August 31, 2010

The Roewe Shanghai Masters Preview: Selby to Invade Trumpton?

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 6:31 pm

It's no wonder he's got a bad back. Will the rivals contest the final?

At Last!! While all the smaller tournaments have been a great precursor to the main events, next Monday sees the start of the first full ranking event of the season, barring the World Open qualifiers, with the Shanghai Masters over in ‘That China’.

Ronnie O’Sullivan lifted his last trophy here a year ago and will hopefully have recovered from his ermm, bad back, which forced him to withdraw from the Paul Hunter Classic at the weekend, so as he can come and defend the title he won last year defeating local favourite Liang Wenbo in the final.

This event is another characterised by wildcards, the completely unfair system of inviting players that have no right to be there to play players that do.

Some of the wildcards are dangerous, not least Tian Pengfei who beat Ronnie in the China Open and faces Jamie Burnett in the wildcard round. Jin Long is another that can turn in decent performances and has actually beaten his opponent Rob Milkins in their only other meeting. Li Hang is another that could upset Martin Gould if he isn’t on his game, all three are capable of progressing at the expense of the more deserving qualifiers.

The full draw for the event is here and the event will be covered on Eurosport, whose commentators will again try and have us believe that they are actually there, bless them. In terms of live scoring, World Snooker have promised that their new scoreboard will be up and running in time for this event. Let’s wait and see before getting too excited about that though.

The matches are yet to be priced up so I’ll do a seperate post if any decent odds become available on a few that might be worth a punt, so we’ll stick to the outrights and the quarters for this.

Quarter One:

This sees Ronnie face a potential rematch with Tian Pengfei should he get past Burnett, it also sees Stephen Maguire, Marco Fu and recent winner Judd Trump vying for a semi final spot. Since the blog began I have never tipped up Ronnie for anything other than the odd match win and I will continue to ignore the claims of the Rocket in the outright market. So much so that I will recommend a bet on young Judd Trump to win the quarter at what I think is a stand out price at Boylesports, who appear to be happy to lay big odds on the young mock Bavarian prince. His recent win will fill him with confidence (as it has me) and I reckon he’s going to have his breakthrough season this year and do what he’s been threatening to do for two seasons. This might be the last time you get prices like this about him. OK he has Maguire first up, a tough match which might well have me eating my words, then either Fu or Mark Davis, then possibly Ronnie. But I’ll stay loyal to Juddly.

Recommended Bet : 0.5 Point win Judd Trump to win Quarter One (12/1 Boylesports)

Will it be King Ding?

Quarter Two:

This is a difficult one to call. Ding Junhui makes his seasonal debut having failed to show up for any of the summer events and I can’t help thinking that this immediately places him at a disadvantage, despite the undoubted home advantage he always enjoys in China. We’ve seen it with Mark Allen and though Ding in my view is a better player than him he will have to hit the ground running against tough opposition. Mark Williams, Jamie Cope, Graeme Dott, Steve Davis and Ken Doherty are in this very difficult quarter to call. Mark proved that he travels well by winning the China Open and he will have his followers no doubt, but in terms of any value in the quarter betting I’m going to have a punt on an outsider here and back Ken Doherty.

Recommended Bet: 0.25 point win Ken Doherty to win Quarter Two (18/1 Boylesports)

Quarter Three:

Blimey this is difficult, in this section we have Ali Carter, Shaun Murphy, Mark Allen and Liang Wenbo alongside others with chances. Wenbo and Allen are best watched early season in my view, neither have done anything so far to suggest they can win this event which leaves the obvious choices Murphy or Carter and Matthew Stevens or Stuart Bingham as likely semi-finalists. I don’t think Murphy is firing on all cylinders just yet but that might still be good enough to see him through this, but to me the value is elsewhere so I’m going to recommend two outside punts.

Recommended Bet: 0.25 point win on each Matthew Stevens (12/1 Betfred) or Stuart Bingham (20/1 Betfred) to win Quarter Three.

Quarter Four:

World Champion Neil Robertson and early season hotshot Mark Selby are the main players in this quarter and despite some potentially dangerous opponents I would be surprised if they didn’t meet in the Quarter Finals which makes the 11/4 on Robertson to win this quarter with Boylesports a tempting bet for back and lay punters, as he’ll be nothing like that price if he does face Selbs. But I have a feeling about Selby this season, I think he’ll win more than one ranking event and I think he’ll benefit a lot from his early season escapades. Sorry Robbo, but it has to be the Jester for me.

