August 8, 2015

Shanghai Masters Qualifying Round 3

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 7:23 am

Saturday sees all the winners from Round 2 matched up in Round 3 in the penultimate qualifying round. Sunday will see the introduction of seeded players 17-32 to face today’s winners.

The betting balance was again marginally positive yesterday given that the daily 3/1 acca landed, it could have been a whole lot better but at least for the third day running we came out with a profit.

So let’s see what today brings.

Mark Joyce v David Morris
Mike Dunn v Jack Lisowski
Andrew Higginson v Zhang Anda
Liam Highfield v Ken Doherty
Dechawat Poomjaeng v Gerard Greene
Hossein Vafaei Ayouri v Joe Swail

Leo Fernandez v Tom Ford
Jamie Cope v Robbie Williams
Lu Ning v Rory McLeod
Dominic Dale v Rod Lawler
Gareth Allen v Li Hang

Mark King v Kyren Wilson
Peter Lines v Jamie Burnett
Tian Pengfei v Matthew Stevens
Dave Gilbert v Luca Brecel
David Grace v Cao Yupeng

Recommended Bets:

Daily Treble: 2 points treble pays over 4/1 at Boyles on Mark Joyce, Jamie Cope and Jamie Burnett.

Daily Double: 2 points double pays over 3/1 generally on Ayouri and Brecel.

Daily Frames Bet: 1 point acca at over 10/1 with Marathonbet on the following matches all being over 7.5 frames – Highfield/Doherty, Poomjaeng/Greene, Dale/Lawler, Ning/McLeod. 


August 7, 2015

Shanghai Masters Qualifying Day 3

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 8:19 am

Friday sees the last matches of the second round before the players ranked 33-48 join the Shanghai Masters qualifiers on Saturday for Round 3.

Bettingwise it continues to be a good week with an over 4/1 treble landing in the afternoon as well as a generously priced daily double. So it’s time to go back in today and see if the good run will continue.   

You can view the full draw for the qualifiers here and the qualifying format here.


Kurt Maflin v Lu Ning
Rory McLeod v Scott Donaldson
Dominic Dale v Lee Walker
Rod Lawler v Michael Leslie
Aditya Mehta v Gareth Allen
Li Hang v Alex Taubman


Mark King v Joel Walker
Kyren Wilson v Vinnie Calabrese
Peter Lines v Syd Wilson
Jamie Burnett v Eden Sharav
Yu Delu v Tian Pengfei


Matthew Stevens v Fraser Patrick
David Gilbert v Zhang Yong
Luca Brecel v Nigel Bond
Thepchaiya Un-Nooh v David Grace
Cao Yupeng v James Wattana

Recommended Evening Bet: 3 points on Nigel Bond at 2/1 with Bet 365.

Recommended Bets:

Daily Frames Bet: 2 points treble pays 11/2 at Marathonbet on all these three matches being over 7.5 frames: Lawler v Leslie, King v Walker and Lines v Wilson.

Daily Acca: 3 points pays over 3/1 at Betfred on Dale, McLeod, Kyren Wilson and Stevens. Add Un-Nooh for a 1 points 5 fold pays over 9/2 at Boyles. Add Bond for a 1 point acca pays over 15/1 at William Hills.   


August 6, 2015

Shanghai Masters Qualifying Day 2

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 8:16 am
Pizza Cake: Jimmy delivered a win yesterday.

Pizza Cake: Jimmy delivered a win yesterday.

It’s Day two of qualifying in Barnsley and this sees the culmination of the first round in the morning session followed by two sessions of the second round in the afternoon and evening.

There was a good win on Day 1 for Jimmy White over Oli Lines and he is back in action today against another one of the young army of players in Jack Lisowski. It’s a funny thing with Jimmy as he clearly still has the game to compete to a certain level, but he does lack the consistency and perhaps the concentration to go really deep in events anymore, but he’s nothing if not a trier and he’ll still be convinced that he’s got a big win or two left in the tank, you’ve gotta love him for that.

Today sees the winners from the morning and afternoon sessions facing players on the next rung up the seeding ladder, so as ever it’s interesting to see whether those with a win under their collective belts will be more at home than those coming in cold, which to me is part of the charm and interest of this old format.

By the way, you know us snooker lot like to have an opinion on things, sometimes just for the sake of having an opinion even if you don’t really have one. If you fit that category why not complete Matt’s snooker survey by clicking here, I did it yesterday and ended up arguing with myself about the answers I was giving, it was a very healthy debate and nobody was hurt in the process, it passes a few minutes anyway and I’m sure given Matt’s reach in the sport the governing body will study the results and then throw them away and decide Bazza was right all along.

