Home Game Hero George Holmes Enjoying His Wild Ride at the 2021 Main Event

Home Game Hero George Holmes Enjoying His Wild Ride at the 2021 Main Event

November 16, 2021
Matt Hansen

George Holmes is on the ride of his life after coming back from the brink of elimination to pick up over 65 million chips on Day 7 of the $10,000 Main Event at the 2021 World Series of Poker.

In the midst of the second level of Day 7, Holmes found himself with just over one big blind left after a failed attempt to oust Jack Oliver from the Main Event. Holmes had shoved his last 9 million into the middle with king-queen, and Oliver, an up-and-coming poker star from England, called with ace-king. The board ran out with no favors for Holmes, and he was left with just 475,000 in tournament chips. 

A few hands later, Holmes got it in with four callers and won a pot to give himself some life with just over 2 million chips. Within 90 minutes, he had 16 million. When Day 7 broke for dinner he had 20 million, and by the end of the fourth level of the day, Holmes had amassed over 32 million in chips and had become a legitimate problem for the remaining Main Event hopefuls.

As Day 7 reached midnight Las Vegas time, Holmes sat near the chip lead on a mountain of 68 million chips after picking up pocket aces to bust Kornuth.

Main Event Specialist

George HolmesGeorge Holmes

The rollercoaster ride on Day 7 is just another one of the many unforgettable experiences that Holmes is managing in just his second Main Event. His first shot at the WSOP’s flagship event came in 2019, where Holmes ran deep and finished in 213th place for $50,855.

“I only play the Main Event,” Holmes told PokerNews during a quick break on Day 7. “I’ve been to a WSOP Circuit stop in North Carolina a few years ago, but this is the only WSOP event I come out to play.” 

Holmes is originally from New Jersey, and he currently lives in Atlanta, Georgia where he plays in a weekly home game. He mostly plays cash games, and he has been interested in poker since 1999. His tournament experience is limited, and his run at the 2019 Main Event is the only recorded cashing finish.

To say that this is all new and exciting would be an understatement, but the Main Event grind doesn’t allow that much time for reflection.

“It’s a wild ride. It’s surreal,” Holmes said about his Main Event experience. “I don’t even think I’ll be able to take it all in until it’s over.”

George Holmes, Chase BianchiGeorge Holmes and Chase Bianchi on Day 7 of the 2021 WSOP Main Event

The Comeback Trail

After fighting his way back from the felt, Holmes crossed the 30 million mark when he picked up two-pair in a hand with Alejandro Lococo. The hand started out innocently enough when Holmes limped from the small blind and Lococo checked his option.

Holmes bet 500k on the {7-Diamonds}{a-Clubs}{9-Diamonds} flop, and Lococo called. Both players checked the {5-Diamonds} turn to see {3-Spades} on the river. 

Holmes bet 2.3 million and Lococo raised to 8 million. After taking a moment to consider his options, Holmes called with {a-Spades}{7-Clubs} and took the pot with two-pair as Lococo mucked a pair of aces. The pot was big enough to push Holmes above the 30 million mark, a far cry from the 475,000 he had just a few hours prior.

If Holmes can navigate his way to the final table, which he has a good shot of doing, he’ll have a shot at turning his comeback into an $8 million payday.

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