The World Open 2018 in Yushan is upon us

Tomorrow the World Open kicks off in Yushan, China and it’s the fits of the “heavy” price money tournament of the season. Most top players did enter – main exceptions being Ronnie and John Higgins – but Shaun Murphy and Stuart Bingham failed to qualify.

Ding is the defending Champion.

Getting to Yushan is a gruelling trip, it takes between 20 and 30 hours involving planes and cars. Mark Williams posted this picture yesterday … it says it all!

WorldOpen2018GruelingTrip

Others will be fresher, having traveled to China about a week ago to take part in the Haining Open, a CBSA pro-am. Mark Selby was the defending Champion and defend he did. Here is the report on Worldsnooker

Mark Selby won the CBSA Haining Open for the second consecutive year by beating Li Hang 5-4 in the final on Saturday.

World number one Selby trailed 3-0 and 4-1 but took the last four frames with a top break of 68. To reach the final at the CBSA Tour event he knocked out Simon Lichtenburg, Paul Davison, Zhang Anda and Gary Wilson and Mark King. He is the first player to win the Haining title twice.

“Li played really well to go 3-0 up,” said Selby. “I’m happy that I managed to fight and come out winning. Snooker can be a cruel game because sometimes the better player doesn’t win. Li was the better player but maybe he felt a bit of pressure towards the end. I had a tough draw so to win the title here again is fantastic.”

He now heads to the nearby Hong Rui Ma Yushan World Open which starts on Monday.

As usual in China, the players , and the referees, were made welcome with a red carpet ceremony. Here are images shared on weibo

 

More info about the coming Shanghai Masters

This was published by Worldsnooker today. It explains a bit better how players will be selected and what it means being a “mentor”.

A press conference looking ahead to the 2018 Shanghai Masters and National Amateur Masters was held in Shanghai on Friday.

This year the tournament will become an invitation event for the first time, with an elite field of snooker’s top stars. Defending champion Ronnie O’Sullivan was at the press conference to interact with fans. He gave away signed posters, took pictures with fans and played snooker against two of them.

Also there were Jason Ferguson, Director of World Snooker and Chairman of WPBSA, Zhang Xingmin, Deputy Director of Shanghai Sports Bureau, Liu Chunsheng, Deputy Secretory of CBSA, Yang Guohao, Secretariat Director from Shanghai Sports Federation, Weng Weimin, General Manager of Great Sports Media and Yang Yibin, General Manager of Shanghai Juss Event Management Co., Ltd.

The 2018 Shanghai Masters will be held at the Shanghai Regal International East Asia Hotel from 10th to 16th September. The total prize money will be £725,000, with a top prize of £200,000. And that total prize money figure will grow over the next five years to reach £825,000 in 2022.

The 2018 Amateur Masters is a very important part of the Shanghai Masters, providing opportunity to the talented amateur players to compete against the world’s best. This year’s Amateur Masters will start at Shanghai Bawanren Snooker Club on 4th August. There will be four events to be held in Shanghai, Shenzhen, Chengdu and Xi’an. Top four at each event will attend the final held in Shanghai on 8th September. The winner and runner-up of the Amateur Masters event will qualify for the Shanghai Masters.

Another innovation this year will be an interactive reality show called ‘Next Stop, The Master’ on 9thSeptember. Instructors Ronnie O’Sullivan and Mark Williams will each team up with four amateur players (including the winner and runner-up of 2018 Amateur Masters) for an exhibition match.

And here is a little trailer featuring Ronnie

Shanghai Masters 2018 – two qualifiers revealed

This was posted earlier today on twitter:

Twitter Screen Shot 2018-08-04 at 10.13.27 - Shanghai Qualifiers

Chang Bingyu recently reached the SF in the IBSF Under-21 Championship in Jinan, China. He will also face Jimmy Robertson next week in the World Open.

Here he is in action, in his QF, in Jinan

Bai Langning will face Ben Wollaston next week. He was also involved in the IBSF Under-21 in Jinan. Here he is in action in the group stages:

And Ronnie seems to be quite happy about his blitz trip to Shanghai. This is what he shared on his Instagram:

Of course, it’s a bit more than just a couple of weeks away … Ronnie’s notion of duration and time flow is a bit fuzzy sometimes. But he seems to be genuinely looking forward to the coming season.

Shanghai Masters 2018 Launch and Press Conference on August, 3, 2018

This was posted on weibo today. Jason Ferguson and Ronnie attended the launch press conference of the 2018 Shanghai Masters. Apparently there will be quite a number of innovations, all intended at promoting the sport in China.