Yesterday the afternoon treble ensured a profit on the day so we’ll play with the winnings today to see how it goes.   

You can view the full draw for the qualifiers here and the qualifying format here.

10:00 am
Duane Jones v Sydney Wilson
Thanawat Thirapongpaiboon v Eden Sharav
Tian Pengfei v Noppon Saengkham
Fraser Patrick v Darryl Hill
Steven Hallworth v Zhang Yong
Chris Wakelin v Nigel Bond
David Grace v Joe O’Connor
Ian Glover v James Wattana

Mark Joyce v Ian Burns
David Morris v Zhou Yuelong
Mike Dunn v Craig Steadman
Jack Lisowski v Jimmy White
Andrew Higginson v Michael Wasley
Stuart Carrington v Zhang Anda
Robin Hull v Liam Highfield
Ken Doherty v Chris Melling

Afternoon Treble: 2 points on Joyce, Doherty and Highfield pays over 4/1 generally.

Dechawat Poomjaeng v Ross Muir
Gerard Greene v Zak Surety
Anthony Hamilton v Hossein Vafaei Ayouri
Joe Swail v Paul Davidson
Sam Baird v Leo Fernandez
Tom Ford v Allan Taylor
Jimmy Robertson v Jamie Cope
Robbie Williams v Martin O’Donnell

Recommended Bets:

Daily Match Acca: 2 points pays over 4/1 at Betfred on Fraser Patrick, Chris Wakelin, Mark Joyce and Joe Swail. Add Ken Doherty for a over 6/1 1 point acca at the same firm.

Daily Frames Acca: 2 points at over 11/1 with Marathonbet on all these matches being over 7.5 frames: Pengfei v Saengkham, Thanawat v Sharav, Carrington v Anda and O’Donnell v Williams.

Daily Double: 2 point double pays well over 7/2 at Betfred on Syd Wilson and Hossein Vafaei Ayouri. 


August 4, 2015

Shanghai Masters Qualifiers Day 1

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 1:08 pm
Snooker's home for the rest of the week.

Snooker’s home for the rest of the week.

Wednesday sees Day 1 of the Shanghai Masters Qualifiers as we return to old format of lowest ranked players steadily progressing though the contest to face those seeded 17-32 on Sunday to join the top 16 and I dare say a few unnecessary wildcards in the main event.

It’s played in Barnsley at the Metrodome and if you are in the area, firstly you have my deepest sympathy and secondly, you can head over to watch all the action for free, which is something of a consolation.

All the matches are the best of nine and in all there are four rounds to be played over the next five days with the first two rounds monopolising Wednesday to Friday.

I quite like this format and it’s usually a bit more of an enticing betting proposition than the flat structures which dominate the calendar after this event. It’s good to have a mix and as all the players are aware of the format from the start I don’t have any problem with this at all. Indeed, in terms of betting this is the same format that reaped the rewards from the Aussie Open Qualifiers last month, so what’s not to like?

There’s some decent matches straight off with Oli Lines taking on Jimmy White in the first session, it’s also good to see that Mitchell Mann’s game against Jamie Cope will be streamed in the afternoon with Sandi Lam also on the stream in the evening. It will be available to watch at the usual betting sites and the World Snooker streaming channel.

The matches on day one are listed below, along with a couple of recommended bets.

You can view the full draw for the qualifiers here and the qualifying format here.

10:00 am

Ian Burns v Sean O’Sullivan
Zhou Yuelong v Hammad Miah
Craig Steadman v Kuldesh Johal
Oli Lines v Jimmy White Streamed
Michael Wasley v James Cahill
Zhang Anda v Andy Hicks Streamed
Liam Highfield v Michael Wild
Chris Melling v Daniel Wells

Recommended Morning Bet: 2 point treble pays just under 7/4 at Marathonbet on Lines, Steadman and Yuelong.  


Tony Drago v Ross Muir Streamed
Zak Surety v Jason Weston
Hossein Vafaei Ayouri v Alfie Burden
Rhys Clark v Paul Davison
Lu Chenwei v Leo Fernandez
Mitchell Mann v Jamie Cope Streamed
Martin O’Donnell v Jake Nicholson

Recommended Afternoon Bet: 2 point treble pays over 7/2 at Marathonbet on Ayouri, Davison and O’Donnell.


