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Mobile Poker School: Play Your Position

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At a table of casual players, nobody is going to understand the concept of poker position. However, position is one of the most vital fundamentals when it comes to improving your online poker strategy.

What Does Position Mean?

The simple answer is to explain where you are sitting at the table. But this must be placed in context of where you sit in relation to the dealer button:

  • Small blind: You are half-committed to the hand, so there isn’t much leeway when it comes to your decision-making – weak position.
  • Big blind: It’s your turn to stump up the big blind without any say in the matter. You are forced into the hand no matter what – weak position.
  • Under the gun: You are in the first seat to the left of the big blind. As such, you are the first player to make a betting decision. However, you do so with less information than the players after you – weak position.
  • Early position: At larger tables, these are the first couple of seats after the player who is under the gun. There are players still to decide and can do so based on your actions – weak position.
  • Mid position: There are still one or two players to decide after you, but you can at least make a decision based on a couple of others – stronger position.
  • Late position: As one of the final bettors, you can perform a raise to bluff the others if you feel they have the weak hands. If this succeeds, then you could steal the pot from your late position – strongest position.

How Should I Play the Positions?

In a poker game, you must understand how to play the various positions, so let’s look at the basic online poker strategy that could apply for each:

  • Early Position: You only want to bet with a very strong hand or else risk losing your stake to someone who does. At this point, you could call the big blind if you have a pair of 10s or better.
  • Mid Position: In the mid position, called hijack, you can gain better information at larger tables. Nevertheless, you could foreseeably call with a lower pair or perhaps a couple of un-matching face cards. If you feel the early player is bluffing, then don’t be afraid to raise when you have a pair.
  • Late Position: The cut-off and the button are the names given to the latest positions. After seeing what everyone else has done, you can potentially steal the pot with just an average hand or even nothing. If called, then you can still see the flop cards to try and make a good hand.
  • Blinds: When the action comes all the way back, you have the opportunity to act if the late position players have been tentative. In such an instance, you could raise the action with decent cards or even attempt a bluff.

As you can see, position is a tool that can either weaken or strengthen your strategy. It’s all about understanding where you are in relation to other players.

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How to Play Mobile Poker: Seven-card Stud

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The origins of seven-card stud date back to mid-19th century America, a time when poker was being played in saloons all over the Wild West. From those tense first years, the game boomed in popularity and finally came into the safer confines of the public sphere.

Where to Play Seven-card Stud

Texas hold’em has been the dominant variant for decades now, but seven-card stud led the way during the 1980s. For anyone seeking an alternative challenge, they can learn how to play seven-card stud poker with this guide. Seven-card stud is one of the most popular poker games at these mobile poker sites:

  • 888 Poker: Start with £20 no deposit and then unlock up to £400 in deposit bonus funds by installing 888 Poker to your Android or iOS device.
  • Unibet Poker: You can also download Unibet Poker to Android or iOS. A first deposit can then unlock up to £500 in poker bonus funds.

Seven-card Stud Rules

The game starts by giving players seven cards that are exclusively for their own use. Considering the greater use of cards, seven-card stud limits the table size to eight players. The following headings cover the steps found in a typical hand.

Ante and Bring-in

A hand starts with the paying of an ante, which allows for players to receive two down-cards (facing down) and one up-card (facing up). A forced bet termed as the “bring-in” is then demanded from the player holding the worst up-card (for reference, clubs is the worst suit).

First Betting Stage

After the bring-in, the remaining players will have the option to fold, meet the ante (known as completing), or raise. This stage provides the first round of betting in a hand of seven-card stud.

Second Betting Stage

All remaining players will receive another up-card to give them four in total. At this point, the table is still running at the low betting limit. This time, the player with the strongest up-card will act first, as opposed to being the worst. After the low bet is placed, the remaining players can fold, call, check, or raise as this stage progresses.

Third Betting Stage

The minimum betting limit is now raised to their higher value, which starts to majorly increase the pot value for the players who remain. At this point, the fifth card deal is also an up-card, with the strongest card starting the betting – decisions will then proceed as normal.

