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21 Apr 15 21:43
Date Joined: 14 Sep 04
| Topic/replies: 16,762 | Blogger: Pokermonster's blog
Quite a few seemingly good shots have rattled.
Pause Switch to Standard View These pockets are definitely playing...
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Report trebor April 25, 2015 2:34 PM BST

I don't know if Steve Davis's brother Keith has anything to do with the world championship tables, he always used to do the tables in Barry Hearn's clubs.
Report winsamsoon April 25, 2015 3:13 PM BST
"These pockets are definitely playing tight THIS YEAR"

I'd assumed from the title of the thread that we were comparing the tables at Sheffield this year to other years, not to club tables. Now I'm sure if we were to go on YouTube we could easily find shots to 'prove' this either way, but my view is that there is no way they are tighter than the last few years.
Report Angel Gabrial April 25, 2015 3:30 PM BST
So do you subscribe to the bucket comparison winsamsoon such as Gentlemanjohn?

Which is why i was talking him through the club table to match table difference.
Report Angel Gabrial April 25, 2015 3:32 PM BST
This was John`s post earlier on in the thread.

The thing was the bucket talk had apread from the forum last year and infiltrated the bbc commentary booths, even Steve Davis was laughing at one stage at how receptive the pockets were. I guess they had to do somethign or continue to be a laughing stock.

This is why people should know the difference between club and match tables.
Report Angel Gabrial April 25, 2015 3:32 PM BST
This was John`s post earlier on in the thread.

The thing was the bucket talk had apread from the forum last year and infiltrated the bbc commentary booths, even Steve Davis was laughing at one stage at how receptive the pockets were. I guess they had to do somethign or continue to be a laughing stock.

This is why people should know the difference between club and match tables.
Report Angel Gabrial April 25, 2015 3:32 PM BST
This was John`s post earlier on in the thread.

The thing was the bucket talk had apread from the forum last year and infiltrated the bbc commentary booths, even Steve Davis was laughing at one stage at how receptive the pockets were. I guess they had to do somethign or continue to be a laughing stock.

This is why people should know the difference between club and match tables.
Report winsamsoon April 25, 2015 3:45 PM BST
Not buckets,  I just don't think they're as tight as other years.
I could be wrong, and it doesn't matter to me or you if I am, they're only our opinions, but I've always associated the World Champs with tight pockets. Maybe it's just been commentaters down the years constantly telling us this that has stuck it in my head.
However, from what I've seen so far this year (close on 50% I'd say) balls hit at medium pace this year are dropping that wouldn't in the last few years.
Report gentlemanjohn April 25, 2015 3:49 PM BST
Angel, i dont think you appreciate that the opinions, for what they are worth, i offer here are not that far off your own. My position, as your quote illustrates, is that last year i thought the pockets were ridiculously generous and it was the first year it had really stood out for me. So i believe, without any clear evidence it must be said, that they had to be tightened up this time around.

The big talking poitn last year was pots along the top cushions being out by several inches and still dropping in. Have had none of that this year from anythign I have seen.
Report winsamsoon April 25, 2015 3:55 PM BST
I'll take ye at yere word that they were buckets last year,  I was confined to highlights for the main.
Report trebor April 25, 2015 3:56 PM BST
yeh I would agree with that, there have been pots that where "leaving" the cushion and still dropped in the past, not seen that happen this year.
Report gentlemanjohn April 25, 2015 3:59 PM BST
The shot i'm talking about as regards Davis was an along the rail shot. I can't quite remember if it was ronnie, but there was a shot where Ronnie was halfway back to his seat, only to see the ball drop and you could just see the shock in his face, before he started smirking. At that point i knew it was obvious last year that there had to be something up with the tables.
Report Angel Gabrial April 25, 2015 4:17 PM BST
John i realise that quote of yours i posted for winsamsoon is a touch out of kilter with what you believe and a tad tongue in cheek when you mention buckets.

We could spend a long time watching old footage over the decades to garner a comparison of pocket tightness but was this discussion happening in smokey clubs back in the 70`s,80`s,90`s.. ? because

I didn`t have to search for long to find a dubious shot from the World Championship match from 1990 between Steve James and Alex. HOW DID THIS BALL GONE IN!!!!!!!! 1990 BIG POCKETS EXCLUSIVE!!!!!


I could spend 24 hours on you tube and find 100`s of examples from other decades, but i won`t.
Report gentlemanjohn April 25, 2015 4:34 PM BST
Have to say fair play Angel, you are putting in a monumental shift on this one! You are also picking a non-existent fight. If you read what i said, i made no reference to any other year than last year. It wasn't a topic that exercised me previously, but it stood out like a sore thumb last year. So maybe it was an aberration for whatever reason.

