Sydney FC to make dreams of lifelong football fan come true

Sydney FC will help fulfill a lifelong wish of a seriously ill Sydney football fan and former player when he competes in a charity poker tournament, thanks to Sky Blues Partner The Star Sydney, this weekend.

It has been the dream of 72-year old Wally Wiederman to travel to Las Vegas and play in the ‘World Series of Poker No Limit Hold Em’ main event.

However, the Kingsford local was diagnosed with a malignant Mesothelioma in mid July 2020 and could not travel due to the Covid-19 lockdown.

Once the travel ban was lifted Wally was too ill to make the trip, so the Sky Blues will launch the inaugural Sydney FC Foundation Charity Poker Tournament this Saturday thanks to the help of The Star Sydney.

Sydney FC’s Isuzu-UTE A-League stars Alex Wilkinson, Andrew Redmayne, Rhyan Grant, Paulo Retre and Patrick Yazbek will take part in the tournament, alongside Head Coach Steve Corica and Assistant Coach Paul Reid from 12.15pm.

Wally’s son Adam was delighted that one of his father’s last wishes could be granted.

“What he loves doing is playing in small tournaments as often as possible, and particularly at The Star Sydney where he could play until recently,” he said.

“He is thrilled to be able to go back there again and we are indebted to Sydney FC and The Star for putting him up and making his wish come true.

“He was a big football fan as a young man and was involved in Maccabi soccer with the Hakoah Soccer Club in the 1st division. “A big thanks for everyone’s efforts. Dad is absolutely stoked and is looking forward to this.”

Wally has a love of football and poker

Wally be placed at the special head table where he will play as a VIP. 

The Star Sydney are also hosting Wally for two nights accommodation and will chauffeur him to and from the venue to back home.

Sydney FC Chief Executive Officer Adam Santo said: “This is the least we can do for a man who has given so much of his life to the game of football.

“It’s going to be a fantastic afternoon and we are hugely thankful to our partner The Star for their help in bringing this to life and supporting Sydney FC’s Foundation as well.”

Sydney FC fans can sign up to take part and can win one of the player’s signed shirts if they eliminate them from the tournament.

All administration fees will be donated to the Sydney FC Foundation while there will also be a number of Sydney FC exclusive merchandise items up for auction.

The Sydney FC Foundation’s mission is to positively impact the lives of youth and our Sky Blue Community now and into the future through the power of football and education.

The tournament is still open for entries by heading to this website.


Start time: 12.15pm
Buy-in: $550 ($500 + $50) – All admin fees donated to the Sydney FC Foundation. No money taken from the prize pool.
Starting Stack: 40,000
Blind Levels: 30 minutes
Re-entry: Unlimited

Registrations available in person at the Poker Registration Desk, via cash or gaming chips, EFTPOS is currently unavailable.