• Hi Guest, The forum will be moving hosts on 26 July and as such will be closed from Midday until the move has completed.
    As we will be with new hosts it may take a while before DNS get updated so it could take while before you can get back on the forum.
    I think it will take at least 4 hours but could easily be 48!
    Ark Royal
  • There seems to be a problem with some alerts not being emailed to members. I have told the hosts and they are investigating.
  • Hi Guest Just in case you were not aware I wanted to highlight that you can now get a 20% discount on Inform Racing.
    Simply enter the coupon code ukbettingform when subscribing here.
    We have a lot of members who are existing users of Inform Racing so help is always available if needed.
    Best Wishes
    AR
  • Sorry for the ongoing issues that you may have been experiencing whilst using the forum lately

    It really is frustrating when the forum slows down or Server Error 500 pops up.

    Apparently the hosts acknowledge there is a problem.
    Thank you for using our services and sorry for the experienced delay!
    Unfortunately, these errors are due to a higher server load. Our senior department knows about the issue and they are working towards a permanent resolution of the issue, however, I'd advise you to consider using our new cPanel cloud solutions: https://www.tsohost.com/web-hosting


    I will have to investigate what the differences are with what We have know compared to the alternative service they want us to migrate to.
    Keep safe.
    AR
  • Hi Guest Just in case you were not aware I wanted to highlight that you can now get a free 7 day trial of Horseracebase here.
    We have a lot of members who are existing users of Horseracebase so help is always available if needed, as well as dedicated section of the fourm here.
    Best Wishes
    AR

Snooker

Delboy99

Mare

Judd Trump fuming as rival Mark Selby snatches No 1 ranking after British Open defeat.

Both Selby and Trump were knocked out of the British Open at the last 32 stage, but the Jester from Leicester's World Championship win earlier this year means he will overtake his rival at the top of the snooker rankings.​

A frustrated Judd Trump insisted there was "nothing I can do" as he relinquished his title as the best snooker player in the world for the first time in two years. His 3-2 defeat to Elliot Slessor in the last 32 of the British Open means Mark Selby will replace him as the world number one after the tournament.
That is despite the Jester from Leicester losing his own match 3-0 to Ali Carter at the Morningside Arena in his hometown.
It is Selby's World Championship win earlier this year which has propelled him back to the pinnacle of the rankings for the first time since he was usurped in March 2019 after four years at the top.
The prize money and points he gained by winning his fourth world title at the Crucible in April are worth so much that Trump's 14 ranking title victories in the last two-and-a-half years have not been enough for the 32-year-old to keep his crown.
The Bristolian had complained about the conditions at the British Open after his first round victory over Mitchell Mann, and clearly struggled again with a highest break of just 33.
His fate was confirmed as world number 49 Slessor sank a tricky red into the middle pocket in the deciding frame to progress.
"There's is nothing I can do," Trump said after the match. "I've won enough tournaments to be world number one."
Even before crashing out of the tournament, the reigning World Grand Prix champion had complained about the "fault with the ranking system" which had put his status as the best in the world in jeopardy. ;)
 

Delboy99

Mare

Mark Allen recalls 'horrible' match against ex partner Reanne Evans after awkward moment.

The former partners faced off for the first time in a professional ranking tournament at the British Open on Monday, and neither player really enjoyed the experience.​

Mark Allen got one over on his ex-partner Reanne Evans when he knocked her out of the British Open in what he described as a "horrible" experience. The two were drawn to face each other in the first round of the tournament at the Morningside Arena in Leicester.
The Northern Irishman won the match 3-2 despite looking destined to lose when he was 38 points behind in the fourth frame with his opponent leading 2-1.
But he managed to claw it back and win the deciding frame to progress to the second round and claim victory in the pair's first ever professional meeting in a ranking tournament.
The tension was already palpable before the two emerged to play their tie, and things became even more awkward when Evans appeared to snub a fist bump offered by her former lover before the match began.
After his victory, Allen made it clear he would not want to face Evans in a tournament again. ;)
 

The Hare

Filly
Still can't believe Evans lost that game - she proper bottled the last frame, 2 pots from victory. Allen wasn't in the same form as first tournament.

Trump is spot on the rankings, as in darts are way too influenced by 1 event, a Hearn trait. He says he copies golf but the money in snooker is way top heavy. I mean Williams got £100,000 for last week yet the runner up less than half. Plus all the perks for winning of endless tournaments and Ranking events that are certain from it for the top players. Outside the Top 32 is a poor return especially in Covid with no China.
 

Delboy99

Mare

Rankings Update After the British Open.

There has been one significant change in the standings.