That said, JUST HOW TIGHT WERE THOSE POCKETS BACK THEN how on earth does that black stay out at 46.55??? Shocked
Report Angel Gabrial April 25, 2015 4:51 PM BST
We could spend the rest of our lives debating this John, last years pockets and Carol Vordermans rump.

The bottom line is though that these tables play tough. Some balls will drop but don`t ignore the balls that stay out.
Report Pokermonster April 25, 2015 4:57 PM BST
Moondan wrote:

Also the great problem with irrefutable facts and stats are they are usually only what fools tend to want to see in them.  And I mean no reflection on your posts trebor. Just the I wanna be an expert types.

This is obviously a pop at me, given that it paraphrases a compliment I paid Trebor earlier in this thread.  I shouldn't really lower myself to respond to such an insult, but everyone has their faults and pride is obviously mine.  Firstly, after leaving school with no qualifications at the age of sixteeen to pursue a pool-playing career, I had to work hard to earn a physics degree later in life from the OU.  Not the most prestigious of universities granted, but I certainly ain't no fool and more than qualified to comment on the technicalities of snooker.  Compared to you, sir, I'm like a walking, talking Stephen Hawking.

Secondly, after working as a coaching columnist for many years at Pot Black magazine I was headhunted by Snooker & Pool magazine to be their lead journalist in the Netherlands.  Whilst there, I was also employed by the World Billiard News based in St Johann, Germany, as one of their three main columnists alongside such luminaries as Doug Gordon and Mike Massey. I was also a cuemaker for many years and, as I am bilingual, was engaged as director and scriptwriter of seven pool and snooker coaching videos for a company based in Rennes, France.

In short, Moondan, I am not a 'wannabe expert type' as you so contemptuously put it, I am a genuine expert and have the credentials to prove it.  Where are yours?

Report Senyatta April 25, 2015 7:33 PM BST
i just hate seeing balls go in off the outside jaw its terrible. its been like this for the last 10 plus years. doesnt make it any easier to observe. there were another few shots in the ding match where he even was bemused a terrible red had gone in when it was a country mile wide. balls should only drop off the inside jaw imo
Report moondan April 26, 2015 9:05 AM BST
The row about pockets has been going on for a few decades but the most notable happened around 1987/88 when 2 young players complained to Alex Higgins about the way the middle pockets had been opened up.
Alex took their concern to the powers that be but nothing was done because the changes helped breakbuilding and enhanced the chances of the century break.

As it happened those changes were exploited fully by the greatest champion snooker has produced and he changed the way the game snooker was to be played in the years since,
One of those players was Stephen Hendry.
Incidentally Alex was in full agreement with Stephen as he could see that these changes would in some ways belittle the achievement of players that had previously played the game on more difficult conditions.

I have no doubt that yesterday balls were potting that would have had no chance prior to the thinner cloth around the cushions.
Perhaps conspiracy is the wrong word mainly because one man wants has the power to instruct how the table is set up.
That man feels the game is a better spectacle with bigger breaks the norm and the regulation book torn up
For me snooker has lost what little credibility it had and to me that is senseless and unforgivable, but the kids don't seem to mind.
Report moondan April 26, 2015 9:22 AM BST

You have been around the different forums for years, memorably mainly for your flag and the way you address others as "Sir" rather than the content of your comment.

I have no qualifications as such other than my understanding of the game not to mention my love.

Great snooker players have an understanding in their heads and great love and tenderness in their hands and while you are evidently better educated than me, I think its very questionable whether you have much to say on what is important and that for me is very sad because your education and skill with the written word could be put to uses that rally matter in the game.
Report gobelins April 26, 2015 12:09 PM BST
M.Fu has just potted a red into the left middle that had no right to drop. It clearly jawed. JV and Ken said it was only the pace that allowed it to drop, and any harder it would have stayed out - as they do every single time this happens. The tables are playing far easier than they were before Thursday.
Report moondan April 26, 2015 12:30 PM BST

Your timing is about right.

World snooker were already making plans at the turn of the century to invest heavily in ways to give players the best conditions to open the game up to more players as 2 decades of 2 men dominating the game was they felt boring the public and they already had knowledge that it was not going to be allowed to use baccy money to fund the games tournaments.
In 2002 the road ahead was set and the table was the first of what I will say are the easy pockets.
Hendry was still somewhere near his best and he still holds the record for centuries in a world championship 16 set that year.players of real depth and class
since that time alterations  to cloth, pockets, has been on going and while I know the world is full of educated idiots it really is disappointing that many think all these changes have had no effect and they in their ignorance can claim this or that player is inferior to todays player.