Fourth Betting Stage

The betting remains at the high limit and shall start with the best hand or cards showing (four showing and two hidden). At this point, it’s very expensive to remain in the betting without a viable hand.

Fifth Betting Stage

The fifth round of betting will see players receive their seventh card, giving them five showing and two hidden. Betting shall proceed as normal until decisions have dictated who’s left for the final showing of cards. Conveniently, the hands are ranked in exactly the same order as they are in Texas hold’em.

Seven-card stud poker presents a different challenge to Texas hold’em, but it’s one that many players enjoy.

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Qualify for the MPN Poker Tour with RedKings

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This summer, RedKings Poker could be your gateway to qualifying for a real-world tournament. The Microgaming Poker Network (MPN) is emerging as a real player in the online sphere, and it has been pivotal that the organisation has managed to host worldwide tournaments.

MPN Poker Tour Tallinn

The Estonian capital city of Tallinn will play host to the MPN Tour from 19 to 22 August 2017. Attendees will be treated to stunning views of the Baltic Sea from the stunning coast-side location. The Baltic Sea is typically cold, but fortunately the MPN Tour 2017 will be there during the warmer summer months.

This is certain be a jewel of the summer 2017 poker tournaments, what with MPN stumping up a guaranteed €150,000 [£134,000] prize fund. And MPN Tallinn is open to players of all abilities, as RedKings Poker is giving players the chance to arrange passage to the tourney through its site.

Qualify for Tallinn

At RedKings Poker, you can use the lobby to visit “Satellites” and then “Live Events” to start trying to qualify. Some talented players just might be able to transform a €1.10 [£1.00] buy-in satellite into a €1,500 [£1,340] prize package. Quite simply, the purpose of the package is to give players pretty much everything important that they will need to play in Tallinn.

The prize package will come with the crucial €550 [£490] that will be required to have seat at the start of the Tallinn tournament. To help players out, RedKings have also decided to stump up €500 [£445] towards hotel and accommodation costs. Finally, RedKings will also be contributing €300 [£265] worth of funds that can be spent on general costs.

Pay Your Way

RedKings has also opened the MPN Tallinn tournament to all players registered with the site. For anyone interested in the Tallinn package outlined above, it will be possible to purchase one for €1,500 [£1,340].

Alternatively, RedKings will also give players the choice of only making the buy-in for €550 [£490]. This is a great option for anyone who would prefer to upgrade their experience with a more luxurious hotel, or even for the players who live close by to Tallinn.

For reference, MPN Tallinn 2017 will be hosted from 19 to 22 August 2017 at the impressive surroundings of the Olympic Park Casino. This can be found by locating the Hilton Tallinn Park Hotel.

Try RedKings Poker

If you are yet to try RedKings Poker, then why not right now? Basically, there has never been a better or more rewarding time to sign up with RedKings Poker. Not only can you enter MPN Tallinn, but also you can unlock a multi-tiered welcome package that breaks out like so:

  • 200% welcome bonus up to €1,000 [£895]
  • €5 [£4.50] tournament ticket
  • Play for more than €10,000 [£8,950] in new player tournaments
  • Claim up to 30% rakeback in the loyalty programme

After joining RedKings Poker, there will be so many poker tournaments and special events that you will be able to enter daily, weekly, and monthly.

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Mobile Poker Starting Guide: Texas Hold’em

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Texas hold’em is arguably the most popular form of poker in the world. Having soared to widespread adoration two decades ago, this form of poker is still the preference of many players. So, why not try it for yourself with the help of this starting guide?

Where to Play Texas Hold’em

The first helpful piece of advice related to knowing where you should play the game. Well, here are some options with fun mobile poker games and appealing bonuses:

  • 888poker – Build your first bankroll with £20 free. You can then download the mobile poker app before claiming a £400 welcome bonus.
  • mFortune Poker – You can download the poker app before snagging a £5 no deposit bonus and a 100% match offer at mFortune.
  • Unibet Poker – Joining the Unibet Poker gang will entitle you to receive £20 free poker chips along with up to £400 in bonuses.

