December 15 2014, by Eric Danis

Schemion v Kitai, Cohen v Selbst + other PoY races going down to the wire

Just a few days ago we went through every possible scenario in the GPI Player of the Year race, currently led by Daniel Colman (GPI#20), but there are plenty of other GPI PoY races that will surely go down to wire as the 2014 poker season enters its final week of play…


Ole Schemion GPI (Jules Pochy)Another late-season run sees 2013 GPI Player of the Year Ole Schemion (GPI#2) at the top of the European Player of the Year race following a pair of final table performances at the Master Classics of Poker in Amsterdam. Schemion was shutout at EPT Prague this week but as we predicted late last week, his season isn’t done. Schemion was spotted as one of the over 30 players in the field at the 25K High Roller event at the Aria Resort in Las Vegas. With another high roller at Aria, the WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic and the WPT Alpha8 Vegas event, there will be plenty of opportunities for Schemion to add more points in 2014 … and he will need to score more points in order to secure GPI European Player of the Year title, why?  …

… that’s because David Kitai (GPI#4) is simply refusing to go away. Kitai, who held the European lead until Schemion’s Amsterdam scores, is guaranteed to go back on top of the GPI European Poker Player of the Year race as he assured to add a minimum of 80+ points to his 2014 score with his current performance in the Main Event at EPT Prague. Kitai will come into Day 4 play as one of the chip leaders and in the worst case scenario, will finish 61st in the event.

Kitai will earn over 250 points – at the very least – for his EPT Prague score, however, he is already at the 13 cash cap, so, one of his cashes at EPT Barcelona comes off the books and will be replaced by his Prague score. Again, every position Kitai gains in Prague will only improve his total score. Both Kitai and Schemion are still very much in the overall PoY race. A very deep in Prague could see Kitai move to #1 in the World in the Player of the Year race.

Although he earned valuable points cashing at EPT Prague, Mustapha Kanit (GPI#30) would have needed a deeper run in order to challenge Schemion and Kitai. Kanit will add approximately 90 points to his PoY score, remaining hundreds of points away from the top duo.

1. Ole Schemion (GER), 3,979.30 points
2. Davidi Kitai (BEL), 3,856.95 (will move to #1 once EPT Prague is complete)
3. Mustapha Kanit (ITA), 3,567.62 (will move to approx. 3,657 points)


The GPI Female Poker Player of the Year race could very well be renamed the Vanessa Selbst (GPI#55) race. In each of the first two years that the GPI has conducted its various Player of the Year races, Selbst has dominated the top of the standings, earning Female PoY honors in both 2012 and 2013.

However Samantha Cohen (GPI#118) has certainly made things interesting in 2014, taking the Female PoY lead heading into EPT Prague. Cohen will add one point to her total with her 236th place finish at Eureka Prague and unfortunately for her, that won’t be enough for her to continue leading the way.

Like she has done so many times before, Selbst just shines when it matters most. Selbst will take a Top 10 chip stack into Day 4 Monday at EPT Prague. Since she has yet to hit the 13-cash quota, every point the former World #1 scores in Prague will automatically go towards her PoY totals; she is guaranteed to add a minimum of 250 some points, easily allowing her to overtake the Female PoY lead from Cohen. There are still plenty of side events remaining to play at the EPT Prague Festival so Cohen will still be able to add points there.

1. Samantha Cohen (USA), 2,110.47 (will move to approx. 2,111 points)
2. Vanessa Selbst (USA), 2,053.97 (will move the #1 once EPT Prague is complete)

Meanwhile, 2010 EPT Sanremo winner Liv Boeree (GPI#314) has all but wrapped up the European Female Player of the Year title. Boeree currently leads her former Team PokerStars teammate Victoria Coren Mitchell (GPI#743) by just under 650 points.


There are plenty of National Player of the Year races still be to be decided. Here are a few of the closest races still ongoing…

Anatoly Filatov (GPI#42) and Alex Bilokur (GPI#28) still have an outside shot at the overall Player of the Year title, but, they first have to settle things in their native land.

Filatov holds the slimmest of leads over the 2014 WSOP bracelet winner. Neither were able to make a run in the Main Event at EPT Prague but a deep run in one of the remaining side events of the festival could see Bilokur return to #1. Amazingly, after starting the season on fire, Bilokur has zero cashes since the WSOP.

1. Anatoly Filatov, 3,409.34 points
2. Alex Bilokur, 3,276.21

Oliver Price (GPI#xx) leads the way in the UK, but both players chasing him will add points to their scores once the next set of rankings are released on Wednesday.

A 30th place finish in the Eureka High Roller will see 2014 breakout star Jack Salter (GPI#40) move past the 3,000 point mark. Currently in third place, 2013 UK Player of the Year Stephen Chidwick (GPI#14) should move to #2 once his 3rd place finish in the EPT Prague Super High Roller event hits the system. Less than 100 separates the top three players in the UK.

1. Oliver Price, 3,087.04 points
2. Jack Salter, 2,832.53 (will move to approx. 3,003 points)
3. Stephen Chidwick, 2,823.67 (will move to approx. 3063 points)

The race in Poland is very much alive! 2014 PCA and EPT Deauville High Roller winner Dominik Panka (GPI#208) has lead the National race for most of the 2014 season, however, Jose Carlos Garcia (GPI#134) refuses to give Panka the trophy – at least not yet.

With a 27th place finish in the Eureka Main Event, Garcia is expected to move to less than 20 points behind Panka.

1. Dominik Panka, 2,174.43 points
2. Jose Carlos Garcia, 1,993.28 (will move to approx. 2,155 points)

Rumen Nanev (GPI#155) leads the way in Bulgaria, however, the race is far from over as Simeon Naydenov (GPI#120) and Atanas Kavrakov (GPI#341) are each less than 200 points behind the leader.

1. Rumen Nanev, 2,107.96 points
2. Simeon Naydenov, 1,960.86
3. Atanas Kavrakov, 1,914.27

Finally to South America we go as current leader Matias Ruzzi (GPI#xx) is set to be overtaken by the man who currently sits in third position, Richard Dubini (GPI#xx). Dubini’s 7th place finish in the High Roller event at the Brazilian Series of Poker earlier this month will see Dubini (unofficially) takeover the #1 spot. Dubini has earned 15 cashes so far this season.

1. Matias Ruzzi, 1,622.11 points
2. Fabian Ortiz, 1,559.22
3. Richard Dubini, 1,515.93 (will move to just under 1,700 points to take the National lead)

Note that all these scores are unofficial – they will remain this way until rankings are released – stay tuned Wednesday to see where players fall in these intense Player of the Year battles.


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About the author

Eric Danis’ passion for poker came at a very early age but it’s when writing about and covering the game he loves that Danis is most in his element. Danis is better known for creating where he spent a few years covering poker events. Danis is also known for having worked on the poker shows Poker Eh! and The Pulse on the Quad Jacks Network.