Pool and Snooker Thread

sd92

International Coach
Joined
Feb 26, 2005
Online Cricket Games Owned
Played some pool last night, good fun.
 

Will_NA

Chairman of Selectors
Joined
Nov 20, 2006
Online Cricket Games Owned
Greatest game of my life earlier. Came back from the brink of being 8-balled (he had a black and a colour on the table) to winning. Fair enough h potted the black and white to lose on the final shot but I went on a potting streak of 3 and 4.

Classic.
 

SciD

Chairman of Selectors
Joined
Feb 11, 2006
Online Cricket Games Owned
Indonesians are best at 9 ball. Love the style of play.
 

zimrahil

Cricketing God
PlanetCricket Award Winner
Joined
Apr 4, 2001
Location
Birmingham, England
Online Cricket Games Owned
  1. Don Bradman Cricket 14 - Xbox 360
  2. Don Bradman Cricket 14 - Steam PC
Definitely. I love watching Williams, Higgins, O'Sullivan and the rest as much as anyone else, and I still want for them to have their day from time to time, but the sooner one of these younger players can win the Worlds, the better. It's also really interesting that this young generation of players is predominantly non-British; hopefully this persuades World Snooker to make the game at least a little less Anglocentric

I'd probably favour something similar to tennis' four majors to sit as the next level down from the World and Tour Championship. The UK Championship, German Masters, China Championship and proposed Saudi Championship would be my preferences. It's an amazing sport, and it has so much potential beyond hosting all its major tournaments in England
Thought better move convo to this thread :p

The Chinese invasion has been talked about for years and whilst I think the class of 92, Trump, Selby etc will be around for a while yet you can see the slowly but sure influence of the Chinese contingent making their way up the rankings and now finally winning big tournaments.
In fairness to WST the pandemic has resulted in 99% of events being held in Britain but they are trying to get more global again with Turkish Masters, Saudi and German Masters all supposedly being held in their own countries. Whilst convenient for us Brits it undoubtedly will be better for sport if snooker is played around the world. Issue with Chinese events historically is that not many fans attend them making for a poorer viewing experience.

Yes the BBC weren't daft in jumping on the Triple Crown bandwagon (which conveniently are only 3 events they cover) but I agree Snooker should be like other major sports with 4 majors. I am not sure how successful marketing of majors underneath the Worlds/Tour Champs would pan out, I think simply add the Tour Championship to the Triple Crown events to get the big 4
Then I suppose like the Tennis Masters 1000 events you could have the next tier of events such as Saudi, China Champs etc but I doubt WST have that kind of vision/ambition to drive game forward :p
 

Aislabie

Black Belt in Statsguru
Moderator
Ireland
PlanetCricket Award Winner
X Rebels
Joined
Sep 3, 2010
Location
Derbyshire
I doubt WST have that kind of vision/ambition to drive game forward :p
They definitely don't and you can kind of see why - what they have at the moment is profitable (but fragile - only three major sponsors) so as a business they have no real incentive to upset the apple cart

Even cricket doesn't try to actively limit the number of professional players though - even if "amateur" doesn't mean the same as in other sports, limiting the world rankings to just the arbitrary "professional" players is lunacy. Like James Cahill getting into the last 16 of the worlds then arriving at the next event with zero ranking points. That completely stopped his career in its tracks
 

zimrahil

Cricketing God
PlanetCricket Award Winner
Joined
Apr 4, 2001
Location
Birmingham, England
Online Cricket Games Owned
  1. Don Bradman Cricket 14 - Xbox 360
  2. Don Bradman Cricket 14 - Steam PC
They definitely don't and you can kind of see why - what they have at the moment is profitable (but fragile - only three major sponsors) so as a business they have no real incentive to upset the apple cart

Even cricket doesn't try to actively limit the number of professional players though - even if "amateur" doesn't mean the same as in other sports, limiting the world rankings to just the arbitrary "professional" players is lunacy. Like James Cahill getting into the last 16 of the worlds then arriving at the next event with zero ranking points. That completely stopped his career in its tracks
In fairness the top 128 players are ranked and they have first dibs at each tour event. When players drop out for whatever reason then top ups are used (never understood how that is worked out though) so its hard to justify even more professional players as they wouldn't get to play anyway.
I agree that any player, regardless of status should receive prize money depending on how they did at an event though, seems the WST are being a bit backward in that regard?
Pro's like Mark Williams wants to cut the tour to only 64 players, which I guess would ensure higher standards at every event but surely that would kill the game at lower levels as would make it praticably impossible to make it as a pro player.
 

