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Thread: World Snooker 2018

  1. #1
    Capped Player OwlsFan's Avatar
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    World Snooker 2018

    I had fallen out of love with snooker for many years but when I saw O'Sullivan and Ali Carter exchange shoulder barges and Selby and O'Sullivan getting knocked out, it suddenly looked more interesting and I am now back to channel-surfing to the matches on Eurosport. Apparently because of the huge market in China, the snooker world wants Ding Junhui to win it. However, I am always dubious of a sport where Barry Hearn is involved and I think one of the favourites, Higgins, was charged with match fixing, so the jury is out but for the moment I am enjoying it.

    It would be nice to see Mark Allen win it. It's been a while since there was an Irish World Champion.
    Forget about the performance or entertainment. It's only the result that matters.

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    International Prospect CraftyToePoke's Avatar
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    I love the snooker, and this tournament is a yearly sporting highlight for me, been to it a few times too, can watch it all day.

    I don't know if Ding is favoured so much for marketing reasons so much as his ability certainly deserves a world title, his close cue ball control break building is sublime. Also he has been bred to win it, and the pressure on him is ridiculous, unfair, from China. When he lost the final a few years ago one of the papers there went full page on how he had failed. This despite having had a super tournament, and indeed season, among the elite. People like this guy, they want that weight off his back. So do I, love to see him win it, but he is getting his ass handed to him tonight by Hawkins as the favourites continue to exit this years fascinating tournament, so many favoured blue blood players not making it out of the early rounds this year.

    The trade off for that might be we wont see so many one visit frames as would be ideal, as more and more 'on their day' players make up the survivors. It may suffer due to that as it draws on when they are playing each other and not giant killing.

    Hearn has done some good things, but I take your point also. But there are more tournaments now, there is a living there for more than the top sixteen elite, which was necessary for the greater health of the sport, you had to be top sixteen in the game to be financially ok, for so long. Picture, tennis or golf, in comparison for example, that is Hearns doing.

    Higgins was more naive I seem to remember, he ended up in some sting or other and got taped. I don't think he threw any matches and those ITK have accepted him back in the fold. He also jettisoned his management who got him in that mess iirc. Maybe, just, just about clean I reckon.

    O'Sullivan's play will be missed, but his self obsessed, indulgent egotistic post match look at me everyone, rambles, not so much. God knows what the shoulder barge was for, ended up looking a right *~ck.

    Allen, I cannot warm to, I want to cheer him on like we did Higgins, Taylor and Doherty but it's just not there, but he can play, he can score heavily and quickly, top players fear him, without him fully joining the top player echelons himself, despite having the game to do so. Again, another match favourite on the wrong end of a scoreline tonight going into tomorrow V Wilson.

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    International Prospect CraftyToePoke's Avatar
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    So we have our semi finalists Owly

    John Higgins v Kyren Wilson
    Mark Williams v Barry Hawkins

    A British lock out again despite the growth of the game in Europe, Asia and beyond, two long standing top sixteen high pedigree repeated tournament winners, in Higgins and Williams, but both were supposed to have their best days behind them also, yet here they are. Williams had dropped so far down the rankings he was going to retire a year ago, but took some coaching (fair play when a former world number one and world champion is willing to go back to school in his forties) and is back up to world ranked seven. Higgins beat the odds last year to make the final but ran out of legs in it.

    Hawkins, a journey man who has started suddenly winning ranking events in his thirties, perhaps due to a coach change and tidying up his cue action. Hope for us all.

    Wilson, one of the new crew tipped to take the game on in the next decade, gifted but is he ready, and will he ever get a clearer run at a world crown ?

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    Capped Player OwlsFan's Avatar
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    So who do you think will win ?
    Forget about the performance or entertainment. It's only the result that matters.

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    The Cheeto God Real ale Madrid's Avatar
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    A Higgins v Williams Final would be one for the ages. Hope it happens.

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    International Prospect CraftyToePoke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OwlsFan View Post
    So who do you think will win ?
    Blindfolded dart throw territory
    You could have listed maybe five or six players a week ago who surely would have the winner among them, and none of them even made the semi's. I was sure after Ronnie imploded thus opening up Ding an easy path right to the final, that is was his year but he duly imploded at the next available opportunity too.
    I would like to see a new winner, maybe Wilson, a bit of a changing of the guard, for the game, but as RealAle says, those two would deliver a final worth watching for sure.

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    Capped Player nigel-harps1954's Avatar
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    Higgins into the final anyway. Williams v Hawkins going all the way. Currently 15-15.
    https://kesslereffect.bandcamp.com/album/kepler - New music. It's not that bad.

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    International Prospect CraftyToePoke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Real ale Madrid View Post
    A Higgins v Williams Final would be one for the ages. Hope it happens.
    You get your wish, neither of these two will freeze anyway, should be good.

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    The Cheeto God Real ale Madrid's Avatar
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    I would have put every cent I had on Higgins after Williams tweeted from the kebab shop at 2.15am last night. But then watching him race to a 4-0 lead while stuffing his face with Minstrels and Wine Gums passed from audience members was a sight to behold. He is so laid back he is actually one of the few who could live with Higgins this week. If he can keep his nose in front tonight I'd nearly fancy him. Higgins still the favourite I think.

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    The Cheeto God Real ale Madrid's Avatar
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    Williams - the ice man Cometh.

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    International Prospect CraftyToePoke's Avatar
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    That was an epic bit of TV sport, huge credit to the pair of them. Ice-man Williams indeed, who else could see a seven frame lead vanish, end up level, then miss match pink and still play then next frame as he did, nerveless. Brilliant.

