World Championship 2019 Qualifiers – the 128 have become 32

This is the line-up for the last round of the World Championship 2019 qualifiers. Tomorrow night we will know who will be at the Crucible…

Tian Pengfei 0-0. Matthew Stevens
Gary Wilson 0-0 Liang Wenbo
Luo Honghao 0-0 Tom Ford
Rob Milkins 0-0 Anthony McGill
Graeme Dott 0-0 Kurt Maflin
Li Hang 0-0 Ben Woollaston
Daniel Wells 0-0 Martin Gould
Michael Georgiou 0-0 Yan Bingtao
Ali Carter 0-0 John Astley
Eden Sharav 0-0 Zhou Yuelong
Dark Mavis 0-0 Lyu Haotian
Thepchaiya Un-Nooh 0-0 Joe O’Connor
Michael Judge 0-0 James Cahill (both amateurs)
Lu Ning 0-0 Scott Donaldson
Matt Selt 0-0 Zhao Xintong
Martin O’Donnell 0-0 Joe Perry

Ten Asian players in the line-up, five of them under 22 years of age, including Luo Honghao a 19 years old rookie. The two youngest non asian players are Joe O’Connor and James Cahill, both 23. Joe O’Connor is also a rookie.

In terms of tour survival here is how things stand now

Yesterday’s results mean that Jimmy White is now off the tour. Mike Dunn immediately came on social media, calling for him to get another invitational tour card. As much as I like Jimmy, I think he shouldn’t. The Seniors tour is developing well, and I’m 1000% behind every effort made to make it bigger and better so that players like Jimmy have a platform to play and continue to entertain. Watching him play, and get beat more often than not, in qualifiers, is sad really. Yesterday Jimmy started well, but he doesn’t have the stamina anymore for long matches.

2 thoughts on “World Championship 2019 Qualifiers – the 128 have become 32

  1. This is really difficult. We were discussing it with my partner and he says he’d like Jimmy to have the card and continue playing, but at the same time says he should not get it. 🙂 On the one hand, it is sad to see if he gets beaten in qualifiers and early rounds, and I don’t know how much fun it might be to his fans. (Like I said before, I really hope Ronnie will not end up in such a situation.) On the other hand, I know Monique, you are a big promoter of the Seniors’ Tour, but I can see why it might feel anticlimatic for some players and spectators. And of course there also is the problem whether giving an invitation card to Jimmy (again) will shorthchange some young talent who cannot make it to the tour…?

  2. They may need Jimmy! There is a shortfall of professionals. It would be Jimmy’s 40th season, so if they need to compromise, a 1-year card might be an option. Of course, I would agree with you that it’s better not to try and turn the clock back, and I’m a little disappointed that some older ones have managed to hang on again. The 1-year list should be for up-and-coming players, but they actually get a new 2-year card, whereas those who finished just inside the top-64 do not.

    But anyway, it’s a really great line-up today. Only 2 of the matches are certainties on paper, although some players are clearly exhausted after their first two matches. There will also be some who choke. It’s a younger field than we’ve had before, and not all Chinese. Even the older players are not old grinders who will put all the balls safe and try to frustrate their opponent. Of the 32 I’d say only 2 or 3 are negative players. The table conditions have helped that.

    Hopefully I can stop coughing, so should be an enthrawlling 2 days!

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