Best Poker Players from Africa
Many people know Africa as the continent where some of the first civilizations were born, but not a lot of people know it for gambling. Still, gambling has always been one of the most popular past times on the continent, especially in South Africa where some of the foundations of the online industry were laid.
However, the role of Africa in the online gaming industry is only one part of its connection with casinos. The African continent is also the home of many great poker players, and none fit that description better than these top 5.
# 5 Warren Zackey
First one on the list is Warren Zackey - a poker pro from Honeydew South Africa. Now, many people might not have heard about Warren, but those who keep a close eye on WSOP circuits will remember him well.
In 2010, Warren Zackey took the 1st place in the WSOPC at Emerald Casino in Vanderbijlpark and went home with $222,477 in cash - his second largest win so far. But that’s only a part of his achievements, as Zackey also has the following successes under his belt:
- 1st place at WPT National Championship in 2016 at the Emperors Palace in Johannesburg, SA;
- 1st place at the 2015 Emerald Poker Series in Vanderbijlpark, SA;
- 1st place at the Royal Swazi Rumble in Ezulwini Valley, Swaziland.
# 4 William Kakon
Even though he is considered an American player, this poker pro was actually born in Morocco. Kakon has never circuited any African tournaments but played in the US, with the one exception being his No-Limits Hold’ Em sitting in Paris, France. However, he is still the 4th highest grossing African player, with the following as his finest moments:
- 1st place at the 46th WSOP in Las Vegas in 2015 (his biggest cash price - $196,055);
- 1st place at the “Battle at the Beach” in 2015, Pompano Beach, Florida;
- 1st place at the Borgata $500K Guaranteed Deep Stack Tournament in Atlantic City.
#3 Darren Kramer
Another South African native, this poker pro was born in Capetown, but just like other South African pros made most of his name in the Johannesburg circuits. His highest winning so far was at the EPT – 7 in Berlin, where he won the first place and went home with € 140,000 in cash.
His other notable successes include:
- 1st place at the SA Poker Open in 2008 in Johannesburg, SA;
- 1st place at the All Africa Poker Tournament in 2010 in Swaziland;
- 2nd place at the Aussie Millions Championship in 2011 in Melbourne, Australia.
# 2 Jarred Solomon
A poker pro that needs no introduction, Jarred Solomon is the second highest grossing poker player from Africa. And let’s face it, with a name like Solomon and Johannesburg as you birth place you’re kind of predetermined to become one of the richest poker players from Africa.
Most poker fans will remember Solomon from his feat at the 42nd WSOP in Vegas in 2011, where he took the 2nd place and his highest recorded winning of $354,460. However, many might not remember his other notable performances, like:
- 1st place at the 2012 Montecasino Poker Challenge in his hometown of Johannesburg, SA;
- 5th place at the 41st WSOP in 2010 in Las Vegas;
- 1st place at the Aussie Millions Championship in 2011 in Melbourne, Australia.
# 1 Raymond Rahme
And finally, the number one spot is reserved for this South African legend who was the first player from Africa to get to a final table at a WSOP main event. In 2007, at the incredible age of 62, he entered the 38th WSOP in Vegas and won the third place, amassing a staggering $3,048,025 in cash in the process.
And even though he never repeated that success at the WSOP ever since, he had a pretty successful poker career that brought him other notable titles:
- 1st place at the 2007 and 2008 All Africa Poker tournament in Swaziland;
- 2nd place at the 2012 Montecasino Poker Challenge in Johannesburg, SA;
- 2nd place at the 2016 WPT Emperor Palace National Championship in Johannesburg, SA.