Various news have emerged in the recent days, some of them rather … surprising and, erhhh, controversial.
Let’s start with the good / non controversial ones
Worldsnooker has published the (provisional) calendar for the new season .
Betfred has extended their sponsorship of the World Championship up to 2019, you can read more about this on Worldsnooker site .
The Q-School is underway and you can follow the scores on Worldsnooker website or on Snooker.org.
AND, now the controversial bit, it was announced today that this season the Shootout will be extented to 128 players and will be ranking . Yes, you read it right!
It’s an understatement to say that this news wasn’t well received by many players and they made their opinions clear on the social media, twitter and facebook (Peter Ebdon Mark Williams, Neil Robertson, Mark Allen being the top protesters)… and Barry Hearn dismissed them as he does, and promised more “news”. We better be prepared then.
Now what follows is my – Monique Limbos- personal opinion and mine only .
This decision is ludicrous, stupid and devaluates the rankings and snooker as a sport. This is an event where “matches are played over ONE frame, under variant rules (need to hit a cushion, ball in hand after foul), with a ridiculous shot-clock time of 10 seconds for half of the “match” and a time limit of 10 minutes. Add to it a vociferous and often drunken crowd and you have the perfect recipe for slapstick, and it’s indeed what you get.
The prize money for this, last season was 32K, more than a PTC where players had to win 7 best of 7. If the current logic of doubling the prize with each round is used, it will be 64K this season, more than the Welsh Open last season. Remember that it would mean that the player who wins 7 frames under variant rules and a preposterously short shot-clock, would get more ranking points than the winner of a proper ranking event with a huge history. You’re kidding Barry ? Apparantly not… I though ranking was supposed to reflect who the better players are, I’m probably outdated and naïve, but to me this is a disgrace and an insult to players skills.