2022 British Open – Last 32 and Last 16

Yesterday in Milton Keys saw the last 32 and the last 16 rounds played to a conclusion.

The quarter-finals line-up is an interesting one.

The two remaining top sixteen players, Mark Allen and Mark Selby will play each other. This opens a great opportunity for the rest of the field. All six other players are quality. I’ll sit on the fence

Robbie Williams faces Lyu Haotian. Lyu had a very hard time when he first qualified for the main tour. He was too young, lonely and terrible things happened to him. He almost quit snooker. That would have been a terrible shame because he’s incredibly talented. He’s still very young, he’s only 24. He seems to be coming back to hist best and it’s good to see. Robbie is a solid all-rounder. I fancy Lyu to win

Noppon Saengkham will play Jamie Jones. Both have played at the Crucible and won at least one match there. Both have reached the semi-finals of a ranking event more than once. I’ll sit on the fence

Ryan Day faces Yuan Sijun. Ryan has reached the QF stage at the Crucible three times and is a multiple ranking event winner but has not done much recently. Yuan Sijun is only 22. He has beaten some big names before: Kyren Wilson, John Higgins, Shaun Murphy, Mark Williams, Stephen Maguire and Ding Junhui. He lost his form for a while but looks very dangerous again. I fancy Yuan to win.

This is WST report on the last 32 round:

Trump Looks Forward To Allen Test

Judd Trump saw off Xu Si 4-0 at the Cazoo British Open and has lost just one frame in his three matches so far in Milton Keynes, but could face a much tougher challenge against Mark Allen in the last 16.


Last 16 matches on Thursday evening:

Mark Selby v Jack Lisowski
Anthony Hamilton v Yuan Sijun
Jamie Jones v Ben Woollaston
Robbie Williams v Steven Hallworth
Mark Allen v Judd Trump
Graeme Dott v Ryan Day
Noppon Saengkham v Jordan Brown
Lyu Haotian v Matthew Stevens

Trump is seeking his first title since he lifted the Turkish Masters trophy in March and looks favourite for the £100,000 top prize this week, which would put him ahead of Ronnie O’Sullivan at the summit of the world rankings.

He might have lost the opening frame against Xu, but the Chinese cueman’s attempted clearance ended when he missed a routine pot on the final pink. Trump capitalised and went on to take the next three frames with top runs of 62 and 130.

“No one has played their best against me yet,” admitted Trump. “The draw is getting tougher now so we’ll see what I really have in the tank. Mark Allen can be one of the best in the world on his day so that’s a big test. That kind of pressure tends to bring the best out of me.”

Northern Ireland’s Allen saw off Gary Wilson 4-2 with top breaks of 98, 52, 82 and 78.

Trump and Mark Selby are the only members of the world’s top ten still in the field. China’s Zhao Xintong, ranked seventh, suffered a 4-1 reverse against Thailand’s Noppon Saengkham. After losing the first frame, Zhao made a 77 for 1-1, then made a 64 in frame three, only for his opponent to clear with 67. That proved the turning point as Saengkham took a scrappy fourth frame then sealed victory in the fifth with an 89 clearance.

“I was excited to play Zhao and I enjoyed it,” said Saengkham. “After I won the third frame he felt uncomfortable and there was pressure on him. I am always trying new things in practice and trying to improve.”

World number 61 Robbie Williams top scored with 96 in a 4-2 win over Ding Junhui, while Ryan Day made a 103 in a 4-1 defeat of Jimmy Robertson. Former Welsh Open champion Jordan Brown edged out Yan Bingtao 4-3 with a top break of 134.

This is WST report on the last 16 round:

Allen Edges Trump To Earn Selby Clash

Mark Allen has lost over four stone in weight during the summer and looks to have new impetus on the table, beating Judd Trump 4-3 to reach the quarter-finals of the Cazoo British Open.


Northern Ireland’s Allen struggled for results in the second half of last season, but slimming down has helped his game and he looks sharp this week. The 36-year-old can look forward to a meeting with Mark Selby on Friday afternoon in Milton Keynes.