Mark Selby has been confirmed as the new world number one in the rankings after the conclusion of the British Open at the Morningside Arena.
The Jester may have exited in the second round in what was his local ranking event in Leicester, but the deduction of Judd Trump’s prize money from the International Championship two years ago saw the latter’s tally dip underneath that of Selby.
Trump could have held onto top spot with a run to the quarter-finals but lost out to Elliot Slessor in the third round, and it’s fair to say that the 31 year-old hasn’t taken the exchange in positions that well.
Perhaps understandably so, considering the fact that Trump has triumphed in ten ranking events to Selby’s five over the last 24-month period, albeit Selby did land the big one at the Crucible in May that earned him a whopping £500,000.
As the official rankings stand after the British Open, Selby leads Trump by just £7,000, and an oddity of the disrupted calendar at present means that Trump will actually regain his coveted number one position no matter what the outcome is in the next ranking tournament in Northern Ireland.
For Selby, though, it’s the four-time world champion’s seventh spell at the summit of the sport, a fine achievement that means a lot to the 38 year-old.
Mark Williams, meanwhile, moves up three places and back into the top eight in the world rankings after his fine British Open success on Sunday.
It was the Welshman’s 24th career ranking title, coming a neat 24 years after he previously won the old British Open back in 1997.
Ding Junhui, who hasn’t participated during the 2021/22 campaign so far, slips to tenth, and with the points from his 2019 UK Championship victory set to come off later this year, a dramatic plummet outside the world’s 16 appears to be almost inevitable.


1Mark Selby£1,213,000
2Judd Trump£1,206,000
3Ronnie O’Sullivan£864,000
4Neil Robertson£772,000
5Kyren Wilson£609,500
6Shaun Murphy£574,500
7John Higgins£411,500
8Mark Williams£400,500
9Stephen Maguire£345,500
10Ding Junhui£335,250
11Mark Allen£296,000
12Barry Hawkins£292,000
13Stuart Bingham£281,000
14Jack Lisowski£272,500
15Yan Bingtao£261,500
16Anthony McGill£248,500

Lower down the pecking order, Gary Wilson rises back into the top 32 with the £45,000 he earned as the British Open finalist enough to see him place in 28th spot.
Zhou Yuelong and David Gilbert’s runs to the quarter-finals ensure that the world numbers 17 and 18 close the gap to the top 16 in what could become a potentially interesting Race to the Masters towards the end of 2021.
Following their somewhat unexpected appearances in the semi-finals, Elliot Slessor and Jimmy Robertson were the other big movers with the English pair rising to 43rd and 48th respectively. ;)
 

Delboy99

Mare

Northern Ireland Open snooker 2021: David Gilbert makes fine start in win over Ian Burns, David Grace beats Jimmy White.

Championship League winner David Gilbert completed a 4-0 win over Ian Burns in the qualifying round of the Northern Ireland Open at Leicester's Morningside Arena. Gilbert reached the televised stage in Belfast with breaks of 116, 108 and 52 in a performance that illustrated his formidable scoring power.​

David Gilbert enjoyed a 4-0 win over world number 102 Ian Burns to reach the last 64 of the Northern Ireland Open boosted by two centuries on Friday.
The former Crucible semi-finalist has made a bright start to the new season by winning his first ranking event at the Championship League and being edged out 4-3 by Gary Wilson in the quarter-finals of the British Open last week.
The world number 18 claimed a tight first frame against Burns before breaks of 52, 116 and 108 helped Gilbert progress to the last 64 of the televised stage at the Waterfront Hall in Belfast.
World number 97 Louis Heathcote closed with a 73 break in a 4-3 win over Craig Steadman, a player ranked one place lower.
Heathcote also made runs of 55 and 65 to lead 2-0 and 3-2 with his opponent rolling in 52, 78 and a 107 before Leicester's Heathcote claimed the decider to advance.
Six-times world runner-up Jimmy White toiled in a 4-0 defeat to world number 58 David Grace, who opened with a 57 and a 67 on his route to the last 64. ;)
 

Delboy99

Mare

Jimmy White Fails in Northern Ireland Open Qualifiers.

It was the last day of action in the preliminaries for the third ranking event of the 2021/22 snooker season.





Jimmy White was easily beaten by David Grace as the Northern Ireland Open qualifiers reached their conclusion on Friday in Leicester.
The veteran never got going and Grace comfortably completed a 4-0 victory to book his spot in the last 64 at the venue stages of the competition instead.
The in-form David Gilbert was another 4-0 winner at the Morningside Arena in what was the fifth day of qualifying action ahead of the main event in October.
Gilbert, who won the Championship League recently to secure a maiden ranking event success, compiled a brace of century breaks in comprehensively overcoming Ian Burns.
Elsewhere in the Northern Ireland Open qualifiers, Rory McLeod earned a similarly one-sided triumph against Dominic Dale while Liam Highfield dropped just the solitary frame in a 4-1 defeat of women’s world champion Reanne Evans.
The closest encounter of the day was between Louis Heathcote and Craig Steadman, with the former holding off a late fight back from his opponent to advance from a decider.
All of the top 16 players in the world rankings weren’t involved in Leicester this week and will instead play their round of 128 fixtures at the Waterfront Hall when the tournament proper gets under way in six weeks.;)


Round
 

Delboy99

Mare

Scottish Open snooker 2021: Ronnie O'Sullivan faces Dominic Dale, Judd Trump meets Robert Milkins, Mark Selby opener.

