Snookerbacker

November 7, 2011

UK Championship Qualifiers: Round 2

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 9:19 am

Darren has been forced to downgrade a bit since the 80's.

It was an action-packed day on the baize yesterday what with the oldies finishing off and start of the qualifiers but a thoroughly enjoyable one both as a spectator and from a betting point of view.

Congratulations must first go to the £18,000 winner of the Seniors Darren Morgan, who might now be able to afford to buy back that personalised ‘Hi Babe’ numberplate from his red sports car he had in the 80’s. It’s no secret that our Dazza stills puts the hours in on the baize and it is a bit of a mystery to me why he retired as early as he did from the main tour. He obviously still has the game and more importantly the temperament to compete, but I suppose in his view there is more to life than snooker (weirdo).

Morgs beat the wonderful Nugget who again proved that old adage that you can’t buy class by totally ignoring the ridiculous new rules that this tournament sought to impose against JP. But rather than me bang on again about the pointless and stupid little gimmicks they introduced into an otherwise thoroughly enjoyable event I’ll direct you to Dave Hendon’s blog where he basically says what I think far more eloquently than I ever could. A final nod to referee John Williams who looks exactly the same as he did when I was a kid. Great to see him back and looking so well, even though he used to scare the shit out of me as tournament organiser at Pontins, the words ‘you’re late, you’re scratched’ still give me nightmares.

While we’re on the Sky events, with all the action going on it might have escaped some people’s notice that one of the top 64 players has failed to enter the Sky Shootout in January. That man being none other than the main draw for Sky, Ronnie. It was a good day to bury bad news with all the action going on and as if to make up for it the ermm, ‘random draw’ threw up a headline with John Higgins drawn against Judd Trump in the first round as well as a repeat of last year’s final in Bond and Milkins. Reports that a microwave was heard pinging just seconds before John and Judd’s balls were plucked from out of the draw bag are just idle chatter of course. Anyway, Welshman Michael White who is ranked 65 takes Ronnie’s place in the event. Apparently each player gets a £500 appearance fee for it but that wasn’t enough to tempt Ron to make the trip to Blackpool, to be fair they’d have to offer me more than that to go there for a weekend aswell.

So to matters in hand and the UK qualifiers continue today with 16 more matches which include seniors Jimmy and Tony Drago, with the Nugget following on tomorrow. The betting side of things could not have gone much better with 9 from the 10 recommended selections winning yesterday and Saturday night including the maximum punt on Kurt Maflin, a treble last night and the 10/3 Boylesports Enhanced Accumulator, making it possibly one of the most profitable starts to a tournament in the history of the blog. Boylesports are sportingly taking us on again this afternoon.

There were two final frame black ball deciders in the afternoon with heartbreak for young Belgian paperboy Luca Brecel who managed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory against Ian McCulloch. The promising Sam Craigie had a five and a half hour marathon against Andrew Pagget and won on a respot, high drama indeed.

Today the winners from yesterday take on the next notch up the ranking list, can any of them make it to York I wonder? Let’s take a look at what we can find today.

Monday 12 noon

Alfie Burden 3-6 Adam Duffy

Jimmy Robertson 6-5  Kurt Maflin LIVE STREAMED

James Wattana 5-6 Ian McCulloch (H2H 1-2)

Liu Chuang 0-6 Tian Pengfei (H2H 1-1)

Barry Pinches 4-6 Michael White (H2H 1-0)

Ben Woollaston 6-5 Sam Craigie LIVE STREAMED

Liu Song 3-6 Cao Yupeng

Xiao Guodong 6-5 Adam Wicheard (H2H 2-0)

Woolly: Big Prospect.

