Poker has become more and more mainstream over the past few years with a growing popularity on TV and the internet.  There has certainly been a rise in the number of players playing poker online and a boom in the number of online casinos entering the market in a short space of time.

The popular card game involves both skill and chance with the prospects of winning equally favourable to all the participants.  More and more females have made it onto the scene recently, and perhaps this list will be an inspiration to our readers to play poker.  Here’s a look at the biggest female winners of last year:

Vanessa Selbst ($11.8 million)
A New Yorker in her early 30s now, Vanessa Selbst is the only woman to have ever reached the number 1 ranking on the Global Poker Index.  Selbst has had six-figure paydays or above in 21 live poker tournaments.

Kathy Liebert ($6.1 million)
Born in the great state of Tennessee, Kathy Liebert made a big hit in 2002 when she won the first Party Poker Million event – the first limit poker tournament with a $1 million prize.

Annie Duke ($4.2 million)
Annie Duke held a gold bracelet from the World Series of Poker in 2004 and was the leading all-time winner among women until she was overtaken by Vanessa Selbst.  Duke has written a number of instructional books for poker players as well as releasing her autobiography.

Annette Obrestad ($3.9 million)
The first non-American on our list is Norwegian player, Annette Obrestad rose to fame in 2007 when she became the youngest person to ever win a World Series of Poker bracelet, which she accomplished in 2007, the day before her 19th birthday.  She is the youngest player in the top 10.

Vanessa Rousso ($3.5 million)
Vanessa Rousso has been on the circuit for more than a decade now and is a pro-gambling campaigner who has also appeared on several reality TV shows including Big Brother where she placed third.  She’s had higher finishes in poker tournaments though, making the top five all-time women’s rankings.

Liv Boeree ($ 3.15 million)
The multi-talented Liv Boeree is a British poker player who has also had success as a television presenter and model after completing her degree in astrophysics with First Class Honours from the University of Manchester.  She was the #1 ranked female player on the Global Poker Index in November 2015.

J.J. Liu ($3.09 million)

Born in Taiwan, J. J.. Liu moved to the USA to pursue her master’s degree in Computer Engineering.  It was there that she fell in love with poker and in 2007 she became the highest-placing female in a World Poker Tour Championship event, finishing runner-up to Ted Forrest at the WPT Bay 101 Shooting Stars.

Jennifer Harman ($2.7 million)
American poker player Jennifer Harman has won two World Series of Poker bracelets in open events and is one of only three women to have done so to date.  Her first came all the way back in the year 2000.  In 2015 she was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame.

Victoria Coren Mitchell ($2.4 million)
The second Brit on our list, Victoria Coren Mitchell is also a writer and television presenter which includes hosting the BBC television quiz show Only Connect, since 2008.  Mitchell has published many books, including her poker memoir For Richer, For Poorer: A Love Affair with Poker.

Maria Ho ($2.08 million)
The second Taiwanese-American poker player on our list, Mario Ho has amassed more than $2 million and gone on to become a television personality and host.  In 2009, Ho competed on CBS Emmy Award-winning TV show The Amazing Race with best friend and fellow poker professional, Tiffany Michelle.