Recommended Bet: 2 Points win Mark Selby to win Quarter Four (7/5 Paddy Power)

In terms of outright bets, I’m going to stick with Selby and Trump, the odds on the latter at Boylesports is too good to pass up, he is less than half these odds at a couple of the other firms, but I’m slightly favouring Mark to be carrying some excess baggage through customs on the return flight and I’m not talking about any weight gained by eating the local grub.

Recommended Outright Bets:

2 points win Mark Selby to win Shanghai Masters (6/1 Paddy Power)

0.5 points each way Judd Trump to win Shanghai Masters (45/1 Boylesports)

Good luck to all punters. News of the prediction competition will be with you tomorrow.

Dates for the Diary

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 6:49 am

At last something decent is on TV.

It seems like about a year or so has passed since we saw a bit of snooker on the TV, but that all changes next week as we can watch the boys in action at the Shanghai Masters and just a week later on the BBC at the World Open.

In the meantime tomorrow night on BBC2 they are screening an hour long documentary on the life of Alex Higgins.

Judging by the preview here they have some quality contributors, the quote from Clive Everton in the preview alone brings a smile to the face.

They promise that ‘the archive is astonishing, the stories often heart-breaking but the snooker is always breathtaking’ and that the tale is ‘at times uplifting, but at other moments very sad – this is a rollercoaster journey charting the life of snooker’s first ‘rock and roll star’.  Hopefully it will live up to the billing.

Incidentally, Ian a regular poster on here found this clip in the 1980’s loft conversion he currently lives in and posted it on Youtube, the frame lost and the match almost lost Alex still can’t resist the urge to entertain and steal a bit of the limelight from the Nugget (still hard to believe that he made a Quarter Final at the weekend, but not as hard to believe as this), anyway brown to blue is magnificent and the black…well, just give it a watch.

Another Higgins, young Master John will also learn his fate next week as his hearing is scheduled for the 7th and 8th. It’s being widely predicted in snooker circles that his punishment will be lenient and we may well see him competing again very soon. A retrospective 6 month ban and a large fine would be my best guess, seeing him back to compete in the UK and the Masters.

I’ll be posting up a preview to Shanghai very soon and also details of next week’s continuing ‘Top of the Pots’ prediction contest.

August 30, 2010

Top Trumps and Fist Pumps

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 7:36 am

Judd will soon be given the freedom of the town of Trumpton

My dad was never one to pass on his vast life knowledge and experience easily. During his varied life he would pick up little pearls of wisdom, take them for his own and pass them on at his own pace to me and my brothers and sister in the hope that we would carry them forward in life.

They included sound financial advice; when it came to paying bills wait until ‘the red one’, when it came to household chores ‘never do today what can be put off until tomorrow’, and when it came to winning and losing ‘never be a bad loser, but more importantly never be a bad winner’. Sound advice on all three counts I’m sure you’ll agree.

I’ve never been 100% sure of what he meant by the term ‘bad winner’ but I think he meant don’t brag about it or show off excessively, despite the temptation to do so.

I remember once at a snooker tournament held in a sports hall when I was 14. I won a tight black ball finish and punched the air in the direction of my mum and dad only to be greeted by a rather scornful look from my mum who ‘never likes a show off’ and a wry smile from my dad behind her back.

He obviously threw his final piece of advice out of the window for a split second when seeing his youngest pull off a rather mercurial double to see off his stunned and dejected Mancunian opponent.

But despite the temptation to do so, I refuse to crow excessively about the 33/1 tip on Judd Trump to win the Paul Hunter Classic which came to fruition yesterday. That now makes 5 PTC events and 3 outright winners tipped up, this being by far and away the best price.

The mustard cashmere team colours have never shone so brightly as Judd carried off the unlikely win from a field of several hundred. During the day I also placed a few quid on him at 45/1 with Boylesports for Shanghai in the hope that his rich vein of form continues.

I know that a few of you followed me in on Juddly and snapped up any price that you could get after the 33/1 vanished, so I reckon we might have given the bookies a bit of a bashing. I have just clenched my fist and punched it in the air while Mrs SB’s back was turned. If I was a religious man I’d think my old dad would be smiling down on me with that old wry grin.

