Mark Selby is the current World Champion, UK Champion, International Championship Champion, Paul Hunter Classic Champion, Gdynia Open Champion and World n°1. He’s been World n°1 for nearly two years now, and is on 994942 points to 517012 to Stuart Bingham who in n°2. It would take something quite extraordinary for Mark not to break the symbolic 1 million points later this season. He is the man of 2016, and he could well be the man of the coming year(s) as well. He’s now a multiple World Champion, a multiple UK Champion and a multiple Masters Champion. He’s now one of the all times great.
Yet, this man has not had it easy, he lost both his parents at a very young age. The promise he made to his dying father to once be a World Champion has been key to his success, and he deserves every credit for his achievements.
So I invite you to watch and read a few pieces about Mark; they are extremely revealing.
The documentary, filmed after his first World title:
Mark Selby: life of a world champion
Those two articles by Desmond Kane:
Snooker: Mark Selby a working class hero in sport wrongly accused of lacking characters
Mark Selby exclusive: ‘I could never bring myself to ask my mum: why did you leave me as a kid?’
And also this piece posted here earlier this year, Ronnie talking about Mark Selby.
I’ve come to appreciate Mark over the years, it took me a while. I prefer flair players, for a long time I was convinced that Mark’s at times slow and rather negative style was just tactics and it infuriated me because I always knew that he is extremely capable and can rack up centuries as well as anyone. At times it felt like torture ,and, after his defeat to Mark in the semi-finals of the Masters in 2013, a best 11 of match that lasted nearly 5 1/2 hours, Graeme Dott went on a right rant claiming that nobody could possibly enjoy playing that way! I was in the media room at the time and wondering how and when I would go back to my hotel, through a blizzard of snow as well …
You can listen to it here:
But I have changed my mind, having had the opportunity to chat with Mark a few times. The truth, as incredible as it sounds, is that Mark is not the most confident of persons, and, when he’s not confident, he rather goes into his shell, he grinds his way out of trouble rather than going out, attacking, in an attempt to make something happen. And, who is to blame him, it obviously worked for him more often than not. One of the beauty of snooker is that there is room for so many styles, Ronnie is and remains my favourite player, probably always will be, but 2016 belongs to Mark Selby.
3 thoughts on “2016 as it happened – The Selby year”
I appreciate Selby, but isn’t this blog called “Ronnieo147”?
This blog is made by a snooker fan who’s favourite player is Ronnie O’Sullivan, but appreciated the sport and therefore all it’s exponents. It’s not a fangirling/fanboying blog. It’s rather customary, towards the end of the year to look back at what happened and there is no doubt that this year was dominated by Mark Selby.
OK, so that was my last cheeky comment for 2016. Happier new year, Monique!
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