Aislabie

Black Belt in Statsguru
Moderator
Ireland
PlanetCricket Award Winner
X Rebels
Joined
Sep 3, 2010
Location
Derbyshire
Pro's like Mark Williams wants to cut the tour to only 64 players, which I guess would ensure higher standards at every event but surely that would kill the game at lower levels as would make it praticably impossible to make it as a pro player.
Yeah, a lot of the top pros have very self-serving views on this. Concerningly, Ronnie O'Sullivan seems to be the most forward-thinking in this regard: he's often criticised the lower-ranked players, but more because he wants to be challenged by them than because he doesn't want them around. A 64-player tour would be so regressive; it'd look something like this:
Top 48 at end of last season
  1. 1643287633403.png Judd Trump
  2. 1643287633403.png Mark Selby
  3. 1643287633403.png Ronnie O'Sullivan
  4. 1643287662948.png Neil Robertson
  5. 1643287633403.png Shaun Murphy
  6. 1643287633403.png Kyren Wilson
  7. 1643287710394.png John Higgins
  8. 1643287747301.png Ding Junhui
  9. 1643287710394.png Stephen Maguire
  10. 1643287747301.png Yan Bingtao
  11. 1643287809331.png Mark Williams
  12. 1643287834729.png Mark Allen
  13. 1643287633403.png Barry Hawkins
  14. 1643287633403.png Jack Lisowski
  15. 1643287633403.png Stuart Bingham
  16. 1643287710394.png Anthony McGill
  17. 1643287747301.png Zhou Yuelong
  18. 1643287710394.png Graeme Dott
  19. 1643287902283.png Thepchaiya Un-Nooh
  20. 1643287633403.png Joe Perry
  21. 1643287948922.png Kurt Maflin
  22. 1643287633403.png Tom Ford
  23. 1643287633403.png Dave Gilbert
  24. 1643287633403.png Ali Carter
  25. 1643287633403.png Martin Gould
  26. 1643287747301.png Zhao Xintong
  27. 1643287747301.png Liang Wenbo
  28. 1643287809331.png Ryan Day
  29. 1643287747301.png Xiao Guodong
  30. 1643287633403.png Matthew Selt
  31. 1643287633403.png Michael Holt
  32. 1643287633403.png Ricky Walden
  33. 1643287633403.png Gary Wilson
  34. 1643287710394.png Scott Donaldson
  35. 1643287747301.png Lu Ning
  36. 1643287809331.png Matthew Stevens
  37. 1643287633403.png Robert Milkins
  38. 1643287747301.png Li Hang
  39. 1643288165710.png Luca Brecel
  40. 1643287834729.png Jordan Brown
  41. 1643288219866.png Hossein Vafaei
  42. 1643287633403.png Mark Joyce
  43. 1643287633403.png Liam Highfield
  44. 1643287902283.png Noppon Saengkham
  45. 1643288307873.png Alexander Ursenbacher
  46. 1643287633403.png Ben Woollaston
  47. 1643287633403.png Stuart Carrington
  48. 1643287633403.png Martin O'Donnell
Top 4 others on one-year list
  1. 1643287809331.png Jamie Jones
  2. 1643287633403.png Sam Craigie
  3. 1643287809331.png Jak Jones
  4. 1643287633403.png Joe O'Connor
Around 10 new and returning pros
  1. 1643287747301.png Wu Yize
  2. 1643287747301.png Zhang Jiangkang
  3. 1643287633403.png Peter Lines
  4. 1643287710394.png Fraser Patrick
  5. 1643287747301.png Yuan Sijun
  6. 1643287809331.png Jackson Page
  7. 1643287633403.png Alfie Burden
  8. 1643287633403.png Barry Pinches
  9. 1643288788094.png Michael Judge
  10. 1643287633403.png Craig Steadman
Tour Card Exemptions
  1. 1643287710394.png Stephen Hendry
  2. 1643287633403.png Jimmy White
  • 1643287633403.png Mark Davis
  • 1643287633403.png Mark King
  • 1643287902283.png Sunny Akani
  • 1643287633403.png Ian Burns
  • 1643287710394.png Dean Young
  • 1643287809331.png Duane Jones
  • 1643287809331.png Dominic Dale
  • 1643287633403.png Jimmy Robertson
  • 1643287633403.png Louis Heathcote
  • 1643288796022.png Ken Doherty
  • 1643287809331.png Dan Wells
  • 1643287633403.png Robbie Williams
  • 1643287809331.png Michael White (who somehow isn't on the tour anyway, to show how broken it is)
  • 1643288868617.png Michael Georgiou (ditto)

