There are only a couple of days to go until the 2019 Masters snooker finalists take to the Alexandra Palace stage to do battle in London.
A total of 33 players know what it feels like to contest the showdown for glory in the English capital city in what is now popularly regarded as the sport’s second most prestigious tournament.
Five out of the remaining six contenders for this year’s crown understand what it’s like to be Masters snooker finalists.
Only Judd Trump has never been to that late stage, when snooker’s greatest invitational title is on the line.
The 29 year-old has the opportunity to go one step closer on Friday when he takes on a three-time former champion in the quarter-finals at the Ally Pally.
The Masters is snooker’s second longest running professional event, dating all the way back to 1975 on the annual calendar.
The inaugural competition featured only ten players and was staged at the West Centre Hotel.
All those years ago, the champion collected just £2,000 for his efforts but fast forward more than four decades and Sunday’s winner will be pocketing one hundred times that amount.
The Wembley Conference Centre was the permanent home of the Masters between 1979 and 2006, and was often heralded as one of the most exhilarating venues to play in – especially if local favourite Jimmy White was in action.
Yet, after a brief spell at the rather soulless Wembley Arena, the excellent Alexandra Palace has proven to be the ideal new home.
There have been countless memories generated at the Masters and there are sure to be many more conjured up over the weekend’s play as we find out who can emerge as the 2019 champion.
Before that, the question is, how many Masters snooker finalists do you know?
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