More people are watching snooker on television now than at any time in history.
There’s a self-indulgent British attitude that the only thing that matters is what happens in blighty but this ignores the fact that snooker is a global sport.
The Grand Prix will be broadcast on the BBC, Eurosport and various other channels around the world, either live or in the form of highlights.
TV channels in China are particularly ravenous for coverage and the total audience for the tournament will run into the many millions, dwarfing the numbers recorded in the UK in the 1980s.
These are deals the WPBSA deserve credit for signing, because they have brought the sport into living rooms in some unlikely locations and turned legions of people into lifelong fans of the green baize game.
Some of the BBC’s terrestrial transmission times from Glasgow have raised eyebrows – the Conservative Party Conference doesn’t help – but every ball of the event is live on the red button or on the BBC website, which most UK viewers now have access to.
The Eurosport player also has coverage of one of the tables and the TV channel will be broadcasting many hours live, although times may vary depending which country you are in.
Here in the UK, we like to think back to a golden age. Well I remember the ‘golden age’ and I remember having to wait for recorded highlights of major finals rather than watching them live.
Viewers will – as is their right – complain about commentators, camera angles, interviews, features and the rest but, the truth is, there has never been a better time to watch snooker on the TV.
And with the internet as well, it is even easier to keep up to date with the action.
Gone are the days when waiting until half past midnight for David Vine to appear was pretty much the only way of finding out what had happened.
Now, snooker much more regularly happens live before our eyes and the game's global footprint is growing every year.
One final thought: there are, apparently, some three thousand folk in Britain who still have black and white TV sets.
I assume they aren't snooker fans.