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World Series Of Poker -- Amanda Baker Among The Chip Leaders In Ladies Event

Baker Runs Deep In Ladies Event Third Year In A Row

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This year’s ladies event at the 2013 World Series of Poker attracted 954 players, all of whom were women. No men entered as a result of a rule change put in place this year, which would require men to pay $10,000 to play while women were given a $9,000 discount.

Poker pro Amanda Baker has cashed for the third year in a row. She finished 11th in 2011 and 76th in 2012. With 40 players remaining on day two she was inside the top 10 in chip counts.

Card Player caught up with Baker to ask her thoughts on the ladies event and her success thus far.

Beth Davis: This is your third year to cash in the ladies event. How do you think you’ve been able to be so consistent in an event where stack sizes are so shallow?

Amanda Baker: It’s hard to really say it’s consistency when it’s just three events. The first three years I played it I would get frustrated because I never really went deep. I think I made some mistakes because I would just be too aggressive and try and push people off hands but they wouldn’t fold. I’ve learned a few things in the last few years. I’ve figured out when to push back and when to give it up. I think I’ve picked my spots better.

BD: What are your thoughts on the new rule change for men to enter into the ladies event?

AB: I think that whole issue gets way more attention than it deserves. I definitely think there are a lot of things in poker about women that bother me. The fact that men play the ladies event gets way more attention than it warrants. One thing that does really bother me is that there is so much attention on the female players and how they look. They’re either criticized for not being pretty enough or not being good enough. That’s an issue that drives you nuts.

BD: That drives you more nuts than five men entering in a women’s event?

AB: Oh yeah. I mean I know it bothers a lot of people and it’s kind of silly that they do play it. But it bothers me that no one talks about these other issues that I think are much more important.

BD: What are your thoughts on the idea of an all ladies event?

AB: I feel that men and women are on equal playing fields in poker. But on the other hand, I do feel that it does feed into that mentality that women are maybe at a disadvantage. So they need a separate tournament, but on the other hand women represent only 3 percent of the main event. We do still need women to be encouraged to play poker. Women are such a small minority in poker, if this is something that encourages women to get in the game and they love the tournament, then why not just have it.

BD: Were you able to accumulate a lot on the money bubble?

AB: I did yesterday. Today I had accumulated some but then kind of gave it all back in a spot that was a mistake. I should have just read her body language and known she wasn’t going to fold. I mean maybe I could have gotten her off like eights or nines or something but it was too risky of a play. So today I gave it all back and I’m about even now, but we weren’t on the bubble for very long today.

BD: If you win this event what is more important to you, money or bracelet?

AB: Definitely winning the bracelet. I mean the money is nice but the thrill of winning a tournament is the whole reason I play.

If Baker wins she’ll score her first bracelet and $173,922.