2013 Masters

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Post by The Special Juan on Tue 08 Jan 2013, 8:14 pm

First topic message reminder :

Here's the draw: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2013_Masters_%28snooker%29

I thought I'd do something different and go through the contenders and rate their chances. I'll fail spectacularly but it'll be fun!!

Name: Neil Robertson
World Ranking: 5
Seeding: 1
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Hard-hitting
Chance of winning: High. Robbo's looking somewhat back to his best and as defending champion I fancy his chances of defending the title. He knows how to win this event, which is probably the second hardest event on tour to win, and has taken to the Ally Pally well since the event moved from the Wembley Arena. He faces Ding in the first round who may or may not turn up. Robbo will have a good run here and will top the year-end rankings (not the end of season rankings).

Name: Ding Junhui
World Ranking: 11
Seeding: 10
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Streaky
Chance of winning: Medium. Ding is undoubtedly one of the best players on the tour but can sometimes go walkabout mentally. He is as good as any other player but is fragile under pressure and is not in good form at the moment. Against Robertson in the first round I don't fancy his chances and think it will be another first round exit on the BBC this season for him.

Name: Mark Allen
World Ranking: 8
Seeding: 8
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Controversial
Chance of winning: Low. Whilst no one doubts Mark Allen's ability, it's his off-the-table comments which have gathered more media attention than his on-the-table work. He's been at loggerheads with nearly everyone in the game (fellow players, Barry Hearn, China) and I think this has hampered his game. I'm a big fan of Mark but until he gets his head back in the game I can't see him winning one of the big prizes.

Name: Mark Davis
World Ranking: 16
Seeding: 16:
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Dangerous
Chance of winning: Low. For years Mark Davis was a journeyman; close but no cigar when it came to the Top 16. However, with the introduction of more tournaments, crucially those of a shorter format, Mark has been punching above his weight and is now inside that elusive Top 16. Whilst he is a danger man over the shorter format as he proved at the UK Championship, he normally is found out over the longer format. Although up until the final is first to 6, the final is first to 10 so even if he does make the final, he will not win. I think he will get past Mark Allen in the first round though.

Name: Shaun Murphy
World Ranking: 4
Seeding: 5
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Fluid
Chance of winning: High. This is the title Shaun wants above all. The chance to join those 7 players who have won the World Championship, the UK Championship and the Masters. Murphy's potting is excellent, his safety is up there with the best, he can win scrappy frames which has made him one of the elite players on the circuit and is simply awesome when in full fluid, especially with that wonderful, wonderful cue action. He may not be the most popular person with the snooker audiences but he is a dangerous player and one who I think will do very well in this tournament. Will he win it? He's definitely in the mix.

Name: Ricky Walden
World Ranking: 12
Seeding: 11
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Nervous
Chance of winning: Low. Poor Ricky, he always looks so nervous!! Despite being a two-time ranking event winner (in China at the start of the season), he's underperformed in the big events in Britain; both of his major wins have come in China. He faces Murphy in the first round and although Ricky can beat anyone on his day, Shaun's in form after reaching the final of the UK Championship last month and although I'm a fan of Ricky and want him to do well, I can't see him winning.

Name: John Higgins
World Ranking: 4
Seeding: 4
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Great
Chance of winning: Medium. John's chances are lower in this event compared to all other events because simply, for some unknown reason, he either reaches the finals or loses in the first round. This was perhaps due to the old arena which John admitted he didn't like, but there is something about the tournament which makes him susceptible to early losses. Make no mistake; if John Higgins brings his A game, he wins, but I can only judge him on his past record and despite being a 2 time winner, I don't see him winning, unfortunately for myself.

Name: Ali Carter
World Ranking: 15
Seeding: 14
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Steady
Chance of winning: Medium. Ali's a dark horse for this tournament. A fully fit Ali Carter is a dangerous man. He's a former World Number 2, two time Crucible Finalist and two time major winner. When he plays at his best he's very difficult to beat. He tried to grind Ronnie in the World Final which was never going to work against a focused Rocket and would have had more of a chance playing his normal game I think. He faces Higgins in the first round which is winnable but a potential QF final match v Murphy might have Ali thinking about their last meeting...

Name: Mark Selby
World Ranking: 1
Seeding: 3
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Consistent
Chance of winning: High. Despite being a two time winner of this event in 2007 and 2009 (with another final appearance in between), his recent UK Championship will let both Selby and his opponents know he can win on the big stage. Selby's won PTC events this year (including the last one in Munich) and has now, in my opinion, evolved into the complete all round player, second only to Higgins. People might complain about Selby's "slow play" but through sheer consistency he is rightfully the current world number 1 and I think he will make the final v Robertson.