Friday’s quarter-finals

Mark Selby v Mark Allen
Robbie Williams v Lyu Haotian

Noppon Saengkham v Jamie Jones
Ryan Day v Yuan Sijun

Breaks of 68 and 67 helped put Allen 2-0 ahead of Trump, and he might have extended his lead but missed the last red to a baulk corner in frame three. That handed Trump a lifeline and he thumped the red into the same pocket, cleared for 2-1 then took the next frame to square the match. Allen regained the lead before Trump’s 109 made it 3-3.

In the decider, Trump had first chance and made 38 before playing safe. Allen’s counter ended when he missed the last red to a top corner on 55, and he was fortunate to snooker his opponent behind the black. Another slice of luck on his next shot saw him snooker Trump again, and from the chance that followed the Antrim cueman cleared for victory.

From 2-0 I let Judd back into the match,” said world number 14 Allen. “But in the end I hung in there and made a decent 55 in the last frame. I was lucky that Judd wasn’t quite at his best tonight. My focus was good. I will need to play better than that against Mark Selby, but I really enjoy testing myself against the top players.

Selby gave the clearest indication yet of a return to his best form as he beat Jack Lisowski 4-1 and made a superb 147.  The maximum gave Selby the opening frame, then the second went to a respotted black and he converted a double to a centre pocket for 2-0. The Leicester cueman got the better of a battle on the last red in the third and extended his lead.

Lisowski showed his quality during a break of 119 as he pulled one back, but a long red early in frame five set up Selby for a match-winning 117.

It was fantastic to make the 147 on live on TV, it’s extra special,” said four-time Crucible king Selby. “I had no choice but to go for the treble (on the 12th red), it was a one in 50 shot.

Jamie Jones beat Ben Woollaston 4-2 to reach his second quarter-final of the season, having made the same stage of the BetVictor European Masters. Welshman Jones was due to run the London Marathon on Sunday but snooker takes priority.

I am supposed to collect my number by Saturday evening, so if I win my quarter-final here I’ll have to think carefully about whether to pull out of the marathon,” said Jones, who now meets Noppon Saengkham, a 4-0 winner over Jordan Brown. “If that happens then I will run a virtual marathon in Neath next week and people will come out and run with me, which would be great anyway. Either way it’s going to be a positive end to the week for me.

I played well in patches tonight. All of the underdogs left in the draw realise this is a great opportunity, as the random draw has kept us away from the bigger names.”

China’s Lyu Hoatian made breaks of 141 and 131 as he beat Matthew Stevens 4-1, setting up a tie with Robbie Williams, who ended the run of amateur Steven Hallworth. From 3-2 down, Williams took a scrappy sixth frame, then finished in style with a 134 total clearance.

Yuan Sijun edged out Anthony Hamilton 4-3 and now meets Ryan Day, who beat Graeme Dott 4-2.

This is Mark Selby’s 147, shared by WST on their Youtube channel

The 900 – Aaron Canavan wins Week 2

Aaron Canavan, the 2018 World Seniors Snooker Champion, won week 2 at the 900. He beat Stuart Watson, another stalwart on the Seniors tour in the final. After his win, Aaron praised Jason Francis, basically saying that without him he would still be hitting balls only in Jersey.

With a “slimmed” Seniors Tour this season, a lot of Seniors have expressed interest in the 900.

Here is how the action unfolded yesterday:

Emma Parker could not repeat her last Monday heroics but she still showed that girls can play.

Billy Castle was in the commentary box.

There is a strong support for the series and it’s obvious that it means a lot to the amateurs. They rarely get such exposure and they truly appreciate the experience.

Here are more pictures, shared yesterday on social media

This is the program for next monday

Again a lot of seniors players in the draw, including Levi Meiller from Canada !

2022 British Open – Held-over and Round 2

Round 3 at the 2022 British Open starts this evening and we have lost quite a few of the top players already. You can follow all the results on snooker.org.

Four of the top 16 went out in round 1 (held-over matches): Ronnie, Shaun Murphy, Luca Brecel and Hossein Vafaei.

Here you will find more about Ronnie’s defeat to his Nemesis, Alexander Ursenbacher (again!).