And it wouldn't just be about the players not on the tour now - plenty of snooker players develop slowly and players like Stuart Bingham (spent the first near-decade of his career ranked 40+), Barry Hawkins (similar start to his career as Stuart Bingham) and even Kyren Wilson (finished the 2015-16 season ranked 56th and famously nearly retired from the game) would never have been able to establish themselves on such a small tour; they'd have been washed out and forced to go for proper jobs. And that's without looking at the non-UK players, who have to swallow travel costs and for whom the situation now is borderline untenable - guys like Hossein Vafaei and Zhao Xintong, two of the game's brightest prospects, would never have been able to survive on a 64-man tour.

I agree that any player, regardless of status should receive prize money depending on how they did at an event though, seems the WST are being a bit backward in that regard?
Amateur players do earn prize money, but they also have to swallow all their own travel costs and entry fees. Players with Tour Cards often get this sort of thing subsidised to some or all extent by WST.

In fairness the top 128 players are ranked and they have first dibs at each tour event. When players drop out for whatever reason then top ups are used (never understood how that is worked out though) so its hard to justify even more professional players as they wouldn't get to play anyway
At some point, I will post my spreadsheet explaining how I'd work this - for now I'll say that if the business model demands flat-128 draws and no qualifying tournaments, then yeah - there's no tenable way for the tour as it is to support more than 128 full-time players.
 

zimrahil

Cricketing God
PlanetCricket Award Winner
Joined
Apr 4, 2001
Location
Birmingham, England
Online Cricket Games Owned
  1. Don Bradman Cricket 14 - Xbox 360
  2. Don Bradman Cricket 14 - Steam PC
Yeah, a lot of the top pros have very self-serving views on this. Concerningly, Ronnie O'Sullivan seems to be the most forward-thinking in this regard: he's often criticised the lower-ranked players, but more because he wants to be challenged by them than because he doesn't want them around. A 64-player tour would be so regressive; it'd look something like this:
Top 48 at end of last season
  1. View attachment 262497 Judd Trump
  2. View attachment 262497 Mark Selby
  3. View attachment 262497 Ronnie O'Sullivan
  4. View attachment 262498 Neil Robertson
  5. View attachment 262497 Shaun Murphy
  6. View attachment 262497 Kyren Wilson
  7. View attachment 262499 John Higgins
  8. View attachment 262504 Ding Junhui
  9. View attachment 262499 Stephen Maguire
  10. View attachment 262504 Yan Bingtao
  11. View attachment 262505 Mark Williams
  12. View attachment 262506 Mark Allen
  13. View attachment 262497 Barry Hawkins
  14. View attachment 262497 Jack Lisowski
  15. View attachment 262497 Stuart Bingham
  16. View attachment 262499 Anthony McGill
  17. View attachment 262504 Zhou Yuelong
  18. View attachment 262499 Graeme Dott
  19. View attachment 262507 Thepchaiya Un-Nooh
  20. View attachment 262497 Joe Perry
  21. View attachment 262508 Kurt Maflin
  22. View attachment 262497 Tom Ford
  23. View attachment 262497 Dave Gilbert
  24. View attachment 262497 Ali Carter
  25. View attachment 262497 Martin Gould
  26. View attachment 262504 Zhao Xintong
  27. View attachment 262504 Liang Wenbo
  28. View attachment 262505 Ryan Day
  29. View attachment 262504 Xiao Guodong
  30. View attachment 262497 Matthew Selt
  31. View attachment 262497 Michael Holt
  32. View attachment 262497 Ricky Walden
  33. View attachment 262497 Gary Wilson
  34. View attachment 262499 Scott Donaldson
  35. View attachment 262504 Lu Ning
  36. View attachment 262505 Matthew Stevens
  37. View attachment 262497 Robert Milkins
  38. View attachment 262504 Li Hang
  39. View attachment 262509 Luca Brecel
  40. View attachment 262506 Jordan Brown
  41. View attachment 262510 Hossein Vafaei
  42. View attachment 262497 Mark Joyce
  43. View attachment 262497 Liam Highfield
  44. View attachment 262507 Noppon Saengkham
  45. View attachment 262511 Alexander Ursenbacher
  46. View attachment 262497 Ben Woollaston
  47. View attachment 262497 Stuart Carrington
  48. View attachment 262497 Martin O'Donnell
Top 4 others on one-year list
  1. View attachment 262505 Jamie Jones
  2. View attachment 262497 Sam Craigie
  3. View attachment 262505 Jak Jones
  4. View attachment 262497 Joe O'Connor
Around 10 new and returning pros
  1. View attachment 262504 Wu Yize
  2. View attachment 262504 Zhang Jiangkang
  3. View attachment 262497 Peter Lines
  4. View attachment 262499 Fraser Patrick
  5. View attachment 262504 Yuan Sijun
  6. View attachment 262505 Jackson Page
  7. View attachment 262497 Alfie Burden
  8. View attachment 262497 Barry Pinches
  9. View attachment 262512 Michael Judge
  10. View attachment 262497 Craig Steadman
Tour Card Exemptions
  1. View attachment 262499 Stephen Hendry
  2. View attachment 262497 Jimmy White

