Shanghai Masters draw
Main News, Non-Ranking

Shanghai Masters: 2023 draw, preview, schedule, how to watch

The Shanghai Masters is back on Monday after a four-year absence with Ronnie O’Sullivan among the stars in the draw.

Once a permanent fixture of the annual calendar, the tournament hasn’t been staged since 2019 because of the pandemic.

But with China opening itself up again to international visitors, the popular non-ranking event has been welcomed back to the schedule.

Prize, history, and format

The Shanghai Masters was launched in 2007, and for the first decade it boasted ranking event status.

Dominic Dale was a surprise inaugural champion, but the roll of honour thereafter included some of the biggest names in the sport.

The likes of Mark Selby, John Higgins, Ding Junhui, Stuart Bingham, and Kyren Wilson each got their hands on the trophy between 2011 and 2016.

Sandwiching those triumphs were successes in 2009 and 2017 for Ronnie O’Sullivan.

When the Shanghai Masters transitioned to a prestigious invitational tournament in 2018, the Rocket added another brace of titles.

Shanghai Masters Roll of Honour

Ranking Event
2007: Dominic Dale
2008: Ricky Walden
2009: Ronnie O’Sullivan
2010: Ali Carter
2011: Mark Selby
2012 John Higgins
2013: Ding Junhui
2014: Stuart Bingham
2015: Kyren Wilson
2016: Ding Junhui
2017: Ronnie O’Sullivan

Invitational Event
2018: Ronnie O’Sullivan
2019: Ronnie O’Sullivan

O’Sullivan will finally then get an opportunity to defend the crown he last won in 2019.

The world number one is the bookies favourite at 4/1 to triumph again in China.

Judd Trump, who lost deciding-frame finals in 2012 and 2015, has odds of 6/1 with world champion Luca Brecel on 12/1.

With a total prize pot worth £825,000 and a whopping £210,000 being awarded to the champion, it’s unlikely that O’Sullivan will withdraw from this event like he has done the opening two of the 2023/24 campaign.

There are 24 players in total in the 2023 Shanghai Masters draw, with matches in the first three rounds lasting 11 frames.

Multi-session encounters will subsequently be required in the semi-finals (bo19) and the final (bo21).

2023 Shanghai Masters draw

Ronnie O’Sullivan is one of eight seeds who will receive byes through to the last 16 of the competition.

The others are world champion Luca Brecel, former winners Mark Selby and Kyren Wilson, and fellow top-eight ranked competitors Mark Allen, Judd Trump, Neil Robertson, and Shaun Murphy.

The other eight members from the top 16 in the world rankings (backdated) have been drawn to face four top-ranked Chinese cueists and four wildcards in the round of 24.

The wildcards are Deng Haohui, Dong Zihao, Gong Chenzhi, and emerging women’s star Bai Yulu.

The tournament runs from September 11th to September 17th at the Shanghai Grand Stage.

Schedule (times in BST)

Last 24 (bo11)

Ali Carter (11) 6-2 Dong Zihao
John Higgins (10) 6-0 Deng Haohui

Hossein Vafaei (16) 6-1 Gong Chenzhi
Jack Lisowski (13) 6-5 Zhou Yuelong

Gary Wilson (14) 2-6 Fan Zhengyi
Ding Junhui (15) 6-2 Si Jiahui

Robert Milkins (12) 6-1 Bai Yulu
Mark Williams (9) 6-1 Pang Junxu

Last 16 (bo11)

Ronnie O’Sullivan (1) 6-3 Ali Carter (11)
Kyren Wilson (8) 3-6 John Higgins (10)

Mark Selby (5) 6-5 Hossein Vafaei (16)
Judd Trump (4) 6-5 Jack Lisowski (13)

Mark Allen (3) 3-6 Fan Zhengyi
Neil Robertson (6) 6-5 Ding Junhui (15)

Shaun Murphy (7) 5-6 Robert Milkins (12)
Luca Brecel (2) 6-4 Mark Williams (9)

Quarter-Finals (bo11)

Ronnie O’Sullivan (1) 6-5 John Higgins (10)
Mark Selby (5) 6-1 Judd Trump (4)

Fan Zhengyi 1-6 Neil Robertson (6)
Robert Milkins (12) 3-6 Luca Brecel (2)

Semi-Finals (bo19)

Ronnie O’Sullivan (1) 10-7 Mark Selby (5)

Neil Robertson (6) 7-10 Luca Brecel (2)

Final (bo21)

Ronnie O’Sullivan (1) 11-9 Luca Brecel (2)

How to watch the 2023 Shanghai Masters

Live coverage will be available across Europe on discovery+ and Eurosport.

Viewers in most other territories can watch the action via a subscription on Matchroom.Live.

However, there is more information available at the World Snooker Tour website on how to watch the Shanghai Masters this week from around the world.

Featured photo credit: WST

3 Comments

  1. Bai Yulu looks to be quite a prospect and may well get on better on the main tour compared to the disappointing performances of the other female invitees. Bai Yulu seems a more open player than her main rivals on the women’s tour so she could be more susceptible to counterattacks. Still, I think that ironically the two best overall women players atm are not on the main tour: Bai Yulu and Ng On-Yee.

    • Since her emergence in March, she has made 10 century breaks in various tournaments, including a 142 in the CBSA tour qualifiers, and a missed 147 (snookered herself on the yellow) in an U21 event in Guangzhou. There are no other women who can match that kind of scoring. Her problem is that she played hardly any events during 2020-22 due to lockdowns in China, so she lacks real match experience. I first saw her when she was 15, competing with the boys in the CBSA Academy (several of them are now on tour). It was very apparent that they accepted her as an equal. She has a weibo page with very interesting videos of practice routines and matches. Against a player like Rob Milkins, she might get chances to show glimpses of what she is capable, but it’s a very big step up.

      • From the little that I’ve seen she’s certainly an attacking scoring player: 10 competitive centuries is very impressive. Milkins can have some very uneven performances so it might get interesting!

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