-2011 at 09:21 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 05-28-2011, 09:20 PM   #15
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

I had a brief Twitter exchange with FatalError that reminded me of some analysis that I did a while back.

FatalError mentioned that "women play (correctly) risk averse deep in tournaments where payjumps are large." If this is correct, than what you should see is that women are ITM on a commensurate % based on participation %, but their results are skewed more toward the lower end of cashes due to more risk averse play.

A post on the PokerStars blog about the 2010 PCA by Rebekah Mercer (link here: http://www.pokerstarsblog.com/2010/w...ng-063753.html) prompted me to write a post about women in poker on my now defunct blog.

Mercer wrote, "The women in this year's [PCA] Main Event cashed at the same rate as men, and they demonstrated that, like men, they have the fortitude to work their way through a huge field to the top."

Mercer's cash rate comment was based on the fact that 4 of the 29 women (13.79%) who entered the PCA Main Event were in the money, while 220 of the 1,500 men (14.67%) were in the money. Amanda Baker was the highest female finisher (38th place for $59,000).

I pointed out that 14.65% of the PCA Main Event field made the money, which means that the women, taken as an independent group, cashed at slightly below standard rates compared to the full field. However, the difference between the women's cash rate and the overall cash rate was close enough that one could infer that the women's rate was relatively on par with the overall field.

However, a sharp distinction arose when you looked at the overall take for the combined 4 women cashers: $141,500 of the $14,831,300 prize pool (0.95%). Therefore, while women constituted 1.90% of the total field, they only accumulated 0.95% of the prize pool while cashing at roughly the same rate as the men / total field.

I understand that the analysis of one event is not a sufficient sample to generate any broad conclusions about the ITM versus ROI differential of men and women based on "risk averse play deep in tournaments," but FatalError's theory may be an additional factor when trying to understand why there is a disparity of bracelets (or even final tables) by women in WSOP open events.
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Old 05-28-2011, 11:31 PM   #16
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

I think Brandon is on the right side. If you look at events surrounding the Ladies event, one week before or after, this year is more favorable than last year was for women cashing. There are more smaller buy-in NLHE tournaments closer to the time of the Ladies event, and the Seniors event this year is not anytime close to the Ladies event. I think that women are probably overrepresented compared to their average representation in smaller buy-in NLHE events and massively underrepresented in the Seniors event (just a hunch). There are probably more than a few women who make a trip to the WSOP for the Ladies event and play maybe another couple of events on their trip (again, just a hunch).

The Ladies event is also closer to the Main Event this year, with two smaller buy-in NLHE events between them. I suspect that women who want to play the Main Event will consider playing these tournaments between the Ladies and Main, since they'll already be in Vegas and in tourney mode anyway.

In short, I think the placement of the Ladies event in the 2011 WSOP schedule will mean that women will make up a larger percentage of the field than in past years in at least a few NLHE events.

Granted, this does not translate to a huge difference in win percentage, but I would have taken Brandon Adams's side even without knowing any of this. I think past performance is not a great indicator, and that the growth rate of the population of skilled female poker players has outstripped that of the general population over the last five years. Consider the women's all time money list top 10 at Hendon Mob. Of those 10, five are under 30. On the general all time money list, zero of the top 10 are under 30.
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Old 05-29-2011, 12:28 AM   #17
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

X = percentage of the total field that are women (3-3.5% according to this thread).
Y = percentage of people who have a reasonable win expectation who are women (?%).

If Y>X, then Brandon likely has the right side of his bet, and visa-versa.

In other words, since such a large percent of WSOP fields (especially in the small NLHE events) is essentially dead money with little-no win expectation, we should ignore those players and focus primarily on professional/capable players with a reasonable win expectation. The vast majority of bracelets - even in small NLHE events - are won by pros.

The calculations in this thread suggest that, based on X, Brandon is perhaps even money or taking slightly the worst of it. So if Y>X, then he probably has the best of it.
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Old 05-29-2011, 12:52 AM   #18
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

Example of the small field effect. Assume everyone equally likely to win.

