Snooker shenanigans

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Joined: 25 Apr 2006

PostPosted: Sun May 02, 2010 2:18 pm    Post subject: Snooker shenanigans Reply with quote

That's pretty shocking - the daft bastard's cards are marked now...
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Pitch Queen

Joined: 24 May 2007
Location: Sunshine State

PostPosted: Sun May 02, 2010 6:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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Joined: 25 Apr 2006

PostPosted: Tue May 04, 2010 1:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Neil Robertson grinds down Graeme Dott to take world crown
Robertson defeats Dott 18-13 in game of attrition
28-year-old becomes Australia's first Crucible winner

Clive Everton at The Crucible
The Guardian,
Tuesday 4 May 2010

Neil Robertson this morning became the first world champion from outside the British Isles since Canada's Cliff Thorburn 30 years ago. The Australian beat Scotland's Graeme Dott 18-13 in a final that finished at 12.54 when he won the last three frames. That matched the latest finish when John Higgins completed his victory over Mark Selby at the same time in Sheffield in 2007.

The climax to a fine championship was ruined by absurd BBC scheduling that proved nothing had been learned from Dott's victory over Peter Ebdon in the 2006 final or that of Higgins a year later. (I think the suggestion here is that the coverage ended before the game did!)

Robertson, Australia's first finalist since Eddie Charlton lost 31-30 to Ray Reardon in 1975, had led Dott 12-10 at the conclusion of a truncated penultimate session of their best-of-35-frames final. Dott, still in contention long after higher‑profile Scots such as Higgins, Stephen Hendry and Stephen Maguire had returned home, resumed 9-7 down after yesterday's play and seized the day's opening frame with a run of 79. Robertson shaded the second on the pink and then led 11-8 after a break of 82.

Since both players were engaged in the most important match of their lives, it was not surprising that extra care and more thought than usual was devoted to many shots, particularly by Robertson, whose average shot time for the afternoon session was an uncharacteristic 29 seconds. Dott's 23-second average was also above his norm.

In the 20th frame Robertson seemed to suffer a brain freeze after a foul by his opponent and inwardly debated various shot choices, two of them obviously feasible, for four minutes and 40 seconds before he gave up the struggle and put Dott in again. Dott, ironically but good humouredly, applauded this decision and opted for a none too difficult safety, which of course had been available to Robertson. Dott then took the frame after 34 minutes of play and thinking time.

As the day's first four frames had occupied 112 minutes, it seemed that there might be time for only one more, leaving 14 to play in the evening. But Robertson took the next frame with runs of 38 and 51 and Dott won the sixth with 112 to leave the Australian 12-10 ahead and facing the prospect of a long evening.

Australia's billiards and snooker reputation was second only to Britain's from the games' earliest competitive days until the disappearance from the circuit of the late Charlton, who was not only its foremost player for two decades but an indefatigable promoter of tournaments and exhibition tours. Robertson never met Steady Eddie but he has been known to demonstrate the off‑table vagueness of Walter Lindrum, the dominant billiard player of the 1930s, of whom Joe Davis said: "Walter's head is so full of billiards there's no room for anything else."

Robertson's vaguer moments have not been in Lindrum's class, but they have verged at times on the self-defeating. Two years ago, he pitched up at the Crucible casually dressed for a second‑round match against Maguire, only to discover as he changed into his arena clothes that he had forgotten his black shoes. Twenty minutes before his match he was in a shop, buying a new pair. He never recovered from losing the first nine frames. He believed he was playing on the second day of last October's grand prix in Glasgow and found out only in a chance conversation that his match was on the first. However, he went on to win that tournament, his fourth ranking title.


I saw some emotive clip of Robertson talking about how his parents had put up their life savings to help him become a professional - but that was irrelevant; he was clearly the most determined player over the championship, Australian or not.. I really enjoyed watching him whittle away at the contenders and even though Graeme Dott is Scottish it wasn't an issue - this is a game of brains and grit, and the Ozzie bugger won it fair and square.

pi-chau-thock - that's my snooker impression.
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