888Poker has signed Japanese poker player, Akira Ohyama, to represent the brand, as the country’s impending casino bill looms large.
If you want to sign professional forms with an online poker room it seems the value you need to bring to the table is pretty simple. You either have to have a large following on Twitch, or come from the land of the rising sun.
888Poker has signed Japanese poker player Akira ‘Clutch Hero’ Ohyama. He joins the likes of Jackie Glazier, Nico Villa Lobos, Bruno Kawauti, Bruno Foster Politano and Sofia Lovgren as an 888Poker Ambassador (although the 888Poker web tech guy needs to pull his finger out of his ass, as their newest asset is not shown on the ambassador page).
Ohyama first discovered poker when studying in the States. After Black Friday he returned to Japan to play online full time. Records show he has won $1.8m playing online, with over a million of that bounty earned, ironically, playing on PokerStars. He has earned $186k playing on 888Poker. His biggest single cash was for $54,377 in the Sunday 500 on PokerStars.
The latest addition to the 888Poker stable is also a World Series of Poker Circuit (WSOPC) gold ring winner. He has earned $126,000 in live tournament earnings, and the $29,843 he earned, back in 2011 when he won that event, remains his largest purse to date.
“I am honored to become a part of Team 888poker, and I am excited to help poker and the 888 brand grow in my country. I will continue working hard both on and off the tables to play to the best of my ability and show results while representing my favorite site, 888poker.” Said Ohyama.
The second largest online poker network in the world has followed in the footsteps of the largest online poker network in the world. In Jan 2015, Stars announced the signing of Kosei Ichinose, the first Japanese player to ever grace the Team PokerStars line up. Then, in March 2015, they rather controversially hired Japanese model, and corn on the cob sucking Yuiko Matsukawa, as a brand ambassador.
The two largest online poker rooms in the world are positioning themselves for a Japanese online poker explosion. Lawmakers in Japan are still fiddling around with a casino bill that if introduced, would make them one of the most lucrative gambling markets in the world.
It was hoped that the new bill would be introduced in time for the 2020 Summer Olympic Games, in Tokyo, but its believed progress is proceeding to slow too make that cut, with 2012 a wiser prediction.