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25th Oct 2023

Man sold all his possessions and bet entire life savings on one single roulette spin


Words by Ryan Grace

Londoner Ashley Revell played double-or-nothing with his future and headed to Sin City for a life-changing spin on a roulette wheel.

Revell was 32 years old when he did what many of us would only ever dream of doing and put his life-savings on red.

This Revell-without-a-cause sold all of his possessions, including his home and his entire wardrobe – to gamble £76,840 at the Plaza Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas.

His once in a lifetime punt, in 2004, was showcased in the Sky One reality show Double or Nothing.

Viewers of the programme were more than happy to help Ashley make his decision over whether to go with red or black, safe in the knowledge their life’s work was not on the line.

“It was just… pleading that I’d pick[ed] it and that it would come in red,” he told CNN at the time.

“Before I actually walked up to the wheel, I was thinking about putting it on black, and then suddenly the guy was spinning the ball around and all the Sky viewers said … they [had] voted that I should put it on red.

“So suddenly I just put it all on red.

“But … I was just pleading that it would come in and I’d get lucky this time. What I was really worried about was that I’d lose and my parents would be upset and my family would, you know, all my friends would be upset.”

Ashley revealed that his father was totally against the idea, as any caring parent would.

The dad was quoted in an interview, saying: “I told him he was a naughty boy, he was a bad boy, he shouldn’t do it. He should work like all other kids do.”

“I mean, I obviously went and shook his hand before I did it, and after he was just hugging me and jumping up and down,” Ashley explained.

“So, you know, I think most all dads are just concerned, and he’s seeing all my friends being married off and having kids and stuff, and he’s like any father, he just wants me to settle down and make sure I’m secure.”

It was a daring move, but one that well worth making as Revell doubled his money to an eye-watering £153,680, doubling his life-savings in under a minute.

The incredible feat was a viral hit across the globe, so much so that it inspired another reality show – Red or Black.

Revell spent some of the cash on a cross-Europe motorbike road-trip where he ended up meeting his future wife.

15 years after his big win, Revell returned to Las Vegas where the Plaza commemorated the win and its new single zero roulette table with a promotional free chip to players.

Revell even placed a ceremonial bet, although the stakes weren’t quite as high this time round.

He told KSNV: “I have said that the roulette spin at the Plaza was the most amazing moment of my life.

“Single 0 roulette wasn’t around back then. Clearly a lot has changed in gaming and at the Plaza. So, I am excited to return, and hopefully, we can all celebrate another successful roulette spin.”