The one fly in the ointment yesterday was the continuing incompetence displayed by World Snooker and a special thanks should go to Jan Verhaas, who tweeted the final frame as it happened to counter scurrilous rumours of a Hamilton black ball win which were surfacing in other places. The fact that it should come to that in this day and age is quite frankly an embarrassment to the sport and once again World Snooker should be hanging their collective heads in shame at the utter shambles that it still is in this area.

In the Prediction Contest a tight run finish saw victory for Sean og, who beat Andy in a tense finish by 64 frames to 63, with Ray in Oz in third with 59 frames. The overall ‘Top of the Pots’ Order of Merit is still headed by consistent performer Steve K, who after two events is 5 frames clear of Godspeed. The full list will be updated at some point this morning and will be available to view here.

If Sean og reads this before I get in touch please email me at [email protected] and I will arrange for your free £50 bet.

I will also post up the details for Event 3 soon as the sponsors Betfred have again kindly agreed to donate a £50 free bet prize for the winner. The Shanghai Masters starts next weekend and is covered by Eurosport, so that should make for a top drawer tipping tussle.

More details to follow.

August 29, 2010

D-Day for Judd and Sean og: Finals Day Updates

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 9:44 am

It's a nail biting time for some today.

Judd Trump carries the weight of expectation of a Team SB captain today when he dons his mustard cashmere sweater and sky blue tie to try and land the Paul Hunter Masters.

The 33/1 is beginning to look a bit big now but I’ll take nothing for granted against his first opponent Anthony McGill, who regulars will know I have been backing all season without much luck, if he ends up winning this he will assume a mantle previously only reserved for Barry Pinches in terms of tales of betting woes, but hopefully Judd will send him packing in the nicest possible way.

The Betfred Prediction Contest also enters it’s final day with the leader Drew holding a slender one frame advantage over sean og.

However, the current second placed player still has Judd and Shaun Murphy in his team whilst poor old Drew will be praying for 4-0 whitewashes against the pair of them as a consequence of having no surviving team members.

Steve K’s place on the overall Top of the Pots List may still be intact by the end of Event 2, as he has performed strongly again and still has Murphy running.

Barring a few freak results though it seems to be sean og’s for the taking, though there is a shrewdie lower down the leader board; Pchell, who will be paying particular attention to the progress of Alfie Burden today, hoping to creep up on the rails and steal the prize as will Deco800 with Anthony Hamilton, epure with Mark Davis and Schalke04 with Andrew Higginson.

But for me the day is about keeping fingers crossed for Judd and Gerard, even a semi final spot for the 125/1 Irishman would suffice, let’s wait and see what happens. The neutrals will obviously be rooting for Jimmy and Steve and if my lads aren’t up to the mark it would be marvellous to see one of the old gits win it.

It appears that Global are no longer updating frame scores after doing so all week as their person there is on her way home, once again the governing body appear happy to let the updates rest on one person, unpaid by them who does this out of love for the sport.

What kind of shambolic operation are World Snooker running here? They should be at least updating frame scores as and when they happen, their continuing incompetence is now becoming pathetic. Shame on the governing body once again, a total revamp is required to get them actually working for the sport and for the fans.


Judd ‘Von’ Trump 4-3 The Sheriff of Pottingham

Semi Finals

Shaun Murphy 2-4 Judd Trump

Daniel Wells 1-4 Anthony Hamilton

Quarter Finals

Steve Davis 1-4 Shaun Murphy

Jack Lisowski 0-4 Judd Trump

Jimmy White 2-4 Daniel Wells

Stuart Bingham 3-4 Anthony Hamilton

Starting 10am (BST) 11am (CET)

Steve is still in the hunt with Jimmy.

Steve Davis 4-3 Mark Davis

Andrew Higginson 2-4 Shaun Murphy

Jack Lisowski 4-0 Ricky Walden

Judd Trump 4-2 Anthony McGill

Peter Lines 0-4 Jimmy White

Daniel Wells 4-2 Alfie Burden

Gerard Greene 1-4 Stuart Bingham

Anthony Hamilton 4-2 Bjorn Haneveer

August 28, 2010

Paul Hunter Classic Final Day Last 16 Line Up

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 5:18 pm

Demand for Replica Team Jerseys are soaring at Betty's.

I thought I’d post up the last 16 draw for those nice bookies to get their prices sorted out in plenty of time for tomorrow.