10 events, 5 with 100 players, 5 with 1000 players

Women make up 3% of the players in the entire 10 event series.

If women are 3% of each event, 26.3% chance a woman wins a bracelet.
If women are 1% of the 5 small events, they are 3.2% of the 5 big events. Which yields a 19.2% chance a woman wins a bracelet, a significant decrease.
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Old 05-29-2011, 01:09 AM   #19
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

Quote:
Originally Posted by PokerFink View Post
X = percentage of the total field that are women (3-3.5% according to this thread).
Y = percentage of people who have a reasonable win expectation who are women (?%).

If Y>X
This equation is not possible. There cannot be more winning women players than there are women players.


edit: oh i think i understand your Y now. It's just poorly worded for my brain. To reword it in math terms: Y = reasonable win expectation women / rwe men
I think that equation is way to simplified given the outliers in poker, especially large field MTTs. Give me an army of lemmings, you can have 3% of the field.

Seems like a lot of math with imperfect assumptions...so who wants to gamble?!?

Last edited by Wizard-50; 05-29-2011 at 01:37 AM. Reason: keeping it consistent i guess
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Old 05-29-2011, 05:01 AM   #20
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

I think FatalError has hit the nail on the head so I will contribute.

The following points are based on my observations. I don't hold them to be set in stone, but I will comment anyhow.

1) In NLHE fields, notably the stuff $1500 and below, I think 90% of women play too passive preflop and on the flop (in my opinion) to put a significant dent into bracelet win figures. The lower-buyin NLHE stuff runs seemingly forever on a 30bb average stack, so aggression preflop and on the flop is pretty important. As FatalError said, playing passive is good on money bubbles, not good for winning bracelets. See Selbst winrate versus Clayton winrate =)

2) In fixed limit events which draw smaller fields, I think a larger % of women play suitably aggressive to impact bracelet win figures, and the size of one's chipstack is slightly less important. I don't have a good enough sample size to ballpark a number, but I think it's a lot bigger than 10% of women.

3) Todd Terry's point should be noted when considering that the WSOP has shifted more towards large-field NLHE events.

In the 2000 WSOP there were 23 open-field events. 3 were NLHE.
In the 2010 WSOP there were 54 open-field events. 24 were NLHE. A few more were some kind of bigbet NL variation.

So we need to be asking ourselves what % of women are entering these NLHE lottery crapshoots versus the smaller field fixed-limit stuff. I think when you answer that question you'll get a better idea as to bracelet expectation.

I want to say results in the last 5 years have been mostly noise but I think Brandon Adams set his line too ambitious and I think it's closer to 1.5:1. I think it's 1:1 if I see more women in the stud/o8/LHE stuff than I previously anticipated.
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Old 05-29-2011, 03:11 PM   #21
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

I'm just glad this bet/conversation isn't involving talk of Matusow streaking down the Strip. (Remember Ty Stewart's prediction last year of three women winning open events?)

Some anecdotal stuff of little statistical value but maybe sorta interesting…

Last year there were 101 entrants in the $10,000 2-7 Draw Championship (Event No. 19), won by David "Bakes" Baker. I'm pretty sure only one woman entered (V. Rousso). There might be a few events on the schedule in which perhaps only a couple or three women will enter at most.

I covered the 2008 WSOP PLO event that V. Selbst won. I remember noting with well over 100 players remaining (when she already had a big chip lead) there were three women left. K. Liebert min-cashed and A. Jaffrey-Shulman also made the money. I've covered a bunch of PLO events, and while I haven't kept track, *very* few women seem to enter them (i.e., a smaller % than the NLHE ones). There are six PLO & PLO/8 events this year, plus one PLO/PLH.

