Vanessa Selbst bests Nadal in friendly game of poker

When two champions go head to head, it is only fair to assume that the fight will be intense, regardless of sport. This is exactly what happened when Vanessa Selbst and Rafael Nadal set down at the poker table, an arena where the lady of poker is more experienced. This didn’t have a deterring effect on the tennis champion, who took his chances and valiantly defended his stack until there was nothing left to protect.selbst

Rafael started his poker career with baby steps two years ago but over the course of 2013, he pushed this activity into overdrive. He is now one of the best tennis players who also plays poker and he has plenty of accomplishments to be proud of. Just a couple of months ago, in December he outshined a few fellow sportsmen, including Ronaldo but the biggest victory came against Team PokerStars Pro Daniel Negreanu

This time, the stakes were not as high in terms of financial gain but the tournament was every bit as important. The reason is that the one who would win at the luxurious Casino de Monte Carlo would be the one to donate the prize to a charitable organization. This is something definitely worth fighting for and that’s why none of the competitors took their assignment likely. In the end it was Vanessa that emerged victorious, but this is less important, because the fight was memorable.

The format of the tournament was in her advantage and Vanessa was quick to admit that she started as favorite, but praised her competitor for the manner he played. Nadal’s poker coach Alfonso Cardalda can be really proud of his accomplishment, because in a matter of months he managed to turn a regular tennis player into a skilled poker gladiator. The €5000 that Selbst won’t will be donated to Care International charity and both players are looking forward for a potential rematch, one that Rafael will try to win.


April 27, 2014 - Offer valid as of date published. T&Cs apply