Stephen Hendry's 5-0 demolition of Ryan Day passed almost unnoticed in yesterday's excellent second session at the Sanyuan Foods China Open that saw a 147 for Neil Robertson, the exit of world champion John Higgins at the hands of Mark Williams and a quite simply brilliant match between Ding Junhui and Mark Selby.

Hendry is through to his first ranking event quarter-final since last season's Betfred.com World Championship.

His opponent is Mark Allen, a feisty, highly talented Northern Irishman who reached the Crucible semi-finals last season.

Hendry and Allen play the same sort of game, so it will be an open, attacking and hopefully entertaining encounter.

Hendry's problem for the last few years has been consistency. He's played very well in some matches but been unable to keep it going throughout whole tournaments.

Allen can also blow hot and cold and tends to get down on himself when things aren't going well, but he's terrific to watch and will surely win a ranking title sooner rather than later.

Ding very nearly let things slip against Selby when he missed the blue clearing up to win 5-2 but prevailed in a nervy eighth frame to ensure it was a happy 23rd birthday.

When he beat Peter Ebdon 5-0 in the 2005 China Open, a somewhat insensitive Chinese journalist asked the 2002 Crucible champion the following question:

'Mr. Ebdon, how come you win the World Championship?'

His deadpan response was, under the circumstances, creditable. 'I was lucky,' he said.

Of course, the true answer is because Ebdon allied his talent to a never-say-die attitude and ability to play well under pressure.

Even so, with crowd support Ding will fancy his chances again.

Williams impressed, as he has for most of the season, in taking out Higgins and will start favourite against Marco Fu.

Ali Carter has crept through to the quarter-finals without much fuss and faces his fellow Essex man Mark King, a player who is always difficult to beat.

Their match could become quite drawn out. Then again, it might not but I wanted to shoehorn in a reference to 'the long Good Friday' before ending this post.


John McBride said...

I watched with interest the Stephen Hendry v Mark Allen match. Back & forth the match swayed.

I can't help but notice now that the Great one's (Stephen Hendry) misses are down to the exaggerated pause in his cue action, when he's about to strike the Cue ball, which filters into his game from time to time. This immediately effects his tempo & his fluency. Its worth looking at. It might be worth remembering that when playing this game, to do all your thinking before you get down on a shot.

Simple analogy I know, but isn't the idea to try & make this wonderfully difficult game, simple?

Kudos to Mark Allen though, he delivered a quality 70+ break when he needed too in the ninth frame.

Zhang Anda up next for the Great one, where would we be without him?

Anonymous said...

Snooker © The Fine Art Method
A secret is wasted if not shared
Dear Mr Kildare @ 7:05 PM. Hello Dave
I am sorry sir that I must disagree with you on Ronnie O being a Genius. The lad is a fare wee player that sometimes combines entertainment with snooker skill but nothing more.

Albert Einstein (Genius) said Quote! “You don’t really understand something if you can’t explain it to your Grandmother”.
Why doesn’t Ronnie or some other Snooker Guru explain with detail “How it’s done”? A Guru Mr K is a person with explanations of a complex subject.

To Miz Betty Logan @ 4:25 AM please don’t miss lead the many youngsters on Dave’s blog with the silly expressions “Single Ball Potter”.
Mark Williams should really take offence at the slur. As it implies playing a “Successful” shot without a specific address on the cue ball. Mr hey you

Anonymous said...

Snooker © The Fine Art Method
A secret is wasted if not shared
Dear John McBride. Hi Dave
How are you both! Thanks Dave for the posts. Your observation John on the Stephen Hendry cue action is 99% correct. You will find the very words in the “Fine Art” method.

The further fault with the pause on the back swing is: How long to make the pause in length of “Time” and also and how long to make the pause in the “Length” of inches back swing.

The youngsters that copy this cue action often find after the pause, the player needs another address to get started again. The “Fine Art” is there to copy John but not for commercial use or to enhance a reputation. Mr hey you

Anonymous said...

@Mr Hey You

You are showing yourself up to be a complete idiot. Not only is your grammar appalling, but you have no idea of the definition of a genius. You seem to focus on academia and the great equations that Einstein gave us. What has that got to do with describing RoS as a genius? Absolutely nothing.

In modern lexicon a genius is used across far more areas of our lives than merely an IQ measure. Genius can be defined as achievements by a person surpassing excellence. I think most intelligent people will realise that someone who can play snooker with both hands well enough to beat nearly everyone else on the planet can be described as a genius.

You then try and obfuscate things further by implying that RoS is a guru! Where do you get this nonsense from? Look up the definition of a guru and you will see that O'Sullivan is certainly not one.

The sad thing for you of course is that your inane dribblings on this blog show you up to have a below average IQ. Quite ironic when you have quoted Einstein, don't you think?

CHRISK5 said...

It clarifies how far snooker standards have risen in 30 years - when a 147 maximum now only gets one-line or a paragraph devoted to it.

Compared to the famous originals conducted by Davis (1982 Classic) -
Thorburn (1983 Worlds) & Kirk Stevens (1984 Masters)

I agree that prize money shouldn't be dished out literally for every maximum. (as so many get made in practice sessions anyway)

Considering still only 70 in total have been made in professional competition - It's very much a monumental personal acheivement nonetheless.

And that's coming from someone whose Highest Break is a mere 113!!

