Liv Boeree - how the brainiac took the catwalk to PokerStars

Thumbnail image for ps_news_thn.jpgby Sue Carswell
It defies stereotypes that a fashion model amassed €1,250,000 in this past April's PokerStars EPT San Remo. On the other hand, you probably would think an astrophysics major (who graduated from the University of Manchester) might well indeed score this major victory. With Olivia "Liv" Boeree, you get the whole package and a new boon for the perception of models.

Boeree, who was born in 1984, and still so young, is the face to watch, pun fully intended, at PokerStars events. Not only might you get some fashion tips, but it's also nice to see such a friendly, smiling face at these events. I recently caught up with the former model and TV presenter (who found her way to poker through a reality TV show) in between tournaments.

The Team PokerStars Pro's journey thus far has been "a rollercoaster!" she says joyfully. "It wasn't until after graduation that I was introduced to poker, although the attraction was instant, and I knew it was the game for me. Since then I've worked really hard to become as good a player as I can be and to become known in the industry. It's been a long journey (nearly five years) that's taken me around the world quite literally!"

Looking back a few years, she admits that her best subjects were mathematics and sciences. "I always found physics particularly fascinating as it explains everything around us. I particularly loved the astrophysics side, as the universe is surely the most incredible thing. I don't understand how people don't want to spend more time knowing more about it!" (Hmm. . . . no comment from interviewer who barely made it through college.)

The crossover from the two subjects wasn't too difficult when Liv found herself at a poker table. As she says, "There are definitely skills that cross over between the two, such as logic, problem solving, and the ability to process lots of information under pressure in order to make the correct decision/calculation."

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Liv Boeree

Now back to the more fun stuff. I tell her fellow Team PokerStars Pro Vanessa Rousso bought a yellow Lamborghini with her earnings, and I wonder what extravagances Liv has cashed in on. With a laugh she replies: "I'm looking for a nice new apartment." Oh come on, Liv, what else? What fancy fast car? She finally fesses up. "I've got my eye on one though, namely the new Jaguar XK."

Growing up on a farm in the beautiful countryside of Kent, Liv admits to having been an uber tomboy. "I was surrounded by animals, mud, and trees. Due to this I'm excellent at teaching dogs how to play hide and seek and other games!"

Asking where those beauty genes come from (she's appeared in Britain's "Maxim" to name just one magazine) she is free in admitting: "My mum! She's amazing, and still has the most incredible figure that hopefully means I have hope for the future. I'm actually very lazy when it comes to primping. I've only had two manicures in my life!" (That's okay Liv, I bite my nails.)

Our conversation ventures to men, but Liv says there is no special one. "No boyfriend," she admits bluntly. "I travel far too much to make a reasonable girlfriend for anyone. I have two pets that live with my parents: a bearded dragon lizard called Mr. Osterlind, and my horse, Bella."

As for fun, this former "ninety-two percent partier and eight percent panic-cramming student," loves to play her guitar when not playing poker. "I love nothing more than cranking up my amp and blasting out some Pantera. If I'm not playing, then chances are you'll find me in a metal bar head banging." She adds: "Table football is another hobby . . . and an excellent way of hustling poker boys out of their cash!"

And now that we know more about Liv Boeree, she fesses up a secret. Ready? She comes clean. "I can't say the word 'Ibuprofen!'" Aha! Must come from all that head banging!

You can watch Liv play online at PokerStars under the screen name 'LivBoeree'.

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Simon Young
@MrSimonYoung in PokerStars news