The Scottish Open is due to be held in Wales this year at Venue Cymru in Llandudno between 6-12 December with the sport's leading players discovering their opponents in the first round. Defending champion Mark Selby faces Sean Maddocks with last year's runner-up Ronnie O'Sullivan meeting Dominic Dale. Judd Trump takes on Robert Milkins LIVE on Eurosport.​

Six-times world champion Ronnie O'Sullivan will face two-times ranking event winner Dominic Dale in the first round of the Scottish Open in December with Judd Trump meeting Robert Milkins in his opening match LIVE on Eurosport.
Defending champion and world champion Mark Selby meets Sean Maddocks in his tournament opener.
Selby has won the event over the past two years with a 9-6 win over Jack Lisowski in 2019 and a 9-3 triumph against O'Sullivan last year in Milton Keynes.
The event will be staged in Wales this year by Venue Cymru in Llandudno between 6-12 December after a contractual issue saw the tournament organisers forced to abandon plans to return to the Emirates Arena in Glasgow, host venue between 2016 and 2019.
World finalist Shaun Murphy faces three-times women’s world champion Ng On Yee with Players champion John Higgins opening against Alfie Burden.
The qualifying round for the event runs between 24-29 September at Barnsley's Metrodome with matches involving the game's top 16 players held over until the venue.
The Scottish Open is the third leg of the Home Nations Series broadcast LIVE on Eurosport and Quest with the Northern Ireland Open in (9-17) October, the English Open in (1-7) November and the Welsh Open concluding the series in (28-6) February and March. ;)
 

Delboy99

Mare

Ken Doherty Loses in Northern Ireland Open Qualifiers.

The preliminaries for the third ranking event of the season are taking place this week at the Morningside Arena.





Ken Doherty won’t feature at the venue stages of the Northern Ireland Open after losing 4-2 to Martin Gould in the preliminary round on Thursday.
Doherty and Gould were locked at 2-2 after four frames, but the latter ended the Irishman’s hopes of competing in this year’s Northern Ireland Open hopes by winning a close fifth frame before completing the victory with a century break.
Luca Brecel also booked his flight to Belfast, the Belgian Bullet earning a more straightforward 4-0 triumph over Michael White at the Morningside Arena.
Meanwhile, Elliot Slessor’s form continued into a new week as he won the last three frames to deny amateur Ross Muir in a decider, while Liang Wenbo won a battle of the Chinese competitors with Pang Junxu 4-1.
Xiao Guodong edged Peter Lines in a match that lasted the distance, Andy Hicks overcame Aaron Hill 4-2, and Pakistan’s Farakh Ajaib conjured up a surprise defeat of Andrew Higginson.
Among the others to progress to the main tournament that takes place in October were Mitchell Mann, Jak Jones, and Simon Lichtenberg.
A change to the format in the Home Nations series this season means that only the top 16 in the world rankings and a few local competitors will play their opening matches at the venue stages.
Every other player in the 128-player field must undergo their opening fixture at a different location – in this case the Morningside Arena – before qualifying for the main draw.
The final qualifying ties take place on Friday, including the matches between Jimmy White and David Grace, Championship League winner David Gilbert and Ian Burns, and Reanne Evans and Liam Highfield. ;)
 

Delboy99

Mare

World Snooker Tour launch investigation after Peter Lines ‘offered Xiao Guodong out for a fight’ after match.

Peter Lines has been accused of asking Xiao Guodong to step outside for a fight after the veteran Englishman was beaten 4-3 by the Chinese star in the Northern Ireland Open qualifiers in Leicester last week.
Lines, who first turned pro back in 1991 and is now a player director for the WPBSA, was also accused of swearing at Xiao after finishing the match furious over a disagreement on the table.
The 51-year-old was reportedly angry over the white ball being replaced incorrectly after a foul from Xiao, with the Yorkshireman accusing his opponent of cheating.
Xiao wrote about the incident on his Sina Weibo account – a Chinese social media platform – saying that he had made a complaint.
‘I do not make trouble – but also I am not afraid of any provocation,’ wrote the 32-year-old. ‘I am a Chinese. Though my English is not good, I still could make out what was said.
‘I have sent all the details to the authorities and am waiting for them to announce the investigation results.’
A letter was written by Xiao’s team to snooker authorities at WST and the WPBSA detailing their account of the situation, which read: ‘Xiao brought us to the attention that Peter was using swear words and was also threatening Xiao to step outside the arena for a fight in front of the referee, which is not acceptable and quite intimidating for a player who is coming from a different country.
‘In fact it was the security guy that stopped Peter from doing worse.’
Approached for his side of the story by the Sun, Lines said: ‘I would like to comment – but I have been ordered not to until the investigation is concluded.’
An investigation is now underway, as confirmed by a WST statement, which read: ‘WST has received a formal complaint from Xiao Guodong regarding the conduct of his opponent Peter Lines following their match in the Northern Ireland Open Qualifiers.
‘A thorough investigation is now underway and the matter is being treated serious.
‘Neither WST or the WPBSA will make any further comment until the issue is resolved.’
Guodong’s win over Lines sets up a clash with Mitchell Mann in the last 64 of the Northern Ireland Open in October. ;)
 

Delboy99

Mare

Snooker star Robertson reflects on fine British Open campaign.

