5.5.09

THE HIGHS AND LOWS OF THE CRUCIBLE 2009

And so the Betfred.com World Championship recedes into memory but not before a little look back at the best and worst moments...

BEST MATCH
John Higgins v Mark Selby was a bona fide Crucible classic. It featured snooker of the highest quality. Selby made five centuries and still lost.

WORST MATCH
I don’t think many people will be ordering DVDs of the Mark King v Rory McLeod slog-a-thon.

BEST SHOT
The two that really stood out for me were a shot of Ricky Walden’s where he had to come off three cushions to roll up to a red and did so expertly and the screw back by Mark Allen on a long red in the semis.

WORST SHOT
Bearing in mind all the brouhaha that ensued as a result, it must be Graeme Dott’s in-off stopped with his fist.

PLAYER OF THE TOURNAMENT
This is an easy one. John Higgins.

STAR OF THE TOURNAMENT
Mark Allen proved he is a big occasion player and also that his passionate style of snooker is a great favourite with fans.

FALLEN STAR OF THE TOURNAMENT
Peter Ebdon’s first round defeat to Nigel Bond was a big surprise given his form in winning the China Open.

BREAK OF THE TOURNAMENT
Stephen Hendry’s second Crucible 147 – 14 years after his first – was marvellous to witness. Get that statue up now!

HEROES
Betfred were enthusiastic sponsors who did much to build excitement backstage without disrespecting the championship – it’s good to have them on board.

The table fitters took stick over the pockets but they were the same size as before. The reason balls were sliding in was because the cushion cloths were changed more regularly. This made conditions better overall.

Jack Lisowski was remarkably self assured for a young lad thrust into the spotlight as recipient of the Paul Hunter Scholarship. Good luck to him for the next year.

Strictly speaking a heroine, but Michaela Tabb handled the final with great authority despite all the attention surrounding her.

The WPBSA ran the event efficiently without any kind of problems as far as I can tell.

VILLAINS
Simon Hattenstone
and the many other sneering newspaper columnists who seem to make it an annual mission to do the sport down. Stick to football if you don’t like it.

DAMP SQUIB
The much-hyped Super 6 event didn’t exactly get the juices flowing, did it?

31 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hendry's 3 ball plant for best shot!

Sammy said...

Worst Haircut: Martin Gould

Matt said...

That screwback by Allen was ridiculously good.

Anonymous said...

...especially for one with such a stabby cue action

Anonymous said...

Dave - does Rob Walker not get a mention for pointing out many times that Rory McLeod is in fact a "black man"?

Corben Gallas said...

Best comeback : Neil Robertson from 14-7 to 14-14

Best slap : second session of the final (7-1)

Matt said...

During the tournament on my site both my Rory McLeod and Michaela Tabb pages had more views than any other profiles. Rob must have shocked people into searching for them.

Greg said...

Does Dott realise how much of a clown he looks?

Punching the ball around the table and laughing about it, with that stupid plaster on his chin. What a cretin.

Anonymous said...

sammy 3:39

No, that distinction still belongs to Ding "i made 2 147s with a mop on my head beat that" Junhui.

Biggest disappointments of the tournament

1) Marco Fu - Dec08 lost by only a frame against Murphy in a thrilling UK championship final clash; Apr09 played like a drunkard against Murphy

2) Stephan Maguire - flattered to deceive again; difference between him and another Scot, John Higgins is all too clear

3) Ding Junhui - still has a mop for a hairstyle; to be fair, once he gets over his slump, he will be a fearsome force at the Crucible for sure

4) Stephen Hendry - threw away the free pots and countless chances Murphy gave him post-147; Murphy would have lost that match easily had Stephen taken them

5) Steve Davis - to be fair, it is credit to him he is still around at his age. But against Neil Robertson, his now-not-so-legendary-skills were cruelly exposed sadly.

Anonymous said...

have to disagree with the break of the tournament... the break of higgins to win the qf against selby is the best.

Anonymous said...

have to disagree with that. i think hendrys was the best by a mile.

jamie said...

Best match: As I did not sadly get to witness much of Selby v Higgins, I will say Ronnie v Allen as the 2nd session was top draw, and the atmosphere was electric, plus it was the only genuine shock result.

Worst Match: King v McLeod sounded bad but I had the pleasure of missing it. For me I will go Maguire v King.

Player: John Higgins it has to be.

Star: Well this could be John again, but I see what Dave is saying about Mark Allen though. I have to got to admit that I am not overly keen on his compact action.

