2007 World Series: Rudolf 's Just Desserts

by Simon Young

Chef Rudolf Pfister thought his goose was cooked when, all in with A-K against Q-Q, his opponent hit a third queen on the river. He was simmering away when the flop did not help, a blank turn failed to take the heat off, and the apparent killer queen sent him to boiling point.

Rudolf Pfister: confusion

Even so, he kept his internal eruptions to himself. "Good game," he said politely, before setting off in a hurry for the rail. He got halfway along the aisle in record time, but thankfully still close enough to his table to hear something of a kerfuffle.

"Wait, come back," shouted one player.

"Man, you won the hand, where are you going?" added another.

Rudolf, a PokerStars qualifier from Austria, stopped in his tracks and raced back to the table. What on earth had happened? The board was still laid out on the felt. It read 4-J-10-8-Q... yup, that river had actually filled his straight and, rather than being busted, he had doubled up to more than 30,000!

"I just did not see it," he said, raking in his unexpected prize. "I just saw the queen and thought, 'That's it, I'm out'. This is a nice surprise."

The table all had a good chuckle - even the non-plussed loser of the hand - and one player summed it up rather nicely: "Well, you took your bust out well, but then you took your double up well, too."

Rudolf, who won his seat in a $33 rebuy, now has the ingredients necessary to make a decent run.

A little further along the room a gentleman in a PokerStars shirt caught my eye. He looked familiar but was hiding behind sunglasses. Upon closure inspection (ie tapping him on the shoulder) it turned out to be Anthony Holden. Big Deal. No, I'm not being dismissive, I mean Anthony is the author of Big Deal, which famously chronicled his attempt to play on the circuit as a pro for a year. The book was credited with attracting many to the game, and now the long-awaited follow-up, Bigger Deal, is on the shelves and selling well.

Anthony Holden

But why the shades? I've never seen him wearing them before.

"Well I thought they would make me look a bit like Greg Raymer," he said.

Er, sorry Anthony, you may have to think again.

He's been steady in chips so far, and last time I checked was hovering around his 20,000 starting stack.

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in