News, opinion and insight from the green baize
I initially deemed your mention of a free rival publication as generous, but having read the first [or last] 3 editions of On Cue, its quite apparent that snooker scene has no immediate worries of being usurped as the premier potting publication.While I encourage all attempts at providing a medium for our beloved sport, Snooker Scene is unrivalled at delving behind the scenes, beyond the gloss and into quagmires that make no commercial sense whatsoever and appeal to the minority that is the diehard snooker fan.On Cue is fine, but I suspect it will become an online version of Cue World, Pot Black or the old BBC pre match filler, Snooker Break [remember that].The market has been littered down the years with glossies that are devoid of controversy or depth, and usually have some self serving or purely commercial agenda.How comforting it is to know, that as long as Clive, yourself and the other elves at Snooker Scene are around, we will always have a credible and analytic alternative.
eh, it's free - and I certainly didn't know of Peter Ebdon's move to Budapest or his in-depth knowledge of Skoda windscreen wipers.The top ten article (not to be taken too seriously) has some funny lines in it.I have spent more to read worse - so chill Kildare manAnd PS - it sppears to be in Chinese as well - something that may even be beyond Sir Clive
1244, dont worry, the first poster was just bumlicking Dave and clive.not that they dont do a good job on the mag, they do, but it seemed more important to him to have a go and compare apples with oranges.i wish both 'publications' all the best.
It's great to see On Que back again on the 110 site.It first appeared back in 2000 with some very good pieces and seems to have picked up where it left off.Well done to Stewart and the team
Ah yes, Chinese. Now i get it. Thats a lot of potential subscribers and unlimited advertising potential in a tiger growth market. Fair enough. Sorry I didnt think of it myself.Dont know if you are involved Dave, but top ten overseas players and review of the noughties both appear to be reincarnations of earlier features on this blog.Forgive my cynicism but on a different note altogether, when a large management stable/promoter becomes a major media player while being represented on the board, I become concerned that the seeds of vested interests are starting to blossom into green shoots. We know the chairman is not beyond a little mutual backscratching, and while this in itself is not wrong, there will be occasions when the board will have to make decisions where the financial short term interest of the top players will be incompatible with the long term interests of the game. This is a situation where the players union would be required to add weight, but hold on, arent they spearheaded by a board member also.Dont donate the gloves to Oxfam just yet clive.
I dont think that any snooker magazine deserves any credit whatsoever.Clive and co, could have done so much for the game than what they have, they could have kept it honest, but they didnt.One of clives greatest sayings was "achievement outweighs opinion everytime" yet that is no longer his clarion call. Thats a sad day for snooker.No longer do you have to prove your worth, you just have to put in the very odd good performance to kid the ignorant, your better than the past.Snooker has reaped what it has sown and under the present regime its hardly going to get better.Lets have less worrying about honesty off the table, and more about integrity with the table.The question I have for all these magazines is, where was your integrity when the last decade has seen balls enter the pockets that would not have in previous times.Did they not think that something was wrong?Did they tow the boards line, instead of voicing the concerns of many of us older fans who knew the difference between what we had seen before and the last decades offering. Did they think they were dealing with fools?Clive let a lot of us older fans down. He was the knight in shining armour, he stood up to the board if they nicked a fiver from the petty cash, but where was he when they destroyed the games integrity in a much more fundamental way.His silence was deafening.For me, its put up or shut up, the game is the star, its players are mere passing characters, and many have been made to look better than what they are, because the game has been prostituted in a down market fashion.
Is that a joke?The pockets now are far tighter than in the 1980s. Ask the players from the 80s and they'll tell you the same.
Yep. Tightened in the early 90s when they changed the templates. They are actually even tighter this season on the new Star tables.
the "original" star tables a year or 3 ago were easier than 'todays' imho
Hi Dave - really off topic here, but I find the standard of reporting on the WS website so poor. There seems to be a frantic need to update without checking the quality. The frantic updates on today's matches is really really poor in my opinion.
Stick to 606 moondan...
