World Snooker Championship Qualifiers: Who Will Reach the Crucible?
April 14, 2014 15:59
After 6 full days of intense and sometimes brilliant, sometimes dogged and determined competition we are down to the final qualifying round for this years Dafabet World Snooker Championships which start on Saturday 19th April.
There are 16 matches across Tuesday and Wednesday this week that will determine the 16 players that will join the seeded names at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield.
In the last week of action at Pond’s Forge some big names have already fallen, including 6 times World Champion Steve Davis who now also finds himself relegated from the main tour for next season, he does have the option of trying to gain a tour card again through the Q School but we have not heard it confirmed yet that he will try and do so.
Another crowd favourite, Jimmy White also bowed out in Round 2 when he lost 10-4 to Ian Burns.
Who Will Reach the Crucible?
Interestingly there are five players that have reached final qualifying round all the way from Round 1.
Kyren Wilson who will play former champion Graeme Dott; Michael Wasley who plays Robert Milkins; Robin Hull who will play a no doubt slow paced encounter against Peter Ebdon; Stuart Carrington who has beaten Jack Lisowshi and Nigel Bond en route to this round and now plays Ryan Day and finally Chinese player Li Yan who faces compatriat Xiao Guodong for a place at the Crucible.
These players have over the last week gained a lot of knowledge about the playing conditions at Pond’s Forge and will have no fear knowing that one more win sends them to the Crucible.
For the seeded players it is always tricky to come into a venue fresh but they will have been putting in the practice and being the seeded player should in theory mean they will reach the Crucible if they play reasonably well, but as we have seen throughout Crucible history there is always one or two surprises.
Round 4 Matches (Players in Italics are the Billiards Boutique Prediction)
- Ken Doherty v Dechawat Poomjaeng
- David Gilbert v Jimmy Robertson
- Graeme Dott v Kyren Wilson
- Dominic Dale v Andrew Higginson
- Mark Williams v Alan McManus
- Michael Holt v Jamie Jones
- Mark King v Jamie Cope
- Matthew Stevens v Tom Ford
- Robert Milkins v Michael Wasley
- Fergal O’Brien v Robbie Williams
- Peter Ebdon v Robin Hull
- Liang Wenbo v Martin Gould
- Ben Woolaston v Jamie Burnett
- Ryan Day v Stuart Carrington
- Michael White v Matthew Selt
- Xiao Guodong v Li Yan
A few interesting matches and Mark Williams versus a resurgent Alan McManus looks good but I would expect Williams to be more than capable of getting to the Crucible. I have opted for Tom Ford over Matthew Stevens as I simply think he is due a good tournament and it would be great to see him at the Crucible. Wenbo v Gould will be tight and I have Gould just edging that one, both have had good runs at the Crucible in the past.
If you have any thoughts on the predictions then let us know in the comments.