The 2023 Wuhan Open commenced on Monday at the Wuhan Sports Gymnasium with several star names in the draw.
There was a difference of only a few shorts hours between the English Open ending and the Wuhan Open starting.
It’s a strange schedule that has already come in for heavy criticism from many top players on the tour.
Worse still, the back-to-back staging of tournaments on either side of the globe has resulted in several high-profile withdrawals.
World champion Luca Brecel and recent British Open champion Mark Williams are among those who have opted to pull out.
But a lucrative prize fund ensures that there’s still plenty to play for in what is the inaugural Wuhan Open.
History and format
There are no prior champions in the draw as this marks the first ever edition of the Wuhan Open.
However, it is a historic competition in some respects, as it will represent a first ranking event on Chinese soil since before the pandemic.
Judd Trump was the last winner of a ranking event in China – the Englishman claiming the 2019 World Open in Yushan.
There is a total prize fund of a £700,000, with a huge £140,000 slice of that being awarded to the champion.
A traditional format sees best-of-nine frame matches until the semi-finals, with the penultimate round increasing to 11 frames before a 19-frame title decider.
Wuhan Open Prize Money
2023 Wuhan Open draw
The withdrawal of Brecel and Williams has led many to query how those in charge could allow this kind of calendar to be devised in the first place.
Graeme Dott and David Gilbert are other guaranteed no-shows.
Trump beat Zhang Anda to win the English Open final on Sunday, and both competitors faced a hasty journey east that lasted thousands of kilometres.
A preliminary qualifying stage in the Wuhan Open draw was held last month, so the majority of the last 64 lineup was already known.
The likes of Trump, Mark Selby, Mark Allen, Neil Robertson, and John Higgins all re-entered the fray in the second round.
World number one Ronnie O’Sullivan, meanwhile, had his first-round encounter held over to the venue stages.
2023 WUHAN OPEN DRAW
Round of 128 (bo9)
(held over fixtures)
Xing Zihao w/o Luca Brecel
Daniel Womersley 3-5 Gong Chenzhi
Si Jiahui 5-2 Wang Xinzhong
Ali Carter 5-2 Bai Yulu
Anthony Hamilton 5-0 Wang Xinbo
Zhou Yuelong 5-2 Baipat Siripaporn
Ding Junhui 5-3 Ashley Hugill
Ronnie O’Sullivan 5-1 Ken Doherty
Round of 64 (bo9)
Xing Zihao 5-4 Michael White
Stephen Maguire 5-2 Joe O’Connor
Ryan Day 5-4 Jackson Page
Marco Fu 3-5 Wu Yize
Ben Woollaston 1-5 Aaron Hill
Martin O’Donnell 5-1 John Higgins
Jordan Brown 3-5 Gong Chenzhi
Elliot Slessor 2-5 He Guoqiang
Mark Selby 4-5 Xu Si
Rod Lawler 2-5 Xiao Guodong
Robert Milkins 5-4 Hammad Miah
Tom Ford 5-1 Cao Yupeng
Jamie Jones 5-4 Ian Burns
Sanderson Lam 2-5 Barry Hawkins
Thepchaiya Un-Nooh 2-5 Matthew Selt
Oliver Lines 2-5 Judd Trump
Mark Allen 5-4 Mark Joyce
Si Jiahui 5-4 Jak Jones
Jack Lisowski 5-3 Scott Donaldson
Ishpreet Singh Chadha 2-5 Sam Craigie
Daniel Wells 1-5 Stuart Bingham
Jamie Clarke 1-5 Ali Carter
Anthony Hamilton 0-5 Zhou Yuelong
Liam Highfield 5-3 Neil Robertson
Ben Mertens 5-1 Dominic Dale
Chris Wakelin 2-5 Lyu Haotian
Zhang Anda w/o Mark Williams
Noppon Saengkham w/o Graeme Dott
Alfie Burden 3-5 Ashley Carty
Yuan Sijun 5-0 Ding Junhui
Pang Junxu 5-3 Stuart Carrington
Mark Davis 1-5 Ronnie O’Sullivan
Round of 32 (bo9)
Xing Zihao 1-5 Stephen Maguire
Ryan Day 2-5 Wu Yize
Aaron Hill 5-1 Martin O’Donnell
Gong Chenzhi 4-5 He Guoqiang
Xu Si 0-5 Xiao Guodong
Robert Milkins 2-5 Tom Ford
Jamie Jones 1-5 Barry Hawkins
Matthew Selt 0-5 Judd Trump
Mark Allen 5-4 Si Jiahui
Jack Lisowski 5-4 Sam Craigie
Stuart Bingham 4-5 Ali Carter
Zhou Yuelong 3-5 Liam Highfield
Ben Mertens 1-5 Lyu Haotian
Zhang Anda 5-1 Noppon Saengkham
Ashley Carty 2-5 Yuan Sijun
Pang Junxu 4-5 Ronnie O’Sullivan
Round of 16 (bo9)
Stephen Maguire 4-5 Wu Yize
Aaron Hill 5-3 He Guoqiang
Xiao Guodong 4-5 Tom Ford
Barry Hawkins 2-5 Judd Trump
Mark Allen 5-2 Jack Lisowski
Ali Carter 5-1 Liam Highfield
Lyu Haotian 5-2 Zhang Anda
Yuan Sijun 1-5 Ronnie O’Sullivan
Wu Yize 5-4 Aaron Hill
Tom Ford 0-5 Judd Trump
Mark Allen 2-5 Ali Carter
Lyu Haotian 5-1 Ronnie O’Sullivan
Wu Yize 1-6 Judd Trump
Ali Carter 6-2 Lyu Haotian
Judd Trump 10-7 Ali Carter
How to watch the Wuhan Open
Live coverage of the 2023 Wuhan Open will be available across Europe on Eurosport and discovery+.
Chinese viewers can watch on CCTV5, Migu, Youku, and Huya.com, while fans in other territories can watch via Matchroom.Live.
Featured image credit: WST