Dave, Let me first say that I often switch to Eurosport for commentary, its better balanced and tends to recognise all great shots, no matter who plays them.You mention the eighties pockets being looser than todays yet Ive always been led to believe its the same tenplate.I cant be sure of that because conditions seem to be shrouded in secrecy, so much so, that players are banned from discussing the issue.One thing I am sure of is that in the 80s or 90s I didnt see balls hitting the near cushion or knuckle and still dropping.The 80s table had many difficulties and I have been to matches where the ref has had to use a hair dryer in the mid session interval to try and take the moisture out of the cloth because it was raining outside and the white was too sluggish.By the end of the 80s most of those type of problems were solved because the cloth was much thinner, there was almost no drift on the ball and it was mainly conditions that saw the sudden rise in century breaks.The size of the pocket is in any case a red herring, its more to do with the cloth that surrounds the opening, the thinner the cloth the more acceptable the ball becomes, and when you are talking of players of pro class, the difference can be enormous.I know its fashionable to believe that today we are talking about players who are far superior to yesterdays player, in some cases thats true but in others its not. Davis would certainly be sitting on a couple of hundred more centuries than what he has today.Alex Higgins would be sitting on more than 51 career centuries.The improvement in the game has been conditions led. There is much evidence to more than suggest that from the turn of the century and throughout the first decade we have seen players find a game they never had in the 90s.The great Hendry reclaimed his Sheffield century break in 2002 which had previously stood at 12 until Higgins did 14 in 97 but in 2002 Hendry although way past his best did 16, it was also in this decade he fanally did 4 centuries in a best of 9.Was all this improvement in the players or improvement in playing conditions.Well all I can say is, it came at a time when so many balls were dropping that were raising eyebrows, so Im pretty certain why.The truth of the matter is, they lost the tobacco money and they thought that they had to make the game more exciting so they spent a lot of money looking for ways to achieve that.Different cushions, different cloths, it all had the desired effect.The only problem was the public were not that interested in big breaks, they want the rough and tumble, the blood and guts and most of all they want the honesty.Anyone who is over fourty knows what Im saying is true, anyone under 35 really wasnt there and they wouldnt know, no matter how much they think they do.I see you left out the 90s, for me this was an era of the perfect table, hard but honest, it was certainly an improvement on the 80s table, and so it should have been because much money was spent in trying to give players the conditions they deserved.There is bags of evidence to back up what I say, the trouble is nobody wants to see it.I hope the new tables are of a professional standard and after 4 events its certainly looking tighter.The snooker world can kid these kids but the at home viewer who is moreoften than not beyond middle age will not be.As for what the 80s player says, depends on who your listening to, I do know that many of them are sick and tired of listening to mister Davis.How the commentary team on bbc havent organised a discipline hearing in the bogs for Davis is quite beyond me.
My colleague Phil Yates tells a story about being at the qualifiers in Stoke in the early 1990s and walking past a (very) well known player who was practising and unable to pot a ball. He complained that the pockets had been tightened without the players' consent. Sure enough, Phil asked an official and this was confirmed.It is certainly true that with lighter balls and thinner cloths, break building is easier today (Clive has said this on one of our podcasts).However, on the other side of that coin, the pockets are tighter (though they still appear to vary from tournament to tournament even though they are carefuly templated and checked by experts).The late John Spencer said in the mid 1990s that he would have had to have had two black start to beat the top players of that era.I don't agree that Stephen Hendry was past his best in 2002 and I think he, Ronnie O'Sullivan and John Higgins would have been the best players of whatever era they found themselves in.
There was a spell during the late 80's where the pockets were enormous on the BCE tables.I played during the halcyon days of the game and the pockets were pretty large generally speaking.Its an urdan myth that the pockets were tighter in those days. This myth is based on folklore and the wellbeing and nostalgia which goes with the past and our impressionable younger days, combined with the insecurities we feel of modern life and the achievements of the younger and fitter man/woman.
The playing conditions and thus the century count, has dramatically improved at the Crucible since they cut out the "sprung floor" problem.There are far fewer roll-offs etcThe pockets are tighter (and sadly I'm in the well over 40s group that remembers not only the 80s but the 70s, 60s and even 50s!) but the thinner cloths and lighter balls leads to far better pack splits and easier break building.One the downside, am I the only one who thinks the thin clothes and lighter balls has led to far more kicks than old the old woolly rugs?
Dave I agree that the 3 you mention would top any era but strongly disagree that Hendry was the player of old in 2002.I think the table helped him and in fact, it was that performance that convinced me something was not right with the tables, as too many balls were dropping that shouldnt, and over the next few seasons we saw some unbelievable stuff, much of it was from players who could only dream of playing like that in the nineties.I wont labour the point any further, its not what anyone wants to hear.I will say this of spencer, I would struggle to name 10 players better than him and its sad that conditions never stayed static, then we could all say with some certainty who was the best.My overall opinion is Hendry was the toughest, Ronnie was the prettiest.As great as John Higgins is/was, he is nothing but a luke warm Hendry.The commentary on eurosport is professional and balanced, its a credit to the game and I hope you all keep that up.If snooker loses us greyhairs then its bang in trouble, the kids have better things to do with their youth, and that will never change.
