Global Poker Index: Griffin Benger Joins Team Canada; Sorel Mizzi Extends His Lead

Griffin Benger

Each week, the Global Poker Index releases a list of the top 300 tournament poker players in the world using a formula that takes into account a player’s results over six half-year periods. The GPI also ranks the top performers of the year over two six-month periods as calculated by the USA Today Global Poker Index point system.

2015 GPI Player of the Year

RankPlayerGPI ScoreChange
1Dzmitry Urbanovich3380.70-
2Scott Seiver3023.15+2
3Ivan Luca2978.00-1
4Connor Drinan2919.17+1
5Joe Kuether2545.91-2
6Steve O’Dwyer2538.37+3
7Nicholas Petrangelo2326.17-1
8Ramin Hajiyev2228.48+4
9Vladimir Dobrovolskiy2152.88-2
10Atanas Kavrakov1969.75+4

As expected, the recently completed PokerStars and Monte-Carlo®Casino EPT Grand Final festival certainly had its effect on the Global Poker Index Player of the Year race, but another impressive showing by Dzmitry Urbanovich (pictured above) enabled the Polish player to withstand the heat from others to retain the No. 1 spot in the POY rankings for an eighth-straight week.

After finishing runner-up in the €100K Super High Roller during the first week of the series, Urbanovich followed that with a cash in the €10K Main Event (finishing 40th) and a third-place showing in one of the very last events, a €10K NLH 6-Max Turbo.

We mentioned last week how Scott Seiver had bolted up the rankings after winning a side event in Monaco and final tabling both of the Super High Rollers (the €100K and €50K). Seiver would then cash in the €25K High Roller as well (finishing 20th) plus take fourth in that aforementioned €10K Turbo to finish one spot behind Urbanovich — all of which helped Seiver move one spot behind Urbanovich in the GPI POY race, too, into second postion.

Others hovering just outside the Top 10 this week thanks to successful EPT Grand Finals include Dominik Nitsche (No. 11), Daniel Dvoress (No. 12), Stephen Chidwick (No. 13), and, finally, a Canadian hope in Sorel Mizzi (No. 14).

GPI 300 Top 10

Rank PlayerGPI ScoreChange
1 Scott Seiver3972.33-
2 Ole Schemion3878.61+1
3 Dan Smith3828.71+17
4 Davidi Kitai3745.14-2
5 Byron Kaverman3670.90-1
6 Jason Mercier3669.68-1
7 Stephen Chidwick3606.35-
8 Bryn Kenney3586.55-2
9
Global Poker Index: Griffin Benger Joins Team Canada; Sorel Mizzi Extends His Lead 101
Sorel Mizzi3483.57-
10 Pratyush Buddiga3451.41-2

All of those EPT Grand Final scores enabled Seiver to stay on top of the overall GPI rankings again for a third week in a row, but both of the last two top-ranked players are edging closer to him after also doing well in Monaco.

Ole Schemion had been No. 1 for a record 18 straight weeks until Seiver began his reign atop the rankings. A sixth-place finish in the EPT Grand Final Main Event helped Schemion move back into the No. 2 position this week, not far behind Seiver with the World Series of Poker now looming.

Meanwhile Dan Smith had been No. 1 for the 17 weeks prior to Schemion’s time at the top, and after dropping down to No. 20 shot back up to third position this week after winning a €5K “Midnight Hyperturbo” event in Monte Carlo, then finishing eighth in the €25K High Roller.

Incidentally, EPT Grand Final champion Adrian Mateos moved up from to No. 58 to No. 27 this week in the overall GPI rankings; he’s also now at No. 24 (up from No. 79) in the 2015 POY race.

Welcome to the GPI Top 300

Rank PlayerTotal Score
186 Georgios Sotiropoulos1923.47
198 Charlie Carrel1886.56
221 Nicolas Chouity1825.58
248 Felix Stephensen1734.75
265 Simon Higgins1679.09
268 Fabrice Soulier1669.87
271
Global Poker Index: Griffin Benger Joins Team Canada; Sorel Mizzi Extends His Lead 102
Eric Afriat1661.94
275 Damian Salas1653.27
278 Vlado Banicevic1639.82
285 Rocco Palumbo1619.76
289 Nicolau Villa-Lobos1606.19
296 Vyacheslav Stoyanov1598.06
297 Hossein Ensan1593.86
298 Jason Mo1591.67
299 Giacomo Fundaro1589.20

Fifteen players jumped into the GPI Top 300 this week, again thanks largely to EPT Grand Final successes. Felix Stephensen and Rocco Palumbo each won side events at the Monte Carlo Bay Resort and Hotel, while Hossein Ensan managed to capture two trophies in Monaco.