Lu Ning v Sanderson Lam Streamed
Scott Donaldson v Jordan Brown
Lee Walker v Ashley Hugill
Michael Leslie v Luke Simmonds
Barry Pinches v Gareth Allen
Michael Georgiou v Alex Taubman
Joel Walker v Adam Duffy Streamed
Vinnie Calabrese v Thor Chuan Leong

Recommended Wednesday Frames Bet: 1 point acca pays over 21/1 at Marathonbet, all these matches to be over 7.5 frames: Burns v O’Sullivan, Melling v Wells, Wasley v Cahill, Mann v Cope, Walker v Duffy. 


August 2, 2015

Riga Open Finals Day

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 7:36 am

It’s Finals Day in Latvia today as the sixteen qualifiers from the previous two days battle it out to see who will carry off the cup at the end of the day.

You can keep up with all the scores here and watch one table on Eurosport, Trump v McManus is the first match on the telly.

Recommended Treble: 2 points at just under 10/3 at Marathonbet on Over 5.5 Frames in all these morning matches: Doherty v Day, Selt v Murphy and McLeod v Ford. 


July 31, 2015

Saturday at the Riga Open

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 2:28 pm

Riga OpenFollowing the first eight qualifiers for Finals Day on Sunday, Saturday determines who will join them to contest the last 16 of the Riga Open.

Friday’s recommended bet didn’t produce the goods with the treble going down on a single frame in the end and betting on matches in these events is notoriously difficult but I’ll flag up another, again on the total frames betting with Marathonbet on three that I’d expect to not be 4-0 or 4-1 either way.

Recommended Bet: 2 point treble Over 5.5 frames in the following matches pays 10/3 at Marathonbet – Ebdon v Bond, Mehta v Jones and Cope v Burns. 

You can view the draw for the Riga Open here. The Eurosport schedule can be viewed here.

9.30 Local Time (7.30am UK Time)

Shaun Murphy v Andreas Ploner
Aditya Mehta v Duane Jones
Jack Lisowski v Rhys Clark
Peter Ebdon v Nigel Bond
Matt Selt v Joe O’Connor
Joe Swail v Alfie Burden
Liam Highfield v Tomasz Skalski
Robert Milkins v Fraser Patrick
Stuart Carrington v Thor Chuan Leong
Rory McLeod v Roman Dietzel

Not Before 11.00 Local Time

Fergal O’Brien v Callum Lloyd
Michael Holt v Jimmy White
Kyren Wilson v Ross Muir
Tom Ford v Jamie Clarke
Joe Perry v Alex Borg

Not Before 11.30 Local Time

Ricky Walden v Zak Surety
Ian Burns v Jamie Cope
Ben Woollaston v Vinnie Calabrese

Not Before 12.30 Local Time

Michael Wasley v Jeff Cundy
Gerard Greene v James Cahill
Mark Williams v Barry Pinches

Not Before 1pm Local Time

John Higgins v Joe Roberts
Oli Lines v Daniel Wells
Dominic Dale v Chris Melling
Stuart Bingham v Ashley Hugill

Not Before 2pm Local Time

Ali Carter v Joe Steele
Liang Wenbo v Damian Wilks
David Morris v Robin Otto
Dave Gilbert v Lewis John Calcutt

Followed by Later Rounds 



July 30, 2015

Friday at The Riga Open

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 10:52 am
Mark and Judd will both be on our screens tomorrow.

What a Gay Day! Judd and Mark will both be on our screens on Friday.

Once the amateur rounds are done and dusted in Latvia it’s then time for the professionals to join in and Friday kicks off on Eurosport with the holder Mark Selby up against Leeds boy Sanderson Lam.

It’s good to see the likes of Sanderson, a former SB Classic regular, getting his chance to shine in the spotlight against the best players, I wonder if he can emulate his mate Oli Lines who last season managed to get one over on the Jester from Leicester?

We’ll also get a chance later in the day to see another familiar name to us on here Syd Wilson, who takes on Judd Trump, so all in all, it’s a bit of an SB Old Boys Day on the telly.

Incidentally, Syd has been busy getting a website up and running recently and pretty impressive it is too, you can take a look at it by clicking here, my only criticism is that he hasn’t included the picture of him in his woolly jumper in our front room on there, but there’s still time. Other players take note.

Below you will find the schedule for Friday. You can take a look at the vast array of markets on the matches, including handicap and total frame betting at Marathonbet here

Given the effort they are making on the snooker this season (and the fact they are sponsors of the SB Classic), it might be worth regular snooker punters getting an account there as there are likely to be markets on there that aren’t always available elsewhere, give them a go and let me know what you think.