Texas Hold’em Rules

Poker games are initially simple to learn when you have a concise set of rules. Here are some Texas hold’em rules of you to use a resource:

  • Hole cards: All players will receive two cards. The player marked as big blind will be required to pay the full entry stake, while the small blind plays half. All other players will choose whether or not they wish to proceed. A round of betting follows.
  • The flop: After the previous betting round, three community cards will be drawn. Players use these to create better hands and will then begin another betting round.
  • The Turn: A fourth card, called the turn, will then be drawn before a betting round.
  • The river: The river is the fifth and final card. Players can join a final round of betting before the hands are shown.
  • Hand strength (top to bottom): Royal flush, straight flush, four of a kind, full house, flush, straight, three of a kind, two pairs, pair, and high card.

Texas Hold’em Strategy and Tips

There are many different Texas hold’em tips, but these are applicable to players of varying skill levels. In this Texas hold’em guide, the focus is firmly on strategic players for new and novice players:

  • Play your position: Before placing a bet, always make sure to consider your position in relation to the blinds. Quite simply, the blinds and those immediately after will be the first to bet. As a result, those who bet later are in a greater position of strength.
  • Think about the odds: Don’t go chasing after unsuited 2s and 9s or other terrible hands. Basically, what you need to think about is that your chances of winning diminish with your ability to create good hands. Competing with high pocket pairs is a solid poker strategy, while chasing runs to the river is foolish.
  • Stick to your level: Poker gets extremely difficult when you climb the ladder. Remember not to get carried away in your development and stick to the easier tables and lower stakes when you begin.

Texas hold’em is a thrilling experience because of how you compete against fellow players. Hopefully, this guide can give you a great head-start.

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Australia Online Poker: The Party is Over

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Online poker was a worldwide phenomenon in the early 2000s, with players emerging all over the globe and coming together on various gaming sites. However, the global push fell away dramatically when George W Bush made US online poker illegal in 2006. From March 2017, the international online poker scene has lost Australia.

Australia Bans Online Gambling Channels

Australia had been working on the amendment of its online gambling industry since 2015, when the Review of Illegal Offshore Wagering was performed. Ultimately, Australia’s conservative politicians felt that too many residents were playing online poker with offshore operators. They also felt there were more than enough land-based opportunities to play poker within the country.

Fast-forward to November 2016 and the Australian Senate were discussing the Gambling Amendment Bill in an attempt to shut regulatory loopholes. As of 21 March 2017, Australia passed the Gambling Amendment Bill 2016 and shocked the industry with its highly restrictive approach to online gambling.

Crackdown on Match Fixing in Sports

In an attempt to eradicate match fixing, Australia wanted to end in-play betting. However, this also extended to the illegalisation of online poker and online roulette. Some Australian politicians, such as Liberal Democrat senator David Leyonhjelm, couldn’t understand how online gambling games were tied to match fixing.

Incredibly, Leyonhjelm has even encouraged Australian residents to obtain a virtual private network that they can use to continue with their offshore poker account. However, players will not be able to do that with 888poker or PokerStars. Both operators will entirely leave the Australian market behind after the amendment is ratified.

Parallels with Australia and the US

Moving forward, Australia will continue to have land-based casinos where players can still engage in poker tournaments. This is similar to the US approach of maintaining physical casinos in Nevada and New Jersey, while players can also visit casinos that are operated on the sovereign land of Native Americans.

Like the Americans, the Australians seem to believe that it’s okay to gamble in person but not digitally. One primary advocate of this approach is US Republican Party supporter Sheldon Adelson. Coincidentally, he owns Las Vegas casinos that he wants people to visit.

Meanwhile, Adelson maintains fantasy sports websites whereby players compete against each other for money. The US doesn’t deem this to be a form of gambling, whereas online poker players staking their own money in a competition against each other is.

The Future of Australian Online Gambling

Online gambling operators tend to leave entirely when countries make it overly difficult for them to provide services. Two major operators already plan to leave Australia, so their industry competitors are likely to follow suit. Black market possibility will obviously emerge, but this will carry the risk of legal punishments.

The US states of New Jersey, Nevada, and Delaware have all legalised online gambling because they have states’ rights to defy the US Federal Government. By comparison, Australia doesn’t have the same heritage of defiance that exists in the US. Therefore, it’s unlikely to see parts of Australia implement their own online gambling legislation.