There are a few head to head records to go on here and the one that grabs me the most is the one between the high scoring Xiao Guodong and Adam Wicheard, who had a solid win yesterday. They have met twice in recent months in the PTC’s and Adam has only won a single frame. For me, in a match where I would have been siding with the Chinese player anyway this just puts the top hat on it. I’d make Guodong the bet of the morning for big punters. The three meetings between McCulloch and Wattana came almost a decade ago so can be largely ignored. Macca isn’t a player that I enjoy either betting on or opposing as he’s a lot more inconsistent these days than he used to be when he had that chavvy waistcoat. Wattana’s qualifying round record since his return to the tour is solid enough for me to suspect he will come through here, but it’s not a bet for me. Another I won’t be touching is the all Chinese clash between Song and Yupeng, I have already underestimated Yupeng once so I’ll keep an eye on him as he may have started to improve, Song is a very capable player on his day but throws in poor performances almost at random intervals, steer clear. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Adam Duffy overturn the odds and rain on Alfie Burden’s parade today. Cockney sparrow and cow fancier Alfie is beginning to get some results after a miserable run but Adam had a good win yesterday and considering he is something of a rookie first season pro he is winning more than he is losing at present and should not be underestimated. The other all Chinese affair between Pengfei and Chuang should be a great match, but again for me is too close to call between two of the more promising players from the region. Instead I’ll be concentrating again on a match involving Kurt Maflin, but this time I am going to oppose him with Crucible qualifier from last year Jimmy Robertson. Jimmy is showing improving form again lately and given Kurt’s pretty lame performance yesterday I’m confident that on home turf Jimmy can win this one with a bit in hand. I am also turning into a big admirer of Ben Woollaston, who as well as winning a PTC already this season seems a really solid player with a nice temperament and I’d expect him to beat the promising youngster Craigie who came through a marathon yesterday, Ben is best priced 1/2 at Boylesports and I think that’s a solid bet. Finally to round things off, my own personal Lord Voldermort when it comes to betting Barry Pinches is back again, he plays Michael White who is turning many heads of late. Barry is on an 8 match losing run and can’t buy a win and Michael is in fine form. Although this pattern would usually indicate that Barry is nailed on to win I’m going to stick with the form book and back White.

Recommended Monday Lunchtime Bets:

3 points win on the Snookerbacker Enhanced Treble at Boylesports on Guodong, White and Woollaston pays enhanced odds of 5/2.

2 points win on the Snookerbacker Enhanced Acca at Boylesports on Guodong, White, Woollaston and Robertson pays 9/2.  

Find the special blog bets here

Click here or the box below to open an account with Boylesports and take advantage of an exclusive introductory offer to blog readers. 

Monday 7pm

Anthony McGill 6-2 Sam Baird

Jimmy White 6-2 Passakorn Suwannawat LIVE STREAMED

Peter Lines 6-4 Robin Hull (H2H 1-0)

Andy Hicks 5-6 Li Yan LIVE STREAMED

Joe Swail 1-6 Dave Gilbert (H2H 0-1)

Adrian Gunnell 6-4 David Grace

Mark Joyce 6-5 Rod Lawler (H2H 1-2)

Tony Drago 6-3 Andrew Norman (H2H 1-1)

Hicks: Experienced.

Some very interesting match ups tonight and I’d be surprised if we didn’t see a few final frame deciders for anyone that likes random correct score bets. Some of these look very evenly matched indeed and the favourites will not have things all their own way in these, that’s for damn sure as mustard. Mark Joyce of course had his best ever professional ranking event run in this last season making it all the way to the quarter finals before losing narrowly to MJW. He has only fleetingly produced that kind of form since because of an unfortunate incident that left him in a bad state for a bit. But he did win the Pink Ribbon event here in the summer and with that in mind I would be tempted to side with him against Rod Lawler who is a bit in and out these days despite his battling qualities. Another player that I am usually happy to oppose is Adrian Gunnell, but he appears to have got a bit of form back recently albeit fleetingly and when he does turn it on he can still play a bit, I wouldn’t put you off backing David Grace to overturn the odds there but it’s not one for me. Robin Hull is a seriously good player when he is in the mood and he absolutely hammered Yu Delu last night, he’s in with a strong chance against Peter Lines who has lost to weaker opposition than Hull in the last two PTC’s. I watched Li Yan last night and although he is a great potter he does tend to be rather erratic at times and if Andy Hicks keeps his discipline, which he usually does I expect him to come through that one. Ant McGill takes on Sam Baird in one that I can’t call, Ant is a hot prospect but I also rate Sam quite highly and for me that one is a coin toss which you might argue makes the 13/8 about Baird at Boyles appealing, but again I’m not committing. The two SWSA players meeting tonight are Drago and Andrew Norman, as ever with Drago he is impossible to read but to me he isn’t playing all that well lately and Stormin’ Norman might take advantage of that at odds against. Fellow senior Jimmy takes on Passakorn who had very little to beat in Round 1, I marginally fancy Jimmy to come through that one. That just leaves the one match that I will definitely get involved with tonight in taking Dave Gilbert to beat Joe Swail. Joe tends to win and lose in blocks and he is currently in the process of building a losing run, Gilbert must have played more snooker since May than anyone on the planet and is not yet showing any discernible signs of fatigue. He would be my strongest fancy tonight at the best priced 9/10 with Boyles.

Monday Evening Recommended Bets:

2 points win Gilbert to beat Swail at 9/10 with Boylesports

1 point trebles and a 1 point accumulator on Joyce (8/11) Hicks (8/11), Norman (6/5) and Gilbert (9/10) with Boylesports   

Bet £20. Get £40 Free!


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