by Brad Willis on July 10, 2010 2:30 PM

wsop2010_thn.jpgTalk 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:


  • I shouldn't be here sitting in my hotel room at the Palms sending you this email except for the fact that I have 55,000 chips going in to day 2B and I have 8.9 million reasons to keep on playing.
  • I shouldn't be here except that I really did believe the PokerStars television commercial when it said I could be the next WSOP Champion.