It’s been quite a day today with shocks aplenty. A no-show from the Rocket followed by defeats for top dogs Mark Selby, Mark Williams, Neil Robertson and Ali Carter. The holder Shaun Murphy is still there as is my Team SB captain Judd Trump who faces Anthony McGill in the next round.

But the story of the day is surely the old guard getting some German air in their lungs and turning back the clock yet again. Both Steve Davis and Jimmy White joining the likes of young bucks McGill, Trump, Daniel Wells and Jack Lisowski on Finals Day.

As well as the Team SB captain, another of the team also made it through in 125/1 shot Gerard Greene. I also managed to recoup the losses from day one with the early morning treble recommended in the previous post, so all in all a good day, which will be bettered immeasurably tomorrow should young Juddly or Gerard carry the mustard coloured cashmere woollens to the winners podium.

The Prediction Contest is very tight at the top with the leader Drew on 39 points, but this particular player has run out of team members after Ali Carter lost to Davis, so I have a sneaking feeling that the name Sean OG may be looking good come this time tomorrow for the £50 free bet from Betfred, he is one point behind but still has Judd and Murphy in his team. If I was a bookie I think I’d probably have him around 1.02 now looking at the field just behind him, but stranger things have happened and there is still a possibility of two players catching him if all goes pear-shaped.

In terms of a bet this morning I can only find Sportingbet pricing this up at the moment and not all the matches, but it doesn’t start until 10am (11am CET) so perhaps Betfred and co will follow. I think I’ll hang fire as there isn’t any value there at the moment. If I was having a bet at this point I’d probably go for a double on Burden and Bingham (sorry GG, you are welcome to prove me wrong) at around the 15/8 mark but I refuse to recommend a bet against one of the team. All my concentration today will be on young Juddly who kicks off against Ant at 10.

Last 16 tomorrow:

Steve Davis v Mark Davis

Andrew Higginson v Shaun Murphy

Jack Lisowski v Ricky Walden

Judd Trump v Anthony McGill

Jimmy White v Peter Lines

Daniel Wells v Alfie Burden

Gerard Greene v Stuart Bingham

Anthony Hamilton v Bjorn Haneveer

Day Two: Idea Theft takes shine off Team Effort

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 7:03 am

I admit I may have overreacted slightly.

I had a right mood on last night, not because Michael Holt managed to turn around this 0% win rate for the season against Tom Ford but because World Snooker stole an idea I had a few weeks ago and didn’t even thank me for it.

I suggested in a few places that a good way to drum up support for the World Open would be to advertise discounted or free tickets around University campus for students. I said this because I have a pretty good knowledge of the student market and their interests and leisure time activities. It’s kind of my day job.

Then lo and behold yesterday they announce that they are giving away ticket to students for £1. Now I don’t mind them taking my ideas and running with them but a small amount of gratitude doesn’t cost a penny and I refuse to believe that they thought of it themselves given their track record in marketing. Poor form.

Anyway, Mrs SB managed to talk me down from the roof with the promise of one of her fish curries tonight, when it comes to life and death decisions her cooking wins every time. So I live to fight another day.

Talking of the Mrs, she has been using her powers of persuasion on a certain MC, Rob Walker who has kindly agreed to be interviewed by her for the blog. She has her own list of people that she wants to quiz, not just on snooker but on their ‘softer side’, the list includes only those who she considers to be ‘nice and polite’, Ali Carter, Neil Robertson and Mark Selby are all included and are future targets for her pink fluffy microphone.

On the betting front, yesterday started brightly with Rod Lawler justifying support with a demolition job on Liang Wenbo, I owe him a pint when I see him next. But that ended up being the high point of the day as the accumulator died a death and then Holt won 4-3.

But once again, just as the dark mood was setting in along came the unmistakable team colours to put a smile back on my face. All members of Team Snookerbacker are still in action today. My captain Judd Trump (33/1) is into the last 16 after victories over Michael Judge and Peter Ebdon. Stephen Lee (100/1), Gerard Greene (125/1) and Marcus Campbell (150/1) all won through, Marco Fu (28/1) didn’t play but starts this morning and Jamie Jones (200/1) is also into the last 16 with victories over Jak Jones and David Grace.

Clearly the feel of yellow cashmere wool against ash wood is helping, the instantly recognisable Team Snookerbacker outfit and colours now being subject to copyright from Betty’s Wool Shop on the High Street. It is surely only a matter of time before they are seen on our screens and replicated in Chinese child labour sweatshops for the masses and Sheffield tourists. Well, one can dream….

