This was broadcast on BBC yesterday
Today is a big day for the World Seniors tour with this announcement by WPBSA
WPBSA World Seniors Tour
3rd May 2018
The World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association (WPBSA) is today delighted to announce the official formation of the WPBSA World Seniors Snooker Tour.
Following the statement last December that the WPBSA would engage to develop an official tour of events for players over 40, we can now confirm that a new subsidiary company known as World Seniors Snooker will be formed under the auspices of the WPBSA, which during the 2018/19 season will run a full calendar of six World Seniors ranking events.
Jason Francis, founder of Snooker Legends will be a partner in the company and brings a wealth of experience from his previous involvement in developing successful Legends events and more recently was granted the rights to run the World Seniors Championship on behalf of the World Snooker Tour. Following two successful events, the project now merits the support of snooker’s world governing body and its amateur international federation, the World Snooker Federation to continue its growth.
Francis will be joined on the board by WPBSA chairman Jason Ferguson and WPBSA player director and current professional world number eight Shaun Murphy, who will both support the tour with their undoubted passion to develop amateur snooker globally.
- European Seniors Open (venue TBC) – 11-14 October 2018
- UK Seniors Championship (Hull) – 23-25 October 2018
- Seniors Irish Masters (Goffs, Ireland) – 4-6 January 2019
- World Seniors 6-Red Championship (Belfast, Northern Ireland) – 2-3 March 2019
- World Seniors Championship (venue TBC) – 25-29 March 2019
- Seniors Masters (Crucible Theatre, Sheffield) – 10-11 April 2019
These events will be supplemented by 15 qualifying tournaments, including new events in Canada, Hong Kong, Belgium and the United States of America. Each qualifier will carry a minimum €1,000 prize for the winner and a place at a World Seniors ranking event.
- The WPBSA World Seniors Snooker Tour will comprise six international ranking events during the 2018/19 season and carrying a total prize fund of £200,000.
- The first prize for the 2019 World Seniors Championship will increase from £10,000 to £25,000.
- There will be 15 international qualifying events staged during the season, each carrying a minimum first prize of €1,000.
- The WPBSA and the World Seniors Snooker Tour will continue to work together to provide a pathway for amateurs to be able to compete at professional events. The winners of the 2019 World Seniors Championship and now the 2018 UK Seniors Championship will both earn a place at the 2019 professional World Championship qualifiers.
- There will be a one-year amateur World Seniors ranking list, which will see the top 16 ranked players at the end of the season qualify for a new event to be staged at Blackpool’s Norbreck Castle In 2019.
- All players who currently, or go on to receive an Invitational Tour Card to play on the World Snooker Tour will be eligible to compete in World Seniors Tour events.
Dare to dream
Under the ‘dare to dream’ message World Seniors events staged during the past two years have seen many retired players picking up their cues again, with opportunities to either return to or even compete for the first time at some of snooker’s most iconic venues now available to them.
The WPBSA clearly recognises that there is a demand from many amateurs and the former greats of the professional sport who have still got the desire to play snooker competitively. The World Seniors Snooker Tour therefore provides an important facility by which retiring players from the professional World Snooker Tour will be able to extend their careers.
These events also carry a great nostalgia, evoking memories of great sporting moments that we have witnessed in snooker that have created the legends in our sport. Nobody will forget the first ever maximum 147 break made at the Crucible made by Canada’s Cliff Thorburn back in 1983 and so to see him lift the trophy at the same venue some 35 years later last month was a truly special moment.
WPBSA chairman Jason Ferguson said: “Today we pay thanks to those greats who have helped bring our sport to where it is today. The tour will provide a supporting role to the World Snooker Tour, providing an attractive corporate model, being agile enough to work with amateur federations and new territories around the world and at the same time using great champions of the past to deliver our message.”
World Seniors chairman Jason Francis said: “It is a proud and historic day for me to help create new opportunities for players, whether they are former world champions or enthusiastic club players. I am grateful for the support from World Snooker and the WPBSA for helping us to make this a reality.”
And here, published on the World Seniors Tour Players Forum on Facebook, is the provisional Calendar
If you are a World Seniors Tour Player don’t hesitate to join the discusiion there.
This is Jason’s “summary” message on the forum
Leaving sheff but will update properly later.
6 ranking events
200k prize money
15 qualifiers including Hong Kong, Houston Texas, Toronto Canada, China, Belgium, Ireland and England
Minimum 1000 euros winner qualifier
Win a wc qualifier and get £2500!
New official playing shirt to replace dickies in qualifiers which player must buy
Q format – don’t say I don’t listen 😎
European open Best of 5 no respot
Irish masters best of 5 no respot
6 reds best of 7 no respot
Worlds, masters and uk 2-2 then respot.
Respot deciders at all Final Events
£50 entry per event
Have to be a member of your national governing body before first days play
Winner of uk and worlds get place in world professional qualifiers
More referees and steaming at qualifiers
Top 16 end of season norbreck castle
Belfast 6 reds 20k winner takes all!!!
