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New Poker Champion


The new poker champion Annie Duke has beaten her older brother and eight other poker legends to win $2 million and the World Series of Poker Tournament of Champions.

The 39-year-old Duke outlasted the other players in a grueling game held earlier this month at the Rio hotel-casino.

ESPN telecast the event, the results of which had been kept secret, in a nearly three-hour broadcast.

In a great comeback, Duke, the only woman to play in the No-Limit Texas Hold'Em event, knocked out the garrulous Phil Hellmuth to take the title after being on the verge of elimination most of the event.

The players included four past World Series of Poker champions: Greg Raymer, Doyle Brunson, Johnny Chan and Hellmuth. Brother Howard Lederer, T.J. Cloutier, Phil Ivey, Daniel Negreanu and Chip Reese also competed.

Duke, a Las Vegas mother of four, holds a double major from Columbia University and did graduate studies in cognitive psychology at the University of Pennsylvania.

The winner-take-all, invitation-only tournament was established by Harrah's Entertainment and ESPN, who are teaming up to broadcast the World Series of Poker Circuit in 2005. ESPN has an option to televise the new points-based seven-event tournament circuit for 2006 and 2007.

 



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