World Series of Poker Odds Stacked Against Women at Main Event

OddsShark.com@@OddsSharkFeatured ColumnistMay 17, 2013

It's only a 10-to-1 long shot, which is strange for an event that only happened once in the history of the World Series of Poker.

Back in 1995, Barbara Enright became the first woman to make the final table of the Main Event of the unofficial world championship of poker. No woman has done it since, but that doesn't stop oddsmakers from posting odds on it.

The 2013 edition of the great Las Vegas poker event starts May 29 and runs to July 8, when the Main Event wraps up. In all, 62 events will take place at the Rio with millions to be won.

One sportsbook posted 10-1 odds on a woman surviving the grueling three-day Texas holdem marathon.

Those are fairly steep odds considering that, just recently, two women narrowly missed earning a seat at the final table, where all nine players are guaranteed a $1 million payout.

In 2012, France's Gaelle Baumann and Norway's Elisabeth Hille finished 10th and 11th overall and were the final two cuts before the televised portion of the Main Event.

New Jersey's Greg Merson went on to win in 2012, pocketing nearly $9 million for his trouble. He outlasted 6,597 other hopefuls.

Merson was the oldest winner since 40-year-old Jerry Yang won it back in 2007. Merson defeated favored Jesse Sylvia in "heads-up" play, even though Sylvia had reached the final table with the biggest chip stack

"The WSOP has become a young man's game because these marathon sessions can last for days," said Dave Harrison, a poker analyst at OddsShark.com.

Young Americans have won the event in recent years, making the odds on the eventual winner's nationality a predictable line (USA is favored at minus-150).

The over/under on the age of the 2013 winner was set at 27 by most of the sportsbooks that cater to WSOP events.

The odds on the winning hand favored two pair or better at minus-140. Last year, Merson entered the final hand with a king of diamonds and five of diamonds.

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