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    Capped Player OwlsFan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CraftyToePoke View Post
    That was an epic bit of TV sport, huge credit to the pair of them. Ice-man Williams indeed, who else could see a seven frame lead vanish, end up level, then miss match pink and still play then next frame as he did, nerveless. Brilliant.
    Enjoyable stuff apart from the constant panning to the families who were looking at themselves on TV and making the appropriate nervous gestures. Would I be correct in saying that the standard (as opposed to the drama) wasn't that high in the Final, except when Higgins went on that run? No sooner did one player get in than he ran out of position or missed a pot which of course added to the drama. Even the Sheffield Wednesday Chairman has a front row seat at the match. Snooker is a great sport for TV, especially the shots where the player on the table is aiming for the top left pocket and the forlorn face of his opponent can be seen looking on.

    I thought Williams would crumble after he missed that pink to clinch the Title: lesser men would have fallen apart. Fair dues to him to come back from that.
    Forget about the performance or entertainment. It's only the result that matters.

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    International Prospect CraftyToePoke's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OwlsFan View Post
    Enjoyable stuff apart from the constant panning to the families who were looking at themselves on TV and making the appropriate nervous gestures. Would I be correct in saying that the standard (as opposed to the drama) wasn't that high in the Final, except when Higgins went on that run? No sooner did one player get in than he ran out of position or missed a pot which of course added to the drama.
    Maybe if it did lack anything, it would have been a few more one visit cleaner frame wins but like I said a few posts above, that might be the trade off for players who wouldn't have expected to go so deep into the tournament. I love the cutthroat level play, swapping centuries and one mistake, one visit, onto the next frame, but maybe because it was two players we have known and watched since 1992 it didn't negatively impact my enjoyment of it one bit. They made up for it in match play, shot selection, nous around the table and some phenomenal pots. Agree re the families also, no need for so much of it. A snooker final such as that unfolding on BBC doesn't need it.

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    Capped Player SkStu's Avatar
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    I watched a few frames of the evening session of the UK Championship yesterday but didnt get to see the climax and O'Sullivan's win. He is, for me, the greatest to have ever played and I've always loved him - warts and all. He's been very open and candid about his mental health issues and also how his love for the game has been non-existent for some time. But his comments yesterday after winning, they kind of bother me. It devalues the game and the achievements a bit. I dont think its intended from him as he is just talking about himself, but it cheapens the achievements a bit.

    Sorry, i have no idea how to articulate the point i am trying to make. He's given me a lot of joy over the years, i wish he could find the same joy from it himself and celebrate how good he is.

    “I’m not sitting here with a massive grin and super-excited,” said O’Sullivan. “I just go through the motions a lot of the time. It’s great to win and I give my best when I’m out there and I want to win, but it’s not the same excitement as years ago when I was winning my first world and UK and Masters titles, and you’re buzzing.

    “Don’t get me wrong, it’s still a nice feeling and a job well done, but I get more of a buzz from going for a run in the morning or having breakfast with my mate. I don’t actually feel like ever playing. Once you get down there you think you’re glad you’ve done it, but even in this match today I was thinking I didn’t feel like it, I’d rather sit on my bed and watch a bit of Netflix. I feel like that a lot of the time.”

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    Why doesn't Ronnie just give the game up so ?

    There is something about his personality that wants attention for weird reasons !

    If he was getting some regular good hidings ( in snooker ) he might think about other stuff instead of his. Look, I ain't even that bothered but I am still able to beat the rest !

  18. #16
    Biased against YOUR club pineapple stu's Avatar
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    Those kind of comments annoy me alright, but to be honest I try just ignore them and it doesn't impact my enjoyment of, say, the final session last night.

    Oldest and youngest champion, and 30 years in between. It's an amazing achievement that simply can't be matched in most sports. Yes, there's talk that there's a dearth of new players coming through which doesn't help. But the raw figures alone show how phenomenally talented he is, even now.

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  20. #17
    The Cheeto God Real ale Madrid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkStu View Post
    I watched a few frames of the evening session of the UK Championship yesterday but didnt get to see the climax and O'Sullivan's win. He is, for me, the greatest to have ever played and I've always loved him - warts and all. He's been very open and candid about his mental health issues and also how his love for the game has been non-existent for some time. But his comments yesterday after winning, they kind of bother me. It devalues the game and the achievements a bit. I dont think its intended from him as he is just talking about himself, but it cheapens the achievements a bit.

    Sorry, i have no idea how to articulate the point I am trying to make. He's given me a lot of joy over the years, I wish he could find the same joy from it himself and celebrate how good he is.
    Ronnie was on the Overlap podcast last week talking about mental health - sponsored by SkyBet. I would never belittle anyone with mental health issues but surely some sort of awareness of how gambling contributes to mental health deterioration particularly someone who struggles themselves should make them think twice about what they contribute to.

    Ronnie is the greatest to play the game but i have no trouble shouting against him. I just think he's all about the money these days and that's why he's playing. He wants to play in China were big crowds are but not in the UK - has no issues taking big money from Macau instead of playing the NI Open. Does analysis on Eurosport all the time which I find particularly odd given his apathy at times - he has his book - his tuition series which is a monthly sign up - he's a well oiled machine.

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    TBF, it's also partially down to the sheer number of ranking tournaments (17) over the course of the snooker season, and, aside from the Triple Crown events, the top 16 players will always pick and choose the competitions in which they participate, so naturally enough, they'll focus on those which offer the most money. Trump is the most consistent modern player most likely to eventually knock Ronnie off his perch, but he's yet to maintain that level of performance in the Crucible.

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    Like the Fonz. Only a dog. Mr A's Avatar
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    Jeez I think we all end up going through the motions a bit in our jobs from time to time, but it's absolutely extraordinary to be able to win tournaments when you feel that way though.
    #NeverStopNotGivingUp

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