That enough to get you going…????
I need a rest..
It was an amazing event!
Aaron Canavan is your Champion!
Jason Francis took the opportunity to share some good news about next season. Here they are:
Assetereum World Seniors. We have some amazing facts so far! Over 500 players have entered the qualifiers this season. Peter Lines has flown the flag for our event, a very worthy Champion.
A minimum of 5 Senior events this coming season!
New opportunities for our Champions and we have qualifiers in Hong Kong and New York already lined up
Entry fee cut to £50, halved! We have joined with WDBS with a free place for their nominated player. Ladies are also now playing in our Tour
Ranking list will be official under WPBSA. £5500 on offer for top 16 at the end of the season Shootout
Lastly, next year at the end of the season we will have an event for the top 16 of the Tour and we will take them back to the Norbrek Castle where it all started for so many…
Masters Trophy to be named after John Spencer
26th February 2018
World Seniors Snooker has today announced that the World Seniors Masters trophy is to be named after the great John Spencer, the first-ever winner of the professional Masters tournament.
Jason Francis of World Seniors Snooker said: “As a three-time world champion, the first winner of the Masters and former WPBSA Chairman, John did so much for the game and I’m delighted that his partner Jean has granted us permission to name our trophy in his honour!”
Jason Ferguson, WPBSA Chairman said: “John Spencer was not only a huge snooker star during the formative years of the modern era, memorably becoming the first player to win the World Championship at the Crucible, but he was also one of my snooker heroes as a young player. He also previously served as WPBSA Chairman and I have many very fond memories of him. I kept in touch with him and spoke to him just before he passed away.
“The decision to name this trophy after him is a fitting one and I am sure that the event will be a success.”
Following the conclusion of play at the final qualifier at Upton Park Snooker Centre earlier this month the line-up for the World Seniors Masters event was finalised.
Jonathan Bagley, a taxi driver from Leeds, defeated former professional Barry Pinches on the final black ball to become the final qualifier for the event. He will now realise a dream to walk out at the Crucible Theatre where he will face 1985 world champion Dennis Taylor.
Jonathan completes a stellar line-up for the event which will also see former professional Michael Judge, who won the first qualifying event in Newbury, come up against seven-time world champion Stephen Hendry in the last eight.
The full draw is:
Joe Johnson v Cliff Thorburn
Dennis Taylor v Jonathan Bagley
Stephen Hendry v Michael Judge
John Parrott v Willie Thorne
The winner will take home the John Spencer Trophy and a first prize of £7,500.
Images provided by David Muscroft.
In this Press Release, Jason Francis has today announced a new Title Sponsor for the Seniors World Championship:
This is of course great news for the players, and for the future of the Seniors Tour. Jason deserves a lot of praise for the way he seeks and secures deals for the Seniors Tour, in various sectors, not just in the betting industry. Make no mistake, this is a massive effort and a huge personal investment as well as financial risks.
Here is Stephen Hendry’s video:
And here is the link : https://www.assetereum.io/Register/Snookerlegends
(in the text above, it’s just an image, so not clickable).
Following Shaun Murphy’s generous gesture, Jason has been contacted by another tour player, which has prompted him to send this message around:
Dear World Seniors Tour Player,
Following on from the fantastic gesture from Shaun Murphy yesterday i received an email from another tour player asking if we accept donations from players and snooker fans of what we are doing trying to create this tour.
As i said to him anything we get donated will be paid out in full in prize money for you. I totally understand everyone has different financial circumstances but the one thing we have in common is our love for the game and our support of this venture. Therefore if anyone wishes to make a donation, either publicly or in private then please email me
If you want to keep it private then we will say its an anonymous donor, if you want publicity for your business or a charity then we can use our huge social media numbers to do that as well.
We can provide receipts for any donations made, in some cases this can be tax efficient for you.
Most of you who know me will understand I will work as hard as I can to generate as many opportunities and as much prize money as possible but we welcome all the help we can so please get in touch.
And, don’t forget, coming to the events, is also a great way to support the Seniors Tour whilst having a lot of fun!
WPBSA World Seniors Snooker Tour
14th December 2017
The World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association (WPBSA) can today announce its involvement in the beginning of an official WPBSA World Seniors Tour.
Whilst the World Snooker Tour has gone from strength to strength in recent years, it is vital that we consider the longevity of the careers of our players. We recognise the excellent work already carried out by Jason Francis and Snooker Legends in creating interest and events which many of our sporting greats now compete in. Our intention is to create a partnership with Jason to take what he has done global and create more playing opportunities for amateurs than ever before.
There is clearly a role to play for the WPBSA as snooker’s world governing body in ensuring this concept receives the attention and support it deserves. Globally, there are significant numbers of players who are over 40 who continue maintain a strong competitive instinct in our sport, this includes many passionate amateurs and includes both past and present World Snooker Tour players.
In support of the many players and the work of the World Snooker Federation as snookers IF, we are now engaged with the partners involved to build a tour of events as an official WPBSA World Seniors Snooker Tour.