Day 2 at the 2023 Masters and 6-reds 2023 World Championship Qualifiers Outcome

Yesterday afternoon Ronnie won his opening match at the 2023 Masters. He beat Luca Brecel by 6-1.

You will find the report on that match here.

In the evening, Jack Lisowski beat John Higgins by 6-2. This was Jack first win in the Masters.

Here is the report by WST:

Lisowski Scores First Masters Win

Jack Lisowski had won just four frames in three previous appearances at Alexandra Palace, but broke his Cazoo Masters duck with an excellent 6-3 victory over John Higgins.

In the past, Lisowski has struggled to handle the atmosphere at the 2,000-seater London venue; he lost 6-1 to Ding Junhui on his 2019 debut, then went down 6-2 to Kyren Wilson the following year and was thumped 6-1 by Ronnie O’Sullivan in 2022. But at the age of 31, the gifted Gloucestershire cueman has finally got through to the quarter-finals for the first time.

The left-hander will meet Hossein Vafaei on Thursday evening, with both players stepping into unchartered territory. Lisowski showed impressive form at the Cazoo UK Championship in November when he came within a frame of the final, losing 6-5 to Mark Allen in the semis, and having made a century and three more breaks over 60 tonight, the world number 12 will be confident of another deep run.

Higgins has a mixed record in this event as he lifted the trophy in 1999 and 2006 but has now lost his opening match 14 times in his 29 appearances. He admitted making “criminal” errors tonight as his disappointing run of form continued.

The opening frame was tied 40-40 when Higgins missed a difficult pot on the last red with the rest, handing his opponent the chance to go 1-0 ahead. Lisowski doubled his lead with a run of 68, before Higgins responded with a 142 total clearance, the new target for the £15,000 high break prize. A run of 88 put Lisowski 3-1 ahead, then Higgins hit back after the interval with a 79 to halve the deficit. Lisowski’s highest break of the match, 100, made it 4-2.

Higgins had several chance in frame seven, crucially missing a short range red to a centre pocket at 55-0. The frame came down to the last red and Lisowski got the better of a safety exchange then cleared to go three up with four to play. In the eighth, Higgins was on for a 147 until he overcut the black on 65, and Lisowski had a chance to clear but missed the last red, and his lead was soon cut to 5-3. There would be no fight back for Scotland’s Higgins as Lisowski wrapped up the match with a run of 93, delighting the crowd with a series of exhibition shots.

It’s massive to win my first match here, such a special feeling,” said Lisowski. “I thought I was clinical tonight, to beat someone as good as John is a dream. I made a few decent breaks when it really mattered and stopped him from building momentum. The break in the last frame, that was such a good feeling and it’s why we play snooker.

I worked very hard for this tournament and that showed on the table. It’s the best crowd, anywhere in the world. They have so much energy and they are so enthusiastic, it’s the perfect place to play. I try to entertain people, I want them to enjoy it. It’s high tariff stuff but when it comes off, it’s lovely.

Hossein is a great lad and a very good friend of mine. He’s a future top 16 player and he’ll stay there for many years to come. He plays the game the right way. But it will be business on the table, I’ll try to take him out.

Higgins said: “In the last couple of years I have missed balls which are unforgivable. In the seventh frame I decelerated on the red to a middle pocket, that was criminal. I have been trying something with my technique recently and it feels ok, but then when you get put out into the bear pit, I couldn’t concentrate, I was all over the place. Then I started to enjoy it and I felt better, but a couple of lapses in concentration, and Jack punished me. I thought he hit the ball really well and his style of play is superb for the crowd. He reminds me a bit of Michael Smith the darts player, he has lost in a few finals, but when his game clicks then the sky is the limit.

Higgins admitted before Christmas that he is considering seeing a sports psychologist for the first time. “I haven’t got any further with that,” said the 47-year-old tonight. “I’m not in the next few events so it’s something I might look at. It’s a singular sport and you want to do your own thing, but so many of the boys now have someone in their corner rooting for them. And it gets more difficult as you get older.

I’m not a fan of Ebdon for a number of reasons, not all related to snooker, but there is no doubt that working with him has helped Jack massively.

We are half-way through the first round at the 2023 Masters, and 3 out of 4 of the top seeds are out. I don’t expect that trend to continue today. Gilbert has not been at his best, on and off the table. I would be very surprised if he was to beat Willo tonight. Mark Allen has been the form man of the season so far whilst Barry Hawkins has been very quiet.

Yesterday also saw the conclusion of the 6-reds 2023 World Championship Qualifiers.

Here is WST report on the outcome of that qualifying event

Quartet Are Bangkok Bound

Monday 9 Jan 2023 08:39PM

Jimmy Robertson, Ali Carter, Zhang Anda and Chris Wakelin all made it through the qualifying rounds of the Six Red World Championship to earn places in the final stages in Thailand in March.

This is the first time that the invitation event has a qualifying process, with the four winners to join the field for the main tournament which runs from March 6-11 in Bangkok.

Robertson beat Aaron Hill 6-3 in the final qualifying round, making breaks of 69, 73, 63 and 73. Wakelin saw off Ben Mertens 6-2 while Zhang beat Robbie Williams 6-3 with a top run of 68. Carter fired runs of 74, 73 and 50 in a 6-1 success against Zhou Yuelong.

The field of 32 players is:

Stephen Maguire
Ronnie O’Sullivan
Judd Trump
Mark Selby
John Higgins
Mark Williams
Kyren Wilson
Shaun Murphy
Jack Lisowski
Barry Hawkins
Luca Brecel
Stuart Bingham
Mark Allen
Anthony McGill
Hossein Vafaei
Ricky Walden
Ding Junhui
Noppon Saengkham
Thepchaiya Un-Nooh
Jimmy White
Mink Nutcharut
Andreas Petrov
Dechawat Poomjaeng
Ken Doherty
Mahmoud El Hareedy
James Wattana
Sunny Akani
Poramin Danjirakul
Jimmy Robertson
Ali Carter
Zhang Anda
Chris Wakelin

The draw will be announced soon.

All detailed results are on

Other than Zhao and Yan, notable absentees from the top 16 are Neil Robertson and Ryan Day. Maybe the biggest surprise in that list is the presence of Andres Petrov.

A player who deserves a mention here is the 18 years old rookie from Belgium, Ben Mertens. Ben reached the last stage of the qualifiers where he lost to Chris Wakelin. En route he had got the better of Jenson Kendrick, Jordan Brown, Mark Davis and Jamie Jones. That’s two top 32 players’ scalps and “Dark Mavis” who has won the 6-reds World Championship three times (2009, 2012, 2013), more than anyone else. Needless to say that Mark knows how to play this format! Well done Ben!

Bizarrely, the 2009 6-reds World Championship isn’t mentioned in the main wikipedia article about the 6-reds World Championships. I was puzzled because I knew for sure it happened … I was there. It has its own page though.

7 thoughts on “Day 2 at the 2023 Masters and 6-reds 2023 World Championship Qualifiers Outcome

  1. I kneel before Mr Higgins and applaud: several times in maximum attempt! Respect to John (for race in race attitude, Thnx!)
    Triple Crown 147 collection…Ronnie now, or Ding in April (maybe May : ))

  2. I understand all the other players, top players, Thai pros and amateurs, the four qualifers, but…why exactly did Andres Petrov get an automatic invite to the Six-Reds in Thailand?

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