Anyway there are no rose tinted glasses adorned here and its a great shame that the standards of the nineties which produced many players of real depth and class has been so disgracefully abandoned.
Report moondan April 26, 2015 12:36 PM BST
Gobelins, Don't be too harsh on the commentators they have strict instructions on how the game should be sold to the public and they need the work.

What they say and what they think is not the same.
Report moondan April 26, 2015 12:42 PM BST
Senyatta, sorry if my comment makes little sense, the bit about players of real depth and class has somehow been shortened.
Report Pokermonster April 26, 2015 1:35 PM BST

I love snooker as much as the next man, I really do.  One does not spend their entire working life in the game otherwise.  The trouble with you, sir, is that you have taken your obvious dislike of Barry Hearn and tried to shoehorn it into just about every damned conversation started on the forum whether it warrants it or not.  This has naturally become tiresome and, aligned to the fact you have a propensity for snide insults when anyone else has the temerity to challenge such views, you should not be surprised when a certain level of umbrage is forthcoming.
Report peckerdunne April 26, 2015 5:32 PM BST
Are they letting women into snooker clubs these days, well feck me......Laugh
Report moondan April 27, 2015 11:19 AM BST
I have no problem whatsoever in being challenged about any of my views, my main concern is the actual health of the game.
The fact that ex players who were not of poor quality make so many poor judgements that they would never have made on the table is something that they should be held to account for.

Only yesterday ,  I think it was the second frame into the O'sullivan match when Ronnie was extremely lucky to miss the middle bag in a safety exchange only for the white to overrun its intended destination of tight on the baulk cushion and ran up plumb behind the green.
We know that all balls which end up tight behind a baulk colour are not great shots just lucky.
Parrot is probably the worst offender in turning every average O'Sullivan shot into a work of art quite beyond the rest.
Fantastic shot, touch of side he explained as if it was intended.
I tend to stand up for the dignity and skill of all players and try to educate fans as to why changing conditions have allowed players to exploit the table better.
My view is that the 2 worst offenders who have let the game down so badly is Parrot and Davis who really would not have been out of place explaining to a pre school class and are certainly a contributing factor in the mass exodus of fans from snooker.

The pub I use has a strong pool and snooker following and my views are the common view and certainly everyone of them has a mind of their own with views I respect.

I am a big Ronnie fan that has always been saddened by his behaviour and the way the snooker establishment has cowtowed to his every whim.
For me a hardened snooker fan,    titles can only be won on the table and not by flawed opinion and while I have every respect for Davis and Parrot the players it is zilch for their gross childish observation.

How past players have been insulted is a stain on the game itself.

I offer you no hope of me being quiet, and of course you do not have to agree or even read.

I would also remind you that when a thread is about posted about conditions its a given I will comment.

My university is and has been the table since 71 in both pool and snooker and many many thousands of hours in thousands of matches with a few quid involved has educated me in a way no book ever could.
However life is too short so let the diference of opinion exist without bad feeling.
Report moondan April 27, 2015 11:23 AM BST

glad to see you are still stirringGrin  who is your money on.?
Report jed.davison April 27, 2015 11:34 AM BST
Always fascinates me on his forum how people who clearly love the game can have such wildly differing views about almost every aspect of it.

FWIW moondan, you could do with winding your neck in , same old moans all the time, and attacking poker monster is just not on. He's a judge and a gentleman.
Report Angel Gabrial April 27, 2015 11:36 AM BST
Moondan thinks he understands ball control more than Parrot now!Laugh
Report jed.davison April 27, 2015 11:40 AM BST
He probably does to be fair, Parrott is a total ice-cream.
Report gentlemanjohn April 27, 2015 11:48 AM BST
Getting fed up with Parrot and his imaginary kicks all the time. The cue ball actually jumps EVERY time it hits an object ball, it's elementary physics!

