Speaking at an interview with PokerNews, Angel Guillen, former member of PokerStars Team Pro and winner of a World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet, expressed hopes that Mexico will soon enact laws that will lead to a poker boom.
He said: “A big event like this one is what we are missing in Mexico. As soon as that happens, poker is just going to go insane.”
Admitting that the poker gaming community in Mexico hasn’t shown a great deal of enthusiasm in pushing for favorable poker laws, the poker pro said that Mexico has the potential of becoming another Brazil. He said: “Poker has grown a lot in Brazil since they have started to organize tournaments all over the country. Now, I am expecting something similar in Mexico as well.”
Expressing his opinion on the current laws, Guillen said that they are vague and outdated, but Mexican lawmakers are working on improving them. Expressing hopes that Mexico will soon host a huge poker tournament, he said that one will know in September exactly whether or not Mexico will pass proper poker laws. Till September, players can either sign up at offshore online poker rooms or play illegal poker games that are being stealthily played all over the country.
Speaking about poker gaming options in Mexico, Guillen said that poker players in Mexico play plenty of poker games online and also take part in underground poker games. Some casinos offer electronic tables and two live poker rooms also exist in certain grey areas. Although these poker rooms cannot be considered fully legal, they cannot be considered to be illegal either.
Christian de Leon, another Mexican professional poker player who forms part of Team PokerStars Pro, also hopes for gambling reforms in Mexico. Speaking at an interview with Brenda Hinojosa of PokerNews, he said that a lot depends on new gambling reforms in Mexico. He said: “There have been many speculations and a lot of talks, but the truth is that we can’t say anything until the new laws will be voted.”
Towards the end of August, the press in Mexico began publishing reports on the country’s new gaming laws. Fernando Zarate Salgado, the president of the gaming commission, said that the new laws will be presented in around 10 days. He said that the new laws will raise the legal gambling age to 21 years and will require operators to get licenses that can be renewed once in a decade.