EPT11 Grand Final: Who's afraid of Elmar The Wolf?
As poker players go Elmar Dirnberger is a live one. You see, Elmar Dirberger was never really happy being just Elmar Dirnberger. He prefers his other name, the one he talks of in the third person when playing poker, and the one he makes sure those he plays against are soon familiar with: The Wolf.
It's not normally the done thing to give yourself a nickname. But Dirnberger gets away with it because he's at least entertaining. Well, in small doses. Perhaps less so when you're at his table all day.
Then again The Wolf plays like a man in a hurry, never really sticking around for too long. For the wolf that howls twice as loud, does so for half as long. Actually less than that. About three and a half main event levels all told.
And so wearing his trademark black, with a curious thick black strap on his right wrist - presumably where he had previously been restrained -- he played on in the same way he has for years, cheroot replaced by an e-cheroot, and an almost continuous commentary of his own performance, and of that of his table mates, such as Anatoly Filatov and Nick Maimone.
We won't go into the detail, not least because I stopped writing down the hands he played when it became obvious he intended to play them all. But here are a few highlights.
"The lady wants to play with the Wolf? It's always dangerous... it's always dangerous... it's always dangerous... it's always dangerous... it's always dangerous... it's always dangerous... it's always dangerous... it's always dangerous..."
"Not my flop, not my turn. Where's the girl from before (the previous dealer)? She gave me all that I needed. Now I'm losing, losing, losing."
"The ladies are always dangerous. The wolf likes the danger. Otherwise he wouldn't be the wolf."
Even Dirnberger himself laughed at this one.
But he's gone now. Off to prowl the side events, unnerving those he comes up against whatever he does. That's another trademark of Elmar Dirnberger.
Stephen Bartley is a staff writer for the PokerStars Blog.