October 5, 2011

PTC 7 ‘The Pink One’ Preview

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 7:04 pm

It's all going pink this weekend

The boys are heading over to Gloucester again to the excellent South West Snooker Academy to fight it out for the seventh PTC of the season. We are still yet to see a player win two of these events in one season, will we see another new winner this weekend I wonder?

It is the usual minefield when it comes to betting but as ever I like to give the outrights a good look. I tend to do better on these than the matches as I find the head to heads increasingly hard to predict in these and will always stick to minimum stakes unless something jumps out, even then though I treat them with caution.

That said, we’ll have an excellent live stream again from more than one table and it’s always fun to have a dabble when the coverage is so good.

Apollobet are really leading the way when it comes to the PTC match betting, they not only provide more markets than any of the other firms, they also price up matches during each day’s play and this is something that so far even the more proactive firms have largely failed to do. It’s great to see a bookie prepared to give us poor punters a fighting chance and they should be applauded for their commitment to these events. I know they are open to, indeed welcome any suggestions that you may have in terms of snooker markets so either post them on here or follow them on Twitter and contact them directly here.

They have also kindly provided a £40 free bet prize for a tipping competition on this event and you can enter that here. So I suppose I have to be nice to them and keep them on their toes of course as they are still a nasty old bookie. But you can open an account with them here and view their prices here.

Now let’s take them to the cleaners.

Before I get to the preview I must share with you my big news. Yes, today myself and Mrs Snookerbacker had a new arrival. I haven’t been telling anyone about it on here as I wasn’t sure if that would be bad luck but we are both absolutely over the moon about it and I’m sure you will be the first to congratulate us on this, our proudest day. It’s been an emotional time but we are now both as proud as can be, even though at one point it was a little touch and go.

I am talking of course about our advert in Snooker Scene, yes, the Snookerbacker Classic is featured on Page 30 of snooker’s legendary mag which came out today. It’s quite weird seeing something you thought about in bed one night coming to fruition like this in a magazine you used to run to the newsagent for as a kid. Weird and quite scary at the same time. Anyway, here’s a picture of it. Good or what? Designed by a great company called Lake Creative, who have infinite patience with yours truly and continue to be top drawer.

Oh and we went to see Stephen Merchant last night and I can honestly say it was the funniest stand up show I have seen. I recommend it heartily if you get the chance to see it. Hello Ladies.

So, the Team SB pack this week:

The top section of the draw features amongst others Ronnie, John Higgins, newly promoted top 16 man Martin Gould, Stuart Bingham and Stephen Maguire. Now I have had a look at the draw here and there is a reason that I am prepared to plump for one name here as this week’s team skipper. That name is John Higgins.

Ronnie is now safely in the top 16 until the next revision and I’m not sure that he will be giving these events his all now. There are ‘proper’ ranking points to be made in the UK this side of Christmas and I have a feeling he will be concentrating more on that than these events. That said, perhaps the relaxed dress code might bring out the best in him, he seems to want to treat these events like practice and I wouldn’t be surprised if he made it to a showdown with John to make Finals Day.

I think Higgins however, is very much in the mould of Neil Robertson when it comes to how he is viewing the season as a marathon not a sprint. He took his summer break, albeit shorter than usual, safe in the knowledge that when he got back he would slowly improve to peak round about the UK. I think he will win either this one or the PTC8 Alex Higgins event so if he doesn’t win this, expect a cut and paste job for the skipper role for that.

I mentioned Neil Robertson and he also has to be backed in the top half of the draw given his current form and focus. I think if anyone can break this two wins a season hoodoo that seems to be prevalent in the PTC’s it’s him. Bags of bottle, bags of mental reserve and talent. You feel that for Robbo unlike a few of the others, the season is just starting. He is the second member of Team SB.

I’m then going to select Stephen Lee again, he’s another player in form, confidence high and a winner last year at this venue, who can forget the pie picture? He can benefit from a very good draw to make Finals Day and possibly kick on again, as he did last week at half this price from there, although the always formidable presence of MJW is lurking in his section of the draw.

In the bottom section of the draw we find another SWSA PTC winner Judd Trump again with a good draw to Finals Day. He clearly loves this venue and the adulation that goes with it and at 18/1 with Apollobet this has to be backed. You won’t see a better price on Judd this season.

I’m then going to take a chance on another player that must start his season soon. He will have benefited from the time off and assuming he is still the fighter and player he was the price on Mark Allen at Skybet is decent. OK, he may face PTC stalwart Dotty in Round 2 but if he wins that there is nothing to stop him making the final Sunday. I don’t think he’ll win it, but an each way bet is allowed at those odds.

Finally, a punt. Mark Selby looked to all intents and purposes, knackered, last time we saw him. He missed Poland, but not for a rest, he went to China on promotional duties such is the Jester’s work ethic. If I was Mark’s manager, I would remind him of how he was last season during the World Championship, he burnt out. Already this season in my opinion, he has been doing too much and whilst he undoubtedly has the best draw of the top players in this, I don’t think the price on him, as low as 7/1 at Skybet and 9/1 at Apollobet represents value in a field that may comprise some very big names on Sunday. As I like to include a big outsider I’m going to have a plump on Li Yan who has been getting some very decent scalps of late in these events, including Higgins and Trump, again at the price, a small each way bet beckons.

Recommended Bets:

2 points win John Higgins @ 12/1 Apollobet

1 point win Neil Robertson @ 14/1  and Judd Trump @18/1 with Apollobet 

0.5 points each way Stephen Lee @ 40/1 with Apollobet and Mark Allen @ 50/1 with Skybet

0.25 points each way Li Yan @ 125/1 with Apollobet 

The best of luck if you are having a bet.


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