Amateurs at the UK Championship

Posted on: 23 November 2020

Last edited on: 31 December 2020

York Barbican venue for the UK Snooker Championship 2018

That’s where it should have been!

As we know, the UK Championship will be at the Marshall Arena in Milton Keynes – like the other tournaments have been.

There was hope that the final stages could be played at the Barbican in York, but COVID has put paid to that – and my annual visit.

So immediately following Judd Trump’s win over Ronnie O’Sullivan in the Northern Ireland Open yesterday, the logos have been changed for the Betway UK Championship.

You can watch the action on the Eurosport player and the BBC will be muscling in on Saturday. I will stay with Eurosport thanks.

5 Amateurs are in the draw

Amateur action starts on Monday afternoon when Michael White will face Mark Selby .

On Wednesday Brian Ochoiski will play Neil Robertson and Leo Fernandez will play Ronnie O’Sullivan .

On Thursday Paul Davison plays Judd Trump and Jamie Curtis-Barrett plays Ding Yunhui (seeded 1 obviously).

This is the stupidity of the 1 v 128, 2 v 127 and so on system that WST employ.

This has got to stop and a tiered draw implemented across all the tournaments featuring 128 (or more) players.

Day 1

The only amateur playing today was Michael White – I still find it hard to think of him as an amateur!

White put in a great showing against Mark Selby but was ground down eventually and lost 6-4.

No prize money for White, which is a disgrace! If this is an entertainment business then it should be acknowledged that both players are involved!

Day 3

After a day off as far as amateur snooker goes, this wasn’t a good day at all!

Leo Fernandez played Ronnie O’Sullivan and Brian Ochoiski played Neil Robertson.

No disrespect to either Leo or Brian but it wasn’t surprising to see that neither of them won a frame.

This is a completely unfair system and there appears to be a groundswell of opinion that it has to change.

Let’s hope Jamie Curtis-Barrett and Paul Davison can do better today.

Day 4

Unfortunately, and as expected, both Curtis-Barrett and Davison were well beaten – both losing by the same 6-1 scoreline.

There are some that believe this is good experience, but I for one don’t!

So that’s it as far as amateur interest goes. I, like many of you I guess, will be watching the rest of the event anyway.

So what now?

Friday is a day off for some as the BBC role into town, shove everyone around and pretend the event starts tomorrow! Yes, you’re right. I don’t like the BBC.

I will be watching on the Eurosport Player where, if you are at a loose end today, you can see replays of some of the recent UK finals.

I was at the final in 2014 when Judd Trump made a magnificent, but not quite enough, comeback and lost to Ronnie O’Sullivan.

We know it won’t be another Trump against O’Sullivan final as they are in the same half for this event. They could meet in the semi-final but who knows? There could be some shocks to come yet.

Can Ding Junhui retain the title? Will there be a new name on the trophy? And where will the final be played is another big question. With the new rules and COVID tiers there is the possibility that the final, at least, could be staged at the Barbican after all. Doubtful, but possible.


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