And it wouldn't just be about the players not on the tour now - plenty of snooker players develop slowly and players like Stuart Bingham (spent the first near-decade of his career ranked 40+), Barry Hawkins (similar start to his career as Stuart Bingham) and even Kyren Wilson (finished the 2015-16 season ranked 56th and famously nearly retired from the game) would never have been able to establish themselves on such a small tour; they'd have been washed out and forced to go for proper jobs. And that's without looking at the non-UK players, who have to swallow travel costs and for whom the situation now is borderline untenable - guys like Hossein Vafaei and Zhao Xintong, two of the game's brightest prospects, would never have been able to survive on a 64-man tour.
Yeah whilst the quality would be amazing and TV would love it, for everyone else connected to the game it would be horrendous. I had forgotten about Kyren Wilson, imagine if he had got lost to the game (now multi ranker and World finalist)
Imagine all those promising youngsters that would be lost to the game, especially the Chinese and UK contingents plus how could game grow globally when near impossible to join main tour?


Amateur players do earn prize money, but they also have to swallow all their own travel costs and entry fees. Players with Tour Cards often get this sort of thing subsidised to some or all extent by WST.

Oh I thought been reading lately that top Pro's were highlighting fact that first round losers need to have their expenses etc covered, I didn't recall distinction being made between having a tour card or not?

At some point, I will post my spreadsheet explaining how I'd work this - for now I'll say that if the business model demands flat-128 draws and no qualifying tournaments, then yeah - there's no tenable way for the tour as it is to support more than 128 full-time players.

Now this I would be interested in seeing, presumably you want something like 96 on main tour plus qualifiers for each event that lead to 32 players making it through to round 1, for example?
 

Aislabie

Black Belt in Statsguru
Moderator
Ireland
PlanetCricket Award Winner
X Rebels
Joined
Sep 3, 2010
Location
Derbyshire
Yeah whilst the quality would be amazing and TV would love it, for everyone else connected to the game it would be horrendous. I had forgotten about Kyren Wilson, imagine if he had got lost to the game (now multi ranker and World finalist)
Oh yeah, the quality of snooker would be unbelievable for a while. And you'd likely have a bunch of one-table events, which would be fun.
Oh I thought been reading lately that top Pro's were highlighting fact that first round losers need to have their expenses etc covered, I didn't recall distinction being made between having a tour card or not?
Hmmm it may be different then - though I wouldn't imagine that any help from WST would provide for more than a basic option, and given that Ronnie was at The Imperial Hotel in Llandudno for the Tour Championship a few years ago, there's no way WST's help would extend that far. Certainly, the help doesn't completely cover players' travel and accommodation - but they don't have to pay entry fees which "amateurs" do.