Shaun Murphy lost in the most dramatic fashion: he was playing Gary Wilson – not an easy first round opponent – and had potted the last black in the deciding frame, only to see the white disappear in a middle pocket. That’s hard to take. Gary Wilson could hardly believe what he had just seen and here is his reaction as reported by WST:

World number 33 Wilson, who lost to Mark Williams in the final of this event last year, said: “I was the most surprised out of anybody, because I was sitting in my chair thinking I had lost. Shaun’s a lovely bloke and took it in great spirits. I’ve never actually won a game at this venue, and that was in my mind as he was he was clearing and up. Then all of a sudden, something stupid like that happens. I’m not sure whether he had a kick or just hit it a bit thick.

“I’m playing with a new cue and it didn’t feel great, it just felt heavy. I missed so many easy balls and played so many bad safeties, I just didn’t feel comfortable at all. I’m always hard on myself but I do try to look at positives as well.

Mark Williams, the defending champion, had a rather easy win against young Andres Petrov from Estonia. H.E. Mr Viljar Lubi, the Ambassador of Estonia to the United Kingdom came to watch the match and support Andres. It’s a nice gesture and a lovely recognition of the sport of snooker, but I’m not sure it helped Andres who probably was already under a lot of pressure playing the defending champion on the main table.

Round 2 proved to be a stumbling block for many of the top seeds: we lost Anthony Mc Gill, David Gilbert, Stuart Bingham, Zhou Yuelong, John Higgins, Kyren Wilson, Joe Perry and Mark Williams.

Mark Williams, the defending champion was beaten by 4-1 by Ben Woollaston. Mark had been on a cruise just before this tournament.

Stephen Hendry was not impressed with Mark Williams performance and attitude as reported by Eurosport

Seven-time world champion Stephen Hendry had little sympathy for Mark Williams after the Welshman was unceremoniously knocked out of the British Open by world No. 44 Ben Woollaston.

Speaking on ITV Sport, Hendry said: “He [Williams] said after his first match he’s hardly been practising.


I know he won this tournament last year getting through matches but you’ve got to put the work in and he hasn’t done. I’m sure he’ll put the work in before the next big event.

He was poor tonight.

Ben himself didn’t play fantastically well and, in general has not been playing great for quite some time. The same Eurosport article “explains” why …

Woollaston has been diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome recently, and afterwards he spoke more about his ongoing battle to manage the condition.

It has got better recently so I am trying to be positive,” the 35-year-old said. 

On the good days I feel 60 or 70% of my usual self, but then I have days where I just completely crash.

I can only practise for one or two hours a day and it’s hard to look after my kids when I’m at home. [Wife] Tatiana has been a massive support but it has been hard for her as well. 

Some people never recover from this kind of illness but I am hopeful because in the last few months I have been better.

I am doing my best in matches and I have managed to win a few this season. I have no expectations. Tonight’s win was one of my best in recent seasons and the short matches suit me better.

I’m wishing Ben the best possible for the future.

John Higgins was beaten by Yuan SiJun in a deciding frame. He missed match ball and Yuan cleared to win. John was really aggrieved as reported by WST in this report:

‘Unforgiveable’ Defeat For Higgins

It was a bittersweet day for John Higgins at the Cazoo British Open as he became the second player in snooker history to reach the landmark of 900 career centuries, but suffered a cruel 4-3 defeat against Yuan Sijun.

Higgins led 64-8 in the deciding frame but missed match-ball red to a top corner and that proved a crucial error as China’s Yuan made 31 then played safe, before clearing the colours to snatch victory 66-64.

Livid Higgins was barely consoled by the fact that he has become with only player other than Ronnie O’Sullivan to cross the 900 mark. “It is a milestone but I would have much preferred it to have happened in a win,” said the Scot. “It is unforgivable how you can’t close it out like that in the last frame – just unforgivable. You can add this to the list of so many times when I have collapsed near the finishing line. It only gets worse as you get older.

Yuan took the opening frame, then in the second Higgins was on course for a 147 until he missed the ninth black on 65, and his opponent cleared with 72 for 2-0. World number five Higgins took the next three, making a 132 in frame five. But Yuan took the next with a 72 and won the dramatic decider book his place in tonight’s third round draw.

Performance of the day came from Cazoo UK Champion Zhao Xintong as he compiled runs of 112, 128, 101 and 52 in a 4-1 defeat of Stuart Bingham. “I didn’t miss a shot in the first three frames,” said Zhao. “There is pressure on the main table but I enjoy that.”

