2022/23 World Snooker Tour Cards
The WPBSA and WST have today jointly announced the provisional tour card structure for the 2022/23 World Snooker Tour.
Once again, the top 64 players on the official world ranking list following the 2022 Betfred World Championship will retain their professional status. They will be joined by players who are currently on the first year of a two-year tour card, as well as the top four players on the one-year ranking list, not already qualified for next season.
The tour will be completed by players who are able to successfully qualify through recognised tour qualification pathways. As was the case last season, these will include Q School, the CBSA China Tour, the World Women’s Snooker Tour and the Regional Federations recognised by the World Snooker Federation (WSF). Due to the timing of rescheduled regional events following the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, additional places may be award for these tournaments.
There will also be places won via the planned staging of the WPBSA Q Tour and World Snooker Federation Championship tournaments, both of which were unable to take place last season but are now set to proceed.
Jason Ferguson, WPBSA Chairman said: “We are delighted to announce the tour structure for 2022/23. This is a golden era for snooker in terms of our strength in depth and the standard of play on our global tour gets stronger every year.
“We are particularly excited to bring back tour places for the winners of the fantastic amateur events staged around the world, providing incentive and opportunity for the best new talent from around the planet. It is so important to see the leading players from all continents, including Africa and the Americas, playing in the spotlight of our professional circuit, in order to help our sport grow in those regions.
“We are one of the few truly inclusive sports, with no barriers in terms of gender, age and nationality, and that is reflected in our tour structure.”
Full qualification list:
Top 64 from the two-year Prize Money World Rankings after the 2022 World Championship: 64
Players awarded a two-year Tour card for the 2021/2022 season (not already qualified): 31*
Top 4 players from 2021/2022 one-year ranking list following the 2022 World Championship (not already qualified)** 4
CBSA China Tour**: 2
Q School**: 12
WPBSA Q Tour**: 2
WSF Championship**: 1
WSF Under-18 Junior Championship**: 1
World Women’s Snooker Qualifiers**: 2
EBSA European Qualifiers**: 2
APBSF Asia Pacific Qualifier**: 1
PABSA Americas Qualifier**: 1
ABSC Africas Qualifier**: 1
*Final total subject to change if any of these players finish inside of the top 64 of the two-year prize money rankings after the 2022 World Championship
**Players will receive a two-year tour card
In addition to these confirmed places, any players who qualify for the final stages of the Betfred World Championship at the Crucible, who otherwise would not earn a new tour card, will also receive a two-year tour card, as was the case last season.
Interestingly no mention of invitational cards …
Also worth noting that APBSF includes Oceania.
Players coming from some of these regions have consistently struggled on the main tour, some gave up before completing their two years, some even never showed up.
I’m certain that Jason Ferguson is aware that the level of the snooker in some areas is nowhere near what is required from main tour professionals and that the players coming from those areas have next to no chance to stay on tour after two years. It’s hard enough to have to move to the UK as an expat, to leave the family, to learn a different language, to adapt to a different culture without having to cope with the fact that you feel that you don’t have a proper chance to succeed. Ideally, there should be a true secondary tour, and this should be where all new pros start. The fact though is that there isn’t such a secondary tour for now … so why not offer those aspiring players one full year of scholarship under supervision of a mentor/coach and, only after that year, offer them a two years card PROVIDED that
- they still want one
- they have shown commitment and dedication throughout their scholarship
- they have played in most Q-Tour events available to them (*)
Also, just as WST/WPBSA have put structures into place to support those players who struggle with mental health, it would be a good idea for them to facilitate the access to English language courses for those who need them. Brits tend to assume that everyone speaks English (whilst themselves usually don’t speak any other language 😉) but this isn’t the case. Being able to communicate is essential in every aspect of our lives. It’s even more important when one is away from home and family. Isolation is a huge negative factor when it comes to wellbeing and mental health.
(*) If the Q-Tour becomes truly international, some of those aspiring players may find it difficult to secure visas and other required papers for some destinations.