Best break: Hendry 147

Heroes (Although not keen on that word in a sporting context):
Rob Walker, he seemed to be everywhere but remained enthuastic. Now that was the funny bit in Hattenstone's piece when he likened him to Partridge, which for me is a good thing as a Partridge obsessive.

Michaela Tabb: Showed she deserved that final because of her class not her sex, but looking good for her age!

The peolpe who renovated the Crucible. This year the air conditioning and the seats were a lot better.

Villians:
The people not giving Phil Yates more column inches.

Whoever has decided to marginalise Clive Everton.

Flop:
Super six's, offers nothing that grabs you

Anonymous said...

BEST MATCH
John Higgins v Mark Selby, possibly the best match in terms of standard over this length that I have ever seen.

WORST MATCH
Either of Mark King's, but worst Match-up has to be Robbo versus Davis

BEST SHOT
Allen's screw shot, awesome cue power.

WORST SHOT
I'm sure Rory or Steve Davis could take the top 50, but what about Mark Williams foul while lazily leaving his cue butt on the table.

Failing that Hendry's red on 57 of his 147, should never have dropped!!

PLAYER OF THE TOURNAMENT
John Higgins.

STAR OF THE TOURNAMENT
Mark Allen or Tony Knowles

FALLEN STAR OF THE TOURNAMENT
Stephen Maguire, fails once more to prove he can do it where it really matters, his time has passed, he will never win in Sheffield.


BREAK OF THE TOURNAMENT
Any one of Allen's pressure breaks against Ronnie

HEROES
Betfred for saving World Snooker's bacon.

Rob Walker - genius.

VILLAINS
Ivan Speck from the Hately Mail who tried his best to dampen any enthusiasm for the tounament.

The table-fitters, ruined the tournament with the ridiculously kind cuts.

Stephen Hendry for accepting the 147 money from the new sponsor.

Grahame Dott's fist.

Tony Knowles not letting that young kid win (Brilliant!) Snooker needs a panto villain like Knowlsey.


DAMP SQUIB

All of Dennis Taylor's commentaries.

Anonymous said...

a few biased views and opinions there lol

Nguyen said...

I completely agree with you about Mark Allen being the star of the tournament!

Anonymous said...

Why shouldn't Stephen accept the money?He earned it.

Anonymous said...

because the person posting wants to wind folk up, like you....

Anonymous said...

not only did stephen pocket 157k pounds, a charity will also receive the same amount from Betfred.com. Kudos to them for this act of generosity

Anonymous said...

What is it Dave with you and Simon Hattenstone, you seem to have some sort of problem with him, or is it he likes Ronnie and i won't say you don't like him, but i get the impression Ronnie is not you're cup of tea.

Anonymous said...

i see dave as a fan of snooker who like ronnie as well as other players as opposed to a ronnie fan who likes snooker because of ronnie

Anonymous said...

I agree wid u 1 turty 3 1 am

hegeland from TSF said...

Widest pocket:

Murphy's pink against Robertson, frame 19. I've uploaded it here (look at 2:19) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PUos3KsVdb4

legoland from TFS said...

that is W_I_D_E!!

jamie said...

After Portugal this weekend it will be time surely to give out season awards Dave did last year.

Dave H said...

I don't play favourites - never have, never will.

I always try to be fair to everyone and have respect for all players. They have, after all, helped provide me with a living from snooker, none more so than Ronnie O'Sullivan.

If people think differently that's up to them.

Anonymous said...

well said Dave and good reply. its obvious who Jamie was trying to get you to mention. well played.

jamie said...

Dave your comment underneath mine about not playing favourites is not linked to mine is as the anonymous person seems to think it was. I was not just asking you to give out their season awards but everyone. It doesn't mean you have favourites if you name a player of season, you did it last year.

Dave H said...

I wasn't replying to you, Jamie, I was replying to the anon who said I have something against Ronnie

I'll be doing the awards next week

jamie said...

Ok, I thought so.Looking forward to it John Higgins gets my nod ahead of a certain genius as he was the model of consistency throughout winning two events including the big one. He also made another final and featured in two semis plus a UK quarter. I think my choice is factually backed up by John Higgins having accumulated more ranking points than any other player in 2008/09.

Anonymous said...

Dave i never said anything about you having something against Ronnie, i did say i get the impression he's not your cup of tea. My post was more to do with Simon Hattenstone, which you have ignored.

Anonymous said...

John Higgins gets my vote. None of the players deserve to be called a genius, but he deserves the vote for being the best in the last year, by a long way. Well done John!!