Jimmy Robertson enjoyed his best run in a World Snooker tournament for nearly three years.

The Bexhill potter performed superbly to reach the semi-finals of the British Open at the Morningside Arena, Leicester, last week.
Robertson won five matches in all to get to the last four of a ranking event for the second time in his career before bowing out at the hands of eventual champion Mark Williams.
The 35-year-old opened up with a 3-0 win over world number 63 Mark Joyce before recovering from 2-1 down to defeat 39th-ranked Thai player Noppon Saengkham 3-2 thanks to a break of 99 in the deciding frame. Robertson then edged out Welsh cueman Duane Jones 3-2, prevailing 62-53 in a tight final frame having earlier knocked in runs of 82 and 81 to lead 2-1. ;)
 

Delboy99

Mare

Snooker star David Lilley on a memorable 2021 and his Toon support.

The last three or four months has been a bit of a golden time for North East snooker, with Gary Wilson and Elliot Slessor making waves at the British Open in recent weeks and DAVID LILLEY seeing off the likes of Ken Doherty and Jimmy White to win the World Seniors Championship at the Crucible in May. And for 45-year-old Lilley, who spends much of his time across the Tyne at Gateshead Snooker Centre, the best could still be to come…

I started playing snooker when I was 13. I’d been playing pool for a little bit, and one day I said to my dad that I wanted to play on one of the big tables. I was hooked straight away. I won my first major – the European Championship – when I was 19. The same year, I lost the Northern Amateur final to the late Paul Hunter. And then I got a job and I had to grow up, basically; there wasn’t a lot of money around, and I couldn’t get a sponsor. I’d have loved to turn pro but I didn’t have the coin to do it.
After the tobacco sponsors were squished, snooker really suffered – to the point where there were only around six tournaments a year. At that point, I’d won the English Amateur title, I was CIU champ three years in a row, I was one of the top amateurs in the world and I had quite a good job as well, so I didn’t feel it was worth giving that up to play in a handful of tournaments a year. I continued working in the insurance industry for a number of years, and then Barry Hearn took over and took snooker back to what it was like in the Eighties, where there were 16 or 17 tournaments a year again. And I thought: ‘You know, I’m coming up to 40 years old – I need to make a decision and just go for it.’ I was actually at work, at a team-building workshop, when I eventually made the call. There was a guest speaker there called Brendan Hall, who’d
taken part in the Round the World Yacht Race, and a lot of the things he said just struck a chord with me. That was it. I thought: ‘These are signs that are telling me I’ve got to leave work and go and play snooker full-time.’ I told my gaffer I was going to leave, and I did.
I got on the tour – the World Snooker Tour – two years ago now. The irony is that, after waiting all of my life to turn pro, I couldn’t have picked a worse time to do it, because Covid kicked in and just about every tournament got cancelled!
However, winning the World Seniors Championship earlier this year has really changed everything for me. After overcoming a shoulder problem (the result of going from spending eight hours a week at the table as an amateur to something like 48 as a pro!), I could feel myself starting to play well again and it all came good that week in May. The experience was second to none. It was at the Crucible – the home of snooker – and it was just unreal. You see it on the TV where there are two tables side by side, but even just playing the one-table arena, the place felt really small. It was intense, and you feel the pressure straight away. You’re being interviewed every two minutes, and it all just builds. I felt I got better with every game I played, all the way through to the final against Jimmy White. To be playing against Jimmy – my hero – was really quite surreal. He’s such a nice guy, too – he couldn’t have been friendlier throughout the week.
Last month, I played in the British Open in Leicester. It was the first time the tournament had been played since 2004, and it’s a little like snooker’s version of the FA Cup – it’s really good for the neutral because two top players can come up against one another in the first round, as was the case with Mark Selby and Shaun Murphy this year. I won my first game and I played really well. I didn’t give my opponent, Craig Steadman, much of a chance, and I got over the line 3-1. The draw for the next round took place and I ended up playing Jordan Brown, but it was one of those where everything I touched went wrong and whatever he touched went right. After the way I’d been playing, it was disappointing to lose, but you have to take your medicine and come back fighting.
While I was there, though, I learned I was going to be playing in snooker’s Champion of Champions later this year. It was a complete surprise; ten seconds before you saw me do an interview for ITV4 on the Tuesday night, that was when I found out! I was stood with Rob Walker, having a bit of craic about the Olympics, and just as the camera was about to start rolling, he said: ‘So, Dave, how do you feel about being in the Champion of Champions?’ I just couldn’t believe it. People will laugh but, in my opinion, it’s the biggest competition there is – all of the players taking part have had to pot match ball to win a tournament. It’s the
one I’ve always dreamed of being in. I’m counting down the days ‘til I go and play in it and I’m very thankful to my sponsor, GoSkippy Insurance, for their continued support.
I love the Toon. The last 18 months, not being able to come to St. James’ Park, has been complete torture. I was planning on coming to the Burnley game and the Southampton game as well, but they’ve just revamped the snooker calendar and I had to play in a qualifier! But I’ll definitely be coming to a few games as the season goes on. I just hope we can finish about where we did last season, and we’ll see what happens with this takeover. ;)
 

Delboy99

Mare

Judd Trump and Mark Selby swap snooker for pool as they enter September tournaments.