Recommended Treble: 3 points pays over 10/3 at Marathon Bet on all these matches being over 5.5 frames: Walker v Davison, Stevens v Hallworth and Joyce v Wakelin. Add Mitchell Mann to beat Lee Walker for a 2 point acca pays over 7/1.

You can view the draw for the Riga Open here. The Eurosport schedule can be viewed here.

9.30 Local Time (7.30am UK Time)

Mark Selby v Sanderson Lam
Joel Walker v Paul Davison
Ken Doherty v Winner of Match 38
Gary Wilson v Winner of Match 39
Jamie Jones v Hamza Akbar
Luca Brecel v Winner of Match 40
Michael Georgiou v Winner of Match 41
Ryan Day v Allan Taylor
Graeme Dott v Winner of Match 42
Andrew Higginson w/o Hossein Vafaei Ayouri
Mike Dunn v Winner of Match 43 

NB 11.00 Local Time

Matthew Stevens v Steven Hallworth
Rod Lawler v Winner of Match 44
Peter Lines v Winner of Match 45
Scott Donaldson v Michael Leslie
Mark Allen v Gareth Allen 

NB 11.30 Local Time

Barry Hawkins v Winner of Match 46
Robbie Williams v Ian Glover
Craig Steadman v Winner of Match 47
Anthony McGill v Winner of Match 48 

NB 12.30 Local Time

Mark King v Winner of Match 49
Sam Baird v Jason Weston
Mitchell Mann v Lee Walker
Michael White v Winner of Match 50 

NB 1pm Local Time

Stephen Maguire v Winner of Match 51
Anthony Hamilton v Winner of Match 52
Jimmy Robertson v Eden Sharav
Alan McManus v David Grace 

NB 2pm Local Time

Kurt Maflin v Sean O’Sullivan
Robin Hull v Tony Drago
Mark Joyce v Chris Wakelin
Judd Trump v Syd Wilson

Followed by Later Rounds 


July 28, 2015

Viva La Riga! Snooker Returns to Latvia

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 2:11 pm

Viva La Riga

The slightly stuttering stop/start to the new season sees Riga in Latvia play host once more to the first of this season’s European Players Tour Championships, which starts with the amateur rounds on Wednesday and sees the professionals enter the fray on Friday.

This of course, as has been well documented, is the final year of the EPTC’s in their current form. They morphed out of the PTC format and have now become synonymous with new European venues for snooker and decent crowds who are increasingly being turned on to the sport by watching it live, albeit whilst being groomed into thinking Best of 7’s are where it’s at, when in fact they are total arsewipe.

For me, I think it’s rather a surprising reversal in thinking to largely replace these next season with an English, Scottish and Irish Open, joining the Welsh for a £1 million Grand Slam of Snooker (the £1m only applying if Ronnie, I mean someone, wins them all). Bazza and Jason have previously stated on several occasions that they saw the future of the sport outside of the UK, yet they have decided to bring it back on a larger scale than for over a decade. But at least Ronnie will be happy as he doesn’t like going abroad anymore.

It’s also almost certain that the route to the main tour through the EBSA Order of Merit will be closed off for amateurs after this season, meaning that as things stand, the development of the amateur game will suffer. However, there may be a few developments in the pipeline to address this so all may not be lost, but my guess is the door to the tour through this list will be.

Anyway, it’s not the last year in Riga at least as it’s already been confirmed that this one will run again next season and I hope the same goes for the Paul Hunter Classic as it would be a real shame to lose this established event in Germany from the calendar, let’s hope they can find sponsors for that one to secure its long term future aswell.

It’s very hard to know who is going into this having put the hours in. A lot of the potters have used the break since Australia to go on holiday so there might be a few very careless suntanned hackers on display come the weekend.

The best strategy in terms of betting on the outrights I always find is to select a player from each quarter to back each way and nail your colours to a winner, it’s served us well in the past so there’s no reason to abandon that tactic now.

So here goes nothing:

Recommended Bets: 1 points each way on Jamie Jones at 80/1. 2 points on Stephen Maguire at 20/1. 1 point each way on Matt Selt at 66/1. 1 point each way on Ali Carter at 40/1. 

You can view the draw for the Riga Open here. The Eurosport schedule can be viewed here. You can take a look at Marathonbet’s comprehensive match betting by clicking here.


July 15, 2015

New Sponsors for SB Classic

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 11:06 am
A champion in more ways than one.

A champion in more ways than one.