That shot Moondan mentions of Ronnie's, the snooker behind the green, if it did graze the middle knuckle, then I guess it was fortunate, but i remember a discussion like this before, and i have observed Ronnie going for that shot quite a bit since, although most players will aim for the cushion. But i do think Ronnie will play it if he sees the opportunity and be successful quite a lot of the time.
Report moondan April 27, 2015 11:57 AM BST
Jed, you have your moments as wellLaugh

So you think that players are aiming to hit the baulk cushion and then rest on a baulk colourShocked
After all my lessons you have learned nothingCryCryCryCryCryCryCryCryCryCryCryCry
Report jed.davison April 27, 2015 11:59 AM BST
More than a few Laugh
Report Angel Gabrial April 27, 2015 12:01 PM BST
Yes we had this debate didn`t we John and Ronnie plays it the same way in his masterclass.
I think Ronnie understands the angles more than Moondan gives him credit for.
The way moondan carry`s on anyone would think that Ronnie is always playing for the baulk cushion like they did in the 70`s.
Report Angel Gabrial April 27, 2015 12:03 PM BST
Moondan, i could give you lessons if you like free of charge just for the craicGrin
Report moondan April 27, 2015 12:13 PM BST

I agree he has at times but in the world championships its doubtful and I did detect a reaction from him when it grazed the knuckle, he did think he had made a mistake.
Ronnie for me is the best safety player I have seen and he above all others knows that a ball stuck to the baulk is the least controllable of all.

How do you think Trump is going?  As you know I am on Ding but certainly I am very afraid of Trump but still I have my doubts.
The quarters will tell us so much more.
Haven't seen much of Robbo but do hope he does a little less thinking and if he does that he could crush them all.
Report moondan April 27, 2015 12:15 PM BST
Angel if we did you would think you were in heavenLaughLaughLaugh
Report Angel Gabrial April 27, 2015 12:19 PM BST
Anyone else notice how many times Trump is coming off the baulk cushion and nestling behind a baulk colour?

Look out for this shot Moondan, he has been watching the Ronnie masterclass.
Report gentlemanjohn April 27, 2015 12:29 PM BST
I have a vague memory of the topic and just watched out in a few ronnie matches to see if it stood up, and definitely if he sees the angle is there and the risk reward balance is favourable, i think he will go for it on occasion. Judd i'm not sure about.

Ding was a canny outright bet Moondan. Did your chinese contacts tip you off that the triads were letting him off the leash for the world champs? Seriously, though, good pick. I thought he'd no chance.

Robertson is still a bit annoying, fidgeting around the table, but not as bad as before i think. Looks in terrific shape to my uninformed eye at least.
Report moondan April 27, 2015 12:30 PM BST
Angel, for somebody who lives in gods house you can be very economical with the truth, perhaps a weekend in Devil his house will be a stark warning to you.Grin
Report Angel Gabrial April 27, 2015 12:36 PM BST
Ding still has no chance unfortunately for Moondan.
Report gentlemanjohn April 27, 2015 12:50 PM BST
Totally agree. Robbo takes him apart in the final.
Report moondan April 27, 2015 12:51 PM BST

I took the 17.5 at the start because I though he was the best value, then he drifted to 24.5 so I took that but he has drifted to as much as 30s in some matches.

I do have grave doubts about him because in my 50 years of gambling, 40 odd of them on snooker I have witnessed him miss some incredible shots that are extremely difficult to understand and frame betting, match betting, and all sorts of happenings in frames are hugely backed in these eastern countries especially china.
I am talking of vast sums that make the uk betting market look small change, one match can produce multi markets and multi millions and it is not regulated or accountable and when you think that to accuse the chinese could have diplomatic repercussions it really is a tin of worms.
Our Bookmakers are very careful with a capital C in taking any bets from other than known origins.
Biggest gamblers in the world are chinese.
Report moondan April 27, 2015 12:55 PM BST
Providing Robbo does not overdo the grey matter then I would agree and arse will be coveredGrin
Report gentlemanjohn April 27, 2015 1:01 PM BST
I do agree about the far eastern gambling concerns moondan, i dont know how they relate to Ding, if at all, but i can understand why concerns would be raised. Some of the sums bet on those IPL cricket games are obsence, think i saw one the other day with 80 million matched or something like that, its crazy stuff when you consider the sums that are also going into illegal markets. The corruptino simply must be endemic.

Got to think something went on with wattana all those years back, what a talented guy he was, but never came close to realising his potential.
Report moondan April 27, 2015 1:12 PM BST
Agree about James but it has to be remembered it was a tough school then and some extremely powerful cue arms the norm.

I am glad he will always be remembered for being one of the 5 players that Hendry had to beat to win the historic seventh and that I have no doubt be ever equaled let alone beat.