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Qualify for WSOP 2017 at 888poker

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The World Series of Poker (WSOP) main event is the dream of players at every level of the sport. And it’s been possible for amateur players to qualify ever since poker went online and operators decided to shake up their promotions. This is your rundown of how to earn WSOP 2017 qualification through 888poker.

WSOP 2017 Qualification

888poker has made the smart decision to tier the strategies that players can pursue if they want to try and make it to the WSOP 2017 main event in Las Vegas, Nevada. The first approach of entering satellite poker tournaments will be appealing because the buy-ins start from only $0.01 [£0.01], which will limit the risk for players with smaller bankrolls.

Alternatively, there is a second qualification avenue that will give more experienced players the ability to bypass the earlier satellites and register directly for 888poker’s WSOP 2017 qualifier. The cost of doing this will be $1,050 [£840], but players can save on time by skipping the early WSOP 2017 satellites with larger volumes of players.

WSOP 2017 Prize Package

888poker has assembled a prize package that is worth thousands of pounds. By reaching the WSOP 2017 qualifier, you will be in a position to win the following:

  • $10,000 [£8,000] buy-in for WSOP 2017 main event
  • Five-night stay at Vdara Hotel Las Vegas from 9 to 14 July 2017
  • $1,200 [£960] cash towards travel costs and expenses

888poker has put together a fantastically generous prize package that will make WSOP 2017 a life-changing experience for the winning players. Therefore, it is all the more incredible to see that the package will also include a VIP welcome session, an 888live poker kit, and the convenience of daily transportation during the main event.

New Player Rewards at 888poker

Trying to qualify for the WSOP 2017 main event is just one great reason for signing up at 888poker. First of all, it begins with signing up for a £20 free bonus with absolutely no deposit required. This will be granted over various online poker tournaments during your first week with the site.

888poker has also tailored a superb welcome package that can really help you to hit the ground running. By snagging all or most of the package, you will maximise your bankroll in terms of receiving access to even more poker tournaments. Have a gander at what you can claim below:

  • 100% match bonus up to $400 [£320]: The bonus funds will be awarded in $10 [£8] portions for every 100 bonus points collected through real money play.
  • 7 Tickets for $500 [£400] First Depositors Tourneys: Play for a $3,500 [£2,800] prize share in these daily tournaments starting from 7:30pm (GMT).
  • 2 Tickets for $1,000 [£800] Depositors Tourneys: Receive two tickets for these twice-weekly tournaments.
  • 1 Ticket for First Depositors’ Challenge Tourney: Enter this exclusive tournament on your first Friday with 888poker. The starting time is 7:00pm (GMT) and you can play for the Sunday Challenge Tournament.

Good luck to all of you wanting to know how to qualify for WSOP 2017.

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Mobile Poker Tournaments Explained: Sit & Go Poker

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Thousands of online poker tournaments are being hosted at any one time and coming in a number of different variations that are accessible on your smartphone or tablet. In this guide, you can understand how sit & go poker tournaments work.

Top Sit & Go Poker Sites

An important first step, however, is to highlight a couple of the mobile poker sites where you can find sit & go tournaments:

  • 888poker – You can start playing free by claiming 888poker’s £20 no deposit bonus. Following on is a 100% match bonus up to £400, with 888poker apps available for Android or iOS.
  • Unibet Poker – You can also start free at Unibet Poker, where a £10 no deposit offer awaits. Unibet can then award up to £200 in progressive bonuses plus instant-play or app-based access on mobile screens.

How Sit & Go Works

Sit & go tournaments offer the potential for faster-paced poker action. Larger poker sites will host huge tournaments in this format, but also use them in their daily schedules because of their efficiency.

In terms of how they work, a sit & go table will typically accept a maximum of six of nine players. These tables are quite casual because they are usually devoid of starting times and will not begin until each table has been completely filled.

When it comes to six-player tables, you can usually expect to earn winnings if you finish in the top two. Meanwhile, a nine-player table could offer the potential for a winning payout if you end up in the final three. Obviously, the overall winner will claim the largest share.