Also winning big this week was the U.K.’s Charlie Carrel who topped a 215-entry field to win the €25K High Roller and capture €1,114,000 million first prize. Carrel catapulted from No. 440 to No. 198 for that triumph, marking the 21-year-old’s debut inside the GPI Top 300.

The new Canadian in the Top 300 is Quebec's Eric Afriat. He won a $2,500 Série Royale de Poker at Casino Montreal in March and added a few more points with a 14th-place finish in the WPT Canadian Spring Championship at the beginning of this month.

Biggest Gains

RankPlayerTotal GPI ScoreChange
285Rocco Palumbo1619.76+531
198Charlie Carrel1886.56+242
297Hossein Ensan1593.86+207
126Isaac Haxton2166.12+148
186Georgios Sotiropoulos1923.47+132

Carrel’s leap up was the second-biggest among those in this week’s Top 300, with Rocco Palumbo’s move from No. 816 to No. 285 being the most spots advanced. In addition to winning one EPT Grand Final event, the €3K NLH “Escalator,” Palumbo took second in another, a €2K NLH Turbo 8-Max event.

Biggest Drops

RankPlayerTotal GPI ScoreChange
209Anatoly Filatov1855.05-70
224Farid Jattin1806.85-67
193John Racener1897.41-55
231Kiryl Radzivonau1774.33-45
220Blake Bohn1828.03-44

Anatoly Filatov dropped the furthest this week among GPI Top 300 players, falling from No. 139 to No. 209 after coming up empty in Monte Carlo following having three cashes there a year ago.

GPI Top 10 Canadians (the #EhTeam)

Rank PlayerTotal Score
9
Global Poker Index: Griffin Benger Joins Team Canada; Sorel Mizzi Extends His Lead 103
Sorel Mizzi3,483.57
20
Global Poker Index: Griffin Benger Joins Team Canada; Sorel Mizzi Extends His Lead 104
Daniel Negreanu3,163.85
30
Global Poker Index: Griffin Benger Joins Team Canada; Sorel Mizzi Extends His Lead 105
Jonathan Duhamel3,035.58
31
Global Poker Index: Griffin Benger Joins Team Canada; Sorel Mizzi Extends His Lead 106
Mike Leah3,034.86
42
Global Poker Index: Griffin Benger Joins Team Canada; Sorel Mizzi Extends His Lead 107
Andrew Chen2,803.49
48
Global Poker Index: Griffin Benger Joins Team Canada; Sorel Mizzi Extends His Lead 108
Ami Barer2,767.97
53
Global Poker Index: Griffin Benger Joins Team Canada; Sorel Mizzi Extends His Lead 109
Mike McDonald2,740.34
54
Global Poker Index: Griffin Benger Joins Team Canada; Sorel Mizzi Extends His Lead 110
Mike Watson2,739.13
100
Global Poker Index: Griffin Benger Joins Team Canada; Sorel Mizzi Extends His Lead 111
Sam Greenwood2,341.28
118
Global Poker Index: Griffin Benger Joins Team Canada; Sorel Mizzi Extends His Lead 112
Griffin Benger2,205.30

Team Canada remains relatively unchanged bar the addition of Griffin Benger to the roster in the last spot. He recorded a result (30th — $7,340) at WPT Canadian Spring Championship to give him a few points. Also, Sorel Mizzi keeps adding to his lead, now enjoying a large point spread between Daniel Negreanu and him. And, as he appears to be poised to make a deep run at WPT Amsterdam, that lead will likely grow next week.

To view both the 2015 Player of the Year and GPI overall rankings in their entirety, visit the official GPI website. While you’re at it, follow the GPI on Twitter and its Facebook page.

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