Tragic about his father but a clue to how some parts of the world  still live and if the right people order something then it is carried out and never questioned.
Report Pokermonster April 27, 2015 6:54 PM BST
Fair enough, Moondan.  Let's forget about it with no hard fellings then, sir.  Straying off topic, here's a sreen-grab of Ronnie whacking his cue on the side rail yesterday.  How it didn't snap in two is beyond me, ash isn't normally that flexible.

Report Senyatta April 27, 2015 7:40 PM BST
great pic. didnt even think at the time that he hit it that hard. another bizarre interview after his win. not sure if id want to have my money on him but wouldnt like to back against either
Report ccd April 27, 2015 7:46 PM BST
Nice shot.
Report peckerdunne April 27, 2015 7:50 PM BST
Hurls,hurleys, irish game, are made of ash predominantly due to the spring.
Report axxeman April 27, 2015 9:37 PM BST
I think there is a very valid point to be made regarding pocket tightness and that is not necessarily the distance between the jaws or, indeed, the radius of the cushions.  It is the slates...

Years ago, the old Riley tables used to have slates which were chamfered at the edge of the drop.  This curvature allowed the balls to drop far more readily if they rattled.  Some time after that, BCE brought out tables with a sharp edge on the drop, and the difference was amazing.  They played much much tighter.

I would imagine that the slates on these tables are much more akin to the BCE tables of the 80s.
Report moondan April 28, 2015 9:51 AM BST

Not sure about that.

I think what is certain is the huge amount of money spent on so called improvement to the tables was not spent to make the game more difficult.
Secondly and more importantly, the thicker cloth era was not spoiled by kicks and such that has without doubts cost players championships.
Players were asked in the early 90s to vote on whether to eradicate the kick and return to the heavier cloth but overwhelmingly chose to stay with the faster conditions that were essential for the bigger breaks and flashier snooker and risk the kick.
Since that time many changes have been made to the cloth in search of a cure, also the weight of ball and its makeup.
The application of a thinner cloth around the cushions and pockets has enhanced the chances of a ball potting and when you think that a finger mark is often accused of changing a balls path its easy to see why these much stronger alterations have had such an impact and have in effect extended the careers of many players for several reasons which I will not bore you withGrin

I am sure many of you will be glad to hear this is my last word on the subject at least until the uk championships so I hope you all enjoy what should be some great matches but please do not think that the game is now overrun with Hendrys and O'Sullivan through natural improvement, those guys were playing this standard 0ver 2 decades ago on much tougher conditions.
In the main improvement in the game has been conditions led Hendry and O'Sullivan were just freaks.
Interesting to see if Robertson can reach their average standard, he has a way to go but a better chance than Trump I think. But it is true to say they are the only 2.Plain

Report Angel Gabrial April 28, 2015 10:14 AM BST

You should have stopped after you typed Not sure about that.Laugh
Report trebor April 28, 2015 11:35 AM BST
I am sure it must be me misreading it , but Moodan are you saying that the cloth around the pocket is thinner than the rest of the cloth?
Report peckerdunne April 28, 2015 12:57 PM BST
Hi Moon, i hope you are well old chap..

However in the words of Johnny Logan Laugh

'Whats another year'

You have been Donged again Laugh 

He will never ever do it, how many times have i told you, man.Laugh

I have the ginger fella at some fancy prices..

I dont fancy the rest(because of a weakness) other than Ronnie off course.

I see Stephen Hendry has 'STATED' he cant remember seeing so many balls jiggle and then GO IN, CONTRARY TO poplar beliefs on here, not mine as you will know.

As regard the cloth, a little consideration would allow anyone to realise the thinner end of the wedge, shall we say.

laters friend
Report jed.davison April 28, 2015 2:29 PM BST
Pretty simple, pockets were fairly tight early on, then they reclothed the tables and they changed to a bit more generous. Maybe moon an is right hat this is some evil Blofeldian conspiracy. Or maybe shi* happens.
Report Only-the-Brave April 29, 2015 12:44 PM BST
Pockets defo seem as if they are bigger/more accepting this year.  Loads going in off the jaws, even near jaw which is silly at times.
Report Pokermonster April 30, 2015 9:13 PM BST
In the interests of fairness, last night I decided to watch a few old frames on Youtube from snooker matches in the early years of the Crucible.  I believe anyone who does likewise will agree with me that, actually, the generosity of the pockets don't seem to have changed much, if at all, over the years.  I witnessed countless examples of balls looking like they were going to miss after hitting the near jaw, but then falling in regardless, and just as many rattling out against all odds.
Report Pokermonster April 30, 2015 9:15 PM BST
I think much of this debate is seeing what one wants to see.
Report Angel Gabrial April 30, 2015 10:07 PM BST
Aint that the truth PM. I have done similar and watched plenty of old footage just to remind myself that balls did wobble and drop back in the day.

