World Snooker have hit back at the 'mystery' player who criticised them in the News of the World with a statement on their website.

In this, they defend their actions and point to the various positives since Sir Rodney Walker was made chairman in 2004.

Personally, I wouldn't take issue with any of them and it's actually refreshing that the governing body should defend its position rather than say nothing at all, which has all too often been their stance in the past.

However, to talk about 'discussions' for events in the Middle East and Europe is not a good idea because we've been hearing this for, literally, four or five years and such 'discussions' have not yet borne any fruit at all in terms of actual tournaments.

World Snooker have previously announced events in Brazil, Thailand, Macao and Holland that have simply never taken place.

I think players have every right to complain in public if they are unhappy with how their sport is being run but would add that they should do so on the record rather than anonymously.

However, the notion, as suggested in the last paragraph of the statement, that players should only say nice things about the governing body - regardless of what they feel about them - is, frankly, ludicrous.


Shaun said...

I've thought for a very long time now that snooker's future lies in Asia. Yes, there are more tournaments being played in China now, and players beginning to emerge in the footsteps of James Wattana, Marco Fu and Ding Junhui - but Dave, do you honestly believe anyone at the WSA has the vision to actually relocate the tour out there? That's what I believe is necessary: you could still have the World Championship, Masters and UK Championship based here, but look to play a majority of events out there.

This would attract far more players from that part of the world, many of whom must be put off by having to base themselves in another continent; and would surely have a much better prospect of attracting new sponsors and funding to the sport than the status quo. Obviously, tobacco advertising would be a big reason for this, which is depressing, but also a question of commercial realpolitik. I simply don't believe professional snooker is tapping the Far Eastern market anywhere near as much as it should, and may well need to if it's to keep developing over the next 10-20 years.

Eric (Snookerblog) said...

Don’t forget the event in Germany which was announced and never happened. Such things annoy fans. I’d like to see a main tour with far more events, fifteen probably, staged worldwide. Like the formula 1 there would be half of the tournaments in europe and the other half in asia.

Snooker is not in a crisis, it’s in some kind of numbness, floating around not moving. But there are some new tournaments which will bring back life into the sport - At least I hope so.

Anonymous said...

I must agree with your recent comments on this Dave. Too many established events- World team championships, World Doubles, British Open, Scottish and Irish Masters all disappeared off the scene. Apparently this was due to lack of tobacco sponsorship and tv coverage disappearing on itv and sky. It seems sad to me that with tournaments having gone WSA is announcing profits for the year. Surely any profits should disappear immediately into an additional tournament. Instead of complaining I am amazed the leading players dont salvage their financial future by taking more control of where their money is going by using their votes. John H

Dana said...

I think Europe is a good market. There is a big interest in snooker and nearly no one event. In fact there is just Paul Hunter Classic in Germany and that's all. Would be great to have more tournaments around the Europe.

Dave H said...

Shaun - I think World Snooker recognise the value of China and the Far East in general but the problem is simple: they have to look after the whole membership (ie all the players) so have to stage ranking events

There could be, in theory, 10-15 invitation events around the world but World Snooker would then get it in the neck from the lower ranked players

However, as I said the other day, independent promoters are free to stage such events if they want

Anonymous said...

Hi there

Just to say, I love your blog and have been reading it religiously for a few years and take no end of enjoyment out of what you do. Thank you! It's refreshing to get an unbiased opinion about what's going on and to not have to rely on worldsnooker, I couldn't agree with you more about world snooker's statement, especially the last sentence, I couldn't belive when I read it, I do however understand why the player has remained annonymous, given the recent treatment of Geame Dott.

Thanks again, a HUGE fan.

PS Stephen Hendry for the world title!

Dave H said...

Many thanks for those kind comments