August 30, 2011

Snookerbacker Classic: New Venue Announced

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 2:46 pm

I'm taking the Classic to Dublin

Since this morning’s post I have been busy finalising a date and venue for what will be the third of five qualifying events in the Snookerbacker Classic this year and I am pleased to announce that this will take place on Saturday 15th January 2012 at the Crossguns Snooker Centre in Dublin.

You can find out more about this excellent venue, which is Irelands oldest snooker club having been in business since 1958 by visiting their website here. As you can see some illustrious names have been through their doors including the legendary Hurricane and the Whirlwind, Jimmy listed as having made two maximum breaks on the premises.

The event itself will be limited to 16 players and the winner of the one-day shoot-out will progress onto Finals Day to play for the big prizes. All matches will be played over the best of seven frames.

As with all qualifiers to the Finals, the winner will receive a minimum of £100 even if they lose their first match in Gloucester and they will also receive an award marking their appearance in the first ever finals day of the event. Every player competing in the Snookerbacker Classic will leave with a unique momento of having taken part in the first of what I hope will be many of these events in the future.

I’m over the moon to be going over to Ireland for an event, not just because I like Guinness but also because my dear departed old man was Irish and I absolutely love Dublin as a city. I hope the event will be a great success.

The entrance fee will be 50 Euros (roughly £44) and can either be paid through Paypal or alternatively you can email me for direct payment details. You can do this at [email protected] where you can also reserve a place throughout September pending payment of entrance fees. Full details of the other venues for the tournament can be found here.

It should be a cracking event and I can’t wait to get over there.

The Month Ahead: Shanghai and Samba September

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 9:19 am

Good morning everyone. It doesn’t seem a month since my last ‘month ahead’ feature when I recounted the tale of a woeful Eric Clapton album that finally shot any street-cred I may have had to smithereens. But time flies and in the words of a fellow Liverpudlian, life is what happens to you when you’re busy making other plans.

September has always been one of my favourite months of the year I have to say. It would usually signal the start of the snooker season of course but those days are gone now with the seemingly 365/24/7 snooker calendar. But that isn’t the reason I like this month so much. See, I live over the road from a beach and when it’s sunny the seaside attracts people, and I use the term loosely, that don’t respect the environment. By that, I’m not talking about people with dogs, who by and large clean up after themselves, I’m talking about people with out of control kids (usually two or three too many) that leave shitty nappies, Iceland carrier bags and empty boxes of cheap lager all over the place. September traditionally for me signals a time when all that stops and we can have our seafront back and they return to their life of Jeremy Kyle and Playstations. Bloody riff raff.

Anyway, what snooker is in store for us as the nights become that little bit darker and the first signs of frost begin to appear in the UK? Well, in amongst the smattering of Premier League nights which regulars will know I don’t bother with, we have three ranking events; two PTC’s one in Sheffield and one in Poland as well as the main event, the Shanghai Masters which begins next week. We also have the innaugural Brasilian Masters which sees a few of the top players bothering to make the effort to go but a lot of them preferring to come straight home and have a couple of weeks off after a gruelling week, or in some cases no doubt a couple of days in China, the poor overworked loves. I reported on the situation surrounding this event earlier this month here and I think the players originally invited should have gone, particularly the two that are instead lining their own pockets with an ultimately pointless exhibition match.

Shanghai begins on Monday and Ali defends the title he won last year, the last event he won. After a period of ill-health The Captain will be looking to get his season off the ground with a similar performance. The big question on a lot of people’s minds will of course be if Ronnie will make the trip or not. He seems to be a bit more dedicated lately but how long will it last? I’m not of course suggesting that the neck and back problems that forced him out of the Australian event were not genuine, how could you possibly think such a thing of me? Shame on you.

The PTC’s rattle on with a more familiar low-key event in Sheffield running from 21-25th before PTC6 takes in Warsaw at the end of the month taking us into the dark nights of October and the first seeding cut off point.

On a personal note, the Snookerbacker Classic is now only 9 weeks away from the first event taking place in Scotland. I’m a little disappointed with the response to the event in Glasgow I have to say. Compared to the other events the demand has been poor and I’m not sure why that is. I have therefore taken the initial decision to limit this event to 16 rather than the originally intended 32 and play to one qualifier, this retains the four best of 7 matches to Finals Day premise and I am now actively seeking a venue in Dublin to host a similar 16 field event to give Ireland some representation in Finals Day.

I will be monitoring how and if the response to the Glasgow event changes before making a final decision on it. I want to get as close to the 16 as possible, but with a withdrawal coming in yesterday I now have just 7 entries, compared to Gloucester that is now in the 20’s and looking like being full very soon. Leeds is also filling so anyone that wants to enter that should either do so now or follow the instructions below. Essex is likely to be a slow burner I should think and anyone that is knocked out of any of the events will be offered the opportunity to enter the final qualifying event as the tournament progresses.

In terms of the events:

Glasgow, Lucky Break Snooker Centre (6/11/11 – 16 players) please email [email protected] to reserve a place and I will hold one open pending payment of entrance fee and subject to spaces available until September 30th.

Leeds, Northern Snooker Centre (2/12/11 – 32 players) please email [email protected] to reserve a place and I will hold one open pending payment of entrance fee and subject to spaces available until September 30th.

Gloucester, South West Snooker Academy (30/1/12 – 32 players) please email [email protected] to reserve a place and I will hold one open pending payment of entrance fee and subject to spaces available until September 16th.

Essex, Chelmsford Snooker Club (10/2/12 – maximum 64 players) please email [email protected] to reserve a place and I will hold one open pending payment of entrance fee and subject to spaces available until November 30th.

Please email me at [email protected] to reserve a place in a 16-player event in Dublin which is likely to be in January at a venue to be confirmed.

I think that’s September in a nutshell. Full steam ahead with a Shanghai preview shortly.

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