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Poker Life – Women at the table

Thu, Sep 1, 8:35am by Poker Guru

I have heard many female poker players say that men often start flirting with them at the tables, and not only that, some men even start soft playing against them. That just shows how weak some men are, and I am not (only) talking about their poker ability here.

Soft playing is a poker term for when you play ‘nice’ against someone you know. You do not bluff, you do not value bet, you do not raise unless you have a very good hand. This is generally considered cheating, especially in tournaments. Soft playing against a woman because you find her attractive might not fall in the category of cheating but it is still bad poker. Personally I would never soft play against anyone—I enjoy winning money from friends even more than from people I do not know. And I would never do it against a female poker player just because I am attracted to her.

I do not flirt with women at the poker table either, but what if a woman flirts with me?

I played in a major tournament a few years ago and I was in seat 6 and there was a stunning Swedish woman in seat 2. She was a model but no picture could do her justice—her charisma was amazing. Then I was involved in a big pot with her. I had AK and I raised pre-flop, she re-raised me from the Big Blind, I hesitated but went all-in. We both had average stacks. She started thinking and she started looking at me in a very flirty and sexy way. At least that is how it felt. Then she asked if I would show my hand if she folded. I said no. Then she asked me if I could tell her during the next break. That was tempting but I said no again. In the end she folded pocket queens face up.

Beautiful women certainly have a unique weapon and should use it to their advantage, not only passively by letting stupid men soft play against them but also actively like the Swedish woman I played against.

This actually ties back to the column I wrote a few weeks ago, About Your Table Image. By being a very likeable guy you might actually get other players to soft play against you, at least to some extent. Isn’t there an old saying that you will make more money from others’ mistakes than from your own good plays? I definitely believe in that.

I also believe that you should not just sit there and wait for others to play poorly against you. That should be part of your game plan. Interact with other players, be likeable, be annoying, whatever you want but make sure that the other players care about you in one way or the other.

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