Australian Pro Poker champion Thea Francis with her trophies, certificates and two winning cards for winning rare back-to-back championships.
Australian Pro Poker champion Thea Francis with her trophies, certificates and two winning cards for winning rare back-to-back championships. Gerard Walsh

Thea focused for poker in US

WARWICK player Thea Francis has won a trip to Las Vegas for a second consecutive year with back-to-back wins in the Australian Pro Poker Championships.

She won last year at Cessnock in New South Wales and on Saturday beat a field of 310 at Seagulls club at Tweed Heads.

A search of poker records yesterday failed to unearth any player with consecutive wins in major tournaments in the past two decades.

If concentration is important in batting for cricket, it is even more important in poker.

Francis played from 12.30pm Saturday to 1am Sunday in an elimination event that eventually put her on a table of nine and then the final against a woman from Ipswich.

"The final went for 45 minutes," Francis said.

It was a pair of fives which won her a second national title.

Poker has been her sport after representing Queensland in rifle shooting.

"If you lose concentration, you are likely to make a silly call," Francis said.

"Playing a lot of poker online helps concentration."

She was joined in the championships by fellow Warwick players, her husband, Rob Francis, Ian and Lesley Parrinder.

The victory has earnt Francis air fares, accommodation and the $10,000 entry for a second World Series of Poker in Las Vegas in July.



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