Name: Stuart Bingham
World Ranking: 10
Seeding: 9
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: "Purple"
Chance of winning: Low. At the UK Championship there was a lot talk about Bingham being the most in-form player in the land. It was true then but not now I feel. Despite having some good results on the BBC over the past 18 months I think Bingham's purple patch is over. He'll be in the Top 16 for a while longer I'm sure but do I see him as a major contender for this title? No and I reckon Selby will send him home in the first round, although if he beats Selby he'll have a run...

Name: Mark J Williams
World Ranking: 6
Seeding: 6
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Enigmatic
Chance of winning: Low. Is there a snooker player in such a rut as MJW? He's in arguably the worst form of his career; falling down the rankings every update (he was World Number 1 not that long ago!!) and hasn't won anything for nearly a year now. Of course MJW on top form is a dangerous opponent for anyone but the fact is he's not and his first round opponent, Matthew Stevens, will know this and will look to capitalise on this. I think he will and a first round exit looms for one of the game's greats.

Name: Matthew Stevens
World Ranking: 13
Seeding: 13
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Rejuvenated
Chance of winning: Medium. Matthew is one of the game's great underachievers, despite being an ex-UK and Masters Champion. If he hadn't gone walkabout during the middle of his career who knows how many titles he'd have ended up with? The introduction of the PTC's and the general increase in matches has helped Matthew tremendously in getting back to near his best. In this tournament, I think he will beat Williams in the first round and will have a good chance of reaching the semi-finals. He's a dark horse for this title.

Name: Stephen Maguire
World Ranking: 7
Seeding: 7
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Underachiever
Chance of winning: Low. People make talk about Ronnie, for all his talent, being the game's biggest underachiever but I think that title goes to Stephen. For such a brilliant player, all he has to really show for his career is a solitary UK Championship victory many years ago. He's shown signs of making a comeback, especially this year with some PTC finals, but I don't see him threatening the top players this time around and with a fellow countryman who's returning to form in this first round, Stephen might be lucky to escape first round defeat.

Name: Graeme Dott
World Ranking: 14
Seeding: 12
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Dogged
Chance of winning: Low. One of my favourite quotes about Graeme Dott is this: "Dogged Scot. Once forgot to don pants for match." No word sums up Graeme Dott like "dogged"; this man has reached 3 World Finals (winning 1) with sheer grit and determination. He's been in such poor form recently that I wouldn't have given him a hope v Maguire but he reached a PTC final a few days ago (losing in the final against Selby) which makes me think he can win his first round tie. He's not great over a short format but this match is 50-50 and either player can win it.

Name: Judd Trump
World Ranking: 2
Seeding: 2
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Flair (is flair an adjective? I don't care)
Chance of winning: High. Judd Trump. The ex-World Number 1. The current World Number 2. Last year's UK Champion. This year's Shanghai Masters finalist. I can throw as many sentence fragments as I want in this paragraph but in short, Judd Trump is dangerous no matter what the format, no matter what the tournament, no matter what the opponent. Can he win this title? Yes. Will he win this title? Possibly. He's not my favourite to do so but he could quite easily blitz everyone in his way. I think he'll reach the semi-finals at least.

Name: Barry Hawkins
World Ranking: 17
Seeding: 15
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Journeyman
Chance of winning: Low. For years Barry was hovering about the Top 16, much the same as Mark Davis, but never really made it in. He's been in and out over the past 2/3 years and is in this event due to the circumstances surrounding Stephen Lee. Therefore, there is no pressure on him but unfortunately for Barry he's drawn Trump in the first round. He can win against Trump but on TV at the Masters? I don't see it and I think the current Australian Open Champion leaves us in the first round.

My prediction: Robertson beats Selby in the final 10-8 (although it could just as easily be the other way around).
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Post by The Special Juan on Sun 20 Jan 2013, 8:47 pm

Dave. wrote:
The Special Juan wrote:This match is a great advert for modern snooker. Two great break builders who aren't enormous fatties and don't drink or smoke during frames.

What do you think this is? Darts?

I've been impressed by the Jester.

It's not quite Terry v Big Bill.

So have I. He's favourite to win the World Championship now, I think.
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Post by Dave. on Sun 20 Jan 2013, 8:55 pm

The Special Juan wrote:
Dave. wrote:
The Special Juan wrote:This match is a great advert for modern snooker. Two great break builders who aren't enormous fatties and don't drink or smoke during frames.

