13.5.09

WHERE TO START?

I congratulate Daniel Wells and Li Hang for keeping their places on the professional circuit for another year having made their debuts last season.

This is a much better achievement than it sounds. The rankings are worked out using two season’s points.

Wells and Li had only one year’s points, plus the starter points they were awarded at the beginning of the campaign.

These points are the number earned by the lowest ranked player on the list, so they change in amount from year to year.

Actually, both Wells and Li stayed on through the WPBSA’s sensible decision to allow eight places for players who have earned the most points in a single season that are not already in the top 64 on the two-year list.

Even this is much harder than many people realise.

New on the scene, players start in the very first round of qualifying for ranking events and the qualifiers are as competitive as they have ever been.

There are some tough match-players at Prestatyn who will never win major titles but are adept at halting the progress of rising stars.

Daniel kept his place as a result of winning three deciders in the Betfred.com World Championship before losing a fourth to Barry Hawkins to be denied a trip to the Crucible.

By doing so, he has something to work on next season rather than being relegated and spending another year on the PIOS.

Not everyone’s heart will bleed at such a plight. Sport is, after all, the survival of the fittest but I do think new players are unreasonably disadvantaged because starter points vary from year to year and, however you look it, they are still starting right at the bottom.

Here’s an idea: why not just say to the new players that however many points they earn in their first season will be doubled?

This would have seen Wells finish 60th and not 70th while Li would have been placed 64th not 71st.

Would anyone begrudge them this?

Yes, almost certainly, because people begrudge one another all manner of things.

But doubling up would at least reward success to some degree and give the new faces more of a chance.

It will be even harder for those promoted for the 2009/10 season.

Only six ranking tournaments have been announced. If the individual points tariffs are not amended then I expect almost all of them to be relegated.

17 comments:

Nico said...

Good idea, I think (is it the first time you have it, or has something like that been already suggested in the past? dunno, just asking, since I'm rather new at following the rankings closely).

But, in the example you gave, it means that 2 players in the 49-64 bracket would be out of it, thus would have to play another qualifying match, in the place of these two 'newcomers'.

But indeed, it would be better to 'give a boost' to these new faces like that, rather than 'allowing', let's say, a 60th-ranked player to stay around this spot for x seasons (plus, such a player, should he drop out the top-64, maybe this would give him a boost, too, to re-motivate himself in order not to completely drop out of the Main Tour!).

So, really good idea indeed.

Anonymous said...

Only six ranking events for next season. Come on World Snooker, get your finger out. Maybe there could be a new event in the new hotbed of the sport, Portugal?

Chris said...

I think that six ranking events in a year is pathetic.

Matt said...

Absolutely spot on Dave. I was told by a current professional recently that they tried this for a year a while back but then reverted back to the current system for whatever reason.

Anonymous said...

id love it if there was only 6 ranking events next season

Anonymous said...

The only problem with your idea of doubling the points of a first season pro to give him 2 years point to go on is the potential unbalance of ranking events from year to year.
I think you have highlighted this unbalance in the current thread where you suggest only 6 events are scheduled for the forthcoming season.

Anonymous said...

Back to the beginning of the thread, congratulations to Daniel Wells, he did very well in the WC qualifiers too and to me is one of the brighter, less talked about prospects of the moment. I expect him to break into the top 32 in a couple of seasons time and go on from there.

jamie said...

Thats why Wattana needs all the support he can get. One thing that I thought there might be a post on is your reflections on the ranking list.

Anonymous said...

i do not think wattana needs all the support he can get.

also, off topic (but everyone else seems to do it, especially Jamie to mention things directly to Dave or to ask Dave random questions) - Dave i thought you may do a reflective post on the one year ranking list paying particular attention to how Higgins is the man to beat next year (factually) as opposed to the peoples favourite quick player.

wildJONESEYE said...

whats the point getting new players on to tour if they will strugle to stay there and as you say dave you expect them all to be relegated next season.

Snooker needs new blood and if thoes new blood are up then down soon they will get uninterested and snooker will lose them for ever.

jerneymen that ocupy the mid rankings are so good at keeping new players out but potentially theres a World Beater among the new players that wont get his chance because its so tough.

But well done Wells and Hang on keeping their place on tour despite of the system.

Anonymous said...

wje, usually you talk some good sense, but on this occasion i must say that if players were good enough they would climb, eventually. if they arent good enough and dont climb then they should either try harder and try to improve or change "occupations".

the new blood that you say is needed will get there if they are good enough to climb. if not, i am happy with the old blood if they are performing better.

wildJONESEYE said...

i believe its getting harder and harder to stay on tour for new players remember it took shaun murphy 7 years to reach no 48 in the rankings had this system being inplace then he might not have had that chance and played most of thoes years in the PIOS..

but youre right the new blood will get through if they are good enough however is it right to handicap theire developement....

2 seasons ago michael white made it on tour....people was talking of him as the next big thing then but he fell straight back down and he hasent made it back this season.

the same way as the main tour is competative the PIOS is just as competative and if players gets there suerly they should be given a fair crack of the whip in staying there.

id like to see new players get a minimum of 2 seasons on tour so they get that chance without the instant threat of relagation hanging over them.

Pete@CueSport.tv said...

Haven't really looked at this properly but could it be possible to award positions on the tour based on one-year points accrued but still keep the two-year list for seedings? I would need to actually work this out properly but an idea!

Anonymous said...

my proposal would be that for a certain season, lets say 2011 start of season that the last years points plus HALF of the year before thats points are used.

that way, the most recent years form will make up the majority of your points (although it depends on if you have a terrible bad season and one excellent one).

that would be my shout anyway...

Anonymous said...

if there are only 6 ranking events next season theres a very good chance higgins will be number one on next years official rankings which i think would be fantastic for snooker.

wildJONESEYE said...

i dont.

i think its time 34 year olds start to get overtaken by younger men at this rate there will be Zimmerframes as standard issued by the WSA.

Anonymous said...

great attempt at humour, but still failed. oh, and i know you are not the real WJE.