Judd relaxing yesterday.

There isn’t too much to get excited about this morning in terms of the matches and I’m more anxious about the team’s overall prospects, but a bet’s a bet and you could do worse than the 7/4 treble at Paddy Power on World Champion Neil Robertson, Gentleman Joe Perry and Supersmurf Shaun Murphy who all look to have very winnable ties.

Recommended Bet: 2 Points Treble Robertson, Murphy and Perry (7/4 Paddy Power)

Treble Landed 🙂

In terms of the prediction competition and for those who included Ronnie in their line up, his walk over in Round One does not help your cause I’m afraid as the Rocket is yet to get off the mark.

I see Anthony McGill is performing well again and is through to the last 32, I haven’t backed him in this one for the first time this season so just watch him go and win it…

Incidentally, the weekly musical contributions from the good lady and myself can be found here.

Round 2 continues today:

Mark Selby 3-4 Allister Carter

Fergal O’Brien 1-4 (54) Steve Davis

Matthew Stevens 1-4 Mark Davis

Jamie Jones (104) 4-1 David Grace

Patrick Wallace 1-4 (66,51) Michael White

Andrew Higginson (58,52, 110) 4-3 (60) Stephen Lee

Barry Hawkins 0-4 Shaun Murphy

Dominic Dale 0-4 Joe Perry

Jack Lisowski 4-1 Adrian Gunnell

Andrew Norman 2-4 (74) Marco Fu

Ricky Walden (73, 108) 4-1 (91) Michael Wild

Rod Lawler (81,57,60) 4-1 Martin O’Donnell

Judd Trump (108) 4-2 Peter Ebdon

Chen Zhe 1-4 Andrew Pagett

Liam Highfield 1-4 (63,52,54,74) Anthony McGill

Robert Milkins (54) 3-4 (111) Kyren Wilson

The Wind is Blowing!

Mark Williams 2-4 David Morris

Peter Lines (77) 4-1 (84) Chris Norbury

Jimmy White (104) 4-2 Dave Harold

Craig Steadman (54,77) 4-3 (117) Jamie Cope

Luca Brecel (53) 2-4 (54) Mike Dunn

Igor Figueiredo (60,62) 3-4 Daniel Wells

Jimmy Robertson w/o Ronnie O’Sullivan

Michael Wasley (134) 2-4 (55) Alfie Burden

Joe Swail 4-1 (107) Alan McManus

Allan Taylor (80) 3-4 (100, 120, 52)Gerard Green

Neil Robertson 4-1 Martin Gould

Liu Song (64) 3-4 (74,68) Stuart Bingham

Anthony Hamilton 4-1 (111) Mitchell Mann

Nigel Bond 1-4 (84, 64) Marcus Campbell

Stephen Hendry 2-4 Bjorn Haneveer

Patrick Einsle (83) 1-4 Michael Holt

Last 32

Turning back the clock again.

Ali Carter 1-4 Steve Davis

Mark Davis 4-2 Jamie Jones

Michael White 0-4 Andrew Higginson

Shaun Murphy 4-1 Joe Perry

Jack Lisowski 4-3 Marco Fu

Ricky Walden (105) 4-1 Rod Lawler

Judd Trump (90,72,99) 4-0 Andrew Pagett

Jimmy White 4-2 Craig Steadman

Anthony McGill (127) 4-1 (74) Kyren Wilson

David Morris 3-4 Peter Lines

Mike Dunn 2-4 Daniel Wells

Jimmy Robertson 1-4 Alfie Burden

Joe Swail 1-4 Gerard Greene

Neil Robertson 0-4 Stuart Bingham

Anthony Hamilton 4-1 Marcus Campbell

Bjorn Haneveer 4-3 Michael Holt

August 27, 2010

The Spirit of 76: The Paul Hunter Classic Begins

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 7:06 am

What a Whopper!! Germans like everything bigger.

So what the devil is ‘the spirit of 76’ all about then? Have I been up all night listening to 1980’s U2 doppelgangers The Alarm while drinking strong German lager to celebrate the start of the European Tour or what?

No, it refers to the fact that the baize over at the Stadthalle in Fuerth will be hot to the touch with a mammoth total of 76 matches being completed today.

A truly awesome timetable which on occasion seems to optimistically assume that some of these best of seven matches will be completed in as little as half an hour. They are obviously unfamiliar with the likes of Dave Harold, Fergal O’Brien, Rod Lawler and Alan McManus. Good luck with that.