Mark Selby, seeking his first title since the 2021 World Championship, knocked in breaks of 110, 74, 55 and 54 in a 4-1 defeat of Mark Joyce. Jordan Brown top scored with 112 in a 4-1 win against Ng On Yee.

Xiao Guodong beat Peter Lines 4-1 in a match between two players who were involved in a fiery altercation last season which result in Lines being fined by the WPBSA Disciplinary Committee. This time, China’s Xiao top scored with 119 as he eased into round three.

Graeme Dott’s 4-1 win over Anthony McGill was highlighted by a break of 110, while Lyu Haotian took the last frame on the colours to beat David Gilbert 4-3.

In the last session of the round, there were wins for Judd Trump, Ding Junhui, Mark Allen and Yan Bingtao. Here is WST report on that session:

Trump Stays On Course For Top Spot

Judd Trump eased to a 4-0 victory over Dean Young in the second round of the Cazoo British Open, and would finish the week on top of the world rankings if he wins the tournament.

Ronnie O’Sullivan’s first round exit has opened a window for Trump to take over as world number one, if he can land the £100,000 top prize in Milton Keynes. The Bristolian was in tremendous shape today as he whitewashed Young in just 61 minutes with breaks of 52, 84, 100 and 64.

It would be nice to get to number one off the back of winning a tournament, that would give me an extra sense of achievement,” said 2019 World Champion Trump, who now meets Xu Si on Thursday afternoon. “Any time you get to number one is special. Every time I was among the balls today, my position was good, I was in control and making breaks.”

Trump played in the BetVictor World Mixed Doubles last weekend, alongside O’Sullivan, Neil Robertson and Mark Selby. Asked how he feels his game compares to those three fellow titans of the sport, he replied: “When I play my best, I feel no one’s game can live up to mine, but I’m sure the others would say the same. Selby is looking like he is back to his best. Snooker is in a healthy place.

Ding Junhui, who has slipped to 34th in the rankings having not won a title since 2019, showed signs of a return to form in a 4-1 win over Joe Perry, highlighted by runs of 73, 66, 84 and 50. “I am trying hard and practising a lot,” said China’s Ding. “Snooker fans still love to see me win any tournament. I am still trying, I am not giving up. Family is more important now, but snooker is still my career.

Mark Allen came from 1-0 down to beat Li Hang 4-1, making a crucial 63 clearance in the second frame then firing runs of 133, 100 and 83 in the next three. Former Masters champion Yan Bingtao top scored with 92 in a 4-0 defeat of Andy Lee.

And about Judd Trump, unsurprisingly for me, he doesn’t like Ronnie’s idea about “helping” the women’s game.

Here are some quotes reported by Phil Haigh:

‘I am sure Ronnie has got enough money to give away that five per cent in total,’ Trump told The Sportsman. ‘It is a lot easier to say stuff and get a debate going. But he is more than welcome to do it himself.

If he has that strong an opinion about it, why doesn’t he go ahead and do it – and put his money where his mouth is? And then the rest can choose if they want to follow his example or not. He can start the fund or kitty.

Why doesn’t he hand over his whole prize money for a whole season, and give that to the women’s tour? We also already give 2.5 per cent of the prize money away to World Snooker – I’d almost rather they just gave that to the women’s game

If you added five per cent to the 2.5 per cent that is 7.5 per cent, and then tax on it all you are struggling to make a profit.

It is fair to say that taking five per cent of prize money off the winners’ purses on the main tour would not impact the likes of O’Sullivan, Robertson and Trump who, regularly win titles, too badly. However, a five per cent cut in the overall prize fund on the main tour would be extremely unpopular with lower-ranked players.

Outside of the game’s elite, players are not earning vast sums of cash and in the bottom half of the world rankings, some are not making much profit at all, especially when expenses are taken into account.

My understanding is that Ronnie wanted 5% of the prize money fund to go the the women, but that does not necessarily mean 5% at each level. It’s obvious that this idea is only a viable option if the money is taken “at the top” and frankly, I would be happy with that. Making the whole system a bit less top heavy would be a good thing in my opinion.

