2022 British Open and 2022 Hong Kong Masters News

The draw for the second round of the 2022 British Open has been made:

Cazoo British Open Second Round Draw

The draw for the last 64 of the Cazoo British Open has been made. The tournament runs from September 26 to October 2 at the Marshall Arena, MK Stadium in Milton Keynes.

CLICK HERE to watch the draw being made

Defending champion Mark Williams will face Ben Woollaston if he gets through his first round match against Andres Petrov. The top 16 seeds have all had their first round matches held over to the final venue.

World Champion Ronnie O’Sullivan is up against Alexander Ursenbacher in the first round, and victory would set up a tie with Joe O’Connor.

Wilson and Hawkins could meet again

Kyren Wilson and Barry Hawkins met in the final of the recent BetVictor European Masters and they will go head to head again if they both win their opening ties.

Three-time Women’s World Champion Ng On Yee beat Ken Doherty in the qualifying round and her reward is a meeting with Jordan Brown.

The match schedule will be released soon. The full draw is:

Jamie Jones v Elliot Slessor
Zhao Xintong or Bai Langning v Stuart Bingham or Lei Peifan 
Ding Junhui v Hossein Vafaei or Joe Perry
Zhang Jiankang v Jak Jones
David Gilbert v Lyu Haotian
Mark Selby or Ricky Walden v Mark Joyce 
Jordan Brown v Ng On Yee
Craig Steadman v Ben Mertens
Jack Lisowski or Dominic Dale v Mitchell Mann 
John Higgins or Andy Hicks v Yuan Sijun
Luca Brecel or Graeme Dott v Anthony McGill or Wu Yize
David Grace v Xu Si
Dean Young v Judd Trump or Si Jiahui
Li Hang v Mark Allen or Stuart Carrington
Andy Lee v Yan Bingtao or Oliver Brown
Gerard Greene v Ryan Day
Lu Ning v Zhou Yuelong
Ben Woollaston v Mark Williams or Andres Petrov
Tian Pengfei v Jimmy Robertson
Robbie Williams v Lukas Kleckers
Anthony Hamilton v Jamie Clarke
Kyren Wilson or Mark Davis v Barry Hawkins or Duane Jones
Noppon Saengkham v Fraser Patrick
Chen Zifan v Ross Muir
John Astley v Chang Bingyu
Thepchaiya Un-Nooh v Matthew Stevens
Xiao Guodong v Peter Lines
Ronnie O’Sullivan or Alexander Ursenbacher v Joe O’Connor
Dylan Emery v Cao Yupeng 
Shaun Murphy or Gary Wilson v Zhang Anda
Zhao Jianbo v Ian Burns
Steven Hallworth v Hammad Miah

The automatically generated subtitles surely stemmed from the best intentions – helping the fans with impaired hearing – but the result is often hilarious and at times surrealistic. I feel no “shame” at writing the above, being partially deaf myself.

The draw for the 2022 Hong Kong Masters was done yesterday in Hong Kong.

2022 Hong Kong Masters Draw

It is already available on snooker.org

In this article by the South China Morning Post, you will find more information about the organisation of the tournament, the covid-related constraints and the potential future issues

Hong Kong Masters snooker tournament on course for October with ‘closed loop’

  • Officials announce line-up for 8-player tournament featuring likes of Ronnie O’Sullivan, Judd Trump and Mark Selby
  • It comes after government’s late cap on numbers at running and swimming races plunged other sports events into uncertainty

Shirley Chui

Ronnie in play
Ronnie O’Sullivan plays a shot during the final of the previous Hong Kong Masters, in 2017 – and he is expected to return this October. Photo: AFP

Organisers of the snooker’s Hong Kong Masters have unveiled the line-up for the tournament and said it has government permission to proceed in October under a “closed loop” arrangement.

Snooker bosses held a press conference on Friday to announce their latest plans, which include the players remaining in a bubble between their hotel and tournament venue the Hong Kong Coliseum, instead of undergoing the hotel quarantine usually required for arrivals in the city.

Current world champion Ronnie O’Sullivan and former world champions Mark Selby and Judd Trump were among the players announced on Friday for the tournament, to be held between October 6 and 9. A capacity of 8,000 spectators is expected, which could result in the world’s highest ever attendance for a snooker event.

Vincent Law Wing-chung, the chairman of the Hong Kong Billiard Sports Control Council, said details of the closed loop – the model used for the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics – were still to be finalised, but a balance was being struck between the requirements of the city’s government and those of the snooker governing body.

