Wholesale Changes to the 2019 Global Poker Awards With 25-Trophies Up For Grabs

When the shortlists for the 2018 Global Poker Awards (GPA) arrived in our’ inbox’, social graces went awry, as people, angry at the omissions coming from a faulty voting system, spat dummies at the Global Poker Index (GPI) like shells shot from a Sherman.

The GPI’s leader, Eric Danis, reacted with humility, taking the flagpoles to the chin, and issuing a statement promising a ‘concerted effort’ to ‘improve the voting process’ from 2019 and beyond.

Danis has lived up to his part of the bargain.

The GPA returns live and direct from the PokerGO Studios in Las Vegas, March 6. If you have a PokerGo subscription, then you can put the kettle on, grab the homemade date and almond granola, and watch the whole thing live. If not, then outside, foraging for acorns it is then.

The Changes

The broad-spectrum nomination panel turned out to be as popular as turning off your laptop. In the bin, it went, as did the people gathered in a phone booth to make the final decisions – the jury also gets an axe to the head.

As expected, an expert panel takes charge on a category-by-category basis, so, for example, people who listen to podcasts vote for the ‘Podcast of the Year’ award.

The GPI team put together a preliminary list for each category, and that then flies into the hands of the expert panel. During the ‘Preliminary Voting Round,’ each member of the group selects five they believe should make the shortlist. The GPI then use a formula similar to the Oscars to create ‘Official Ballots’ for each category.

During the ‘Final Voting Round’, voting panel members choose three people they believe should finish 1st, 2nd and 3rd, with 5, 3 and 1 points allocated to each pick. The fans also get a say, with a fan vote (that acts as one voting panel vote) calculated in the same fashion.

The GPI team then tally up the scores and announce the final four in each category in January with the winners announced in March.

Here is the nitty-gritty.


There are 25 categories, with eight appearing for the first time.

Poker ICON replaces the Lifetime Achievement award.

Final Table Performance Award replaces the Tournament Performance Award.

The Hendon Mob (THM) Award returns with the GPI team choosing someone who has ‘done something exceptional on the THM database during the 2019 poker season’.

There is also a change to the GPI Breakout Player of the Year with only players never to be ranked inside the GPI POY Top 500 until 2019, eligible.

The members of the GPI100 will select their nomination for ‘Players Choice for Toughest Opponent.’ Fans can vote for ‘People’s Choice for Hand of the Year,’ and ‘Poker Personality.’ There is a new award for ‘Twitter Personality of the Year’, the ‘Media Content Award’ expands into ‘Video,’ ‘Written’ and ‘Photo.’ Finally, as there is no jury, the GPI Award of Merit replaces the ‘Jury Prize’ award.

Here are the awards in full.

Awards Determined by Voting Panel

  • GPI Breakout Player of the Year
  • Final Table Performance
  • Streamer
  • Vlogger
  • Twitter Personality
  • Industry Person
  • Tournament Director
  • Event of the Year
  • Mid-Major/Circuit
  • Journalist
  • Broadcaster
  • Podcast
  • Media Content: Written
  • Media Content: Video
  • Media Content: Photo

Awards Determined by the Fans

  • People’s Choice: Poker Personality
  • People’s Choice: Hand of the Year

Selected by the GPI’s Top 100 Ranked Players

  • Players Choice: Toughest Opponent of 2019

Selected by the GPI Rankings/Awards Team

  • GPI Poker Player of the Year (Alex Foxen)
  • GPI Female Player of the Year (Kristen Bicknell)
  • Poker ICON
  • THM Award
  • PocketFives Legacy Award (with PocketFives)
  • Charitable Initiative
  • GPI Award of Merit