Anonymous said...

Uncle Barry is certainly devaluing the maximum with his recent announcement! I bet that when O'Sullivan, to name just one, gets to 140, he'll walk away from potting the black cos it's just not worth the effort. Sponsors will be happy - won't they???

Anonymous said...

Does any one care what your 'mere 113!!' highest break is Chris thought not!!

John McBride said...

I just think Mr Hey You is Mr Hey You. References what he believes is right. Though I don't think records reflect Einstein ever taking an IQ test? I may be mistaken though.

Good point ChrisK5, if you don't mind me saying so. I remember the maximums you refer too well. I remember getting stopped in the street the Saturday evening Cliff Thorburn hit his 147 against Terry Griffiths. I also remember being in Ron Gross Snooker Centre in Neasden when Kirk Stevens hit his. Which was also on a Saturday come to think of it.

Moving on, isn't it lovely to see Mark Williams have his presence around the table back. Boy is he one tough cookie to beat. A Mark Williams v Ding final me thinks & I can't see anyone beating Mark Williams when in this frame of mind.

Kildare Cueman said...

I see some tournaments have no 147 prize, and that under the new regime, will be abolished completely, barring the world championship.

This is a pity really, as a max is always good to see, and having a cash incentive encourages players to go for them when the opportunity arises.

I understand the decision to do away with the bonus stems from insurance costs.

Why not do away with the high break prize and use the cash saved to roll over for a maximum jackpot.

This would not cost WS anything and still ensure that players go for a 147, not to mention the fact that nobody cares who wins the high break prize.

CHRISK5 said...

Anon @ 3.50pm - Considering your post only came up 50 minutes & only 2 comments after mine - I would say that is YOUR pressumed assumption!! LMAO

Kildare Cueman - Good point - The highest break prices should be scrapped & transferred to 147 maximums only.

John McBride - Nice to hear your stories of the Thorburn & K.Stevens maxes & what a buzz it must have created at the time.

Unfortunately - I was unaware of them & probably at nursery! lmao - Though, I did growup into a snooker following family who got me upto speed quite quickly!

Anonymous said...

Snooker © The Fine Art Method
A secret is wasted if not shared
Dear Mr 2:30PM Hello Dave
How are you both! Gee wiz Dave lad you do attract some real clever and educated punters to your blog, or should I have said real Gentleman with a capital G.

I have no excuse Dave for being an idiot or a genius that’s capable of doing “Things” with both hands, though I have tried it with both hands often when younger.

All my “Big Words” Dave are in snooker; like Deep screw, Stun run through and that one hundred year old word “Followthrough” that snooker coaches replaced only five years ago.

No hard feelings Mr X. you must be feeling better now. I wonder Sir if you are aware that it is impossible to make a ball “Roll” with either hand. Mr hey you

Ruthie said...

In the first year of the Northern Ireland Trophy I remember Ronnie O'Sullivan potting a red and a black, asking the referee if there was a prize for a maximum break and on being told "no" stopped the attempt right there. Isn't it likely that players won't attempt the max unless the frame is already won if there's no other incentive?

CHRISK5 said...

Being as anon had a go at me for my highest break what's everyone else's highest?

Anonymous said...


CHRISK5 said...

Anon @ 9.55pm - Dave H & others are intelligent enough to know when there is a primitive imposter about.

Because the genuine ChrisK5 NEVER sends in basic one liners!!!

Anon @ 9.55pm - You are sad & pathetic & lack self-esteem & if you think you are going to spoil a knowledegable blog - THINK AGAIN!

Back to the China Open - Tough to call with all semi-finalists evenly matched - Should be intriguing to say the least.

CHRISK5 said...

Anon 9.55pm & 10.08pm - The same person with nothing better to do than attempt to dumb down this great & informative blog.

Probably the same guy who said he was sick of seeing my name on the comments page! lmao

If someone made a 148 - They would go into much greater detail about it than just Anon talking to himself in 2 'seperate' messages!

It was SOOO obvious - I am surprised you bothered trying - I am sure other contributors will agree.

It's a great time to be involved with Snooker debate - as we build up to the World Championships & May 5th vote.

That - We can all agree on.

Anonymous said...

22 :(

Anonymous said...

CHRISK5 - I read this blog too and have never responded to you before now but I read comments when I'm bored. A google search on your name reveals a serial commenter on many sites including youtube containing misinformed gems such as this:


Anonymous said...

Snooker © The Fine Art Method
A secret is wasted if not shared
Dear Dave
How are you! Thanks for the posts lad. About big breaks Dave. I remember vividly Dave breaking into double figures. A red blue red blue within a mere six weeks at the game.

I new Dave then that I was a natural, and within six months almost made my first twenty. The nineteen sadly stayed for a few years.

Enough boasting Dave! Your offer to relay messages to Barry should keep your blog very busy. Is there a limit Dave on the number of questions?
Can we put the same E mail through the blog for all to see and comment on? Mr hey you

Anonymous said...

Dave, love your work but hate to say it every time Hendry gets a sniff of a quarter final at a tournament, yourself and other members of the snooker media start building him up saying this could be the one, he's back playing well again, and all that, then he ends up getting cuffed!

Anonymous said...

if i was david and got any emails of off mr a u, id imagine it would go straight to JUNK.

Anonymous said...

Do not puzzle over it!