2022 Hong Kong Masters Draw-2
Vincent Law presents the Hong Kong Masters draw. Photo: Shirley Chui

Players will not be allowed to go out freely – they will be protected inside the bubble,” Law said. “One of the conditions that the World Snooker Tour imposed on us to host this event was that if there was quarantine, they would not allow their players to come here.”

I would say that [the closed-loop solution] is not their preference, but we managed to convince them it is worth their time to come.”

Law admitted that the bubble set-up was less than ideal after the positive impression on the players by the previous Masters in 2017, when Robertson beat O’Sullivan in the final.

When the rest of the world is back to normal, it is hard for the overseas players to see why Hong Kong’s pandemic restrictions are so behind,” Law said. “A bubble is the only way for them to come.

Of course, it is better if there are no bubbles, and the world’s top players can have some contact with the city’s snooker fans, but we still hope that spectators can get close to the star players.”

We’ve been spending time on persuading top players to come. They know that even with pandemic restrictions, they still expect a good show in Hong Kong.

The show will begin with a quarter-final line-up that pits O’Sullivan against Hong Kong’s three-time women’s world champion Ng On-yee, with her fellow home favourite Marco Fu Ka-chun taking on Selby, Zhao Xintong of China playing Neil Robertson and Trump facing John Higgins.

Concerns over the viability of sporting events in the city had risen after a last-minute cap was this week imposed by the Hong Kong government – citing Covid-19 concerns – on numbers taking part in a 10km athletics race and swimming’s Cross Harbour Race.

That decision led to the 10km race’s cancellation four days before the event – placing question marks over other sports events going ahead in Hong Kong this year.

Events in the pipeline include the Hong Kong Marathon, the Hong Kong Open badminton tournament and rugby’s Hong Kong Sevens, all in November.

I totally understand those organisers’ situation, I feel their disappointment,” Law said. “But we are different, we are like a concert, and the 10K and Cross Harbour Race involved more than hundreds of people racing.

We can’t worry too much – we’ve been through the last two years of ups and downs, and the government’s policy towards the pandemic was difficult to predict.

All we can do is try our best and hope for a good show.”

The organisers of the Sevens had already been granted permission to proceed with a tournament in a “closed loop”.

The plans include players and stadium staff staying in designated hotels, an 85 per cent stadium capacity, and spectators being allowed to drink in the stands, though not eat.

Snooker bosses previously aimed to arrange their tournament in early August, then delayed until October after the necessary approvals did not emerge in time.

And this is the (latish) piece by WST:

Star-Studded Field For Snooker’s Hong Kong Masters

Six of snooker’s greatest players – as well as the two local favourites – will compete in the Hong Kong Masters in October.

World Snooker Tour and Hong Kong Billiard Sports Control Council (HKBSCC) recently announced that the tournament would be staged for the first time since 2017 and would be held at the Hong Kong Coliseum venue for four days from October 6th to 9th.

The line-up of players and the draw can now be announced:

Mark Selby v Marco Fu (October 6 at 1.30pm)
Neil Robertson v Zhao Xintong (October 6 at 7pm)
Judd Trump v John Higgins (October 7 at 1.30pm)
Ronnie O’Sullivan v Ng On Yee (October 7 at 7pm)

The quarter-finals on October 6 and 7 will be best of nine frames, then the two semi-finals and the final on October 8 and 9 are best of 11 frames. An Exhibition Game, an exciting competition between legendary foreign players and home-grown elite athletes, is also expected.

Chairman of the HKBSCC Vincent Law (second from right) announced the draw at today’s press conference in Hong Kong

In his speech at today’s press conference, Chairman of the HKBSCC Vincent Law expressed his excitement for the return of the prestigious event. He said: “For the first time, the Hong Kong Masters 2022 will be held in the Hong Kong Coliseum, making it one of the largest snooker tournaments in history. It will provide an unparalleled opportunity for local fans to catch a glimpse of the World Champion superstars and for all of us to indulge in the world of snooker, further promoting the sport of snooker among the local community.

This tournament is under exclusive sponsorship of The Hong Kong Jockey Club (HKJC), as one of the many initiatives supported by the HKJC’s approved donation of HK$630 million to the Government of the HKSAR to mark the 25th anniversary of the establishment of the HKSAR. The Hong Kong Jockey Club is resolute in pursuing its purpose of acting continuously for the betterment of society, all in support of creating stronger communities together.

Tickets go on sale on September 7 and are sure to be in high demand to see some of the world’s greatest sporting stars. For details follow the official website of the tournament: www.snookermasters.hk

Hopefully everything goes well…