The poker industry has been dominated by men and while there are a number of women who play the game, they have not been able to win the big events or dominate the circuit on a consistent basis. Poker pro Maria Ho from Taiwan is an exception as her determination and persistence in live poker has helped her accumulate over $1.6 million in career prize money.
The 31 year old poker pro has been playing poker for the last 10 years and is well known on the circuit. Ho has had impressive results in her career such as being the last woman present at the World Series of Poker in 2014 and 2007. In 2013 Ho won the River Poker Series winning over 6 Figures. She was only the 2nd woman to win the biggest single cash prize that a woman has ever won during the 2011 World Series of Poker $5,000 No-Limit Hold’em event. Ho took home $540,020 for coming in second place and proved to everyone that women did deserve a place at the poker table.
The Global Poker Index currently ranks Maria Ho as the third best female poker player in the world. Ho uses her popularity to promote the game of poker on an international basis and is also the brand ambassador for a number of gambling companies. Ho loves the game of poker but is not a fan of having special ladies events. She feels that these events must be eliminated and women should be free to participate in general events, as they have the skill and persistence to play against men and come out on top.
In a statement, Ho said
Unfortunately, there is still a stigma attached to poker, and I feel like I have to fight against it all the time. When I tell people that I am a poker player, a lot of them really react by giving me a weird look. I would like poker to be more widely accepted. I want that the next time I say that I am a poker player and that I play poker for a living, people will not only understand what I do, but will also know that there is a lot of great and generous people that are part of the game.
Ho believes that Mainland China could become the biggest poker market in the world as Chinese love gambling and poker would fit right in. Ho believes that if the Chinese government is able to successfully crackdown on corruption, the poker industry could boom and provide a lot of revenue to the Chinese government.