James Wattana, Thailand's greatest ever player, will be relegated from the circuit after 19 years at the end of the season.
His 5-2 defeat to Rod Lawler in the final qualifying round of the Welsh Open yesterday was the last in a long line of disappointing reversals over the last couple of years.
Unless World Snooker award Wattana a discretionary wildcard he will be off the main tour as he can't now finish inside the top 64 in the two year rankings or among the top 8 of players on the one year list not already in the top 64.
What a great shame this is. Wattana is only 38 and, in the early 1990s, sparked a snooker boom in his home country on a par with what is now happening in China courtesy of Ding Junhui.
He had first risen to prominence as a teenager in 1986 when, invited to play on the Matchroom tours of Thailand, he won an invitation tournament, beating Terry Griffiths 2-1 in the final.
Wattana stunned snooker by reaching the final of the inaugural Asian Open in Bangkok in 1989, losing to Stephen Hendry.
He soon became one of the leading players of the next decade, reaching a highest ranking of no.3 and winning three ranking titles.
Two of these came in his native Thailand (the other was the 1992 Strachan Open) and he also won the prestigious World Matchplay in 1992.
Wattana was certainly good enough to be world champion but lost twice in the semi-finals, in 1993 and 1997.
He is perhaps best known for making a 147 at the 1992 British Open on the day he learned his father had been shot in Bangkok.
After constructing the break, then only the fourth maximum ever made on TV, Wattana was informed his father had died.
He lived in Bradford in the UK for many years and his grasp of English improved through games of scrabble.
Just two years ago, he beat Ronnie O'Sullivan 5-0 in the China Open but, like many a former great, found the Prestatyn qualifying scramble almost impossible.
Wattana's contribution to snooker has been immense. He has business interests in Thailand to keep him occupied but I can't help feeling his professional career has ended far too early.