As a young lad i had the privilege to practice on an ex tournament match table in the 70`s. The pockets are comparable to the match tables today. I managed century breaks on this 70`s match table PM. The myth makes me chuckle to be honest because Moondan is a soppy old armchair jockey, who doesn`t really know what he is talking about.
Report Angel Gabrial April 30, 2015 10:09 PM BST
And it`s not just Moondan to be fair, there are many. It`s like the horse racing forum, people who have never sat on a horse think they know it all.
Report Pokermonster April 30, 2015 10:26 PM BST
Good evening, AG.

To give Moondan some credit, if we were to assume that pocket template dimensions have remained the same over the years it is very reasonable to expect that the thinner cloths and heated slates of recent times would indeed cause balls to fall (slightly) more readily. The physical effects of such changes demand as much.

When one actually takes the trouble to watch those old matches again, however, not permitting the rose-tinted glasses of nostalgia to cloud one's judgement, it quickly becomes apparent that any any advantage gained in this particular area is somewhat negligible.  As we have both witnessed, the balls rattle and drop, rattle and fall out, and it was ever thus.  My conclusion, therefore, is that the pockets have remained a standard size throughout the Crucible's tenure as the home of snooker.
Report Pokermonster April 30, 2015 10:32 PM BST
The most noticeable difference between the tables of yesteryear and those of today is the speed, they're significantly quicker now.
Report Angel Gabrial April 30, 2015 10:42 PM BST
It was a far heavier game and of course the thinner cloths offer less resistance around the pocket but as you say the effects are negligible. The balls are lighter today so perhaps do not drop as easy, so swings and roundabouts perhaps.

The main advantage of these super fine cloths is cue ball control and pack spread, i don`t think the pocket talk should even be an issue.
Report Angel Gabrial April 30, 2015 10:53 PM BST
All i can say PM is if you put the 1990 match table into the Crucible tonight it would not take long for the players to adapt and they would carry on playing to their pot percentage.
Report gobelins May 1, 2015 8:10 AM BST
Angel - the players pot percentage may be maintained, but the number of century breaks would not. And, the number of century breaks appears to be - the be all, and end all for people who compare previous decades/eras against today. If people believe that the players of today are vastly superior becase they make more century breaks than in years gone by then that is their prerogative, but it is flawed in my opinion.

Today's conditions allow you to manoeuvre the cue ball far easier now. One example of this is when you are slightly wrong side of the blue (just off straight)- it used to be virtually impossible to take the cue ball in and out of baulk, and this positional inaccuracy made it end of break. Whereas, now any member of the top 64 can take the ball in and out of baulk with ease and bring the cue ball back towards the reds.

I have no real view on pocket sizes now compared to 1990 for example, but it cannot be disputed that in this year's event the pockets appeared to be playing far tighter before the re-cloth on the 1st Thursday.
Report gentlemanjohn May 1, 2015 8:43 AM BST
Well looks like Neil Robertson could be the centuries king yet again at the Crucible but he'll be watching the final at home licking his wounds at yet another world championship failure. When he won the crown five years ago, he did not have a single ton in the final. Go figure.
Report Angel Gabrial May 1, 2015 9:38 AM BST

Regarding the pockets playing a tad easier now than at the start of the tournament i think Pokermonster covered this with his in depth scientific analysis of the cushions/jaw areas when the rubbers have been played in.
Report Angel Gabrial May 1, 2015 9:46 AM BST
If people believe that the players of today are vastly superior becase they make more century breaks than in years gone by then that is their prerogative, but it is flawed in my opinion.

Regarding this.

I wouldn`t use the term vastly superior at all, however break building strategy has progressed and yes certain shots are now available that were not years ago. You can now get the cue ball to swing wider around the angles as you inferred Gobelins, but there are also more kicks/jumps in the game now so that could negate progress, but it hasn`t because in depth the top 16 are strategically as a group of players better break builders. Opening up the pack in the early 90`s was not as calculated as it is today. Break building coaching has moved on and many thanks to Hendry for this.
Report Angel Gabrial May 1, 2015 9:52 AM BST
When he won the crown five years ago, he did not have a single ton in the final. Go figure.