The action starts early, with the first set of matches scheduled for 9am CET. Betfred, Sportingbet and Paddy Power having priced up some of them.

Please note that the Prediction Contest will be closed to entries after 8am UK time this morning.

I’ve had a quick look at these and I think I’ll have a little accumulator on a few of them. Of the individual prices which might offer a bit of value I’m tempted at the 12/5 at Sportingbet for Rod Lawler to beat Liang Wenbo. Liang hasn’t exactly started the season that well and Rod is an expert at pouncing on weaknesses at breakneck speed, or failing that he might just tie the sometimes reckless Chinaman on the baulk cushion until he lashes out in frustration. I’m not saying it will happen but I think that price is quite generous and a more realistic 7/4 at Betfred.

It may also be worth having a look at the 10/11 at Sportingbet on PTC3 winner Tom Ford to beat Michael Holt, who since winning a small event in summer has lost his first six matches of the season, not progressing beyond this stage at any of the PTC’s so far.

For an accumulator which pays just on 10/3 at Betfred I’d plump for Judd Trump, James McBain, Jamie Cope and Ian McCulloch to get through their first round matches. If you add Tom Ford this pays over 7/1 at Sportingbet.

So I’ll recommend:

2 points win Tom Ford to beat Michael Holt (10/11 Sportingbet)

1 point win accumulator Trump, McBain, Cope & McCulloch (10/3 Betfred)

0.5 point win accumulator: The five selections above (8.27 Sportingbet)

I’ll update the scores on here as the day progresses.

Sorry for the delay I’ve been to see my Mum. See Rod won after all, should have recommended it….

Jack Lisowski: Safely Through.

95.  Mark Selby 4-1 Tomasz Skalski
96.  Matthew Couch v Ali Carter
97.  Fergal O`Brien 4-0 Chris McBreen
98.  Graeme Dott v Steve Davis
99.  Matthew Stevens 4-0 Tonnie Kok
100. Mark Davis (117)(100th career century) 4-0  Wladimir Pondmarenkski

101. Jamie Jones (83) 4-1 Jak Jones
102. Paul Davison 3-4 (60,68,53) David Grace
103. Mark Joyce 1-4 (74) Patrick Wallace
104. Michael White (58, 136, 101) 4-0
105. Andrew Higginson v Mark Allen
106. Stephen Lee (62) 4-0 Xander Van Rossum
107. Barry Hawkins 4-1 Willem Monfils
108. Mark King v Shaun Murphy
109. Dominic Dale 4-0 Sari Soner
110. Joe Perry v Jamie O´Neill
111. Jack Lisowski (63,52) 4-1 Robbie Williams
112. Adrian Gunnell 4-0 Uwe Seyler
113. Nick Jennings 3-4 Andrew Norman
114. Marco Fu v Zhang Anda
115. Ricky Walden (99) 4-1 Dieter Meyer
116. Kuldesh Johal 0-4 Michael Wild
117. Liang Wenbo 0-4 (75,66) Rod Lawler
118. Adam Wicheard 3-4 Martin O’Donnell
119. Judd Trump (62,51,81) 4-0 Michael Judge
120. Peter Ebdon w/o Jake Nicholson
121. Ben Woollaston 1-4 (72) Chen Zhe
122. Andrew Pagett 4-3 (90,59)  Paul Davies
123. Liam Highfield 4-3 Roy Stolk
124. Anthony McGill (59,70) 4-1 Lasse Munstermann
125. Barry Pinches 3-4 Robert Milkins
126. Kurt Maflin 0-4 (76) Kyren Wilson
127. Mark Williams 4-0 Robert Sax
128. Matthew Selt v David Morris
129. Peter Lines 4-0 Naresh Samarwickram
130. Jimmy Michie 2-4 Chris Norbury
131. Jimmy White 4-0 Michael Seidel

132. Dave Harold (105) 4-1 Reanne Evans
133. Ian McCulloch 2-4 Craig Steadman
134. Jamie Cope 4-3 Ian Glover
135. James McBain 2-4 Luca Brecel

136. Mike Dunn 4-0 Sam Harvey

137. Daniel Wells (68,73) 4-3 Justin Astley
138. Igor Figureido 4-0 Deniz Anar
139. Jimmy Robertson (58) 4-0 Alex Taubman

