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Five of the Best Argentinian Poker Players
Argentina is the eighth-largest country in the world so it’s unsurprising to discover it has produced some superb poker players. Argentinian poker players tend to be passionate and aggressive at the table. Again, this is unsurprising considering 62.5% of Argentinians have Italian ancestry; they’re a fiery bunch!
Argentinian poker players tend to grind online poker cash games and tournaments, although some travel the world playing MTTs. The low cost of living in their home country means they don’t need to win as much as players from elsewhere. Some Argentinian poker players must be living the high life when you look at their impressive winnings.
Ivan Luca Has The Most Winnings of All Argentinian Poker Players
Ivan Luca has the most live tournament winnings of his fell Argentinian poker players. Luca’s tally weighs in at $6,510,587 currently. This is an epic achievement considering Luca’s largest live score is worth $494,080.
He won his first and only World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet in 2015. Luca triumphed in the $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em event and walked away with $353,391 for his efforts.
Twenty-two of his live MTT cashes are worth $100,000 or more! That’s how good Luca is.
He’s no slouch in the online poker world either. Luca has almost 3,000 cashes worth several million dollars.
Jose “Nacho” Barbero Represented Argentinian Poker Players at PokerStars
Jose “Nacho” Barbero used to represent Argentinian poker players through his PokerStars sponsorship. Barbero’s live MTT winnings are approaching $4.4 million, enough for second place in his country’s all-time money listings.
Barbero has won at least six figures every year since 2008. The $1,543,463 Barbero won in 2010 is still his best year. £556,000 ($870,082) of that sum came from winning the £25,000 EPT London Super High Roller. He also won the LAPT Punta del Este and LAPT Lima Main Events for $279,330 and $250,000 in 2010.
Maria Lampropulos, the Amazing Female From Argentina
Maria Lampropulos is the best of the female Argentinian poker players. Lampropulos is the former girlfriend of Ivan Luca mentioned earlier.
Lampropulos is Argentinian although originally born in Greece; the surname gives it away. She has more than $3.3 million in live poker tournament winnings, helped by some fantastic results.
She won the partypoker MILLIONS Dusk Till Dawn Main Event in April 2017. That netted her £1,000,000 ($1,255,004), which is still her largest cash so far. Another seven-figure haul came her way nine months later when Lampropulos took down the 2018 PCA Main Event for $1,081,100.
Damian Salas Gave Up a Career as a Lawyer to Play Poker
Damian Salas used to be a lawyer but is now one of a bunch of respected Argentinian poker players. Salas started taking poker seriously in 2006 and dedicated most of his time to them three-years later. It’s a completely different career path but one that’s proven profitable.
Salas’ $2,687,964 in live earnings places him fourth in Argentina’s all-time money listing. He also plays a lot of online poker, racking up close to $5.5 million in winnings, mostly under the alias “pampa27”. Salas finished third in the recent WPTWOC Main Event, won by Phil Mighall, for a career-best $814,663.
Leo Fernandez Is Another Former Team PokerStars Pro
Leo Fernandez keeps his online aliases secret but he can’t hide from his live poker success. Fernandez, a former Team PokerStars Pro, has almost $2.23 million in winnings. Six outright victories and two dozen final tables helped Fernandez rise to star status.
Buenos Aires is Fernandez’s home, like many Argentinian poker players. His base in Argentina’s capital allows him to travel the world, mostly South America, winning vast sums of money. We know he’d love to win a WSOP bracelet but 13th place is the best he has managed so far.