July 4, 2016

Indian Open – Potters Head to Hyderabad

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 9:43 am
Back early to defend his title.

Back to defend his title.

Tuesday sees the start of five days of action from Hyderabad in India as the potters, hopefully not destined to spend more time on the potty than potting take part in the Indian Open.

One of the aspects of this that is different is of course the Indian commentators, expect many scathing attacks on players if they dare to miss what they decide is an easy ball or they dare to misjudge a safety, much talk of players being ‘club standard’ is to be expected if anyone has a bad day at the office. Those boys don’t pull their punches and they will also be suitably biased towards their own players, making sure that they mention Pankaj Advani and Aditya Mehta more times than Dennis mentions golf in Sheffield regardless of who they are actually watching.

This continues the stop/start feel to the beginning of the new season, first we headed to Preston for a week of qualifiers, including the first round of this event, then a few weeks later came the Riga Masters in Latvia, which to be honest passed me by in a heartbeat and was won by Neil Robertson, now a couple of weeks later it’s this and then we have another couple of weeks to wait until the biggest event so far of the season, the World Open in Yushan, China.

This stuttering start does have its critics but I’m actually a fan of it and would rather we had a fortnight between all tournaments, with perhaps some lesser event like the Championship League providing the baize heroin injection for those who just need more and more of it, which I don’t. It’s not really until November that the events start coming thick and fast and that’s fine by me as the UK Championship and The Masters are there to keep us cozy when the nights start drawing in. For now, let summer do its thing and keep the snooker at a minimal level.

There’s not been that much happening in the baizeworld really over the past few weeks, it’s all a bit quiet while everyone takes in the changes that are happening over here in other areas and tries to get their heads around that, perhaps a focus on snooker every now and again might provide the therapy that I know I need after the week that’s just taken place in the UK.

This is covered on Eurosport Player if you have it, I haven’t so I’d better sort that out if I want to watch it. I do hope they take the Indian coverage though and we get to hear their sometimes comical thoughts on what is unfolding in front of them. We’ll also get to see one of the more bizarre presentation ceremonies at the end which seems to go on forever as every Captain and his mate gets introduced to the bemused winner and loser and Jason Ferguson stands there in his regulation suit and tie combo trying to look interested.

I managed to recommend a winning acca on the Riga preview, albeit at shorter odds by virtue of Kyren Wilson’s withdrawal, which was a certainty since I made him the poster boy of the preview, predicting big things for him this season. Happily he has recovered from the health scare that stopped him travelling to Latvia and is back in action here, where he faces my pal Martin O’Donnell first up.

Click here for the draw

Click here for the updated format

Recommended Bets: Outright – Marco Fu (12/1) Shaun Murphy (11/2) Stuart Bingham (12/1). First Round Acca –  Joe Swail, Dechawat Poomjaeng, Matthew Stevens, Mike Dunn and Anthony McGill pays just over 15/2.

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