Day Four at the Masters sees the last two matches of the first round and an all Welsh clash this afternoon between Mark Williams and Matthew Stevens ahead of an all English shootout later between the in-form Mark Selby and Stuart Bingham.
Yesterday saw wins for Judd Trump and Shaun Murphy and as ever the hacks were quick to go for the biggest story in the game, Judd’s shoes.
Judd decided to walk out in a pair of designer clogs which to the untrained and uncultured eye looked like something you’d pick up on a market stall to wear for a laugh at a stag do. But these things apparently cost him 2000 Euros (although a brief search online suggests he’s either a. lying or b. been overcharged) so he was clearly trying to make a statement, quite what that statement was is anyone’s guess.
Now let me get this straight, I am no stick in the mud when it comes to fashion and dressing up. I spent the majority of my formative years being mocked by friends for my penchant for dressing like Jarvis Cocker (ahhh the memories, got me singing this), these days I’m veering a bit more towards Joe Cocker but the point I’m trying to make is that I have no problem with people wanting to stand out from the crowd, in fact I positively encourage it.
The reason I say this is that this was Judd’s defence, he told that renowned purveyor of serious news, truth and justice The Daily Star that “Louboutin (that’s the blind person what made them) has only just started doing men’s shoes (I’d never have guessed) and I fancied a change, I’ve had my others a long time. I like to stand out a bit now and again.” Ironically the last reader of the Star to stand out was hunted down by a vigilante mob and set on fire because they thought he was a paedophile just because he didn’t like football and pictures of birds tits on every other page.
See the thing is, precisely what Judd is trying to do i.e. stand out, is exactly what dressing in this overpriced and frankly hideous tat discourages. If he wants to stand out, go and trawl through some charity shops and come up with something original rather than conforming to the playboy, rich, trashy and ultimately vulgar norm.
That’s what Jarvis did.
But for all this, Judd is still but a nipper and let’s be honest here, for all his talent on the baize and probably as a result of it he’s not over-furnished in the brains department so we will forgive him this latest transgression. Reading Twitter yesterday you’d think he was up for murdering several children rather than a crime against fashion so perhaps people need to just reflect a bit, he’s actually quite a nice lad from what I have seen, if a little easily led sometimes.
Anyway, he had to take his posh paws off half way through the match as they weren’t designed with snooker players in mind and as well as being awful to look at they were also impractical for potters. I missed most of his match against Barry Hawkins but it seems he was mighty fortunate to come through with poor old Baz missing several chances to put the match to bed in the tenth frame, but Judd and his shoes, march on.
In the evening session, Shaun Murphy made a bit of a meal of his match with Ricky Walden. All the way through there looked to be a gulf in form between them but somehow Shaun only won 6-4. One thing I did notice again was that when he’s under the cosh a bit he tends to start really whacking the ball, when they go in it looks great and very solid and commanding, but when they don’t he can be left looking a little silly, but luckily for him Walden, despite somehow getting back to 4-4 never looked like winning the match and Smurf booked his quarter final place in the end.
Another nice touch at the end was when he stayed to sign autographs for the fans and told the jobsworth at World Snooker that was trying to manhandle him that ‘the press will have to wait’ as he continued to happily scribble away for anyone that wanted his moniker. He obviously knew that the trivial matter of him winning his match would never make headlines like a pair of shoes in these dumbed-down times.
Anyway, bettingwise Murphy’s win means that all accas in the original preview now rest on Mark Selby tonight against Stuart Bingham. So rather than ‘doing a Hallett’ today the recommended bet will be for those that followed the two accumulators in with a small insurance bet on Ballrun, I’ve been in this game too long to think that the bets are in the bag so it’s always wise to cover the stake just in case.
Another reminder that the blog partners Apollobet have put an offer on for match bet punters. If a match goes to a deciding frame and your single bet on the winner of the match ducks they will refund your stake in full, so anyone who lost on the Trump v Hawkins match last night can breathe again.
For anyone that missed my full tournament preview including a look at all the first round matches you can read it here. It’s been pretty accurate so far with six out of six winners.
Recommended Bet: (for acca insurance purposes) 2 points on Bingham at 8/5 with Boylesports.
Oh by the way, you can still nominate the blog for an award. Well, you can and you can do it by clicking here and following the instructions, what’s your excuse?