The world champion will usurp Judd Trump at the top of the standings.
Mark Selby will be the world number one when the ranking list is revised after the British Open, following Judd Trump”s loss on Friday in Leicester.
Selby lost to Ali Carter in the second round on Thursday at the Morningside Arena, but even with that defeat Trump needed to reach the quarter-finals to hold onto the coveted position at the summit of the sport.
However, the latter struggled for form in his third-round fixture, and Elliot Slessor ultimately took advantage to conjure a 3-2 upset and reach the last 16.
At one point during the 2020/21 campaign, Trump led at the top of the world rankings list by almost £1 million, but with his defeat in the quarter-final stage of the World Snooker Championship the 31 year-old failed to defend the majority of the enormous ranking points he earned from his 2019 Crucible conquering.
Selby’s subsequent success in Sheffield thus saw him dramatically narrow the gap, and at the end of the season the Jester finished just over £100,000 shy of Trump’s target.
With Trump unable to defend his whopping winnings worth £175,000 from the 2019 International Championship – what with all Chinese events currently cancelled – Selby quickly had the opportunity to surpass his fellow Englishman’s two-year rolling tally.
It will mark the seventh spell in the glittering career of Selby that he will hold the world number one position in the ranking list.
The Leicester man was a dominant force in first place for several years during the last decade and has been open about his desire to return to the helm of the sport.
Selby may have been disappointed not to star in his local ranking event this week, but he will now take a pretty decent consolation prize away from the British Open nevertheless.
Slessor, meanwhile, will feature in the fourth round of this week’s ranking event later on Friday with a match against Ali Carter to look forward to.
Carter is one of only six former ranking event champions left in the draw, with two of those doing battle in the match between Stephen Maguire and Jimmy Robertson.
With John Higgins joining Trump on the way home after his 3-1 reverse against Ricky Walden, fellow former multiple world champion Mark Williams is arguably now the favourite for glory.
British Open Fourth Round Draw
Jimmy Robertson vs Stephen Maguire David Gilbert vs Hammad Miah Ali Carter vs Elliot Slessor Ricky Walden vs Ross Muir (a) Lu Ning vs Lukas Kleckers Zhang Jiankang vs Mark Williams Joe O'Connor vs Zhou Yuelong Hossein Vafaei vs Gary Wilson
You managed to get this up real quick!
I personally hope Trump losing the top spot might lead to change as to how the ranking system is operated. It’s farcical that Trump wins 11 ranking events over two seasons is now dethroned, in part due to the high value of the World Championship, but also because he can’t defend points from Chinese events that are not on the calendar or being replaced by events with an equivalent purse.
Trump was also correct in his assertion about the scrappiness of the matches on TV table so far. The big breaks haven’t been flowing and a number of matches are stretching on pretty long for best of 5s.
I’m not convinced any changes will be made to the rankings, but it’s definitely an issue. To be fair to Selby, he has won five events over the last two-year period so it’s not like he’s suddenly shot up there just because of the Worlds. But obviously it’s clear that Trump has been the overall best player in that period.
The prize money not being reflected in the format is a big problem for me. Take this British Open for an example. Best of fives for four rounds and a best of 11 final, but £100,000 for the winner. That’s more than the likes of the German Masters and Home Nations events, which are way more established and prestigious, and most importantly have longer formats.
That’s a fair point about Selby but as you say Trump has clearly been the best player. I agree they will not change the system either.
While I’m in total agreement over what you write in the second paragraph. The frame length is definitely a big factor in the prestige of the event. I’ve found this week watchable but it still feels as if the marquee events are a little way off. When it was announced the British Open was returning I assumed that it would potentially be one of the highlights of the season. The format announcement killed a fair chunk of my enthusiasm.
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