For the first time in 10 months, there is a new #1 ranked player in the world of online poker – Roman ‘Romeopro’ Romanovsky.
Regardless of rankings, Romanovsky is considered one of the very best MTT players in the entire world. He regularly competes and earns victories in tournaments at the highest stakes offered on every online site he plays. The Ukranian crusher has been a mainstay in the worldwide top 10 for the better part of two years and finally, for the first time, he’s taking over the #1 spot.
Although this is his first turn at the top of the rankings, it certainly was not the first time he had come close. ‘Romeopro’ had spent some time as the #2-ranked player in the world in 2018, trying to catch the #1-ranked player at the time, ‘C Darwin2’. However, throughout 2018 Romanovsky had a reoccurring theme – he’d show up for the biggest online series of the year, dominate them and then take time away from the online tables. At times, those long breaks turned from weeks into months and his pursuit of the #1 spot began to slip away as other top-flight grinders around him put in more volume, accumulating more PLB points.
At the beginning of 2019, it appeared that Romanovsky rededicated himself to the grind, with the goal of climbing the rankings in mind.
After taking the entirety of October and November 2018 off, and playing for only one week in December that year – Romanovsky came back to online poker with a vengeance. In January, he played and cashed nearly every day, racking up 13 five-figure scores including a fifth-place finish in the partypoker $1M GTD Big Game for $58,025. His online grind earned him the January PLB title and with it he began his climb back into the top five, finishing the month as the #4-ranked player in the world.
February was another stellar month for Romanovsky. He finished second in the monthly PLB race to ‘Girafganger7’ but still amassed massive amounts of PLB points. He picked up his first six-figure score of 2019 in the partypoker $1M GTD Big Game with a bronze medal finish for $105,500 and 517.28 PLB points.
Romanovsky kicked off March with a victory in the GGpoker $5K Blade for over $87K and 451.94 PLB points which lifted him back to his then career-high ranking of #2 in the world. He was on the doorstep of overtaking the top spot. It looked like it was going to happen the week of March 15 after picking up two victories for five-figure cashes on March 12. However, when the rankings came out, he was just 2 PLB points shy of besting the leader, ‘lena900’.
This week that changed. Aging results for ‘lena900’ dropped his total PLB score and, with Romanovsky’s recent surge, the two-point gap collapsed. ‘lena900’s PLB total slipped and Romanovsky now holds a 127 PLB point lead – taking the top spot from the longtime king of the rankings.
‘lena900’ nearly set a PocketFives record, sitting as the #1 ranked player for an astounding 44 weeks. That was just one week shy of the longest consecutive reign which sits at 45 weeks, held by online poker legend Chad ‘M8kingmoves’ Batista in 2007-2008.
For ‘lena900’ this may simply be a brief vacation from the top spot as Romanovsky opted not to grind this week. As has been demonstrated time and time again, a 127 point deficit can quickly be covered in the world of the high rollers. Additionally, this isn’t ‘lena900’s first time having dropped from the top spot and needing to retake it. He first earned the #1 ranking back in 2013 and since that time ‘lena900’ has spent seven turns in the pole position.
While all eyes will be the battle between Romanovsky and ‘lena900′ for the top spot, the grinders had better not take their eyes off the rest of the top 5.
Now based in the UK, ‘girafganger7’ is the currently #3 in the world, sitting only 785 PLB points behind Romanovsky. Another one of the most respected tournament players on the scene, ‘Giraf’ has been picking up PLB points in large chunks, including a victory in the partypoker Sunday High Roller Bounty Hunter at the beginning of the month for over $42,000 and 447.21 PLB points.
‘Giraf’ is only 12 PLB points ahead of Swedish superstar ‘C Darwin2’ who sits with 10,092 PLB points. ‘C Darwin2’ just recently took down the March 19 edition of the partypoker High Roller Bounty Hunter for $21,723 and 316.23 PLB points. The longtime former #1 could easily be back into the top spot in the next few weeks.
Rounding out the top 5 is Patrick ‘pleno1’ Leonard. Leonard has been away from the online grind for a few days while he was running deep in the partypoker MILLIONS South America Main Event. He finished 10th place for over $61,000. Leonard, also a former #1 ranked player, makes the entirety of the current top 5 alltop-rankedd players.