Here is the article (automatic translation by Chrome)

New system, new look and feel – World Snooker Shanghai Masters “Gorgeous Turn”

Author: World Snooker
Posted on 2018-08-03 19:15:55

The September Snooker feast in Shanghai has become a habit for fans. On August 3, the press conference of the 2018 World Snooker Shanghai Masters and the National Amateur Snooker Masters was held at Shanghai Regal International East Asia Hotel, which means that the Shanghai Masters will be hit again in the new year. The difference is that this year’s event will adopt a new system and a new model, bringing a new look to thousands of fans and striving to reach new heights. The Shanghai Masters “Gorgeous Turn” also excited the contestants. Today’s most popular player Ronnie O’Sullivan also came to the conference to interact with the fans and build momentum for the Shanghai Masters. The National Amateur Snooker Masters, which was the “outpost” of the Shanghai Masters, was officially launched on the same day.

Fu Zhesheng, President of the World Professional Snooker Association, Zhang Xingmin, Deputy Director of the Shanghai Sports Bureau, Liu Chunsheng, Deputy Secretary General of the China Billiards Association, Yang Guohao, Director of the Shanghai Sports Federation Secretariat, Weng Weimin, General Manager of Wuxing Sports Media Co., Ltd., Shanghai Jiushi Sports The deputy general manager of Industrial Development (Group) Co., Ltd. and Yang Yibin, general manager of Shanghai Jiushi International Event Management Co., Ltd. attended the conference.

Shanghai 2018  Launch 1World Federation of Taiwan’s President Jason Ferguson (Fozawa)

At the press conference, with the enthusiastic attention of guests, fans and the media, the long-awaited 2018 National Amateur Snooker Masters Ceremony ushered in the opening ceremony. Fu Zhesheng, President of the World Professional Snooker Association, Zhang Xingmin, Deputy Director of the Shanghai Sports Bureau, Liu Chunsheng, Deputy Secretary General of the China Billiards Association, Yang Guohao, Director of the Shanghai Sports Federation Secretariat, Weng Weimin, General Manager of Wuxing Sports Media Co., Ltd., Shanghai Jiushi Sports Yang Yibin, deputy general manager of Industrial Development (Group) Co., Ltd. and general manager of Shanghai Jiushi International Event Management Co., Ltd., went to the table to jointly launch the 2018 National Amateur Snooker Masters.

Shanghai Masters “New”

The 2018 World Snooker Shanghai Masters is scheduled to be held at Shanghai Regal International East Asia Hotel from September 10th to 16th. The event was hosted by the World Professional Snooker Association, China Billiards Association, Shanghai Sports Association, Shanghai Xuhui District People’s Government, Shanghai Jiushi Sports Industry Development (Group) Co., Ltd., Shanghai Jiujiu

Shanghai International Events Management Co., Ltd. and Wuxing Sports Media Co., Ltd. are the organizers of Shanghai International Events Management Co., Ltd.

Shanghai 2018 Launch 22018 Snooker Shanghai Masters

The new system, new model, new concept, the “new” word of the 2018 Shanghai Masters. This 11-year-old event will no longer be a ranking game this year, but will be presented in the form of a more prize-winning invitational tournament. Twenty-four players will participate in the event, and they will perform their peak matchup in September. They are ranked by the top 16 players in the world and the top four Chinese players in the world (if they are in the top 16 rankings), 2 Recommended by the China Billiards Association and two national amateur masters. This year’s event prizes are also very rich, with a total prize money of £725,000 and growing year by year. The 2018 World Snooker Shanghai Masters will focus on the development of Chinese professional snooker and the promotion of the Snooker movement.

Folk masters compete in the race

The 2018 National Amateur Snooker Masters is a very important part of this event. It gives the folk masters the opportunity to compete in the race and help the development of the Chinese folk snooker movement.

As the “outpost” of the 2018 World Snooker Shanghai Masters, this year’s National Amateur Snooker Masters will be officially opened on August 4th at the Shanghai 80,000 hit pool.

Shanghai 2018 Launch 32018 National Amateur Snooker Masters Opening Ceremony

The 2018 National Amateur Snooker Masters is a simple and not simple system. The four cities of Shanghai, Chengdu, Shenzhen and Xi’an will be used as races. Each station will produce four players to participate in the September 8th. In the finals of the National Amateur Snooker Masters in Shanghai, in the end, the champions and runners will be qualified for the Shanghai Masters.

The folk masters, grassroots heroes, and the scenes of the gatherings of the United Kingdom will undoubtedly increase the intensity of the game to a great level. The development of China’s billiards movement is inseparable from the world’s integration. In addition to the hard road of “remaining the ocean”, the holding of this amateur masters also provides an “exclusive channel” for local players to participate in international competitions at their doorsteps. For the folk masters who entered the Shanghai Masters Tournament, this is only the beginning.

O’Sullivan and Mark Williams serve as “star instructors”

The star tutor system is a highlight of this year’s national amateur snooker masters. After the 8th National Amateur Snooker Masters Championship on September 8th, the players can choose the mentor who wants to partner according to the rankings, and receive the tutor’s guidance. The champion has the right of choice.

