There have been a few changes in the top 16 of the world snooker rankings after the conclusion of the British Open on Sunday.
Mark Williams beat Mark Selby 10-7 to claim the Clive Everton Trophy and a winner’s cheque worth £100,000.
Success for the popular Welshman represented a 25th ranking title of what has been a long and illustrious professional career.
The 48 year-old is the second-oldest ranking event winner, and with a ranking still inside the world’s top ten, you wouldn’t bet against him eclipsing Ray Reardon’s record of 50 years of age in the future.
Official World Snooker Tour rankings
Similar to the European Masters earlier this season, Ronnie O’Sullivan’s withdrawal from last week’s tournament left the door ajar for somebody to replace him as the world number one.
Luca Brecel could have reached top spot for the first time in his career with a mere run to the last 32 in Cheltenham.
But the Belgian Bullet lost in an opening-round decider to Ding Junhui, which granted was a difficult tie to receive from the random draw.
Mark Allen could have usurped O’Sullivan as well by going one better than his runner-up finish at the British Open a year ago.
However, Allen’s slow start to the 2023/24 campaign continued with a one-sided defeat to Kyren Wilson in the last 64.
Brecel and Allen stay second and third respectively behind O’Sullivan, but the pair may get another crack during this week’s English Open in Brentwood.
Selby, meanwhile, moves back into the top four after his run to the final of the British Open, with Judd Trump dropping to fifth.
Neil Robertson, Shaun Murphy, and Wilson complete the top eight ahead of Williams, who rises above fellow Class of ’92 member John Higgins.
A little below that, Hossein Vafaei’s semi-final appearance has helped the Iranian return to the top 16 with Ryan Day losing his spot among the elite bracket.
With the UK Championship and the Masters not too far away in the schedule, the scramble for places inside the top 16 is expected to intensify.
Elsewhere, Xiao Guodong’s run to the last four at The Centaur has seen his ranking improve three positions to number 34.
|Official World Rankings|
Race to the World Grand Prix
Glory for Williams ensures that he will definitely feature at the World Grand Prix and the Players Championship, and he’ll almost certainly qualify for the Tour Championship too.
Like in previous seasons, the top 32 highest earners from the one-year snooker rankings list (based on events this season) will first be invited to compete in the World Grand Prix.
The competition, which was won by Mark Allen last season, doesn’t take place until January so there are several opportunities to earn money between now and then.
But the Pistol finds himself only inside the cut-off point, with the likes of Ronnie O’Sullivan, Neil Robertson, Ding Junhui, and Luca Brecel languishing outside the top 32 as things stand after the British Open.
Note: The list below was updated before matches took place at the venue stages of the English Open.
What is the next snooker event?
The 2023/24 snooker season continues this week with the English Open the next tournament on the roadshow.
This term’s fourth ranking tournament runs from October 2nd to October 8th at The Brentwood Centre.
Featured photo credit: WST