Neil Robertson

Neil Robertson's UK Championship Was Sensational

Neil Robertson met Liang Wenbo in the UK Championship final earlier this month and walked away with a rather sensational victory. The event caused a surprisingly quiet reaction. Perhaps, as was noted in The Guardian, it’s because this was the first time the UK Championship has been contested between two overseas competitors (Robertson being Australian and Wenbo hailing from China). But regardless, Robertson’s win deserves some attention.

In part, this is because of the style in which Robertson won the final. BBC Sport’s recap of the contest featured a pretty thorough examination of how the action unfolded. It also made note of the incredible fact that Robertson notched the third 147 of his career, making the perfect break in the sixth frame against Wenbo. That’s a pretty amazing way to rise to the occasion, and it was one of the key moments that helped Robertson hold an edge in what was otherwise a fairly tight contest. Wenbo, for his part, felt he didn’t play as well when the pressure was on, and he arguably distracted himself with his own bizarre tactics (such as engaging the crowd and occasionally slapping his own face). Still, it wasn’t as easy a victory for Robertson as it may now seem.

The victory was also fairly remarkable because of the run of success it capped off for Robertson. In Betfair’s preview of the championship, some of the most recent contests for the two contenders were discussed and it was pointed out that Robertson defeated three former UK champions from the final 16. He took down Stephen Maguire, John Higgins and, in emphatic fashion, Mark Selby—not to mention he also won the recent Champion of Champions event. Considering all of this, the win at the UK Championship was more of a culmination of terrific recent play than a single triumph for Robertson.

It was Robertson’s second title at the UK Championship, and though he’s currently number three in the world, he’s playing as if he has his eye on the top spot.

Rory McLeod

Rory Rules In Ruhr

Rory McLeod won a title carrying ranking points for the first time by beating Tian Pengfei 4-2 in the final of the Ruhr Open in Mülheim, Germany.

World number 61 McLeod beat 70th-ranked Pengfei in a surprise final at the season’s third Kreativ Dental Clinic European Tour event.

Leicester-based 44-year-old McLeod, snooker’s only black professional, collected the 25,000 Euro top prize after winning seven matches. His only previous pro title came at the qualifying event for the Masters in 2009.

McLeod, who has never been past the last 16 of a full ranking event, went 2-0 up in the final with top breaks of 57 and 41. China’s Tian, playing in his first pro final, pulled one back with a run of 78.

Frame four went to McLeod thanks to a break of 58 then Tian hit back again with a superb 106. But McLeod was not to be denied as he sealed victory in frame six with a top run of 55.

“It feels great, it’s everything that I really wanted,” said McLeod. “In the final I just tried to stick in there, stay positive and not get ahead of myself. I just wanted to enjoy it because this is where I want to be.”

Earlier in the semi-finals, McLeod beat Mike Dunn 4-1 while Tian edged out David Gilbert 4-3.

The Kreativ Dental Clinic European Tour is a series of six events across the continent, with the top 24 on the final Order of Merit to qualify for the Players Championship. The next event is the Bulgarian Open in Sofia from November 4-8.

Results (last 16 onwards)

Last 16
Mark Davis 4-2 Luca Brecel

Rory McLeod 4-1 Ben Woollaston

Mark Williams 4-3 Mark Selby

Mike Dunn 4-1 Andrew Higginson

Tian Pengfei 4-1 Shaun Murphy

Alan McManus 4-0 Dominic Dale

David Gilbert 4-2 Peter Ebdon

Barry Hawkins 4-1 Mark Allen

McLeod 4-3 Davis

Dunn 4-1 Williams

Tian 4-3 McManus

McLeod 4-1 Dunn

Tian 4-3 Gilbert

McLeod 4-2 Tian

Stuart Bingham & Ronnie O'Sullivan

Gibraltar To Host World Snooker Event

Gibraltar will host a professional snooker tournament for the first time when the fifth event on this season’s Kreativ Dental Clinic European Tour series takes place in December.

The televised stage of the Gibraltar Open will run from December 11 to 13 at the Tercentenary Sports Hall.

The tournament, which will run for the next three years, is supported by the Ministry of Sports, HM Government of Gibraltar and will receive extensive live coverage from Eurosport.