Basic Sit & Go Strategy

This tournament format can be applied to popular poker games like Texas hold’em or Omaha, among others. Therefore, you need to understand the rules of those before getting involved in tournaments. However, there are some strategic basics to bear in mind if you are just getting into poker sit & go:

  • Opening hands: the blinds increase much quicker in these tourneys, so you cannot sit around waiting for a dream hand like pocket kings.
  • Decision-making: there are no rebuys, which adds a little pressure when making your decisions.
  • Position matters: think twice about betting or calling when you have a weak hand. The rapid pace of sit & gos will draw highly aggressive bets from players who have position on you.

Why to Play Sit & Go

Sit & go poker is an excellent way to build up your tournament experience, with games typically being completed within a window of 30 to 60 minutes. These lack the higher payouts that can be claimed in multi-table tournaments, but the advantage is that the lower stakes allow for quicker resolution if you do not have a large bankroll or several hours of free time.

Ultimately, sit & go poker is most appealing for players who want a more casual experience. So, whether you want a quick game or some much-needed experience, these poker tourneys will be ideal for you.

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Alternative Poker Games to Try Out

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Texas hold’em dominates the mobile poker scene, but there are other several other games worth trying. In this special guide, we will touch upon some poker game rules for a number of variants that are overlooked.

Omaha Poker

From the beginning, Omaha poker will feel different from Texas hold’em. Instead of receiving just two hole cards, you will have four to work with. The entire game is still played with a deck of 52 cards, so it will be easier for you to create better hands, but this is also the case for other players.

Omaha has small and big blinds, with the game requiring you to cover both if you want to play a hand. When a hand begins, the dealer will place five community cards for everybody to use. After the cards are dealt, you will be allowed to use two of your hole cards and three of the community cards to create your best hand.

Omaha Hi/Lo

Omaha hi/lo is quite similar to standard Omaha, but the difference will only become clear when the hand is being decided. Basically, the pot will be split by the highest and lowest hands that are made. However, the high hand will win the entire pot if the low hand is better by no worse than an 8.

Seven-Card Stud

Seven-card stud rules are worth understanding because they will enable you to play a thrilling poker game that was arguably the most popular before Texas hold’em emerged to dominate the scene.

In this version, you will draw cards for a standard deck of 52, with aces playing high or low. At the beginning, you will receive three cards, with two facing down and one facing up. Following this initial stage, you will encounter another three rounds of up-cards. To finish the hand, you will receive a final up-card.

Ultimately, you will end up with four hole cards and three up-cards to give you seven in total. Being able to see some of the cards from other players adds an intriguing wrinkle to the game. In the end, you can use the best combination of your seven cards, with bets being placed after every round.

SNAP Poker

Technology has also enabled mobile poker sites to develop new variants based on classic favourites. For instance, SNAP Poker is a Texas hold’em game that is majorly sped up. In SNAP Poker, you have the ability to fold out of turn and automatically be re-seated at a new table to take on a new hand.

BLAST Poker

BLAST Poker is also a Texas hold’em variant, but the intensity is even greater than with SNAP Poker. Fundamentally, these games will only allow four players to sit at one table, which results in much quicker decision-making. The prize pool is kept a mystery until each game begins, with multipliers randomly determining the various payouts.

888 Poker is a prime destination to play all of the games explained here – even the new variants. Sign up and you can receive £20 free and a £400 welcome bonus on your first deposit.

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Online Poker Strategy – Calculating Hand Equity

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Getting better at online poker is a gradual strategy where you keep adding tools to your arsenal. And one way you can do that is by knowing how to calculate pot equity. This might sound a daunting concept, but it’s actually quite straightforward when it’s explained.

Defining Hand Equity

The simplest way to explain hand equity is to use a heads-up example from Texas hold’em. Okay, for any players who watch this form of poker online or TV, they will be familiar with the percentages that are applied to each player’s hand as the round progresses. Those percentages are used to signify which hand has the greater hand equity, which also means who is more likely to win.

How to Calculate hand Equity

In the average hand, you will have limits on what you can calculate, but there are some basics to bear in mind. First of all, you need to remember that a deck of cards has 52, while there are 13 in each suit and there are four cards of each value.

