Asian poker community is expecting a remarkable growth and a stronger footing in 2020 after passing a year of ups and downs.
Despite little in the way of regulatory changes, Asian countries continued to celebrate poker in 2019. In this region, India is considered to be the hotspot for growth and innovation with a gradual improvement for the last three years.
Pokersuperagent.com allows players from all over to world to play in safe and exciting private games. These games are mostly paid by Chinese and other South-East Asian countries. The most notable are Snailpoker (access to GGNetwork and its unbeliavble Blade Tournament Series), Panda Poker and PPPoker where we have the softest PPPoker clubs from Asia to South-America.
To make poker more popular here, PokerStars is continuously making inroads into the Indian culture by partnering with India’s version of Big Brother. In association with Bigg Boss, PokerStars India promoted several poker promotions in exchange for branding opportunities during the Bigg Boss primetime Show.
In a press release, PokerStars said- “In tandem with an increasing network of links between poker sits in India and mainstream media outlets, new ideas were given airtime.” PokerStars India also nominated Mr. Sharad Rao as their first Twitch ambassador In July 2019. It was a timely movement in the region, and could be a trend to follow in 2020 which could spark another wave of growth in India.
Legal issues played as a serious impediment to hold back the smooth growth of the Asian poker market in 2019. The extensive sense of regulatory apathy in Gujarat along with similar levels of disdain in West Bengal and New Delhi hampered the acceptance and popularity of this game all over India.
Politicians tried their best to fuel up the anti-poker activists to take aim against poker operators. Online poker activities like calling for players or organizers, serving players and even promoting tournaments were facing such strong public reactions that everything had to be taken offline.
A prominent local restaurateur was caught up in a crackdown on poker in Kolkata. 14 players had been arrested there from a local poker club. Akhtar Parvez, an Indian poker pro, was forced to surrender his chips, and accused with criminal conspiracy and cheating.
"Given that delayed court hearings and arrests have remained commonplace in 2019, its unlikely 2020 will bring much in the way of change. Although advocates continue to fight for regulation, legalization in certain states remains a pipe-dream at present."
The good news for Indian poker lovers is that poker in India can flourish due to licensing laws in states such as Nagaland. However, the industry has been left with a black eye because of the suicide of a local IT worker due to gambling issues in October 2019.
This is an isolated accident. But, this issue became a firing topic for the anti-poker activists to bolster their campaign to outlaw the game completely from the country.
Anyway, the game is gaining a greater mainstream exposure in 2020 with a slight improvement in traffic. It’s expected that despite all the obstacles and challenges, 2020 will be another progressive year for poker in India.
The scenario is completely different in other parts of Asia. Because of the increasing popularity and growing interest, local operators of Philippines, Japan and China started taking their products overseas.
In November 2019, a famous Chinese gaming company partnered with King’s Casino Rozvadov for the sixth edition of the Boyaa Poker Tournament (BPT). They’re also working to make more cross-continent partnerships. They said-
"The $220,000 prize pool may not have compared to those offered at other King’s Casino festivals. However, the event was the start of a new trend. With Asian poker companies spotting opportunities for growth, more cross-continent partnerships could happen in 2020."
Asian poker operators have plenty of capital, fresh ideas as well as strong desire to expand the game which help them to create new opportunities for the Asian poker enthusiasts in the months to come. Despite some isolated accidents and regulatory issues, the overall movement and outlook of the Asian poker community is positive enough to march forward.