Many of snooker’s top players are expected to enter and they will compete from the last 128 stage. There will also be qualifying rounds for amateurs on December 9 and 10.

The 2015/16 Kreativ Dental Clinic European Tour is a series of six events, with the others staged in Latvia, Germany, Bulgaria and Poland. The top 24 on the final Order of Merit will qualify for the Players Championship in March.

World Snooker Chairman Barry Hearn said: “We are delighted to stage a professional tournament in Gibraltar for the first time. The European Tour has taken snooker to a host of different territories across the continent, helping us to develop as an international sport. We’re excited about the new Gibraltar Open and it’s the perfect chance for fans in the area to see the world’s leading stars.

“I have staged darts events at the Tercentenary Sports Hall so I know it is a cracking venue. We look forward to working with the Ministry of Sports in Gibraltar on delivering another fantastic sporting event.”

A spokesman for the Ministry of Sports in Gibraltar said: “It is great to have yet another tournament of world standard in Gibraltar. Snooker is a very popular sport and followed by millions around the world. This will further promote Gibraltar as an events destination and it is a further example of promoting tourism.”

Ticket details for the Gibraltar Open will be available shortly. The entry deadline for players is November 5th, with the draw and format to be published after this date.

Judd Trump

Llandudno To Stage Snooker’s World Grand Prix

The best snooker players on the planet will be back in Llandudno next March for the World Grand Prix.

The tournament was new to the calendar last season and received a fantastic reception in North Wales. It proved a great success as fans flocked to Venue Cymru to see an array of green baize stars including Ronnie O’Sullivan, Judd Trump, John Higgins and Mark Selby.

This season’s World Grand Prix runs from March 8 to 13 at the same venue in the beautiful coastal town of Llandudno. Tickets are on sale now and they are already selling fast. All supporters are strongly urged to book fast and make sure of their seats, as many sessions will sell out rapidly.

The 2016 World Grand Prix will be a ranking event for the first time, with money earned to count towards the world ranking list. The field for the ITV4-televised event will comprise 32 players, chasing the trophy and a top prize of £100,000.

A unique ranking list will run from the 2015 Australian Goldfields Open until the 2016 Gdynia Open, with the top 32 players on that list to be eligible to enter the World Grand Prix.

Young potting sensation Judd Trump won the title last season, coming from 7-4 down in a superb final to beat Ronnie O’Sullivan 10-7. “The World Grand Prix is a fantastic addition to the calendar,” said the player nicknamed The Ace. “I’m pleased to see it become a ranking event because that means there is more at stake and it will help the tournament grow.

“The crowds in Llandudno were brilliant last time and I thrive on that type of atmosphere. It was a great result for me to beat Ronnie in the final and hopefully I’ll be back defending my title next March, with a lot of support.”

Ding Junhui Welsh Open

Fine for Ding

The following statement was put up on World Snooker’s website today in which it details a £5,000 fine for repeated breaches of the players contract I am lead to believe this should in-fact only be one breach but World Snooker believe that because he has won 5 titles this season he is in breach of the same publicity clause where a winner of a tournament MUST attend The World Snooker Awards Dinner 5 times.

Considering the amount of money that Ding Junhui has won this season I am sure he will be more than happy to pay the £5,000

From what I understand his reason for not attending The Awards Dinner was because he was on a short break back home in China to spend some time with his family.

The Actual Statement from World Snooker is Below

The WPBSA can confirm that after being fined £5,000 by WSL for failing to attend the WSL Awards Dinner, which put him in breach of his players contract, Ding Junhui has been referred to the WPBSA Disciplinary Committee to consider whether any further action is appropriate with regard to repeated breaches of his players contract. 


Ronnie O'Sullivan named player of the year at awards ceromony

Just wanted to see what your opinions on this were, personally I would of nominated Ding Junhui and Neil Robertson over Ronnie O’Sullivan for this award this year and I hate to say it even Mark Selby would of got my vote over Ronnie.

Do the people who make these decisions at World Snooker even watch Snooker? do they know what each player has achieved in a season or do they just pick names out of a hat?

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