The Welsh Open, which starts tomorrow at the Newport Centre, is the third longest running ranking event on the circuit behind the World and UK Championships.

It is always well supported by snooker fans and the local media and has been won by many of the game's leading lights over the years.

It became a ranking event in 1992 having previously been a tournament solely for Welsh players.

Stephen Hendry was the first winner before Ken Doherty claimed the 1993 title and Steve Davis the crown in both 1994 and 1995.

The Welsh Open provided local man Mark Williams with his first ranking event trophy in 1996 before another Hendry triumph in 1997.

Paul Hunter, at just 19, became the event's youngest winner in 1998, after which the Welsh Open moved from Newport to the Cardiff International Arena - one of the best venues snooker has ever been staged at.

Williams beat Hendry 9-8 in the first final there and John Higgins prevailed in a decider over Stephen Lee in 2000.

Doherty won his second Welsh title in 2001 and Hunter his a year later.

Hendry's victory in 2003 was the last at the CIA. Because of cost cutting, the tournament moved to the less than impressive Welsh Institute of Sport in 2004, where Ronnie O'Sullivan came from 8-5 down to beat Davis 9-8 and win the title for the first time.

O'Sullivan edged Hendry 9-8 a year later as the tournament headed back to Newport while Lee was triumphant in 2006, beating Shaun Murphy 9-4.


Anonymous said...

What happens when you build a player up? He lets you down!

I was hoping that Ricky Walden would have a good week in Wales and progress up the rankings. Then again he did lose to Holt who is running along a similar path to Flint's finest, and may have another good tournament.

Thanks, Joe

Dave H said...

And Holty has now lost to Neil Robertson - there really are no easy matches it would seem

Anonymous said...

There is no consistency about any of the young player's coming through.

How can a solid journeyman player, such as Michael Judge, turn over Ryan Day 5-0!

As Joe Perry mentioned after his victory on Monday evening, if you have a good draw and play well, you can win a tournament.

Is it that open....?

Thanks, Joe

Dave H said...

Andrew Higginson seems to be proving that it is - I'm just glad I don't bet on snooker!