Both Judd Trump and Mark Selby will be competing in pool tournaments this month as they take advantage of a gap in their snooker calendars.
Trump will be playing at the US Open Pool Championship in Atlantic City, while Selby is teaming up with his brother-in-law Gareth Potts at the Ultimate Pool Pairs Cup.
The Ace heads to Atlantic City for the 9-ball competition which runs from 13-18 September, while the Jester from Leicester will be playing live on Freesports TV on Monday 27 September under International 8-Ball Rules.
On his American adventure Trump said: ‘I think the US Open Pool Championship has got the most heritage and prestige to it, it’s been around a long time. Everyone in the world of pool knows it’s the tournament if you are going to win one, it’s this one. For me, that’s what kind of attracted me, to go in at the deep end, going in at the biggest event and see what I can do.
‘I think when I get over there and step out, I don’t want to make a fool of myself, that will add pressure. But in the snooker world, I know what I am capable of and I know when I put the work in I’ve got that belief whereas, in pool, I do not know what’s going to happen. Hopefully, I can have a good run in it.”
‘It’s always been a dream of mine to try and take snooker over there into the US, it’s such a big market, it’s an aspiration of mine. It’s nice to be playing any cue sport out there. Just to be a part of it, part of the atmosphere, part of the US Open, hopefully, I can do well and one day they’ll have me back to play again and the dream would be to have a good run.”
‘For me, there’s potential to play in front of a whole new fanbase, there’s a lot of people who watch snooker and don’t watch pool and vice versa. I think for me, it’s all about trying to find that middle ground and getting different people interested in different things, and getting people to open their eyes to see what’s going on.
‘It’s a chance for me to get on their radar and hopefully I can put on a good showing of myself and hopefully nobody hates me after the tournament! Hopefully, I can bring them back across to snooker and hopefully in the future combine them both and make them both as big as possible.’
Selby is returning to pool after winning the WEPF World 8-Ball Pool Championship in 2006 and is excited to compete with Potts, who is a four-time world 8-ball pool champion himself.
‘I’m really looking forward to the tournament and teaming up with Gareth – it’s going to be a unique and special challenge,’ said Selby.
‘It has been a long time since I’ve played 8-ball competitively but having seen what Ultimate Pool has done with its recent tv events, I can’t wait to get out into the arena and sample the atmosphere.’
Trump and Selby have a clear September to take on some other opportunitites after the Turkish Masters was postponed and the month now only features qualifiers for the English and Scottish Opens.
Both players won’t be playing in those qualifiers as they head straight to the venues for those events and play their first round matches there, due to being in the top 16 in the world rankings. ;)
 

Delboy99

Mare
Judd Trump to compete in U.S. Open Pool Championship.

The 2019 World Snooker Champion Judd Trump will be crossing the Atlantic Ocean this month to compete in the U.S. Open 9-ball Pool Championship at Harrah’s Resort in Atlantic City from September 13 - 18.
The 22-time ranking snooker title winner from Bristol in England is heading to the United States at the peak of his snooker powers.


Speaking to Matchroom Pool, who organize the Championship, he said: "I think the U.S. Open Pool Championship has got the most heritage and prestige to it – it's been around a long time.


"Everyone in the world of pool knows it's the tournament if you are going to win one, it's this one. For me, that's what kind of attracted me, to go in at the deep end, going in at the biggest event and see what I can do.

"I think when I get over there and step out I don't want to make a fool of myself, that will add pressure. But in the snooker world, I know what I am capable of and I know when I put the work in I've got that belief, whereas in pool I do not know what's going to happen. Hopefully, I can have a good run in it.


"It's always been a dream of mine to try and take snooker over there into the U.S., it's such a big market, it's an aspiration of mine. It's nice to be playing any cue sport out there. Just to be a part of it, part of the atmosphere, part of the U.S. Open, hopefully I can do well and one day they'll have me back to play again and the dream would be to have a good run.


"For me, there's potential to play in front of a whole new fanbase. There's a lot of people who watch snooker and don't watch pool and vice versa. I think for me, it's all about trying to find that middle ground and getting different people interested in different things, and getting people to open their eyes to see what's going on. It's a chance for me to get on their radar and hopefully I can put on a good showing of myself, and hopefully nobody hates me after the tournament! Hopefully, I can bring them back across to snooker and hopefully in the future combine them both and make them both as big as possible."


The 32-year-old gave us an idea of what fans can expect. "I'm excited for the U.S. Pool fans to get a glimpse of me playing," he added. "I will bring a lot more freedom and energy to the game because it isn't the be-all and end-all on it for me at the moment, my whole life isn't depending on it. I will be one of the players who can play with a smile on my face with a lot more freedom and enjoyment. Hopefully, they will take to that, they will see I am having fun with what I am doing, I try to get that across in everything I do. I think people respect that and hopefully, I can get as many people as possible playing pool."


