The World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association (WPBSA) has today announced the 16 amateur qualifiers who will be offered the chance to compete at next month’s Betfred World Snooker Championship in Sheffield.
To be held at the English Institute of Sport from 5-14 April 2021, the qualifying rounds for this year’s World Championship will be contested by a field of 128 players, including up to 112 main tour players not ranked inside of the world’s top 16 following the Cazoo Tour Championship.
They will be joined by 16 elite amateur players selected by the WPBSA, based on their performances at recognised international competitions held this season. Where tournaments have not been held due to coronavirus restrictions, results from the previous year’s tournaments have been considered.
As in 2020, player availability and international travel restrictions have played a significant part in the qualification criteria, in addition to providing opportunities for aspiring junior players to gain experience at the very highest level.
Full WPBSA Qualifiers list (in alphabetical order):
- Connor Benzey (Eng)
- Dylan Emery (Wal)
- Reanne Evans (Eng)
- Ivan Kakovskii (Rus)
- Rebecca Kenna (Eng)
- Antoni Kowalski (Pol)
- Mark Lloyd (Eng)
- Robbie McGuigan (Nir)
- Ben Mertens (Bel)
- Ross Muir (Sco)
- Florian Nuessle (Aut)
- Brian Ochoiski (Fra)
- Fergal Quinn (Nir)
- Hayden Staniland (Eng)
- Wu Yize (Chn)
- Dean Young (Sco)
All players selected will appear subject to acceptance of their place and any travel restrictions in place. Any replacement players will be selected from a reserve list to include performances at World Snooker Federation and recognised regional events. Robbie McGuigan has already been included from this list in place of Omar Alajiani of Saudi Arabia.
Any current professional players who do not enter the tournament will be replaced from the 2020 Q School Order of Merit.
All ten days will be covered on the Eurosport App, with commentary throughout Europe, plus our partners in the People’s Republic of China – Youku, Zhibo.tv, Migu, Kuaishou and Huya – and Matchroom.Live throughout the rest of the world.
The draw and format will be announced after the Cazoo Tour Championship which finishes on March 28th.
I suppose that, given that Steve Misfud hasn’t played at all in nearly two years, he will not enter this one either, which means the Michael White should be in the draw.
I’m happy to see Ross Muir in that list and I hope that his health issues are a thing in the past. It’s always very sad to see a player forced out of the game by health issues, but even more so when they are as young as Ross is.
A bit surprised to see Wu Yize in the list. Not that he doesn;t deserve it, but will he be able to travel? Or, maybe, he is in the UK already? Lewis?
2 thoughts on “2021 World Championship – WPBSA Qualifiers”
Wu Yize is a talented young player who reminds me very much of a young Thepchaiya. During the lockdown, he posted a video making a 147 in about 4min. So you can imagine he’s excited a lot of people, especially in his native Gansu Province which hasn’t had any professional players before. Sponsorship has followed (in fact, rather a lot of money), and Wu obtained ‘special athlete’ status, which means he’s one of the few players to have the funding and permission to travel to play in Q School. The World Championship invite is probably just part of the deal, since he will be here anyway in April.
But of course we know there will be 4 more places for amateurs, because 4 of the current 128 professionals won’t enter.
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