Go on John explain what you are getting at.
Report gentlemanjohn May 1, 2015 10:12 AM BST
That wasn't aimed at anything you said specifically Angel. Just saying that making centuries isn't the be all and end all, as gobelins stated. It's the era comparing here i have the issue with, not your evaluation of the changes in the game which is on a very sound footing.
Report Angel Gabrial May 1, 2015 10:29 AM BST
People compare eras John, it`s part of the great snooker discussion. If you compare the competition Hendry was facing at the start of his career to the competition JHinggins was facing then it`s only fair to point it out that what Jhiggins was faced with was far stronger than what Hendry was facing.
Report gentlemanjohn May 1, 2015 11:09 AM BST
To clarify, no problem with the discussion, as with the Ronnie-Hendry GOAT stuff it can be a nice diversion and, occasionally, illuminating. I just felt this one was being built on a false premise. My general position on eras is that there has never been sufficient strength in depth at any time to make any era decidedly superior to another, whatever criteria you decide to use and the criteria, as we know, is a crucial factor.

You mention higgins and that's fair enough. Definitely, you could argue the couple of years either side of the millennium constituted something of a golden age, or mini-era perhaps. But i could nitpick too if i was inclined. When he won in 2007 Higgins' passage was Holt-O'Brien-Ronnie-Maguire-Selby - that's one top 8 player, and you can wonder what frame of mind Ronnie was in that year - to win a world title. In fact, Higgins won 2 world titles playing non-seeds in the final.

Not saying that diminishes Higgins or his achievements, or the same with Ronnie and his world titles, just that more than one side can play that game. And yes it's a good debate. I'm sure people will say i am talking out my erris again, smug fcker that i think i am, but it's all good, i can take it.
Report Angel Gabrial May 1, 2015 11:21 AM BST
lol John, fair enough but it`s the suggestion that Hendry was untouchable, yet we all know against the players we mention he was only just ahead of them. Their careers did cross and Hendry`s game did cave in rapidly as he was ganged up on.

Selby was top 8 material in 2007 regardless of his number. Selby got 12 centuries that year as well, Higgins got 11. How many did Griffiths get in 1993?Laugh
Report Angel Gabrial May 1, 2015 11:26 AM BST
Report gentlemanjohn May 1, 2015 11:33 AM BST
The same Mark Selby who lost to Mark King the year after Laugh

Griffiths got one century in 1993, the same number as Higgins in 2015 Wink
Report wit-ham May 1, 2015 11:44 AM BST
no markets working here
Report Angel Gabrial May 1, 2015 11:45 AM BST
Yeah the same Mark Selby that went on to win the MastersWink

Griffiths made it to the semi-final he played many more framesWink
Report Angel Gabrial May 1, 2015 11:47 AM BST
Terry Griffiths didn`t get a 100 break in practice until he was 27Laugh
Report Angel Gabrial May 1, 2015 11:49 AM BST
Selby v Griffiths both aged 27 who wins??
Report gentlemanjohn May 1, 2015 12:01 PM BST
Your lack of respect for Terry is beneath you Angel. The guy broke my heart in the 80s because he beat Alex in the worlds nearly every year, they always seemed to be ranked 8 and 9 so met in the last 16. '86 was the angriest i've ever been after a sporting event, and that includes entire banks been lost in photo-finishes, cos i had convinced myself it was Alex's year. Actually I'm fcking seething right now thinking about it!!

I respect Selby, a very admirable streetfighter, but the fact is his world championship record is solid, but not actually spectacular, and the praise can be a bit overblown. Griffiths is far from one of the greats, but he was a tenacious battler and a very sound tactician, nobody should ever underestimate him.

If you give me 2/1 on Terry and a 1990 table set-up, I'd have a score on him.
Report jed.davison May 1, 2015 12:05 PM BST
Seby, because Griffith's is one o he biggest bottlers who ever played the game.

Not much in it otherwise, both will die with one world title to their name.
Report jed.davison May 1, 2015 12:06 PM BST
Tenacious battler? That's funny.
Report Angel Gabrial May 1, 2015 12:08 PM BST
On a 27 year old Griffiths who has just compiled his first century in practice v a 27 year old Selby who has 2 Masters titles.

Ok you can have 5/2 John and  i won`t restrict you!Laugh
Report Angel Gabrial May 1, 2015 12:10 PM BST
Of course Selby would struggle on the 1990 tournament tables, they were SO different.Laugh
Report gentlemanjohn May 1, 2015 12:14 PM BST
One of the biggest bottlers ever played the game. Big statement that jed. Certainly never bottled it against higgins anyway, and beat davis plenty enough times too.