The 900 – Groups 3 & 4 – 26/27 September 2022

I will look at the 2022 British Open results later today, when round 2 is completed.

Meanwhile here are some important news about the 900.

Reanne Evans is replacing Neal Foulds in commentary/punditry this week and she brought some fantastic news with her:

LLP Solicitors are Reanne’s sponsors and they have decided to support the event.

This is what happened on Monday:

Daniel Wells won the day but it was 23 years old Emma Parker who stole the show. Indeed she beat Tony Knowles and Stuart Watson to reach the final. Tony Knowles is a two times ranking event winner, who was ranked as high as number 2 in the World. He famously beat Steve Davis by 10-1 in the first round at the Crucible when Steve was defending Champion for the first time. Stuart Watson plays on the Seniors Tour and qualified for the Crucible.

Here is Emma’s clearance to beat Tony Knowles:

Yesterday saw Aaron Canavan prevail. Aaron is a former World Seniors Snooker Champion. He beat Jamie Wilson, a young promising talent, and former professional, in the final.

And some more pictures…

This is the draw for tonight

Ronnie yesterday … bad day in office and good ideas

Ahead of his match yesterday, Ronnie looked in good mood and looking forward to play competitively again. It didn’t go to expectations. He was beaten by 4-1 by Alexander Ursenbacher … again

Here are the scores:

And the report by WST:

Swiss Bliss As Rocket Falls

Alexander Ursenbacher once again proved to be one of Ronnie O’Sullivan’s bogey players as the Swiss ace beat the World Champion 4-1 in the first round of the Cazoo British Open.

Switzerland’s top player Ursenbacher has now beaten O’Sullivan in all three of their ranking event matches – the other two coming at the 2019 Welsh Open and 2020 UK Championship. That’s a remarkable record for a player who won just three knockout matches in the whole of last season and remains in danger of relegation from the pro tour.

Ursenbacher’s mother Florenca surprised her son by making the trip to Milton Keynes to watch him play for the first time since his amateur days, and to her delight he rose to the occasion with a fine display against the reigning Crucible king and world number one. O’Sullivan’s attentions now turn to next week’s Hong Kong Masters.

Breaks of 69 and 45 helped Ursenbacher to a 2-0 lead. O’Sullivan pulled one back, and had a chance to clear from 58-7 behind in frame four, but missed the third last red to a top corner on 16. He was soon 3-1 behind, and world number 63 Ursenbacher wrapped up the result in the fifth with a run of 46.

I didn’t think my mum was ever going to come over and watch me because of her work schedule,” said Ursenbacher, who now meets Joe O’Connor in the last 64. “It surprised me when I saw her this morning, I was so happy and I thought there was no way I was going to give in tonight. I was really nervous all day, I was anxious and couldn’t eat. She’s the best mum you could wish for but that put pressure on me because I wanted to make her proud.

Against the best players, it’s the easiest way to push yourself. I don’t know anyone who wouldn’t want to play Ronnie. When I play him I just want to go for it, it’s the ultimate test because he’s the greatest player who has picked up a cue. I always give 100% against him. I just play how I feel and hopefully you will see more of that from me for the next 20 years.

I have lost weight recently. My cat died in April and that helped because I was so upset I couldn’t eat anything, then after that I didn’t put it back on.”

It’s hard to know why some top players struggle against certain opponents. The most famous example is of course Mark Johnston Allen who has a 100% career record over Stephen Hendry.

Stephen Hendry, in commentary, reflected that he had not seen Ronnie play that badly for years. “He was rubbish” was his assessment of Ronnie’s performance. And, truly, Ronnie was very poor, especially in the first two frames. He had no touch at all, overhit the balls and misjudged his safeties. The only positive is that he continued to try. To be honest, he didn’t play well over the week-end either. Having to rest his arm, he probably didn’t put the work in and it showed.

But it wasn’t all about Ronnie. Alexander played really well. He was extremely efficient and reliable when in the balls. He didn’t miss anything easy. He totally deserved the win, on merit.

Off the table, Ronnie came up with the suggestion that the Main Tour should better support the Women’s Tour, notably by funding it.

Here is what Ronnie had to say about that, as reported by the BBC:

It’s so wrong that World Snooker haven’t made it better for the girls,” O’Sullivan told BBC Sport.