Who is the journalist that Peter Ebdon was talking about who was trying to bring him down in terms of the betting scandal?
Janie, I think we are a similar age, your absolutely right about kicks and the connection to the faster cloth.They do understand that this problem didnt exist years ago.Many players have been robbed in recent decades by the dreaded kick.They have spent fortunes trying to address the issue but failed.If the likes of Steve Davis says that the better splits and faster conditions have had no effect and its just better players, then why on earth dont they go back to the thicker cloth where there wasnt a problem.Ive asked that question many times, the truth of the matter is they know it would make them all look like those guys from the seventies and eighties.Its all been conditions led, and to be fair to the board they did give the players the choice of going back to the slow cloth, and it was declined.You dont have to be a genius to understand why.But its that fact alone that proves my point far better than the case I make.
I remember Ebdon saying he had no time for 110sport and them saying the same about himFunny how things turn out
Ebdon and 110 will clearly jump into bed with anyone for the right money/policital wranglings.
In fairness I think it was Ian Doyle Ebdon was always opposed to and he's no longer running the stable
Good point David well made.Also, in terms of the differences Ebdon had with CueMasters/TSN/110sport, a realisation perhaps that there are common goals amongst snooker people and some have been around long enough to realise that.They are the bigger fish who see the pond they have to swim in has become smaller.Rather than seeing who you can swallow up who, or everyone trying to be sharks or piranha, maybe the time has come to go with the flow.Some of the tiddlers should remember that some of the big fish (like Ebdon and 110) have been around for a very long time and it's not through chance or good luck either.Just because people don't always show their teeth doesn't mean they don't have them.
Ebdon is being slightly disingenuous to say it was 'proven' that he was innocent - it was not; simply that there would not have been sufficient evidence to prove his guilt to the exacting criminal burden of proof.The result being that, in the eyes of the law at least, he remains innocent.
Snooker © The Fine Art Method A secret is wasted if not shared Hello DaveHow are you! What’s all this talk about “Integrity” lad? Don’t these punters know that integrity is a kind or dirty word within the snooker establishment?People with well paid jobs and income from snooker will argue the game is “Straight”. The game is equally as straight as “Harry Lauders walking stick”. Talking of Scotsmen! It was Mr Ian Doyle that said “The Joe Davis copyright has been lost in the internet domain”. The game in places is embarrassed by the shameful way that the Joe Davis copyright was borrowed from a ninety year old widow in home care.Joe Davis created a multi million pound industry that should have been sheltered for the WPBSA members and legally binding until an heir to Joe’s fortune is found. Even now when the game could have a new beginning, the establishment wants to build on secrets that will not ever disappear. Mr hey you
Dave, you say that as if Ian D has no bearing on Lee.Maybe that is what you think, and Lee is very much his own man, but it wasnt until the last couple of years or so that Lee really came to fruition at 110 despit whos name may have been on the big door.
It is this kind of thing which makes me scratch my head as to the mindset of snooker fans.Surely we all would like to see the sport recieve more coverage? Then when a publication like On-Q comes along providing free content people still have a go.Those involved @ 110 must wonder why they bother.
I am surprised you say that Dave about Hendry as like you said to me before, Hendry took his foot of the gas after the seventh title. He played some great stuff in the 2002 World's but at his best he would never have lost to Ebdon over best of 35. I'm not sure he was at his best in 1999 actually, as he was no longer number 1 and suffered some strange defeats around that time including that 9-0 drubbing by Marcus Campbell. Of course Hendry, Higgins and O'Sullivan would have been the best of any era, they are the most talented players we have ever had, you could speculate about other's being greater in terms of titles won, but not in terms of pure class.
Yet more garbage from Mr Brannon.
I'm sorry but I'm all for freedom of speech, but these juvenile comments like the one above are beginning to bug me, at least when I get perhaps a little bit aggressive in my support for Ronnie, there is something constructive being said. I know you like to put the majority of comments up Dave, but I don't see what purpose comments like that serve. I don't mind people disagreeing in a constructive way, but these off hand childish remarks do nothing for the blog which is a platform for serious snooker discussion.
You do talk a lot of rubbish though Jamie even Dave's had a go at you quite a few times.
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