Trump insisted that he isn't there just to make up the numbers. He further commented to Matchroom Pool: "At the U.S. Open I've not come to take part, I've come to try and win the event. I've come to give it my absolute all and to see what I can do with myself. It's something I've always felt I wanted to do, and see how good I can be at pool.


"I am not under the illusion that I will go there and blow everyone away. I know the breaking off and tactical side of things is going to be tricky for me. I know there's a lot of things that can go wrong. Hopefully, I can just enjoy myself and pot all the balls on the table and not get into that problem." ;)
 

Delboy99

Mare

Ronnie O’Sullivan owes me a massive favour for Champion of Champions place, says Mark Williams.

Mark Williams reckons Ronnie O’Sullivan owes him a ‘massive favour’ after his British Open win is set to secure the Rocket in this season’s Champion of Champions event.
Williams claimed the British Open title on Sunday 22 August, beating Gary Wilson 6-4 in the final in Leicester and he gave his old rival a helping hand in the process.
O’Sullivan, quite remarkably, reached five ranking finals last season but failed to win any of them, so didn’t manage to book a spot in the Champion of Champions by lifting any silverware.
However, due to players winning multiple titles over the last year, places in the event are opened up to the highest ranked players who didn’t manage to qualify.
With the Rocket ranked number three in the world and Williams stopping Wilson from qualifying for the event, O’Sullivan is set for a return to the Champion of Champions and the Welshman is expecting a thank you from his fellow Class of ’92 legend.
Speaking after his British Open glory, Williams spoke of the remarkable achievement that he, O’Sullivan and John Higgins are still competing at the top of snooker nearly 30 years after turning professional.
‘Myself, John Higgins and Ronnie O’Sullivan having turned pro together all those years ago… we are still hanging around like a bad smell,’ Williams told The Sportsman.
‘I have dropped down the rankings a few times and come back up. But we just seem to be sticking around for a lot longer than people expected.
‘I have always believed there are definitely more titles out there for the other two, but I have won another one here and won one last season – so who knows, maybe I can get a couple more?
‘And by winning this week I may have guaranteed Ronnie a place in the Champion of Champions on his world ranking, so that could be a massive favour he owes me.’
Williams took his ranking title tally to 24 with his victory in Leicester cementing his place at fifth on the all-time list behind O’Sullivan (37), Stephen Hendry (36), Higgins (31) and Steve Davis (28).
The Welsh Potting Machine thinks that players of his era and older were only limited by the number of events they played in during their pomp and Judd Trump (next on the list on 22 titles) has a great chance to surpass them due to the regular tournaments on the calendar now.
‘I do think that if there had been the number of events we play in now all through from 1992, then Ronnie would have 100, Higgins 80, and maybe me on 40,’ said Williams.
”Judd has won 11 in two years. There were only 12 tournaments in total in two years at one time.’
The Class of ’92 and Trump will have their next chance to add to their ranking titles at the Northern Ireland Open, with the main stages starting on 9 October in Belfast.
The Northern Ireland Open and then the English Open offer qualifying chances for the Champion of Champions in November, but even if there are two unqualified winners at those events – which aren’t O’Sullivan – that will still only be 15 different champions for the event and the Rocket will take the final spot on the world rankings. ;)
 

Delboy99

Mare

Neil Robertson calls for change to ‘stale and dated’ World Snooker Championship.

Neil Robertson wants to see changes to the ‘dated and stale’ World Snooker Championship format, with shorter matches at the climax of the tournament and even a change of venue.
The 2010 world champion believes snooker needs to evolve and that few people want to watch the epic World Championship matches played over best of 33 frames in the semi-finals and best of 35 in the final.
The Australian says that he would never watch a match of that length in its entirety, so struggles to see how casual snooker fans, or potential fans of the sport could be enticed in by such lengthy contests.
The 39-year-old has only been to the Crucible semi-finals once since his incredible world title triumph in 2010 and he admits that his desire for a change in format is a personal choice, but it comes not just from a playing perspective, but also from an entertainment stance.
‘I’ve got a little bit of an issue with the World Championship, with the length of the format,’ Robertson told the Talking Balls podcast. ‘I feel that matches can drag on a bit and I’ve been sucker-punched into getting bogged down too much and getting involved in longer, scrappier frames. Which is my fault and it happened again this year, even though I said it wasn’t going to happen.
‘Personally I don’t really like the format, I think it’s pretty dated and it can be very stale.
‘I’ve never watched a best of 35 from start to finish, ever. You’ll never get the general public watching a best of 35 from start to finish, ever.
‘They’ll watch the final of the Masters or UK [Championship], they’ll dip in and out of the World Championship but they’ll never be engaged in the whole match.
‘From an entertainment point of view, the World Championship is a struggle for me to watch and I’m a top snooker player in the game.’
The Thunder from Down Under is not calling for a move to short format games at the World Championship, but believes the length of matches over the first three rounds are as long as any games should be.
‘I think best of 19 is great, best of 25 is really intriguing but you should just cut it off at that,’ he continued. ‘You don’t need to play best of 33 or 35.
‘For me personally as a sports fan I’d never tune in to watch it, I just wouldn’t, it’s like the equivalent of an eight-day Test match in cricket, it’s far too long.
‘I feel as though we’re going to lose a lot of potential fans of the sport unless we change it up.
‘I feel as though the UK Championship has benefitted a lot from going from best of 17 to best of 11. The players have adjusted, we’re not concerned about playing these long formats anymore, we just want to play the matches and for people to see good entertainment quickly.’
Robertson is not expecting the format to change any time soon and knows he must learn to deal with the longest matches in the sport if he is to add to his one world title.
However, if the World Championship was played over a shorter format, he believes he would already be a multiple world champion by now.
‘I don’t enjoy playing a best of 33 or 35,’ he said. ‘It’s me personally, and I’ve probably lost a bit of focus during some matches and that’s on me. I need to change that, while this event is as long as it is then I need to adjust to that.
‘I’d love it to be a shorter format and I’d probably have won it a few more times since I did, but that’s up to me to change that.’
On the longest matches, Robertson added: ‘As a player it’s kind of boring, you’re not shaking the other guy’s hand and saying, “well played” or “bad luck” you’re saying, “we’re going to continue this four hours later and then the next day.”
‘Sometimes you play a best of 25 over three days and it doesn’t feel like you’re playing a match, it feels like you’re playing three best of 9s at that point.
‘Best of 19 up till the quarters and then best of 25 all the way through would make for a much more entertaining World Championship, that’s my opinion.’
Robertson has previously said he is not a fan of the Crucible ‘from a technical point of view’ as it is too tight for him to comfortably play some shots during the two-table set-up stage of the tournament.
He says there have been shots he simply could not play as the venue is so tight, and would like to see a different venue used until the semi-finals when the event could return to the Crucible for the one-table set-up.
On how tight the venue is, Robertson said: ‘That’s where the Crucible is pretty terrible, really. It’s an amazing place to play when you’re in the semi-finals, one of the best venues you could ever play at.
‘But when it’s that small, compact environment, it’s not a great venue to play at from a player’s point of view. Even though you appreciate all the history that’s gone on there.
‘I wouldn’t mind seeing a change in venue and then bringing it back for the semi-finals and final at the Crucible. I can’t see that happening but that’s probably something I’d look to do.’ ;)
 

Delboy99

Mare

Northern Ireland Open snooker 2021: Ricky Walden continues scoring form with win over Fraser Patrick, Joe Perry loses.​

Ricky Walden has lost none of the scoring form that saw him reach the quarter-finals of the British Open last week. The three-times ranking event winner lost to Mark Williams after defeating John Higgins in the third round, but booked his spot in the last 64 of the Northern Ireland Open with a 4-1 win over Fraser Patrick in the qualifying round in Leicester.​

Ricky Walden picked up from where he left off at last week's British Open in a 4-1 win over Fraser Patrick on Wednesday in the qualifying round of the Northern Ireland Open in Leicester.
The three-times ranking event winner lost 4-3 to champion Mark Williams in the quarter-finals of the season's second ranking event in Leicester, but has put that defeat quickly behind him.
Walden produced breaks of 57, 81, 58 and 62 in a polished performance against the world number 112 Scotsman that helped him reach the last 64 and the televised stages of the Belfast event.
World number 41 Robert Milkins ran out a 4-0 victory against 1995 world finalist Nigel Bond with the highlight of his performance producing a 95 run in the third frame.
Matches involving the world's top 16 will be held over until the televised stage at the Waterfront Hall with the Northern Ireland Open staged between 9-17 October LIVE on Eurosport as Judd Trump defends his title.
Former Masters finalist Joe Perry suffered an early exit in losing 4-2 to Oliver Lines.
Perry made 113 in the second frame and 52 in the fourth, but could not stave off defeat with the world number 69 compiling 76, 117 and 73 to progress to the last 64.
It has been a slow start to the campaign for the world number 21 Perry, who has also suffered elimination in the first round at the Championship League and British Open.
But there was a better outcome for former Northern Ireland Open winner Mark King, who completed a 4-1 win over Li Hang in his qualifying match. ;)
 

The Hare

Filly
There's so little snooker at the moment they might end up playing Pool full time! Hopefully China will be back on board soon.
 

Delboy99

Mare
There's so little snooker at the moment they might end up playing Pool full time! Hopefully China will be back on board soon.
… yes, they could all join up with Trump in America. It will be interesting to see just how he does. Been watching a lot of Ronnie’s pool adventures on telly in America. Some of these top notch pool players can certainly whack the ball at break off. They very nearly manage to smash the balls so hard, they very nearly break into pieces. They have probably been playing so long, they know all the ins and outs and pool will be second nature to them. Give them a snooker cue and it will be a very different story! ;)
 

Delboy99

Mare

Drago: Trump Can’t Win 9-Ball.

Tony Drago, one of a handful of snooker players who have had success on the blue baize, is convinced that Judd Trump has virtually no chance of winning next week’s US Open Pool Championship.
Drago enjoyed a successful snooker career spanning over 30 years, climbing as high as tenth in the world rankings. His highlights on the smaller table include victory in the 2003 World Pool Masters, a run to the semi-finals of the World Pool Championship in the same year, and two Mosconi Cup appearances, notably 2007 when he was named Most Valuable Player.
So the charismatic 55-year-old from Malta is better qualified than most to rate Trump’s chances of success in Atlantic City.
“Over the past week I have read a lot of nonsense about it, people saying Judd can win it,” said Drago. “I wish him well of course and it’s fantastic that he is playing. But he can’t win it, unless everyone else gets very nervous when they play him.
“He is probably better than any of them at potting balls. But can he play the jump shot? Can he break? Can he get out of snookers on a pool table? I don’t think so. He could play pool 20 hours a day for two or three weeks but that’s not enough time to really learn those shots.
“I hope he gets through the first two or three rounds, and maybe his opponents will get nervous because they play the name rather than the opponent. But I don’t think he can get much further.
“If Judd wants to play pool, give him my number. I haven’t picked a pool cue up for two years but I could take a few quid off him!”
Since dropping off snooker’s pro tour in 2016, Drago has spent most of his time in his homeland, and is determined to find new talented Maltese players. He recently worked with renowned coach PJ Nolan on developing his own coaching skills.
“I have always wanted to give something back to snooker,” said the Tornado, who still holds the record for the fastest frame (3 minutes) and the fastest century (3 minutes, 31 seconds). “The best young Maltese player is Brian Cini but he is 25 and he has not yet made it on the the main tour. I would love to see another great player from Malta, someone who could get to number ten in the world or even higher.
“I spent three days with PJ, eight hours a day, and I learned a lot. That’s just the first stage, I have some homework to do for him now. My aim is to get my official coaching badge by January.
“Being a good player doesn’t mean you will be a good coach, and being a bad player doesn’t mean you will be a bad coach. In football, Arsene Wenger, Jose Mourinho, Alex Ferguson – they were not great players. I would love to learn more about it and to help others.”
Drago has not given up on his snooker career – he still intends to play in the UK Seniors Championship in Hull in January and he does not rule out a return to the pro game.
“If I qualified for the main tour or if I was given a wild card because of what I have achieved, I would accept it,” said the popular cueman. “I would live in Malta and perhaps play in half of the events. I miss the circuit and I miss the UK – it was my home for 34 years. But I couldn’t live there at my age.
“I’m not the player I was, and I wear glasses now which affects my stance. But some days I get out of bed on the right side, go to the club and make two or three centuries. I can still play.” ;)
 

The Hare

Filly
The World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association (WPBSA) has announced the relaunch of WPBSA Q Tour which will run during this current season.

Initially unveiled last June as a replacement for the previous Challenge Tour system, Q Tour will provide a clear pathway to the World Snooker Tour with two professional places to be won and further high-quality competition for elite amateur talent in our sport.

The 2021/22 season will see a minimum of four Q Tour events held, with the top ranked player at the end of the season guaranteed to earn a two-year tour card. There will also be a play-off tournament run with 16 players with the winner also to be awarded a main tour place.

There will be a prize fund of £12,000 to be won at each tournament with the overall Q Tour ranked number one and the final play-off winner each earning a bonus of £2,000 upon joining the professional circuit.

It is planned that each of the four events staged this season will be held within the UK due to the continued challenges caused by the global pandemic. It is, however, the clear intention that from the start of the 2022/23 season, Q Tour will become a global circuit to include regional Q Tour competitions.

Event structure

Each weekend tournament will be made up of 64 players, with the top 40 eligible players from the 2021 Q School Ranking List eligible to compete. They will be joined by the eight highest ranked junior players on the 2021 Q School Order of Merit, not already qualified.

Tournaments will also include an open entry element through the introduction of preliminary rounds held on the Friday immediately prior to the start of the weekend competition. Up to 16 players will qualify to complete the weekend field.

All Q Tour events will be held at official 147 Clubs recognised by the English Partnership for Snooker and Billiards.

Jason Ferguson, WPBSA Chairman said: “I am today delighted that we are able to announce our plans for the staging of WPBSA Q Tour this season.”

“Snooker has not been immune to the effects of the pandemic, and it is of course the amateur game that has perhaps been most significantly affected as a direct result of the coronavirus restrictions that we have all experienced over the past 18 months. I know that it has been an extremely challenging time for these fantastic players and I am grateful for their continued patience as we have worked to provide opportunities to compete.

“The launch of WPBSA Q Tour 2021/22 represents the first of these opportunities and will be a significant addition to our calendar for elite amateur players, providing a direct pathway to the World Snooker Tour.”

It is anticipated that the first Q Tour competition will take place not before November and further information including entry details will be released soon.
 
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