Why can’t they just take 5% off the prize money and give the ladies a good opportunity to play in good conditions?

I think everyone would support it and back it. You don’t want to be having this conversation even in another two or three years, it should be something that’s done within the next two or three months.

Decisions can be made quickly and done quickly, and it’s important for the likes of Reanne [Evans] as well because they have been playing a long time and they deserve to have that opportunity.

About the Mixed Doubles he added

It shouldn’t be a special event for them, it should be normal,” said O’Sullivan.

I think the best thing World Snooker could do is make that happen. You see what it’s done for ladies’ football, I was more geed up watching the ladies play than I was the guys. The guys haven’t been able to get the job done but the girls showed them how to win.

It would be great for the girls to have that opportunity.

And more specifically about Reanne Evans

Reanne is a 12-times world champion, that’s some feat. At least let her make it a professional job where she doesn’t have to go out and do other things to make ends meet.

She’s devoted her life to this game, most people in her situation would have given up snooker but she hasn’t, she loves it.

To this WST responded

Our remit is to run the World Snooker Tour for the professional players, including the four women on the tour. 

We felt the Mixed Doubles event over the weekend was fantastic. We are proud of snooker’s inclusivity and to be one of the few sports where men and women can compete together.

But that’s missing the point. One of the reasons why women struggle so much when getting on tour is because they never play under professional conditions on the Women’s tour and almost all of them have a full time job because there is no money on the Women’s tour. They are also not welcomed in some – too many – clubs … unless behind the bar. It’s not by chance that two of the four who got on the main tour, are On Yee and Mink who both have access to excellent conditions when “at home”. On Yee has funding as well. Reanne was well supported by her family and was able to devote a lot of time to snooker. Most women never get such opportunities. It all highlights how remarkable Rebecca Kenna’s achievements are. She has a full time job. She experienced rejection when trying to play in her local leagues, when some clubs didn’t allow her to play some “fixtures” solely because of her gender. She persisted, worked hard and is now a pro. Last week-end, she showed real qualities. But she shouldn’t have had to go through what she did. It’s baffling that in 2022 there are still clubs that don’t allow women to play. Also too often, unwelcoming behaviours, mocking and sexual “teasing” are tolerated in clubs. I have experienced it myself… and I’m a grand-mother. I have witnessed it many times too. “it’s just banter” or “boys will be boys” are the usual justifications for not doing anything about it. If this was about race instead of gender people would be up in arms.

Neil Robertson supports Ronnie’s ideas as reported by Phil Haigh

I think the women have been brilliant this weekend,’ Robertson told The Metro. ‘Hopefully women’s sport can kick off, get some more sponsors, some more funding and they can start to play for really good prizes themselves. Even though the money is increasing, it is still very low so we want to see that increase.’

On O’Sullivan’s five per cent plan he added: ‘It wouldn’t bother me at all – I’m always up for stuff like that. I wouldn’t mind prize money coming off from the top and being filtered down elsewhere where the funds are maybe needed more.

Neil Robertson and Mink win the 2022 World Mixed Doubles

Congratulations to Mink and Neil Robertson

2022 Mixed Doubles Champions

Here are the reports by WST:

Afternoon session

Robertson And Nutcharut Storm Into Final

Neil Robertson and Mink Nutcharut came from the bottom of the group into second place on Sunday afternoon to book a final meeting with Mark Selby and Rebecca Kenna at the BetVictor World Mixed Doubles.

Australia’s Robertson and Thailand’s Nutcharut scored a 4-0 victory over Judd Trump and Ng On Yee in their last group game, highlighted by a superb 74 clearance from Nutcharut in the third frame. That was exactly the result they wanted to keep alive their hopes of a final berth, but they still needed Selby and Kenna to beat Ronnie O’Sullivan and Reanne Evans in the last match of the group phase.

At 1-1, O’Sullivan and Evans needed just one of the last two frames to reach the final, setting up an exciting finish. But Selby’s breaks of 67 and 78 ensured that his duo won 3-1 and topped the group with three victories out of three.