The organizing committee hopes to share their professional experience and guide the amateur players through the masters, so that they can prepare for the 2018 World Snooker Shanghai Masters Competition in a more professional way. Good development guidelines. Ronnie O’Sullivan and New World Championship champion Mark Williams have confirmed that they will be “star instructors.”

O’Sullivan, one of the mentor, also appeared at the press conference and instantly ignited the enthusiasm of the audience. O’Sullivan had a brief interaction with two lucky amateur representatives on the spot and had a snooker racing show with them. After the exhibition, O’Sullivan also kindly presented amateur player representatives and lucky fans to represent the signature posters of the amateur and master games, and took a group photo. While another instructor, Mark Williams, did not come to the scene, he recorded a video of the special message for the National Amateur Snooker Masters, which was also broadcast live.

Shanghai 2018 Launch 4Ronnie O’Sullivan appeared at the conference

In addition, a unique interactive program “Next Station, Master” will also be held on September 9th. This is a live-action star tutor show jointly offered by professional athletes and folk players. Mentor O’Sullivan and Mark Williams will be teamed up with 4 amateur players (including the 2018 National Amateur Snooker Masters), and the two will perform a 5v5 exhibition, which will surely become the Masters this year. One of the highlights. Under the concept of new competition system and new perception, the master walks into the folk, the next master, perhaps you.

Snooker tickets start sales

High-value bonuses, high-level competitions, and the new world-class Snooker Shanghai Masters will make a more beneficial contribution to the popularization of Chinese billiards with its unique perspective and unique game mode. Create a classic model of Chinese snooker events.

At present, the World Snooker Shanghai Masters Tickets have been officially opened for sale. You can purchase tickets for the event online at the official ticketing website of the event, http://www.jusstickets.com, or call 021-962123 to purchase tickets. In September, let us join the Shanghai Regal International East Asia Hotel to share this feast of Snooker.

Fan friends can also pay attention to the official WeChat, Weibo platform “Snook Shanghai Masters”, or visit the official website of the event: http://www.snookershanghai.com for more information.

And here is WPBSA post about it all

The Race to Shanghai

3rd August 2018

shanghai

 

An ever-present fixture on the World Snooker Tour since Dominic Dale first lifted the trophy back in 2007, the Shanghai Masters will once again return this year from 10-16 September.

But this year it will be with a twist, following the announcement by World Snooker last November that the 2018 edition will see the tournament become the richest invitational event in snooker’s history.

This follows the signing of a new five-year agreement reached between World Snooker, promoter Juss Sports and the Chinese Billiards and Snooker Association (CBSA), under which the total prize fund will continue to rise year-on-year from £725,000 this year to £825,000 in 2022.

Earlier today both WPBSA Chairman Jason Ferguson and two-time Shanghai winner Ronnie O’Sullivan were in China to formally launch the 2018 event. For the first time, the tournament will also include four players who will qualify via the new Shanghai Amateur Masters competition.

But how will the rest of the field be made up?

ros1 Shanghai

Players

The event will comprise 24 players, to include defending champion Ronnie O’Sullivan, reigning world champion Mark Williams and the next 14 players on the official prize money ranking list following August’s World Open.

Ryan Day currently holds on to the final qualifying spot in 16th position, with Hong Kong’s Marco Fu currently his closest challenger some £16,212 behind.

View the latest Race to Shanghai

They will be joined by the top four ranked Chinese players not already included within the top 16, of which Fu would not be included and so he must earn a top 16 spot to qualify.

The remaining four places will be taken by players who will qualify via the new Shanghai Amateur Masters competition.

shanghai1

Format

The top eight seeded players will be kept apart in the draw and seeded straight through to the last 16, with those seeded 9-24 to meet in the opening round.

Matches up to and including the quarter-finals will be played over the best of 11 frames, semi-finals best of 19 and the final best of 21 frames.

China’s ‘new Masters’

WPBSA Chairman Jason Ferguson said: “The Shanghai Masters has earned its place in snooker history as an elite event and becoming the new Masters event for China is the obvious next step.

“Interest in snooker continues to grow across China and we are proud to be associated with such a renowned organiser as Juss Sports. We can safely say that this long-term relationship with them and the CBSA will year on year deliver a fantastic tournament for everyone involved.”

So as it stands currently the four additional Chinese playes would be Liang Wenbo, Yan Bingtao, Xiao Guodong and Zhou Yuelong

Ronnie is in Shanghai …

To promote the Shanghai Masters 2018. Ronnie is the defending champion. China loves him and he loves China. This year the tournament will feature the top 16 players plus 8 Chinese players.

ShanghaiMasters2018Poster

The official account of the Shanghai masters on weibo shared some images and very shorts videos.

here are te images:

You can read a bit more about who will possibly be there in this post by Matt on Worldsnooker:

Next week’s Hong Rui Ma Yushan World Open is the last counting event before the seeing cut off for the China Championship, D88.com European Masters and Shanghai Masters.

This season the Shanghai Masters becomes an invitation event for the first time so only the top 16  on the official two-year rankings qualify automatically, to be joined by the next four highest ranked Chinese players, and four Chinese amateurs. And with total prize money of £725,000 and a top prize of £200,000 up for grabs, it will be a lucrative event for those who qualify.

Heading into Yushan, Ryan Day is in 16th place in the latest provisional seedings, with a lead of £16,212 over 17th placed Marco Fu. So Hong Kong’s Fu – who would not count as one of the next four Chinese players – will need a deep run to challenge for a top 16 spot. With a top prize of £150,000 on offer in Yushan, there will be plenty of players with a chance of leaping into the elite.

Neil Robertson has taken an early lead on the one year ranking list thanks to his victory at the Kaspersky Riga Masters.

Robertson beat Jack Lisowski 5-2 in the final in Latvia on Sunday to win the 14th ranking title of his career, earning £50,000.

The one-year list will be used to determine the fields for the Ladbrokes Series later in the season. Only the top 32 will qualify automatically for the Ladbrokes World Grand Prix in Cheltenham (February 4-10), then the top 16 go on to the Ladbrokes Players Championship in Preston (March 4-10), and only the top eight will make it to the new Ladbrokes Tour Championship in Llandudno (March 19-24).

Lisowski is second on the list with £25,000 while Stuart Carrington made it to the semi-finals of a ranking event for the first time in his career and he sits third on £15,000, alongside Stephen Maguire.

On the official two-year list, Robertson remains in tenth place, while Lisowski is up from 26th to 24th. Carrington jumps from 50th to 44th.

It will most certainly be Ronnie’s first event proper this season.

The Paul Hunter Classic 2018 – draw and format

This was published by Worldsnooker yesterday 

The draw and format for the 2018 Paul Hunter Classic world ranking event is now available. The tournament runs from August 22-26 in Furth, Germany. For ticket details click here

Click here for the draw

Click here for the format

With only £20000 for the winner it’s fair to say that the tournament didn’t attract many top players: from the top 16, I only see Shaun Murphy, Kyren Wilson and Luca Brecel in the draw.

Ron PHC? 2018-07-28 at 18.01.31

Most of the guys in the poster will not be there, which makes it very misleading to the fans. Yes, I know that those are all the former winners, but most fans won’t think about that and assume that the poster boys will be in Furth, although, of course, Paul Hunter featuring on the poster might prompt a bit of  further thinking…

Whatever, one has to seriously question the future of this tournament, which is a shame. The best that could happen to it might well be to return to its roots and be run as a pro-am again.

The Pink Ribbon 2018 – Andrew Norman is your Champion!

PinkRibbon2018-3160

Andrew Norman won the Pink Ribbon 2018 beating Harvey Chandler by 4-2 in the final.

Congratulations Andrew!

And congratulations Harvey as well. They both were the best players there all week, and by some margin. The final was extremely close, much closer than the score suggests.

Andrew is now off the tour for a few years and competed as an amateur. Harvey is a professional, a rookie, and if he plays on the tour the way he did in Gloucester over the last days he is  certainly one to watch.

Andrew deserves even more credit for this victory because he’s been working tirelessly on the organisation of the event, this year and all previous years. Andrew is everywhere: early morning getting everything ready, during the day, behind the bar, playing snooker, serving food, generally helping everyone and, when everyone is gone for a drink, at 1:30 in the morning, Andrew is still there brushing the tables after the last matches!

Andrew told me that the prospect of being able to play on the World Seniors tour has been a huge motivation to practice hard again lately. clearly it paid off.

Here are a few images taken during the Final

This year the event managed to raise more money than it did last year despite the clashes with the Riga Masters and the Challenge Tour Event 3. Well done to Paul Mount and his team!

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And finally big thank you to Clive Brown, the tournament director, and his team of referees. Everyone one of them worked their socks off to have the event running smoothly!

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Next year will be the 10th anniversary of the Pink Ribbon. Don’t miss this special occasion to celebrate one of the best pro-ams in the World and one run for a great cause too!

During the event I published all the pictures on Facebook. Here are the public links:

Day 1 of Amateur Rounds – 28 July 2018

Day 2 of Amateur Rounds – 29 July 2018

Last 64 & last 32 – 30 July 2018

The Finals Day – 31 July 2018

It was great to see the diversity of players all there to support the charity: from the very young, to the very old, able-bodied and disabled, men and women, unknown and legends.

And finally a special mention for young Ben Mertens, from Belgium. Ben is only 13 and he qualified for the pro stages in both half of the draw. He reached the last 32.

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