APPT Day 2: Sophie’s choice

April 05, 2014

If you made the final table of a major poker tournament like APPT Seoul and received a call saying your wife had gone into labour, would you stay and play it out for the almost US$200,000 top prize – money which could help the future of your new-born child – or would you go be by your wife’s side for this once-in-a-lifetime moment?
It’s a question which Jeff Holbrook may have to answer.

You see Holbrook tells us that his wife is currently very, very pregnant. She’s due any day now and with Holbrook prospering with the chip lead in the APPT Seoul Main Event, if the time comes, he may have to decide whether or not yet he leave his chips on the table and be by his wife’s side.

Sure, we haven’t even burst the bubble yet and Holbrook’s wife may not even go into labour, but it is a possibility and everyone knows that in poker… One outers happen all the time.

Holbrook is from the USA, but currently lives in South Korea. His job is probably one of the more interesting ones we have come across in our travels around the poker circuit – he plays Trumpet in a symphony orchestra. He has worked as a musician here at the Walkerhill since it opened.

Apparently before Holbrook moved to South Korea he played in the underground clubs of New York to save his pennies for the move. We aren’t talking about poker. He played Trumpet in the underground clubs. Considering Holbrook attended Julliard, the world’s premier music school, we are thinking that it wasn’t too hard to make some money playing the trumpet.

Holbrook calls himself an amateur poker player, but has also made some money playing poker, including winning a small event in Jeju, South Korea. He has certainly shown some skills to secure the late chip lead on Day 2 of APPT Seoul.

The hand that would see Holbrook sit behind the largest stack of all started with a flop that read Q-5-4. Three players were involved in the hand, including Holbrook, and after back and forth agression, all the three players got their chips all in. The shortest stack held A-Q, the other player involved in the hand held pocket fours and, yep you guessed it, Holbrook held pocket fives. The cooler of a hand would see Holbrook increase his stack to over 400,000, with the average stack at just around 150,000.


Jeff doesn’t want to toot his own trumpet, but he has lots of chips

Holbrook has told anyone who would listen that this will be his last poker tournament before settling down into a life of being a family man. We are certain that Holbrook will be hoping for a climactic end to his poker career, which will surely be an overture to a happy family life.

When asked what he would really do if his wife fell pregnant during the tournament, he responded in the only way someone could when faced with this situation.

“Sophie’s choice,” Holbrook said with a wry smile.


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