September 16, 2015

Shanghai Masters Last 16

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 6:34 pm
Ebbo's off to an inspiring start on Twitter.

Ebbo’s off to an inspiring start on Twitter.

The Shanghai Masters continues with the Last 16 round being played out and by the end of the two sessions on Thursday we will know the Quarter Final line up.

Off the table there are a few snippits of news flying about. Stephen Lee has announced on Facebook that he is going to be publishing his long-awaited book at some point in April to coincide with the World Championship.

I think it’s fair to assume given its likely content that he won’t be asked to come and give a recital live on the BBC with Hazel and the gang listening intently.

Given that he’s already indicated that Nigel Mawer of the Integrity Unit is very much in his firing line for, and I quote, ‘lying and fixing paper work up’ as well as Barry Hearn’s lawyer (‘in as well World Snooker all at it’ sic), it’s enough to make the BBC target market of Marjorie from Chipping Norton choke on her afternoon cream bun.

It will be interesting to see if he continues with the wholly innocent story given some of the some-might-say irrefutable evidence that was presented against him in terms of who placed bets and when. I’d say he’ll also need to back anything he says, particularly any accusations, up with solid evidence if anyone is going to take it or him seriously, but he claims to have hearing tapes that confirm all his swipes and if he has, then it will indeed make very interesting listening.

Anyway, if all else fails he’s now got a coaching gig in China lined up, so at least he’s getting back on his feet. The documentary link shows Bazza and Nigel typically talking tough about match fixing saying they punish all wrongdoers whilst wishing Lee well with his new venture through gritted teeth. It also features the hapless Rob Walker trying to play snooker so it’s worth watching it just for a laugh at that.

In other off-table news, there was also a new addition to the Twitter clan of snooker players as Peter Ebdon decided to take the plunge into the murky waters of the Twitterati at the behest of Shaun Murphy. After getting the pleasantries out of the way he was quickly tweeting about being a vegan as well as posting those ‘ever so poignant’ pictures with quotes on that we’re all meant to reflect and dwell on and come out of the other side as a better person. None of them have ever worked on me I have to say but maybe I’m a lost cause, or perhaps I’m nice enough as it is and don’t need any further help on the philosophical side. I dunno.

In terms of the tournament so far, sadly Mark Selby had to withdraw following the death of his father-in-law but on a happier note Ricky Walden’s withdrawal came as a result of the birth of his first child. Neil Robertson, playing only his second event of the season, looked a bit rusty in losing to a resurgent Jamie Cope and there were good first round performances from the likes of Michael Holt, Judd Trump, Mark Williams and Martin Gould who I think may have retweeted something about it being his birthday once or seven hundred times.

Bettingwise it’s been a pretty good start with the 4 point bet on Allen getting further than Maguire landing after one round as well as the punts on outsiders Hitman Holt and Dark Mavis, the latter of whom maintained a 100% win percentage over Michael White after eight meetings. The clues were there.

In terms of the outrights, we’re still in the hunt are all four selections; Williams (40/1), Higgins (20/1), Holt (150/1) and main pick Murphy (10/1) who as stated above cleverly introduced his opponent to Twitter to give him something to do other than practice and then knocked him out. The old ‘get my next opponent hooked on Twitter’ routine working a treat for our Smurf. Peter I’m sure will have some philosophical words to tweet about his defeat which I await with baited breath to see if they change me for the better.

Just a note that I won’t be covering the rest of this tournament in any great depth, not through lack of interest but instead because another snooker related project is going to be taking up a lot more of my time in the coming weeks. Hopefully I’ll be ready to divulge exactly what that is to the masses as soon as possible, but suffice to say that on a personal level it’s very exciting.


Stuart Bingham v Mike Dunn (TV)

Mark Williams v Jamie Cope (TV)

Michael Holt v Kyren Wilson

Shaun Murphy v Dark Mavis


John Higgins v Martin Gould

Judd Trump v Matt Selt

Ding Junhui v Ryan Day (TV)

Mark Allen v David Grace (TV)

Recommended Bets: 2 point acca pays almost 3/1 at Ladbrokes on Williams, Murphy, Higgins and Allen.


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