Much of the complaining was from Shaun Murphy and Kyren Wilson about having "mortgages to pay", and as for Mark Allen, well - that is one dodgy financial situation. But it's not really them who should be complaining - the 64th-ranked player on last season's one-year list was Sunny Akani, who made £31,500. This is an intelligent 26-year-old from the other side of the world - you certainly wouldn't criticise him for saying enough is enough.

Certainly the Chinese tournaments, and the Saudi one once it gets the go-ahead potentially next season, are crucial for snooker to keep being a viable living for its professional players.
Now this I would be interested in seeing, presumably you want something like 96 on main tour plus qualifiers for each event that lead to 32 players making it through to round 1, for example?
Of course, my plan does somewhat rely on their being a return to pre-Covid tournaments and things, but I would be looking at essentially having three levels of pro tours:
  • World Tour - with the World Championship, Tour Championship, four Majors, Masters, Champion of Champions and a selection of other events
  • European Tour - with around the same amount of events, spread across Britain and Europe; often lower-paying events
  • Asian Tour - same vibe as the European Tour; we'd be looking at some the Chinese events, Indian Open, that kind of event
  • Women's Tour - already exists; just a matter of integrating it into some world rankings
  • Seniors' Tour - also already exists, but definitely needs to become less Anglo-centric
  • Challenge Tour - see: Seniors Tour; this would also be designed to include some of the major pro-ams, like the Vienna Open
  • Q School - with a little bit of tweaking, this could really be a good route onto the World and Regional Tours
The idea being that players would have a safety net if they fall off the main tour, and that world rankings would include more than just the top 128 players.

I designed a Tariff system that would allow for players to enter into certain tournaments not specifically on their usual Tour schedule, and some World Tour events (most notably the World Championship) would have fields of more than 128 players (even if they are put into qualifying draws). Sometimes, more than one Tour would have an event running at the same time, and that's okay too.

I would also buy up the Snooker.tv domain and stream every non-TV table from every WST event, anywhere in the world in return for a subscription - maybe a tiered subscription depending on whether people want to watch the World Tour, World and Regional Tours, or all of the events. It's another revenue stream. I'd also change up the dress code so that players can wear distinctive shirts in the same way that darts players can - then they can also sell them through WST to net a nice revenue stream while WST takes a 10% cut.

Certain tournaments would also be encouraged to reserve certain places in their tournaments for players from their region. For example, if the English Open had 64 places reserved for players under the English flag, the Northern Irish for players under the Northern- and Republic of Ireland flags, and so on. This would ensure that not all tournaments always have the same players playing against one another, which would be great.

And anyone who played in any event put on by any of these tours would be ranked, because that's how I personally think it should be.

Again - I am definitely not going to get a job with WST any time soon
 

zimrahil

Cricketing God
PlanetCricket Award Winner
Joined
Apr 4, 2001
Location
Birmingham, England
Online Cricket Games Owned
  1. Don Bradman Cricket 14 - Xbox 360
  2. Don Bradman Cricket 14 - Steam PC
I see some similarities with Golf: The PGA tour, European tour, Asian tour, African tour, and the world golf tour, Though the world golf tour isn’t really seen as the pinnacle of the sport.
I love the idea of all events been ranked even it’s been played concurrently across the different tours, the biggest challenge of course is how to get enough interest/players/sponsorship etc globally to make all these Tours viable.
it would be amazing if one day we got something even 10% similar to this.

Something they could do now though is your idea of streaming non-TV tables, I think there would be enough interest in that in the UK alone and probably Asia too. Surprised Barry Hearn when chairman didn’t think of doing this as he always thinks of money first.

Just watching the final of the German Masters, Xintong currently 8-0 up as I type, really fulfilling all that potential he has shown for years. Hopefully someone who can come close to taking over Ronnie’s mantle when he retires.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top