February 3, 2010

Sanyuan Foods Qualifiers China Open Day 2 – 4pm starts

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 11:20 am

JP - You just gotta grin and bear it

It’s a day of faded lights and flickering dreams of a return to the glory days today. It’s a long way from Prestatyn to Beijing, in more ways than one for some.

Who can forget that unfortunate incident last year when poor old John Parrott was forced to pull out of the trip to Beijing after a gutsy qualifying performance. It must have been a very serious injury that he sustained for him to miss that, as he qualifies so seldom nowadays for the ranking event venues and I know he’s partial to Chinese cuisine. But with the wonders of medical science, the plucky scouser was able to soldier on through the pain barrier to fulfill his BBC contractual commitments that same week at Aintree for the Grand National, the former World Champion showing all the grit and determination that secured him the title all those years ago, not only that but he did all this in his usual chirpy Liverpudlian manner. He must be with BUPA.

Today he faces Tornado Tony Drago in his first match on the quest for a return to former glory. Drago fresh from his narrow defeat to a panda in Newport seems to have a renewed appetite for the game since regaining his professional status last year, something that our JP seems to be struggling with.

Jungle Jimmy Whirlwind White of Old London Town is another box office smash looking to break back into the big time and faces a tough task today against the as yet un-nicknamed (maybe Jimmy can lend him one) Xiao Guodong, a very capable Chinese player who dispensed with Jordan Brown yesterday despite his opponent hitting back to back centuries. James ‘Thaiphoon’ Wattana also hooks up with some old sparring partners and faces Joe Delaney, who narrowly escaped relegation from the tour last season, arguably it is Watanna along with Drago who is showing the most signs of being able to make a breakthrough back into the top 64 or so. The faded stars have never been more aptly represented today than in David ‘White Pants’ Gray, once tipped for great things, who also continues his quest for a flight to the Far East, let’s hope it will be more successful than his last trip to this part of the world, but I’ll say no more about that as it would be ermmm ‘below the belt’.

Please forgive him if he acts a little strange

As if this ‘red carpet and limousine’ line-up wasn’t enough, there’s also my old mucker and part-time ice cream man, the canary cueist Barry ‘I’m from Norwich’ Pinches, hoping that he’ll be able to whip up more than a 99 against our man Gray, who seems in good form with a 5-0 win and a 134 already under his belt (oops mentioned belt again, sorry Dave), in that form he’ll be very tough to beat.  But I know better than to mess with Bazza, only the brave or the foolish back against him, I’ve had my one winning bet against him for this decade thank you very much.

So to a bet. I’m going to take Watanna to continue his good form and dispense with Delaney, I’ll also take Paul Davies to beat Matthew Couch, I don’t like to desert someone that has done me a favour the previous day but the standard of Couch’s game against Hogan seemed awful, with neither player even managing a break of 40, if Davies produces a bit of form (I think the odd 50 break should do) he should surely win. I’ll also take a chance on Drago continuing the momentum that he has shown to edge out JP (try your best to get the 4/6 at Paddies, he’s a 4/9 chance at Sportingbet). Jimmy’s match is too close to call but gun to head I’d probably side with the Whirlwind, just on the strength of his advantage in the nickname department alone.

But the only bets I would recommend in this session are Davies (4/6 Paddy Power & Sportingbet), Drago (4/6 Paddy Power) and Wattana (8/11 Sportingbet).   


Match 25 – Jimmy White v Xiao Guodong

Match 26 – Joe Delaney v James Wattana

Match 27 – John Parrott v Tony Drago

Match 28 – Jin Long v Jimmy Robertson

Match 29 – Barry Pinches v David Gray

Match 30 – David Roe v Bjorn Haneveer

Match 31 – Paul Davies v Matthew Couch

Match 32 – Liu Song v Sam Baird

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