140. Ronnie O’Sullivan w/o Yu Delu
141. Michael Wasley (61) 4-1 Gerrit bij de Leij
142. Alfie Burden (110) 4-0 Patrick Fuchs

143. Ryan Day (72) 3-4 (73,63) Joe Swail
144. Alan McManus (66,88) 4-0 Michael Betzinger

145. Allan Taylor 4-3 (51) Maurice Le Duc
146. Gerard Greene 4-1 Mario Wehrmann
147. Andy Hicks v Neil Robertson
148. Martin Gould 4-3 Rene Van Rijsbergen
149. Joe Jogia 0-4 Liu Song
150. Stuart Bingham 4-1 Oliver Brown
151. Anthony Hamilton 4-0 Diana Schuler
152. Mitchell Mann 4-1 Rogier Van De Kamp
153. Nigel Bond 4-0 Sanjin Kusan
154. Marcus Campbell (62) 4-1 Gareth Allen
155. Liu Chuang v Stephen Hendry
156. Bjorn Haneveer (113) 4-0 Chris Henry
157. Patrick Einsle (100) 4-1 Florian Moedershie
158. Tom Ford 3-4 Michael Holt (oh well)

August 26, 2010

The Clock is Ticking and Marky Mark is a bit Miffed

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 10:35 am

Time is running out...........

Time is running out to enter the EPTC1/Paul Hunter Classic Prediction Contest to win a £50 free snooker bet from Betfred. You have until 9am tomorrow morning to enter, to do so please click here and follow the instructions.

There are signs of some unrest this morning from young upstart Mark Allen who appears to feel a little aggrieved at having to qualify, or rather fail to qualify for the World Open last week.

He is quoted as saying: 

“It doesn’t seem that fair that myself and the other players within the top 16 had to turn out at Sheffield”

“We all worked hard to reach our respective rankings and the perk of this is meant to be the opportunity to play at the venue stages without having to qualify – therefore losing in the qualifiers was a bit of a kick in the teeth”

Oh dear, trouble in paradise? Read it all here. Perhaps he shouldn’t have thrown away a 2-0 lead to a player as low down the rankings as you can get. 

August 25, 2010

The Paul Hunter Classic (EPTC1) Preview: Prediction Contest Open!

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 6:34 pm

Paul: Great Guy and Sadly Missed.

The baize boys head over to Germany, the Stadthalle in Fuerth to be exact, on Friday to take part in the annual Paul Hunter Classic which has also been combined to form the first European Players Tour Championship of the season.

Defending champion Shaun Murphy will be hoping to perform better than he has done in the events on UK shores.

It’s a fitting tribute to Paul, who all fans miss remarkably and with good reason.

He was a shining star in his own much too short period in the game, achieving more than most players could achieve in a lifetime, until his was tragically cut short in 2006 aged just 27, with his best years ahead of him. Sometimes life is just shit.

Just looking through old pictures of him makes you realise just what an asset he was to the sport. You can relive his three classic final frame Masters wins here. I can’t help thinking that snooker owes his name a whole lot more. I genuinely think that had he still been around the sport would be in better shape.

Anyway, this event is the usual ‘punt at your peril’ with the confusion only being added to by a first round full of names that we have never heard of and will most likely never hear of again. But I am all for the expansion of the sport into Europe, a market which I believe has been left woefully untapped in the past at the expense of China.

Among home favourites with a bit more of a chance are Patrick Einsle and Igor Figueredo, the Brasilian born German who is setting about rewriting every record book there is for his split nationality with his early season performances. He is likely to face Ronnie O’Sullivan at some point if both win through so expect some fervent support for both in that one.

The Euro Team SB Colours.

I will be running a seperate prediction competition for this event which will feed into the overall Order of Merit (Note to Self: really need to think of a better name for that), details of which are here and I am pleased to announce that Betfred have very kindly offered a free £50 snooker bet to the winner of this weekend’s contest. Entries must be in by 9am on Friday to count.

All you have to do is pick four players from the huge field and you will be awarded 1 point for every frame they win. In the event of a tie at the top, frames against will count, if you’re still level then I’ll have to think of something else. In short, my blog, my rules – geddit? In other words try not to pick the same four as someone else in the hope that I can magic up 2 first prizes as it ain’t ‘appenin bruv. First come first serve innit?

Important: Also if I reckon you’ve had loads of entries under different names I reserve the right to ignore/disqualify you at any point, that’s my terms and conditions.

