WSOP Main Event Day 2B: Robert Solock shouldn't be here
Talk to most people in the World Series of Poker, and they will tell you why they think they should be here. They have earned it, they say. They deserve it. They are owed it.
Robert Solock, a PokerStars qualifier, isn't one of those people. "I think my story is better told as why I shouldn't be here," he told us.
It's not that Solock doesn't believe in himself. He's just facing a reality. As if to strike a highlighter across his name or put an asterisk in its proper place, Solock sent us a list of reasons he should not be at the WSOP.
Top of the list?
"I've only been playing poker for two months when I won a satellite seat for $1," he wrote.
A rank amateur and one who didn't fancy his chances going forward, he thought about taking his $370 ticket to the mega-satellite and cashing it in for T$.
"I knew I had no chance of winning playing against all the real professionals and serious amateurs," he recalled.
And Solock might not have played that tournament, but for the fact that it was Father's Day and his wife wanted to give him something special. She decided to keep their kids occupied so Solock could play the tournament in peace.
From $1 to $370, Solock proved himself wrong. He suddenly found a $12,000 WSOP package in his PokerStars account. Now was the time, Solock said, to cash out the $12,000 and call it a great Father's Day gift. Or, maybe not. See, he couldn't resist telling a few people about what he'd done.
"Because I bragged to my co-workers that I won a seat to the WSOP," Solock said, "I felt obligated to go to Vegas."
And so he did, for more reasons than we'll ever know. One of them: Solock's 40th birthday is in a few days. He wanted to do something exciting.
"I figure this counts," he said.
And so with that, Solock composed the rest of his list to us. It reads as follows:
EMERGING STACK OF THE HOUR
The PokerStars player Charles Sylvestre has about 240,000 chips, principally the result of a monster coup in which he turned a flush in clubs with his A♣7♣ after he and one opponent got it in on a flop of 9♣6♠2♣. "Oh, that is wrong," said the vanquished, who had made what the table considered to be a terrific call with his 8♠9♠.
But Sylvestre hit his draw, the river was a blank, and Sylvestre had his opponent covered. "Good luck with the chips," said the departed as he headed out the Pavilion Room.
SELECTED CHIP COUNTS OF THE HOUR
Charles Sylvestre 240,000
Humberto Brenes 97,000
John Duthie 38,000
Barry Greenstein 59,000
Gavin Griffin 95,000
Jan Heitmann 110,000
Hevad Khan 10,500
Alex Kravchenko 16,100
Florian Langmann 135,000
Johnny Lodden 80,500
Jason Mercier 110,000
Henrique Pinho 56,000
Vanessa Rousso 141,000
Matthias De Meulder 136,000
Marcello Del Grosso 32,000
Vadim Markushevski 38,000
Jorge Arias 41,000
George Lind 14,000
Amanda De Cesare 73,000
Orel Hershiser 19,000
ELIMINATION OF THE HOUR
THERE'S WISDOM IN THERE SOMEWHERE
"Don't limp aces. Kay? You get in trouble. If you have kings, value on the pocket queens. Game of poker is a marathon, kay? It's a long, long time." Overheard in the audience watching the feature table.
GUESS I PICKED THE WRONG DAY TO COME SEE THE WORLD SERIES OF POKER
"Do you know where Phil Ivey is?"
I'm afraid he busted a half hour ago.
"Damn. Okay, how about Daniel Negreanu?"
I'm afraid he played yesterday sir.
OUT OF CONTEXT QUESTION TO DOYLE BRUNSON OF THE HOUR
"If I gave you half a million would you sell it?"
UNLIKELY SIGHT OF THE HOUR
Raindrops, falling from the Las Vegas sky
STATISTICS OF THE HOUR
Number of pairs of broken sunglasses: 1
Number of pairs of broken sunglasses flung across the Rio convention center hallway: 1
Number of players who no longer have functional sunglasses or chips in WSOP: At least one