I know his game went into decline at some point in the 80s, didn't he blame signing up for matchroom team for some of his problems? Anyway, i'm not over-egging his achievements or anything close, but think he was better than the average bottler anyway
Report gentlemanjohn May 1, 2015 12:16 PM BST
Just a friednly score Angel, i'll let you know the result as soon as i've reffed it on the wii
Report jed.davison May 1, 2015 12:20 PM BST
TG is one of my favourite ever players as it happens, pretty much my first real memory of the game is his win in Sheffield. I like the way he cued, and his manner. Sadly though, despite the fearlessness he showed in 1979, he got gradually more incapable of beat in he best players of his era - please check his record - I bet, without looking, he reached more quarter finals han any player of hat  era with he possible exception of Davis. But when he got there, to where the pressure was applied, he froze. Time and time again.
Report jed.davison May 1, 2015 12:24 PM BST
Lost his first ever ranking match 9-8 having been 8-1 in front.
Report gentlemanjohn May 1, 2015 12:24 PM BST
The story i read about Terry, jed, is that he reacted badly to the '79 title, apparently when he went back to his club in Wales, they treated him like a Johnny Big Boots and basically blanked him, and he could't handle that or the pressure of being a champion. Then when Hearn signed him up, he hated the travelling and glad-handling and became a loner. So maybe he was an under-achiever rather than a bottler?

On his record, he took some hammerings off davis in big tournaments, but so did others. His record against Davis, i'm certain, would be better than Higgins', but i've never heard higgins being called a bottler.
Report gentlemanjohn May 1, 2015 12:26 PM BST
Fair enough, that's a stain, but Jimmy lost a rankign final after leading 7-0 against Thorburn. Stuff happens.
Report jed.davison May 1, 2015 12:28 PM BST
Another interesting Griffith's fact, he played 999 frames at the Crucible.

And, in extension of my point above, reached he qf of he world championships nine years in a row.
Report gentlemanjohn May 1, 2015 12:32 PM BST
Anyway jed, your knowledge and memory of the game is superior to mine, and if what you say is right, then only makes me more angry, because he refused to throw in the towel against alex, they had some dogfights and i think terry nearly won them all!
Report jed.davison May 1, 2015 12:34 PM BST
That final was sponsored by one of the great artists gj!!

One of the best finals ever, another jimmy-clff battle, he 1986 mercantile credit classic, jimmy won 13-12 having needed a snooker on the final frame with pink and black left. Remember cliff sliding past the pink off the side kerb, an jimm just smashing the pink in and slewing down for the black as I whooped and hollered in the front room.
Report thegiggilo May 1, 2015 12:35 PM BST
If someone said to you Jimmy white and Alex Higgins are playing in the world championships this week and are going to play their best ever snooker,it's absolute certainty you wouldn't want to back against them and that would include Mark Williams as well.
Report gentlemanjohn May 1, 2015 12:49 PM BST
Couldnt figure out what you were getting at jed, and then finally it hit me, Goya ;)

I'm wallowing in nostalgia but 85/86 were just incomparable years for snooker imo. 85 you had the higins/davis actually becoming a real if temporary rivalry, the black ball final, 86 that jimmy-cliff game, the willie thorne blue ball final. It's no wonder the game took off so spectacularly as it did.
Report gentlemanjohn May 2, 2015 5:42 PM BST
Interesting comment from Willie Thorne regarding the pockets earlier. They - presumably willie and his fellow commentators - had been discussing the pockets at breakfast and concluded shots that struck the near knuckle with force would likely drop in, while shots just rolled in would stay out. The black Judd subsequently missed may have offered a further example.

Are they right? Not a clue, but at least it shows how lively a topic this is among the experts, not just a bunch of nutters on a forum.
Report Pokermonster May 2, 2015 5:49 PM BST
There is a well known pool trickshot whereby an object ball is placed on the jaw in such a manner that it looks impossible to sink it in the middle pocket.  If one stikes the cueball extremely forcefully with backspin, however, the object ball flies in as though the knuckle wasn't there at all.
Report Pokermonster May 2, 2015 5:55 PM BST
The same effect can be actioned on a snooker table's corner pocket if one had a mind to attempt such a feat.  Can't imagine many scenarios where it would be advisable to risk it in a match, but interesting knowledge nonetheless.
Report Senyatta May 3, 2015 12:39 AM BST
even sir alex is making tonnes..
Report thegiggilo May 3, 2015 12:41 AM BST
Only on the ones from Sheffield..Cool
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