World Snooker have unveiled online betting firm 12bet.com as the new title sponsor of the World Open.

The one-year deal will see the tournament, which runs from September 18 to 26 at the SECC in Glasgow, named the 12bet.com World Open.

The world ranking event will feature star players including Ronnie O'Sullivan, Stephen Hendry, Steve Davis, Jimmy White, Mark Selby and World Champion Neil Robertson. It carries a total prize fund of £502,500 with the winner to receive £100,000.

World Snooker Chairman Barry Hearn said: "This is a fantastic piece of news for our sport at just the right time. We've made giant strides forward in the commercial success of snooker in recent months and this keeps the momentum going. The new World Open, with a new format, new venue, and new arena, is one of the cornerstones of the new era so we're thrilled to have a title sponsor on board.

"With over 50 hours coverage on BBC and a combined global audience reaching over 100 million, the tournament will give vast exposure to 12bet.com's brand so it's easy to see their motivation behind getting involved with snooker. We hope they enjoy what should be a great tournament and look forward to building a strong relationship with them."

Rory Anderson, CEO for Europe at 12bet, said: "We are delighted to add the World Open to our fast growing sponsorship portfolio. This event will give our brand fantastic exposure not only in the UK but throughout Europe. We are glad to be on board and are excited about the new best of five format."

Masters champion Selby added: "It's always exciting to have a new sponsor and it seems a long time now since we had a ranking event without one. I am sure the World Open will be a great tournament. All the players are looking forward to it, myself included. We'll all be trying to win it and play our best snooker."

The nine-day tournament will feature quick-fire best-of-five frame matches and a random draw for each round.


Anonymous said...

Hi Dave,

It seems that what Embassy/B&H did for snooker in the 80s and 90s, gambling is going to do it for the sport in the future.

In a week in which sports are coming under scrutiny for this very subject, i wonder whether this leaves a bitter taste for followers of the game.

It's all about the money and the sport and the appeal to new fans...Right? Hmm...

BTW - IF Burnett wins Shanghai, and IF charges are brought against him - whenever that is - wouldn't it be a shame to see the title taken away.

Thanks, Joe

kildare cueman said...

Gambling is an important part of snooker and always has been.
It enables the casual fan to become engrossed in a match, no matter how scrappy or tedious the standard is, for the right reason, that is, to determine a result.

It follows that, in a world where the internet has allowed gaming companies to become truly global, snooker is now an attractive proposition for those companies' vast sponsorship budgets.

I see nothing wrong in this, its' perfectly legal and I tire of the holier than thou brigade who sip tea and turn their noses up at 888, betfred and others.

The match fixing situation is a problem that every sport has to deal with.

How many boxers go down? How many putts are missed? Every day, horses are "held up" until the owners decide the time is right for them to try.

Rmember Grobbellar? The more recent shenanigans from the Pakistani cricket team?

It happens. It has always happened, and it will continue to happen.

Snooker is on the crest of a wave right now, and it matters little to me if there are 25 tournaments sponsored by bookies.

Gambling is the future. Lets get used to it.

Anonymous said...

Burnett potted some good blacks off the spot today (despite being under pressure).


Hi David. Great News, In my view, that Barry Hearn Has got us snooker people a sponsor for The World Open. When Hearn Took over as chairman of World snooker, most of the rest of the snooker eshablishment, myself included, gave him their backing. I am strongly in favour of the view, that thisis yet more proof, if indeed further proof were needed, that he is the man for the job. I well remember that he had only taken over from Sir Rodney Walker, as chairman, a matter of weeks prior to the 2010 Wembley Masters, and ofcourse, he was able to secure a deal with Pokerstars. Com to sponsor that event.
More Events,More Sponsors. This is what the game needed prior to hearn taking over chairmanship. Now he has done so, we have achieved it.
Long may this continue and Barry Hearn has the full supportof Myself, and I am sure the majority of the rest of the snooker public, if not, the entire snooker public, to carry this on. Well done Barry Hearn. Thankyou and please keep up the good work Sir.


Hi David. If I may, I would, in relation to The 12bet.com world Open of 2010, like to put this question to you. This event was formerly known as The Grand Prix, prior to 12bet.com taking over it's sponsorship. The Current World Champion, Neil Robertson, was the last to win the event when it was known as The Grand Prix, in October 2009. Now that the event is under a different name and sponsor, as The 12bet.com world open, Is Robertson to be regarded as the defending champion for this event, or, due to the circumstances I have illuded to, is it to be regarded as a seperate event, with no defending title holder this year? I asked the same question to our friend and collegue, Joe Johnson, who is my snooker coach, yesterday, He wasn't sure.
Many Thanks, JAMIE!

Dave H said...

It's regarded as a new tournament so there's no defending champion


Thanks David. I was busy before the start of the event so that is why it has taken me so long to thank you in reply. Cheers mate!