Monday 19 Jun 2017 11:35AM
Ronnie O’Sullivan will face John Higgins in the first round of the Hong Kong Masters next month as many of the world’s top stars gather for the invitation event.
Organized by the Hong Kong Billiard Sports Control Council Co. Ltd. (HKBSCC), subvented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD) and sanctioned by World Snooker Limited (WSL), the Hong Kong Masters 2017 will be staged at Hong Kong’s Queen Elizabeth Stadium from 20 to 23 July, 2017.
First round draw:
Barry Hawkins v Marco Fu (July 20th at 2pm)
Mark Selby v Neil Robertson (July 20th at 7pm)
Judd Trump v Shaun Murphy (July 21st at 2pm)
Ronnie O’Sullivan v John Higgins (July 21st at 7pm)
Not only will it be one of the major celebrating events of the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, it is also the most-anticipated snooker event in Hong Kong in decades, featuring eight of the world’s best snooker players in the main tournament. There will also be exhibition games on July 23rd featuring legends Jimmy White and Stephen Hendry as well as Hong Kong’s Ng On Yee, the women’s World Champion.
Mr. Danny Mak, Chairman of HKBSCC and the Hong Kong Masters 2017 Organizing Committee, said: “HKBSCC is very grateful for the support from Home Affairs Bureau, LCSD, Information Services Department, our sponsors and partners. Snooker is always a popular event among sports fans in Hong Kong and no doubt it will be a world-class event that will definitely be enjoyed by all. To further promote sports-for-all, we will invite a local youth team to meet the players and learn from these masters. We will also invite different schools and organisations to enjoy the event for free to widen their horizon. As NowTV is the official host broadcaster, public can watch the games though television, smart phone, tablet or computer to join the fun of this remarkable tournament and cheer for Hong Kong players.’
A total of eight elite players will contest the Main Tournament, including some of the world’s very best:
• Current World Champion and world number one – Mark Selby
• Four-time World Champion and world number two – John Higgins
• 2017 Players Championship winner and world number three – Judd Trump
• 2017 World Grand Prix winner and world number five – Barry Hawkins
• Former World Champion and world number seven – Neil Robertson
• Former World Champion and world number eight – Shaun Murphy
• Five-time World Champion – Ronnie O’Sullivan
• Hong Kong’s top player and world number six – Marco Fu
These players will be competing for the title as well as a total prize money of £315,000. The Exhibition Game will take place on the last day of the tournament, where Whirlwind White and seven-time World Champion Hendry will play against local elite player On Yee, showcasing the charisma of the sport of Snooker.
Mr. Raymond Fong, Tournament Director of the Hong Kong Masters 2017, said: “The Hong Kong Masters 2017 will be held and regulated in accordance with the standards applicable to all current televised professional snooker tournaments.
“The Main Tournament will adopt a knockout system. There will be four quarter-finals on 20 and 21 July that are best of nine frames, and two semi-finals and the final on 22 and 23 July that are best of 11 frames.
“For the Exhibition Game, the two legendary players and On Yee will compete in the format of Pot Black, which was extremely popular back in the 1980s.”
On Yee, Ambassador for the Hong Kong Masters 2017, expressed her excitement after unveiling the line-up. She said: “It is beyond my wildest dreams that I can play with the two legendary players Jimmy White and Stephen Hendry in a real match. Hong Kong Masters 2017 symbolises the evolution of Hong Kong Snooker. Through this exceptional event, I hope Hong Kong people will know more about Snooker, be part of the game and cheer for me and Marco at the venue or from home.”
The Hong Kong Masters 2017 has received tremendous support from various sponsors and partners including: official table supplier STAR, official ball supplier Aramith, official cloth supplier Strachan, official hotel the Park Lane Hong Kong, a Pullman Hotel, official apparel TUXEE, official water Aqua Pacific, official host broadcaster Now TV and media partner South China Morning Post.
Tickets for the Hong Kong Masters 2017 will be opened for sale from 22 June. For the quarter-finals on 20 and 21 July, ticket price ranges from HK$100, $200 and $300. For semi-finals and final on 22 and 23 July, ticket price ranges from HK$150, $300 and $450.
A 50% discount will be offered to full-time students, the disabled and seniors over the age of 60 (Discount is not applicable for the $450 tickets on 23 July). Tickets will be available at various outlets of URBTIX as well as via online, phone app and hotline booking. For more information on ticketing, please visit http://www.snookermasters.hk. For more updates on the Hong Kong Masters 2017, be sure to follow the event official website at http://www.snookermasters.hk and Facebook page @hksnookermasters.