Last season’s PTC final in Belgium was one of the best matches of the whole season. In an exhibition of flair, skill and entertainment, Judd Trump beat Ronnie O’Sullivan 4-3.

Snooker returns to Antwerp this week for the latest event of the European Tour, the first two of which have been won by Mark Selby and Neil Robertson respectively. As ever in TV tournaments, the cream rises to the top.

Belgian snooker fans will doubtless have high hopes for their young protégé, Luca Brecel, whose run to the Crucible at the end of last season was evidence of his great potential.

There are some tasty early matches, including Matthew Stevens v Graeme Dott, Michael Holt v Steve Davis and, in particular, Shaun Murphy v Ding Junhui.

Belgium is not a new market for snooker but it is one, like many others, which was allowed to lie dormant for too long. The European Open was staged there several times in the early 1990s.

It would be nice to think that in the near future this tournament could return to the schedule. Snooker is bubbling along very nicely in Europe but outside the UK and not including the PTC finals there is only one ranking event, the German Masters, on the continent.

This is a first class tournament but is yet to attract the levels of sponsorship and thus prize money available in China.

But nobody can doubt the public interest in snooker around Europe. Belgium has a strong cue sports tradition and surely anyone who had a ticket for last year’s final will be back this season.

Eurosport coverage starts at 8.30am UK time on Friday.


Richie Segal said...

Hi Dave,

Is Ronnie playing ?

Dave H said...


Janie Watkins said...

It was all going nicely until someone got shot dead at the hotel


Janie Watkins said...

Ronnie has entered PTC 4 at South West Snooker Academy.

He likes Gloucester!

Anonymous said...

He may've entered PTC4, but what are the chances he's going to care enough to play well?

Anonymous said...

Just imagine if everyone bet against him — they'd have to suspend him when the Gambling Commission investigates those suspicious betting patterns!

Anonymous said...

I'm online to the bookie now. £100 to loose in first match ....


kildare cueman said...

Hallett as usual, incorrectly referred to 2 doubles as cross doubles, but when Higgins actually had a cross double, Hallett informed us he was going for a cut back double.

Page, 27 behind with an easy yellow and colours on spots, prompts Hallet to comment, "He might go for the respotted black here".
He pots the yellow and finishes nicely on the green, to which Mike Smith replies, "Good call Mike, hes definitely going for the respotted black".
Oh my God. Will someone please kill me.

Graeme said...

Kildare....absolutely spot on. Hallett constantly refers to every double attempt as a 'cross' double. A cross double occurs when the white ball crosses the face of the object ball. Anything else is simply a 'double'.
Again, we have to suffer the floor camera operator's second guessing which pocket the player at the table is aiming for. We really do not need these cameras. Do we really need to follow the object ball falling into the pocket at the expense of watching the more skillful controlling of the cue ball ?
Sooner there is a red button option to watch the full view table shot the better.

Graeme said...

....I also worry about Mike Smith's commentary.
Convinced he's related to Richard Madeley !

Anonymous said...

message to Eurosport Player team - irritating bug that when a new button appears (in this case for the snooker) you have to log out and log back in again to get the button. Has been case for ages - please fix.

Anonymous said...

I'm sure Dave will have that fixed in no time given his advanced Perl programming skills.

Anonymous said...

To Kildare cueman - I was watching that frame as well, and in fairness to Mike what he was saying did make sense.

As I recall it, Page had initially been trying to lay a snooker which would've enabled him to win, but then decided to try to clear up instead. So I think that's what he meant.

Anonymous said...

why do the ES commentators keep saying "and ronnie will be back in that big 8000 point tournament" when hes already been back and got beat by a "nobody"?

flogging a dead horse.