There were no ranking events during the week, which left a gap in the calendar for three Championship League Snooker groups to be conducted.
As ever with the invitational version of this tournament, there are seven groups featuring seven players in each, with every group winner advancing to the final round-robin stage.
Groups 1 and 2 were completed in January with English duo Stuart Bingham and Chris Wakelin moving forward to the Winners’ Group.
The three following groups took place over the last six days at the Morningiside Arena in Leicester.
Mark Selby was the winner of Group 3 on Tuesday, beating reigning Championship League Snooker winner John Higgins 3-0 in the final.
The pair had emerged from their league phase with four wins apiece from their six round-robin fixtures.
Selby then beat Kyren Wilson 3-0, the latter having earlier compiled a maximum 147 break during his match against Tom Ford.
Higgins recorded the same scoreline in his beating of Neil Robertson but could do nothing to prevent Selby in the final.
Ford and Gary Wilson were eliminated from the competition after finishing in the bottom two spots in the group.
Group 4 was an unusually tight affair, with five of the seven contenders finishing on three points after the league phase.
That proved to be enough for Neil Robertson, Barry Hawkins, and Kyren Wilson to progress to the group semi-finals behind table-topper John Higgins.
Ricky Walden lived to fight another day by finishing fifth, but a single frame cost Jimmy Robertson his place in the event as he was eliminated in sixth alongside Xiao Guodong in seventh.
In the knockouts, Neil Robertson and Wilson set up a final against one another courtesy of respective triumphs over Hawkins and Higgins.
The Australian then prevailed with a 3-2 scoreline – providing a boost to his otherwise disappointing 2023/24 campaign so far.
It was third time lucky for Higgins as the Scot, a record four-time winner of Championship League Snooker, triumphed in Group 5.
For the third time in a row, Higgins qualified for the knockout rounds with a record of four wins and two defeats.
In the last four, the Wizard of Wishaw then compiled his 13th career 147 break during his 3-2 victory over Fan Zhengyi.
Ricky Walden won the other semi-final thanks to a 3-1 defeat of Barry Hawkins, who had won all six of his round-robin encounters but couldn’t carry that form into the latter stages.
Walden quickly established a 2-0 lead over Higgins in the final, but the four-time former world champion fought back and snatched success in the deciding frame.
David Gilbert and Joe Perry were the two players eliminated after Group 5.
When is Group 6?
Walden, Hawkins, Fan, and fifth-placed Kyren Wilson will have another chance to qualify for the Winners’ Group when they participate in Group 6.
Ali Carter, Jack Lisowski, and Hossein Vafaei will be the newcomers entering the fray in what is the penultimate group before the final stages.
Group 6 takes place on February 26th and 27th, to be quickly followed by Group 7 and the Winners’ Group when the overall champion will be crowned.
In addition to prize money and various cash bonuses on offer in the tournament, the winner will also receive an invite to the Champion of Champions later this year.
Featured photo credit: WST