Flush Example

  1. A flush can be any five cards in the same suit, so there are 13 possible cards. In this example, you have the 7 and A of hearts, while the 2 and 9 of hearts are in the flop.
  1. At this point, you need to figure out how many “outs” you have, which simply means the number of cards that will complete your hand. In this case, you subtract the 7-A and 2-9 from the 13 cards in the suit, which would leave you with 9 outs.
  1. On the flop, you can quickly calculate your hand equity by multiplying the outs by four. Here, 9 x 4 would equate to 36% hand equity.
  1. If the hand continues to the turn and you haven’t created the flush, then you multiply the outs by two. For this example, 9 x 2 is 18% hand equity. As you can see, the equity decreases if you fail to win the hand.

Straight Example

  1. You have 2 and 4 unsuited and the flop has 2 and 5 unsuited, so there are two cards (A or 6) by 4 suits that can create the straight, which means 8 outs.
  1. For the flop, hand equity is 8 x 4 = 32%, which drops to 16% (8 x 2) if the straight is not completed on the turn.

Tips for Using Hand Equity

These calculations can get quite complex, but they can be applied to the more common hands in Texas hold’em:

  • Fair share: Divide the pot to figure out your fair share. For example, four people in a pot gives you a 25% fair share.
  • Using equity: Your strongest bluff is made on the flop. In the flush example, there is 36% pot equity at this stage.
  • Practice: Record scenarios from your last session and practise on the calculations to get familiar with the process.

Hand equity is one of many tools that can help your poker game – check back for more strategy guides.

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These Are the Best Celebrity Poker Players

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Celebrities are often multi-talented, which part of the reason why they are in such demand. In this case, however, we are only interested in the best celebrity poker players. Now, what this simply means is that the list will only include celebrities who are good poker players – not famous poker players. Without further ado, here are the celebs…

5. James Woods

This Oscar-nominated actor has even appeared in the films Casino and The Gambler, which instantly raises his credibility for appearing as one of the best celeb poker players. In terms of pedigree, Woods has racked up poker earnings of more than £170,000. When he isn’t acting, Woods enters poker tournaments in Las Vegas and Atlantic City throughout the course of the year.

4. Ben Affleck

Ben Affleck cannot match James woods for tournament volume, but then Affleck is the busier of the two actors while also working as a director. Nevertheless, this has not stopped Affleck from surpassing the £270,000 mark with his poker winnings. Perhaps he will have more time to compete among celebrity poker players later in his acting career.

3. Nick Cassavetes

While you might not be familiar with his name, you might recognise The Notebook, which was made by this Hollywood director. Cassavetes does not find as much time for poker as come of the other celebrity gamblers on this list, but he is recognised as on the of the highest-ever celeb performs in the World Series of Poker (WSOP) main event in Las Vegas. In 2005, he came 93rd and was awarded £60,000.

2. Jennifer Tilly

This beautiful Hollywood actress is known for her roles in Family Guy, Monsters Inc, and Liar Liar. Outside of acting, Tilly earns second place on this list for her formidable skills as a tournament player. Tilly does not reach Tobey Maguire standards when it comes to winnings, but she has outperformed him for tournaments.

Overall, Tilly has won more than £470,000 in tournament earnings during her poker career. Tilly’s highlights include her WSOP ladies bracelet and taking down a £97,000 windfall when playing in a tournament at the Bellagio.

1. Tobey Maguire

Tobey Maguire is a Hollywood actor who is most renowned for his performances as Spider-Man/Peter Parker. However, do not let Maguire’s boyish good looks and charm fool you, as beneath the veneer are the clinical machinations of a ruthless poker player.

Maguire has displayed little interest in legal poker tournaments, but has instead preferred to play in underground games during his years in Hollywood. At one time, poker pro Phil Hellmuth estimated Maguire had won more than £7.8 million from fellow celebs. Eventually, this led to Maguire being sued for a share of his winnings.

Bonus: Make Your Name at 888 Poker

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Even celebs are not given a free ride in poker, so these stars deserve major credit for their successes.

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