Final Group Table

Mark Selby and Rebecca Kenna: 9 points
Neil Robertson and Mink Nutcharut: 6 points
Ronnie O’Sullivan and Reanne Evans: 5 points
Judd Trump and Ng On Yee: 4 points

Evening session

Robertson And Nutcharut Win Landmark Doubles Title

Neil Robertson and Mink Nutcharut beat Mark Selby and Rebecca Kenna 4-2 in the final of the new BetVictor World Mixed Doubles at the end of a tournament which showcased women’s snooker to a vast audience.

The first televised mixed doubles event for 30 years was live on ITV and many broadcasters around the globe, and will surely inspire women and girls to give snooker a try. All four women in the field – Nutcharut, Kenna, Reanne Evans and Ng On Yee – performed admirably and handled the pressure of playing on the main stage.

Robertson and Nutcharut started the day bottom of the group table, but scored a crucial 4-0 win over Judd Trump and On Yee in their last round-robin match. That game was highlighted by Nutcharut’s fantastic 74 clearance, which was the team’s highest break of the weekend, and the result proved just enough to earn them a final spot. Selby and Kenna were the only team to win all three group games, but they were outplayed in the final.

The title is another outstanding moment in a breakthrough year for 22-year-old Nutcharut, who won the Women’s World Championship for the first time in February, and started her rookie season on the sport’s professional tour in July. Last month, she beat Mitchell Mann in the BetVictor Northern Ireland Open qualifiers, her first win as a pro. Tonight’s prize of £30,000 is her biggest pay day so far.

Robertson was also thrilled to pick up silverware early in the campaign, adding to his trophy haul having won four titles last season. The world number four has not entered the Cazoo British Open which starts on Monday, but he’ll be back in action the following week at the Hong Kong Masters.

Selby made the perfect start to the final by putting his team ahead with a break 107. Robertson’s run of 69 helped level at 1-1, and his team got the better of a scrappy third frame to take the lead. After the interval, Robertson made a break of 67 as his team extended their advantage to 3-1.

Nutcharut fired in a long red early in frame six and made 24 to give her team the edge. They led 31-6 when a weak safety from Kenna let Robertson in for a run of 27 to secure the title.

In some ways, Mink carried us through to the final because of her performance in our last group match,” said Robertson. “Then that filled me full of confidence tonight because I knew if I made a mistake then she could take her opportunities. I’m really proud of her and it’s an amazing feeling to win.

I’m sure there are dads and mums out there now thinking of getting their daughters involved in cue sports. It needed something like this to give it that exposure. If you become one of the best women, this is the occasion you could play in. When I was a kid, all I wanted to do was play a match on TV against one of my heroes. Hopefully this can help give girls the same kind of dreams.

Nutcharut said: “This is more exciting for me than winning the World Championship. It’s my first time playing with one of the top guys and my first time at a big tournament. It’s important for women’s snooker because so many people watched it in the venue and on television. It’s great experience for me and I want to keep improving.”

I really enjoyed the tournament and I honestly believe that this is the sort of event that really helps the development of the game. The format is interesting as it proved that even a bad performance on the first day can be retrieved.

The women showed some very good snooker. Mink was not at her best on Saturday, but her 74 clearance boosted her confidence and, from then on, she played really well. Neil trusted her and that was really good to see. On Yee was her reliable self but could probably benefit from being a bit more aggressive. Bex Kenna showed her tactical qualities. Mark Selby and Rebecca Kenna had practised together ahead of the event and I believe that it really helped them to reach the final. Well done both. It might well prove to be a confidence booster for Bex this season. Ronnie and Reanne of course played many times in exhibitions, but I’m not sure it helped them here. If anything, Reanne in particular went for a bit too much under the circumstances.

Here are more pictures, shared by WST on social media

2022 Mixed Doubles – Day 1

It was an interesting and enjoyable first day in Milton Keynes, as the 2022 Mixed Doubles got underway.

Ronnie was poor in his first match. However he played much better in the evening and the commentators mentioned that they had been speaking to him between the two sessions and insisted that he is really up for the event.

Here are the reports by WST:

Afternoon session

Winning Starts For Trump / On Yee and Selby / Kenna

Judd Trump and Ng On Yee scored a 3-1 victory over Ronnie O’Sullivan and Reanne Evans in the opening match of the BetVictor World Mixed Doubles, than Mark Selby and Rebecca Kenna saw off Neil Robertson and Mink Nutcharut by the same scoreline.

