Snooker News and more short videos from Thailand – 06.03.2023

Some of the stuff published here today were shared some days ago but I preferred to think about it a bit before sharing it.

6-Reds World Championship in Bangkok (so far)

The first day of action already concluded and the defending Champion, Stephen Maguire is already out. He is playing in Group A and has lost both his matches today. The same in true for Mink. Those two play each other in their last match and neither can progress to the next round. Ding and Zhang Anda are certain to progress to the knock-out stage.

In Group B all four players have played one match. Thepchaiya Un-nooh and Tom Ford, who replaces Luca Brecel, won very comfortably, by 5-0 and 5-1 respectively. It’s a very good start of course but, on paper, everything is still possible.

All players in Group C have played two matches. Hossein Vafaei has won both. He beat John Higgins by 5-1 and Poramin Danjirakul by 5-2. Both Hossein’s victims did beat Ken Doherty, who can’t now qualify for the knock-out stage.

Only two matches were played in Group D. Judd Trump whitewashed Ricky Walden whilst future professional Ma Hailong defeated Kritsanut Lertsattayatthorn by 5-1.

It’s a similar situation in Group E except that the matches were closer. Robert Milkins beat Matt Selt by 5-2 whilst Chris Wakelin beat Dechawat Poomjaeng by 5-4.

In Group G as well, only two matches were played: Noppon Saengkham beat Jordan Brown – who replaces Shaun Murphy – in a deciding frame. Stuart Bingham got the better of Mahmoud El Hareedy, He beat him by 5-1.

Groups F and H haven’t started yet.

Table 1 is shown on Eurosport/Discovery+. Table 2 is shown on Youtube. Tables 3 and 4 were streamed on Facebook.

The Thai love a grand ceremony… the trophy was brought to the venue by a military parade!

And more about yesterday and players greeting the fans

Yesterday, Ashley Carty won the Q-Tour Play-offs and regained his professional status

Here is the report shared by WST:

Carty Regains Tour Card

Ashley Carty defeated Florian Nuessle 5-2 in the final to win the 2022/23 WPBSA Q Tour Playoff at the Q House Snooker Academy in Darlington and secure a two-year professional World Snooker Tour card for the 2023/24 and 2024/25 seasons.

Carty was relegated from the sport’s top tier only last year, but the Englishman bounces back quickly after emerging from the 16-player playoff in England’s north-east. 

Heading into the event as the number 12 seed after semi and quarter-final finishes on the Q Tour this term, the 27-year-old’s playoff challenge was nearly over before it really began, as he found himself 3-0 down to Farakh Ajaib in the opening round. 

However, Carty conjured up a brilliant comeback with a trio of half-centuries as he ousted his opponent in a deciding frame before eliminating youngster Hamim Hussain 4-1 in the last eight to reach Finals Day. 

A winner on the English Amateur Tour this season and of the English 6-Red Championship only a few weeks ago, Carty needed to show more mettle as he fell 2-0 down to number one seed Ross Muir in the semi-finals. Once again, he was up to the task as he strung together four consecutive frames to advance into the final as a 4-2 victor.

Waiting for Carty in the title match was 21-year-old Nuessle, who was making the most of his very late call-up to the event after Daniel Wells’ withdrawal on Friday morning. 

The reigning six-time Austrian national champion dispatched Josh Thomond 4-0 and Liam Davies 4-3 on Saturday before ending the hopes of Steven Hallworth 4-1 in Sunday’s last four to stand one further win away from becoming a professional for the first time. 

Former Crucible qualifier Carty took firm control of the final early on as breaks of 71 and 55 helped him establish a 3-0 lead in the best-of-nine frames encounter. He also crafted a run of 57 in the fourth frame, but Nuessle potted brown, blue and pink to take it and get on the board.

Carty re-established a three-frame cushion with frame five and was within a few pots from victory before Nuessle cleared with a 25 to stay alive. However, Sheffield star Carty was not to be denied, as he wrapped up the win with the aid of a 58 break in frame seven. 

Following his triumph, a jubilant Carty said: “It will probably take a few weeks to fully sink in but I’m just over the moon really. I’ve been working really hard lately on and off the table, and it’s really pleasing that it’s paying off. I feel that I’m in a good place at the minute and playing really well.

Responding to the emotions he felt when 3-0 down to Ajaib in his opening match, Carty described: “It seems ages ago! At 3-0 down I was really nervous, especially in the first two frames I was shaking like a leaf and missing too many balls, but Farakh was giving me opportunities and I knew I had been playing well in practice so I knew to just quicken up a little bit and get into a good flow.”

Reacting to his return to the professional circuit and what it represents, the champion also said: “It means a lot. It has been a tough year financially but it’s been a big learning curve. I know where I have gone wrong for the last four years so hopefully, I can put that right now and kick on.

This season on the amateur scene has taken me back to my junior days but it’s given me a kick up the backside and made me realise that I wasn’t putting enough work in as I should have done. In a way, it might have helped me.

I’d like to say big thanks to my sponsors Celtic Surveys because without them this season probably wouldn’t have been possible to practice everyday and put the hard work in. I’d also like to say a big thank you to my friend Kev who had a word with me a couple of months ago and made me put some hard work in and it’s definitely paid off.

Florian was understandably disappointed to lose in the final but, on social media, stated that he had to take a lot of positives from the week-end and that he was grateful for the opportunity.

News about the ongoing match fixing affair

This has been shared by WST some days ago already

WPBSA Statement – 02/03/2023

Thursday 2 Mar 2023 12:00PM

Sport Resolutions have appointed Ian Mill KC to chair the Independent Disciplinary Hearing for the ten snooker players charged with serious breaches of the WPBSA Conduct Regulations. A date of 24th April 2023 has been set for the start of the proceedings.

The players will remain suspended until the outcome of the Independent Disciplinary Hearing is published. They will therefore not participate in any remaining World Snooker Tour events during the 2022/23 season, including the 2023 World Snooker Championship.

So, the hearing will start right in the middle of the 2023 World Championship. That’s very unfortunate and I hope it won’t overshadow the most important tournament of the season too much. The timing means that 7 out of the ten players concerned are certain to be relegated from the tour. The Q-Schools, played right after the World Championship are part of the current season and therefore none of them will be allowed to play in those events even if the hearing finishes in time and some of them are cleared of any wrongdoing. It’s very unlikely but it would be very harsh and unfair.

Zhao Xintong and Yan Bingtao are not in danger to be immediately relegated, but could still get long bans of course. Lu Ning on the other hand is likely to get a long ban and, even if he doesn’t, he might find himself out of the top 64 depending on other players results.

4 thoughts on “Snooker News and more short videos from Thailand – 06.03.2023

  1. It will be a shame if Florian Nuessle doesn’t ultimately get a chance on tour, especially with Arnie Ursenbacher set to be relegated again. However, it was good to see the Q Tour contenders mostly younger players. Several of the players had sponsors, which seems almost a prerequisite to do well at Q Tour.

    If the match-fixing hearings start on 24th April, the final announcements will most likely only be made after the World Championship has finished, so it will scarecely be an issue as nobody can make any comments until the investigation is completed. All of the players will of course be relegated: they are either very deeply implicated or have admitted to wrongdoing which is serious enough to warrant a long enough ban. WST should take the opportunity now to expand the UK Q School to 12 places – 8 is nowhere near enough, and the top-up system is even more unfair than the knockout structure.

    As for the 6-Reds, what a magnificent venue! The tables aren’t perfect, but at least are playing faster. It’s a real shame they couldn’t have used this for the Women’s World Championship.

    • I’m glad to hear that the venue is good. Setting aside issues with adjusting to 6 reds and to new equipment, this event should give us some insight into the state of Ronnie’s game, in the sense that he will hopefully like the venue and also be motivated to perform well in front of the Thai fans…

      • I don’t trust influencers one bit. We have to wait for the outcome of the hearing and then we will know for sure. The score of that particular match was so unexpected that it was always going to attract attention. That’s nor what fixers want at all. The teaser/title of one other video by that same influencer suggests that Ronnie knows “everything” which I certainly do not believe. I have more confidence in the rumours saying that Yan’s fixed match(es) came before his Masters title. That at least makes some sense.

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