The first round concluded with fourteen more players under 23, who have never been professionals, winning their first match, amongst them eight teenagers, including three Asian youngsters and one German. they are: Manasawin Phetmanaikul (20), Chai Ross (18), Jenson Kendrick (18), Yu Kiu Chang (19), Patrick Whelan (21), Ryan Davies (17), Peter Devlin (22), Long Zehuang (22), Ross Bulman (17), Peifan Lei (15), Ben Fortey (22), Geng Mingqi (19), Umut Dikme (19), Ka Wai Cheung (20),
Worth mentioning also Lee Daegyu (23) is from Korea, a country that has produced champions in 3-cushion billiards, but has, until now, shown little interest in snooker.
The second round is under way with some notable results:
The youngest player in the competition, Iulian Boiko – only 13 from Ukraine – has booked his place in the third round, as has the only female player remaining on course, the Women three times and reigning World Champion, Ng On Yee from Hong Kong. Other young teenagers off to round 3 are Kayden Brierley (17), Sia Jiahui (16), Sean Maddockx (17).
Wang ZePeng (22) and Rodion Judin (22) are two more young players who had a bye to round two and won their first match.
The highest break of the competition, a 133, currently belongs to Brian Ochoiski, a 20 years old from France. Ben Mertens, 14 years old from Belgium made a 126, but narrowly lost to Matthew Glasby, an experienced amateur, by 4-3. It has to be confirmed, but this likely makes him the youngest ever player to make a century in a professional competition.
Luke Pinches (17), son of Barry, had to pull out of the tournament because he had to sit an A level exam. It’s a shame and it illustrates one of the problems caused by having the Q-school held at this time of the year. It was the right decision by Luke though. Having an education gives young people a more solid base for their future and more options. Luke hopefuly will get mzany more opportunities in snooker.