There will be a staggered return of fans throughout the 17-day event.
A full capacity crowd looks set to be welcomed into the Crucible Theatre for the final of the World Snooker Championship in May this year.
Snooker has been included in a UK government pilot scheme focussed on reintegrating crowds into sports and entertainment events across the country.
It had already been announced that a one-third capacity would be guaranteed when the venue stages of the blue-riband tournament gets under way on April 17.
However, as reported on the WST website, it has now been revealed that a 33% capacity will be in operation for only the first round before the arena will host 50% in round two.
The quarter-finals and the semi-finals will be played in front of a 75% capacity crowd, before just shy of 1,000 people will be allowed in to witness the two-day World Championship final on the May Bank Holiday weekend.
Fans who are attending will be required to take a COVID-19 test before arriving and another test five days later, and while face masks will be mandatory it is understood that social distancing rules will not be enforced.
There will be many who will praise the decision as a step in the right direction towards returning to a degree of normality, but there will be plenty of critics to the plan as well.
Whether or not it’s too soon to revert back to the norm of packed crowds in small spaces – for entertainment purposes – is a question that is difficult to find the answers for.
Test events like these are obviously going to be needed moving forward, but operating at full capacity in a venue famed for its intimacy does seem like a bizarre overreach at this time.
In any case, the 2021 World Snooker Championship will be the first time this season that supporters will be able to watch their favourite stars up close and personal.
Not since the 2020 World Snooker Championship final in August last year when Ronnie O’Sullivan won his sixth world crown have fans been in to enjoy live snooker.
We all desperately want to see fans return but do have my doubts about the capacity that’s been agreed for the latter part of the tournament. Outdoor football grounds that are being used for pilot events will be nowhere close to capacity but yet an indoor venue like the Crucible is.