The new event sees the world’s top four men and top four women competing as pairs in a team format. The group phase continues on Saturday night and Sunday afternoon, then the top two teams in the group go through to Sunday night’s final.

After winning a tight opening frame, Trump made a break of 75 to put his team 2-0 ahead, then On Yee made a cool clearance from the last red to take the third frame and ensure victory. Evans impressed in frame four with a run of 62 to avoid the whitewash.

Hong Kong’s On Yee said: “I feel like the clearance in the third frame was really good. There was huge pressure but luckily I handled it well.

Trump added: “We spoke briefly before the match about which order to go in and decided it would be me before for Ronnie to try and keep him quiet. That was our tactic, to try and keep him safe. I felt very confident in On Yee and it worked well.

It’s an amazing showcase for the women’s game. It could have been difficult for them to play, as if they were playing with the weight of the world on their shoulders, but actually they settled into the swing of things a lot quicker than me and Ronnie did.

I felt very confident when when the draw come out that we’d have a great chance. Ronnie and Reanne have been the favourites in so many people’s eyes, but I quietly felt we were very strong. And I believe that we have what it takes to go all the way.

In the second match, Selby opened with a break of 134, then Robertson replied with a 64 for 1-1. A run of 64 from Selby helped his team regain the lead. In frame four, the English duo trailed 46-11, but some clever safety from Kenna helped set her partner up with a chance, and Selby took advantage with a 40 clearance.

Kenna said: “I’m pleased that I could put a few balls together. I know how difficult it is to get settled on these tables, they are just so fast. But when when the opportunities came, I went for my shots until I lost position.

Selby added: “It’s huge spotlight, at least 30 years since we’ve had an event like this, especially to be on the main ITV channel with a primetime audience. So I said to Rebecca, just go out there, express yourself. Show everyone your personality go for your shots, because this is a massive platform for women snooker to try and promote it.

Evening session

Selby And Kenna In Pole Position

Mark Selby and Rebecca Kenna beat Judd Trump and Ng On Yee 3-1 to top the group after the first day of the new BetVictor World Mixed Doubles in Milton Keynes.

Points gained after two matches each:

Mark Selby & Rebecca Kenna: 6
Judd Trump & Ng On Yee: 4
Ronnie O’Sullivan & Reanne Evans 4
Neil Robertson & Mink Nutcharut: 2

The top two teams after the third round of group matches on Sunday afternoon will go through to the final on Sunday evening.

Sunday’s play starts at 1pm with Neil Robertson and Mink Nutcharut against Judd Trump and Ng On Yee, followed by Ronnie O’Sullivan and Reanne Evans against Mark Selby and Rebecca Kenna.

English duo Selby and Kenna beat Robertson and Nutcharut 3-1 in the opening match during the afternoon session and scored another success by the same scoreline this evening against Trump and On Yee. They took the opening frame on the colours, then lost a 59-minute second frame which was resolved when Trump potted the final black.

Selby’s break of 68 gave his team a 2-1 lead and he made a 55 to take control of frame four. On Yee had a chance to clear but missed the penultimate red when trailing 59-47 and that proved the key moment.

After losing their opening match on Saturday afternoon, O’Sullivan and Evans bounced back in the evening session with a 3-1 success against Robertson and Nutcharut. They lost a 55-minute opening frame on the colours, then breaks of 111 and 68 from O’Sullivan put them 2-1 up and they secured victory in the fourth.

O’Sullivan said: “It has been good fun. You have to keep your concentration and try to support your partner, there’s a lot going on we are not used to. I don’t know whether to be quiet or whether I’m talking too much! We are feeding off each other. I am trying to get into the zone but also trying to do what feels right.

Evans added: “You have to try and go out and enjoy it, and try to play to your own ability. Who wouldn’t want to be paired with Ronnie!

The above video was shared on twitter by WST

The women generally gave a very good account of themselves. It was Mink who appeared to struggle a bit more with the pressure. Rebecca Kenna is probably the less fancied of the four but she has an excellent safety game and that proved to be a key element in their team success as she “earned” several opportunities for Mark Selby who then duly delivered.

Here are more images shared on social media by WST: