Maybe Tim Byrne should have slipped on his glasses sooner. As one of the online qualifiers for the BetMGM Poker Championship at Aria in Las Vegas , the 43-year-old player from Mountainside, New Jersey , landed a seat in a $25,000 freeroll held on June 22 at the PokerGO Studio.

Early in the event, Byrne (pictured in lead image) looked down at his hand and just knew he was beaten. All in against another player, things looked rough when his opponent landed an Ace-high flush on the turn. Thinking he was beaten, Byrne initially turned his hand over.

However, a floor person said he had to table his hand. It turned out that he’d actually landed a straight flush . “Thank God because I thought I was dead,” he says. “I’m really more of a clicker. I’ve really won one live event, a $100 rebuy Knights of Columbus tournament or something for like $3,000. And that must have been 10 or 12 years ago. I play home game tournaments with six people or so, but other than that, this is the only tournament I’ve played in a long time.” Seeing that straight flush turned out to be quite a fortuitous turn of events and the online poker player went on to win. He took home $4,400 and had quite an experience on his trip to Sin City. Hitting the poker jackpot with BetMGM

For as long as he can remember, playing cards has been a huge part of Byrne’s life. Whether at the poker table or another casino game, he just enjoys the action and fun of having a few bucks on the line. “I’ve been playing cards forever,” says Byrne, who worked for years at a credit union and now runs an Internet-based sales business. “In fifth grade, we’d be in the back of the class playing blackjack. I’ve always been playing poker and blackjack. I just love it. It’s been a big part of my life.” In the Garden State, Byrne is an online poker regular and estimates he’s played at least 200 major tournaments . Being a BetMGM/ […]

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