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Snooker Players and Staff Test Negative for COVID-19

The first event since March is set to begin on Monday afternoon with Championship League Snooker in Milton Keynes.

Snooker has been given the green light to start again after all eight snooker players competing on Monday in the Championship League tested negative for COVID-19.

The non-ranking competition features 64 players in total and marks the sport’s return following the coronavirus lockdown in the UK.

Played behind closed doors, the tournament’s first phase comprises 16 groups of four competitors in each, with two groups being played to their finish across two tables on each of the first eight days.



World champion Judd Trump, who won the last event to be completed in March when he triumphed in the Gibraltar Open, is due to kick start the action again and he was among the eight cueists to thankfully test negative.

Staff at the venue, including referees and on-site commentators, were also confirmed to be free of the virus.

“Matchroom Multi Sport is pleased to confirm that, having completed COVID-19 testing of all 35 staff and Monday’s eight players over the weekend, all personnel have tested negative,” the confirmation came from Matchroom Sport.

“All staff and players were throat and nose swab tested on arrival and remained in isolation until the results were confirmed.”

“Players taking part on subsequent days will be tested the day before they are scheduled to play.”

That means that there are still another 56 players who will need to be tested in order to be permitted to participate.

Once players have entered the Marshall Arena, they will be unable to leave before defeat without prior permission from the organisers and strict guidelines will have to be adhered to – including the wearing of masks, as well as isolation and social distancing measures.

On-site accommodation means that the entire team of players and staff will be able to follow these rules more easily.

Trump, who has won the Championship League a record three times, is in Group 1 alongside David Grace, Elliot Slessor, and Daniel Wells.

The winner of each group progresses to phase two where four further groups will produce the Tournament Finals group of four.

A champion’s cheque worth £30,000 is on offer as the snooker players return to some form of normality, albeit under rather unique circumstances.

Live coverage in the UK and Ireland is on ITV4.

Featured photo credit: WST



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World Rankings Top 16

World Rankings after the British Open – won by Mark Williams.

1. Mark Selby
2. Judd Trump
3. Ronnie O’Sullivan
4. Neil Robertson
5. Kyren Wilson
6. Shaun Murphy
7. John Higgins
8. Mark Williams
9. Stephen Maguire
10. Ding Junhui
11. Mark Allen
12. Barry Hawkins
13. Stuart Bingham
14. Jack Lisowski
15. Yan Bingtao
16. Anthony McGill

Fin Ruane Snooker Academy