Marital disputes generally come with the territory when a man and woman decide to tie the knot. Last Sunday in Las Vegas, however, a husband-wife poker playing duo went head-to-head and one was sent home early.
Time and Ness Reilly have been married for almost three years and share a deep passion for poker. Both are professional players who regularly compete on the World Series of Poker Circuit. It was at a WSOP Cirtcuit tournament Sunday that a conflict of interests and matrimony occurred at the Planet Hollywood in Vegas.
As fate would have it, Tim and Ness found themselves staring each other down at the same table, but instead of sharing a romantic meal, they were battling for big money. Over 610 players started the tournament, and the two skilled players had survived to compete for the $192,152 first-place prize.
Before the flop, Tim raised 18,000 chips, but Ness shoved all-in for 66,000 with an Ace Ten off-suited. Holding pocket Threes, Tim had to ponder his decision before calling his wife and the two nervously awaited the flop. A Queen, a Three and a Deuce hit the table, putting Tim in great position.
The turn was a Four, however, which gave Ness a possible shot at taking down her husband. The river sealed her fate, however, as a King was flipped over, eliminating Ness in 46th place with $3,248 in winnings.
Tim went up to almost 800,000 chips to take over as chip leader after the win, but he ended up in 26th place with just $5,856. The event marked the deepest run either of the pair had made, so the irony was palpable that they ended up facing each other. At the 2015 WSOP Main Event Ness and Tim finished 244th and 360th respectively.
Back in 2015, Tim and Ness discussed the ebb and flow of their relationship. Both believed that their shared love of poker makes everyday understanding and interactions go much more smoothly. Ness said it was definitely “easier to be with someone who plays.”
“It’s definitely an advantage and one I like. It’s tough when we are both doing bad, otherwise, we can lift each other’s spirits, and most of the time it’s a plus actually. I feel his pain and he feels mine.”
Given his lifestyle and the amount of money Tim puts into poker tournaments each year, he doubts he could have found someone as compatible as Ness.
“I have been in poker since 2011/2012. In the beginning I was in a relationship with someone who was not in the poker world and we drifted apart. It’s tough for people who are not in the poker world to understand it. My ex would have
herself if I came home and said we lost $10k today. Ness just says, ‘It’s ok, it’s not a big deal – it’s a Sunday during WCOOP’. I always knew this was the girl I wanted to marry.”
As bizarre as this situation might have been it’s not the first time immediate family members have sent one another to the rail. Back in 2010 at the WSOP main event, and father and son made it all the way to the final table. Irving Rice, the father, ended up being short stacked after being blinded off after his son didn’t wake him up in time from a nap in time to continue play.