You can either enter on the Order of Merit page comments or on the comments section of this post. The draw can be viewed here.

Regulars will know that I like to go at these events with a likely winner and a Team Snookerbacker, made up of bigger priced hopefuls that just might get us the generous terms of 1/4 odds on a semi-final slot. The now famous Team SB colours have been shipped to Germany by DHL and are waiting for the chosen few at their hotel.

The obvious favourite is Ronnie, who is 7/1 with Betfred and may well storm to victory but I’m going to bypass the Rocket as a potential winner in favour of Judd Trump (33/1 Boylesports) who I think has his best draw of any of the events so far up to finals day. His last tournament victory was in Austria so I’m banking on him feeling right at home again here, he also seems to be in tip top shape.

Team Snookerbacker membership has produced mixed fortunes for the chosen few, some handle the pressure better than others and some simply crumble under the huge weight of expectation placed upon them. This week I’m firstly going to stick with the tried and trusted Marco Fu (28/1 BetFred) who may come up against Judd in the quarter finals if he negotiates his way through. If he does, 7/1 on a win for Marco is too big to turn down.

Other members of the band of merry men this time are all three figure prices. They are Gerard Greene (125/1 Sportingbet), Marcus Campbell who is a generous 150/1 across the board, Stephen Lee (100/1 Betfred) is fresh from qualification to the World Open and is dangerous if on a roll and this weeks donkey is Jamie Jones (200/1 Betfred).

Match betting is available at the firms mentioned and I might have a look at those and post a few recommended bets tomorrow to try and beat those nasty old bookies.

Good Luck Everyone.

New Faces? Or Dad's Army?

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 7:17 am

Who do you think you are kidding Mr Bazza?

You can almost picture the scene in Bazza Mansions a few months back as the great man himself had to come up with a cunning plan to convince snotty young TV executives at the BBC to give him one last shot at revamping the ailing Grand Prix.

‘I want an FA Cup for the World, I want new faces, I want quickfire, get rid of the old guard and the journeymen, I want a new dawn, I want THE WORLD OPEN!!’ (cue euphoric music, ‘Flying Without Wings or something equally as rubbish that is always used on X Factor style shows).

Little would Barry suspect that a few months later we would be looking forward to a get together of journeymen and members of the Hasbeens snooker home for former ranking event winners for his new venture.

Masters and Thailand Open Champion in a former life Alan McManus, former World Champion Ken Doherty, serial runner-up and modern day Jimmy White; Matthew Stevens, the original Jimmy White; Jimmy White, former British Open Champion Fergal O’Brien, former World finalist Nigel Bond and Grand Prix winner from 12 years ago Stephen Lee are all through to join the likes of Hendry, Ebdon and the Nugget to discuss the price of fish and where they are going on their latest Saga Holiday next month.

But there are a few new faces there too, Igor Figueredo, John Higgins’ replacement Liu Song, David Morris, Thepchaiya Un-Nooh, Joe Jogia and James McBain all making it through to Glasgow, but unfortunately for Barry the likes of  young guns Luca Brecel, Anthony McGill and Jack Lisowski seem destined for a couple of years learning their apprenticeship at the qualifiers.

You won't be smiling when you see the ranking list.

Flying the flag for the young brigade will be Judd Trump who has started the season in impressive form, the slightly older Mark Allen paid the price for his late start to the season by failing to qualify, losing from a commanding position to McBain and further placing his ranking in jeopardy.

The betting ended up ok after a shaky start, 3 of the 4 flagged up yesterday won despite my misplaced confidence again in McGill who succumbed to the awesome scoring power of McManus, a highest 34 break proving a mountain too high for the inexperienced Scot. I think I’m going to lose a bit before I win on him, if I tip him up again my advice to you would be to ignore me.

It’s another busy weekend coming up. I’ll be working on a preview to the EPTC1/Paul Hunter Classic today and though I am still waiting for BetFred to get in touch about prizes for a Prediction Contest I’ll put one up as part of the preview. I’m planning on also putting a ‘Prediction Order of Merit’ table up on the sidebar at some point. After one event Steve K and Godspeed are making the early running.

When this finishes some of the players will be making their way from Germany to Shanghai for the first full ranking event of the season when we will actually get to see if any of them have physically changed at all over the summer as (cue drum roll) it’s actually bloody televised for a change!!

More later today.

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