Steve Davis has not entered the UK Championship, apparently so that he can instead take part in ITV’s I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out Of Here.
This will mean Davis going not to York to pot balls and sit in the BBC studio with Hazel, JP and Hendry but travel to the Australian outback with rats, snakes, grubs and spiders for company, as well as his fellow contestants.
Steve has more than earned the right to do what he likes but it strikes me an as odd decision. I’d be very surprised if he needs the money. The celebrity world has never been one which has appealed to him.
Still, at least he is famous for doing something tangible. Reality shows tend to be self-perpetuating: finding members of the public to appear on them who thus become famous and can appear on more and more.
Therefore, Steve can expect to share a campsite with the denizens of mind-rotting trash like the Only Way Is Essex and other gems of the schedules.
For the uninitiated, I’m A Celebrity takes well known people and humiliates them on television through a series of undignified tasks, such as lying in a coffin full of rats.
It’s exactly what John Logie Baird had in mind when he legged it down the patent office.
It’s been suggested to me by more than one person that Davis likes a challenge, is fascinated by any game and that this represents a high stakes chance to test himself.
Maybe, but the contestants are at the mercy of the edit. There are two main ways to get screen time: shout at and argue with everyone or cry.
A thoughtful, dryly humorous person may not feature so prominently but Steve, while not exactly appealing to the show’s core demographic, could still do very well. He is much funnier than many people realise and is a likeable character.
The last snooker player to appear on the programme was Jimmy White, who finished third. Can Steve go even further?
Davis was once the king of snooker, now he is aiming the become king of the jungle when the programme starts on November 17.
This is an unexpected development in a glorious career but I wish him the best of luck.