Tuesday and Wednesday sees the annual twitchfest that is Judgement Eve and Day where we get to see who will be lining up against the 16 seeds in the draw on Thursday, before it all kicks off at The Crucible on Saturday morning.
It’s fair to say that there are quite a few names still in the mix that raise an eyebrow. Included amongst those are Alexander Ursenbacher, who is striving to become the first amateur player to make it to snooker’s hallowed ground, also still there are unlikely names like Lee Walker, Akani Songsermsawad, David Grace and Hammad Miah. With the way the matches have panned out we are assured of at least two Crucible debutants this year.
Like last year, World Snooker have decided to have a live show all day with Neal Foulds and Rob Walker, where we are guaranteed to hear every result as it happens. It worked really well last year and was compulsive viewing. My only worry this year is the move to Facebook rather than You Tube.
My experience of live streaming on Facebook isn’t great and I hope this decision isn’t a step backwards. It’s also on Eurosport Player for those of us who subscribe to that, I’m not alone in being a bit cheesed off with that this week either, very poor standard of coverage and freezing every few minutes before asking me if I want to ‘Go Back Live’. Errrmmm, yes, because that is what I am paying for.
Anyway, I hope it all runs smoothly today and tomorrow but I’d feel easier about that if they’d stuck to You Tube, which is of course designed to cope with this kind of thing. Here are the matches, looking back at the original preview I called 5 of these match ups correctly.
Where the players have played each other before click the match for the head to head stats. To find out who plays when click here. Remember for all matches it’s a maximum of 9 frames today and the match conclusions tomorrow, sessions are at 11am and 5pm UK Time both days.
Mark Williams vs Stuart Carrington (Live Streamed)
Tom Ford vs Hossein Vafaei (Live Streamed)
Lee Walker vs Noppon Saengkham
Mark King vs Xiao Guodong (Live Streamed)
Akani Songsermsawad vs David Grace
Michael Holt vs Peter Ebdon (Live Streamed)
Yan Bingtao vs Alexander Ursenbacher
PREDICTED QUALIFIERS: Williams, Vafaei, Saengkham, Maguire, King, Woollaston, Jones, Gilbert, Songsermsawad, Brecel, White, McLeod, Holt, Robertson, Bingtao, Gould.