Finally, there have been a bunch of near-misses for women in open-field events each of the last two years. What I remember (there might've been more)…

2009 - Millie Shiu, 3rd (Event #50, $1,500 LHE Shootout)
2009 - Julie Schneider, 3rd (Event #55, $2,500 2-7 Triple Draw)
2010 - J.J. Liu, 3rd (Event #9, $1,500 PLH)
2010 - Jennifer Harman, 3rd (Event #15, $10,000 Stud/8)
2010 - Christine Pietsch, 2nd (Event #21, $1,500 Stud)
2010 - Karina Jett, 4th (Event #27, $1,500 Stud/8)
2010 - Vanessa Rousso, tied-5th (made quarters) (Event #35, $10,000 NLHE Heads-Up)
2010 - Jennifer Harman, 6th (Event #40, $2,500 Razz)
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Old 05-29-2011, 04:52 PM   #22
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

If someone could crunch the numbers, i think the most relevent data would be what % of final tablists were women. This would provide a much larger sample size and shed light on late MTT results of women. My guess is less than 3% of final tablists were women for the same reasons ckbwop and fatalerror discussed, which i agree with. A more in depth statistic, if it is available, would be stack sizes of women compared to men going into the final table. Again it seems like a lot of research and number crunching unless you have a large prop bet in mind.

Last edited by Wizard-50; 05-29-2011 at 04:59 PM.
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Old 05-30-2011, 03:38 AM   #23
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

I've been informed by Nolan Dalla that this year they will be keeping data on women participants in the WSOP. Based on his observation and experience, the overall % of women participants in WSOP events is in the 5% range (factoring in higher % for NLH lower buy-ins and lower % for higher buy-ins and non-NLH).

Using only the past 4 years and excluding WSOP-E, there were 212 total open event bracelets - 2 of which were won by women. 5% of 212 open event bracelets is 10.6 . . .

During my brunch conversation today with a few poker pros, we kicked around the idea that Brandon's bet is effectively a must-win bracelet bet using about 5-6 names. While I don't believe that Brandon's bet is a 5-6 person must-win, it is interesting that all of the female open event bracelet winners in the past 7 years were known poker pros (although one could make the argument that Thater was not that well known prior to her bracelet).

I'm really excited to see what the WSOP data looks like after the series is finished.
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Old 05-30-2011, 05:42 AM   #24
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick Rivers View Post
In short, I think the placement of the Ladies event in the 2011 WSOP schedule will mean that women will make up a larger percentage of the field than in past years in at least a few NLHE events.
Nick -

Interesting point, and sorry I missed your comment earlier. Based on what I saw from last year, there was definitely an increase in women participants in the $1,000 WSOP NLH tournament that started the day after day 1 of the ladies event.

Understanding that a sample size of 1 probably doesn't mean much, I checked the Hendon Mob results for that NLH tournament (http://pokerdb.thehendonmob.com/event.php?a=r&n=40111).

It appears that the highest woman finisher was Laura Cantero in 24th. (Alexis Lebel is male. I checked.) Beth Gains finished 63d. There were a total of 3,289 entrants. I didn't have the energy right now to try to figure out how many other women cashed

Sure, one could argue that the top women players were still in day 2 of the ladies event, but only 134 of the 1,054 entrants made day 2 of the ladies event.

There's a $1,000 WSOP NLH tournament that begins on Sunday, July 3 (2 days after day 1 of the ladies event) and a $1,500 WSOP NLH tournament that begins on Tuesday, July 5. IMO, I think you may see an uptick in women's participation for the $1,000 event (given the holiday weekend), but I'm not sure that will continue to spill over into the $1,500 event. Certainly there are some women who are planning to be in Las Vegas from around June 30 through the end of the Main Event, but I don't think that number is as high as you may think.
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Old 05-30-2011, 12:32 PM   #25
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Re: Analysis of Women WSOP Open Event Bracelet Winners

So far I have $5k action on this booked with Micah Raskin. AK87 will likely also book in the next day or two for $5k or $10k. Two of the guys at the table have not yet posted and it's must post to book.... So I will call them today to confirm, but neither bet stands unless they post before the heads up. Brandon
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