Those of you with nothing better to do but follow my unintelligible nonsense occasionally on social media will probably be aware that the last 24 hours or so has seen a lot of action on the sponsor front for this season’s forthcoming Snookerbacker Classic, which will be open for entries soon.

On Monday, I received some disappointing news about some sponsorship that I had been hoping to secure, this led to a rather desperate late night appeal on Twitter which in turn led to an upturn in my fortunes and more importantly the future of the tournament.

Tuesday morning started with a text message on my phone from none other than the current World Champion Stuart Bingham, who had read my ramblings and immediately pledged £1000 to the cause. Stuart didn’t have to do this and wanted no publicity for it, it just goes to show that our World Champion has not forgotten where he came from and firmly supports grass roots snooker, what a gent.

Some kind-hearted individuals also offered funding up as well as their valuable time, including Norwegian Eurosport snooker commentator Edwin Ingebrigsten, who I thank immensely for his contribution which again came right out of the blue and is simply a gesture of support for nothing in return.

I also received a donation from ecological consultancy service Udall-Martin Associates and I am also working to secure a further lump sum from another corporate sponsor in the gambling industry.

I am delighted to say that existing partner Eden Resources, a massive supporter of snooker at grass roots level, are also again on board to fund some junior scholarships and that I will continue to be working with Lake Creative Design and My Snooker Stats; both huge supporters of the SB Classic.

My mate Steve

My mate Steve

Just as my blown-head was about to settle down to sleep, last night, the 6 Times World Champion Steve Davis also got in touch to pledge a further £1000 to the prize fund. By now, I was beginning to wonder if I was dreaming….

So to sum up what this means to the tournament. From potentially downsizing a little 48 hours ago, I will now, pending confirmation from one sponsor be able to offer at least £11,500 in prize money, including a winners prize of at least £3000, which will include the World Champion Stuart Bingham Scholarship. As well as this, the Runner-Up and Losing Semi-Finalists will receive Steve Davis Achievement Awards on top of the existing prize money.

I’ll have more details in the very near future including the dates and venues and how to enter this season’s Snookerbacker Classic, it’s likely to be pretty competitive for places as they are limited so please keep your eyes peeled towards the end of the month.

Stay tuned for news of the tournament on here, follow me on Twitter here or Facebook here.  


July 13, 2015

The Pink Ribbon: Information for all Players

Filed under: snookerbacker @ 8:12 am

Pink PantherA festival of snooker and a logistical nightmare is how I’d best sum up what is happening from Wednesday onwards at the South West Snooker Academy in Gloucester as the annual Pink Ribbon tournament in aid of Breast Cancer gets underway.

The information below has been compiled by Andrew Norman (with a few edits from me, see if you can spot them) after the comings and goings had been determined by tournament director Clive ‘Einstein’ Brown.

This information is for all amateur and professional players who are competing. I hope it’s a great event and very successful at raising lots of dosh for charity, I also hope Clive makes it to the end without having to resort to hard drugs.

Please click the links below for:

Amateur Draw

Player Match Times

Tournament Schedule

Last 128 Draw

Professional Match Times

Please read the draw and match numbers carefully to find the correct match times, don’t be utterly careless and miss your match.

Note the times are a guide and can be delayed due to snails who take ages and won’t win it anyway.

Players MUST report to the Tournament Desk located in the lounge at least 15 minutes before your match is due to start, don’t turn up with an attitude because your match is delayed either, it can’t be helped.

Dress Code 

All Players must wear Trousers, Shoes and a Pink Top to represent Breast Cancer Awareness.

Official Pink Ribbon 2015 Polo Shirts will be available to buy at the event in the SWSA Shop.

We encourage spectators to watch all matches throughout the week.

There will be no tickets sold, however there will be conveniently placed charity buckets around SWSA where we would appreciate everyone to donate an entrance fee to the event. In other words, put something in the buckets and don’t turn up expecting to watch the snooker for free, and don’t do that old trick of throwing a couple of two pences in and rattling what’s in there very loudly within earshot of as many people as possible. 

Event Format

1st Round Matches: Best of 5 Frames

2nd Round – Final: Best of 7 Frames

Professional Players will enter the draw at the round of Last 128 Player.

All Professional players will give amateur players 18 points start per frame.

5 times World Champion Ronnie O’Sullivan will be starting his Pink Ribbon campaign at 2pm on Saturday 18th July, if he gets beat he will congratulate his opponent on an excellent season, even though it hasn’t really started yet.

Please do not hesitate to contact SWSA if you have any questions at all on 01452 223214.

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