What do you think this is? Darts?

I've been impressed by the Jester.

It's not quite Terry v Big Bill.

So have I. He's favourite to win the World Championship now, I think.

Ahh that's right, Terry did smoke during a frame! Where have him and Willie gone?

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Post by The Special Juan on Sun 20 Jan 2013, 8:58 pm

We'll hear from Terry at the Welsh Open I think and as for WT, I have no idea. Maybe the BBC fired him for hanging out with Sky.

Poor Neil, he's come up against Selby at 9/10.
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Post by The Special Juan on Sun 20 Jan 2013, 9:06 pm

This is worrying for Neil. He's not turned up tonight and if he loses 10-3 he has no one to blame except himself.
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Post by The Special Juan on Sun 20 Jan 2013, 9:30 pm

Poor Ken. "We all miss important balls". Yes we do Ken, but how ironic that you should say that?
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Post by The Special Juan on Sun 20 Jan 2013, 9:37 pm

Barry needs to learn to run snooker without speaking because every time he does, he sounds like a prat.
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Post by The Special Juan on Sun 20 Jan 2013, 9:39 pm

However I'd like to see an FA Cup-style tournament like the UK Open in darts.
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Post by The Special Juan on Sun 20 Jan 2013, 10:01 pm

Neil's come out fighting. Game on (hopefully).
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Post by The Special Juan on Sun 20 Jan 2013, 10:39 pm

Nice of you to turn up Neil. Don't embarrass me in front of the v2 folks now....
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Post by EdWoodjr on Sun 20 Jan 2013, 10:54 pm

Selby certainly gets his share of flukes. A class act though. No-one can possibly deny that.

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Post by Taylorman on Mon 21 Jan 2013, 12:28 am

Robbo had his chances and kept turning down attacking opportunities for % play. Selby did get the rubs but was also more consistent. Well won and easy fave for the worlds if ronnies opts out, particularly with Trumps and Murphys recent efforts. Higgins was ok and was sublime in the second half at Shanghai.

Well done Selby, hard luck Robbo...

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Post by Guest on Mon 21 Jan 2013, 9:26 am

The Special Juan wrote:Name: Mark Selby
World Ranking: 1
Seeding: 3
Adjective I'd use to describe this player: Consistent
Chance of winning: High. Despite being a two time winner of this event in 2007 and 2009 (with another final appearance in between), his recent UK Championship will let both Selby and his opponents know he can win on the big stage. Selby's won PTC events this year (including the last one in Munich) and has now, in my opinion, evolved into the complete all round player, second only to Higgins. People might complain about Selby's "slow play" but through sheer consistency he is rightfully the current world number 1 and I think he will make the final v Robertson.

My prediction: Robertson beats Selby in the final 10-8 (although it could just as easily be the other way around).
Kudos mate, that was quite a prediction! Apart from the score in the final, even picking the finalists these days is tough clap

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Post by daraghj82 on Mon 21 Jan 2013, 11:14 am



robbo never got going and just seemed to break down so much, he did well to come back to 8-6 , i think he regretted no going for that long red in the 15th frame, fair play to mark , part 2 of the 3 bbc majors won now and imo i think he could collect his first wc in may

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Post by gboycottnut on Mon 21 Jan 2013, 4:12 pm

daraghj82 wrote:

robbo never got going and just seemed to break down so much, he did well to come back to 8-6 , i think he regretted no going for that long red in the 15th frame, fair play to mark , part 2 of the 3 bbc majors won now and imo i think he could collect his first wc in may

Well if the current World Champion Ronnie O'Sullivan decides to play at the Crucible in May, he is still the man to beat and not even a Mark Selby in his current form can stop/beat O'Sullivan over the best of 35 frame long format in a World Final.

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Post by The Special Juan on Mon 21 Jan 2013, 4:38 pm

Cheers Azzy. I'm surprised by how poorly Robbo played during the final but Selby was excellent.
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Post by VTR on Mon 21 Jan 2013, 4:56 pm

gboycottnut wrote:
Well if the current World Champion Ronnie O'Sullivan decides to play at the Crucible in May, he is still the man to beat and not even a Mark Selby in his current form can stop/beat O'Sullivan over the best of 35 frame long format in a World Final.

Ok I'll bite!

He'd have to get there first. An Ebdon type could easily grind him down in the qualifiers or the earlier rounds. Anyway he's very unlikely to be playing at The Crucible sadly!

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