Daniel Schreiber is as close to a ‘hometown’ player battling it out for the APPT Seoul title.
Like fellow Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand ‘ElkY’ Grospellier and Team PokerStars member Guillaume Patry, Schreiber relocated to Korea (from his home in Commack, New York) to compete as a professional Starcraft player. Yep, that’s right, a video game.
The trio are treated like celebrities here, and can’t go out without being swamped by fans of the game. Like Grospellier and Patry, Schreiber turned his focus to poker and quickly built a reputation as one of the top high stakes online players.
He turned that online practise to immediate live success when he captured the $5000 Heads-up championship at the 2007 World Series of Poker, becoming the fifth youngest WSOP bracelet winner ever.
“I've played for a while now. I started out playing ring games or the six-handed but then I started testing myself with heads-up,” Schreiber said.
“I learned a lot from the players who had more experience and who were probably better than me. I took that experience and used that to improve my game to the point where it is today.”
But for a player who honed his skills on a video game, did Starcraft offer any preparation for the cut-throat world of poker?
“You’d be surprised, StarCraft and poker are similar games. I like to say they are both games of missing information. You have to figure out what your opponent is doing, then use that information against them. If you're good at StarCraft, you’re likely to be good at poker.”
With a chip stack pushing 120,000 (the first player to break through 100,000), we’re more than happy to declare Schreiber a “good” player!
But good players sometimes have bad days, like the one Joe Hachem is slowly dissecting beside our blogging base in the Walker-hill Casino poker room.
The 2005 WSOP champion had his hands full with a 19-year-old American Alex Fitzgerald for much of the day, the youngster ignoring reputations and raising Hachem’s bets at every opportunity.
However, it was Jacques Zaicik who eventually took Hachem down. The player who had also eliminated Vanessa Rousso earlier today called Hachem’s all-in with A K. Holding pocket threes, Hachem found himself in a coinflip, but Zaicik hit a king on the flop, which proved enough to send the Aussie favourite to the rail.
Latest chip count (approximate):
Dan Schreiber (USA) 120,000
Joe Berec (Australia) 75,000
Isaac Galazan (Thailand) 61,000
Ziv Bachar (Israel) 60,000
Cory Ann Joseph (Australia) 56,000