UK Snooker Championship 2021: Mark Selby and Mark Williams agree with Shawn Murphy

place: York Barbican dates: November 23 – December 5 coverage: BBC One, BBC Two, BBC iPlayer, BBC Red Button, BBC Sport website and app
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Former world champions Mark Selby and Mark Williams agree with Sean Murphy’s criticism of amateurs playing in professional events and “stand by.”

Murphy’s comments came after him Shock 6-5 UK Championship Losing to China’s Si Jiahui, who was competing as an amateur at the 128-player York field.

The Englishman has been criticized on social media for his views.

But four-time world champion Selby told BBC Sport: “I think a lot of players agree with him.”

The world number one added: “Because [Shaun Murphy] He said it after he lost, people might have thought it was a sour grape and wouldn’t have said it if he had won – but I stand by everything he said.

“There is a reason for the existence of Q School to try to get into it [the professional tour]And if you don’t continue, you have to wait another year and play in the amateur events.”

Selby advanced safely through the first round of the UK Championship with a 6-2 victory over Ross Muir that included breaks 67, 93 and 95.

The 46-year-old Williams, who has won three world titles in an glittering career since turning professional in 1992, echoed those comments and suggested the current system – vigorously defended in a statement from the World Snooker Tour – was not fit for purpose.

“I’ve been saying that for years,” added Williams, after taking two centuries of rest after beating China’s Li Beifan 6-3.

“It’s 128 [man] round and we never got 128 entries. I think it should definitely be smaller. I think if you do the main round it should guarantee you a living. The only way to do that is to cut it off.

“Where’s the development? There aren’t a lot of UK guys coming in because they’re playing Ronnie O’Sullivan, John Higgins and Judd Trump in the first round of tournaments. How are you going to make progress in a draw like that?”

“I wrote [Jason] Ferguson [World Snooker chairman] The other day she says, “If you’re going to get refills, turn off the refills at every tournament.” How is this fair? There is no pressure and they roll freely.”

This season, there are only 122 professional players in the World Snooker Tour, mainly because a number of amateur tournaments offering tour cards as prizes have not been played as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

This means that the best amateurs, ranked according to their performance in Q School – where Si came fifth – effectively guarantee a place in the 128 tournaments.

Wilson makes the most of progress and O’Sullivan

World number 21 Gary Wilson posted the fourth-maximum break of his career as a 6-2 win over Ian Burns.

Wilson, who has not made it past the last 16 in the UK Championships, will collect £15,000 for the highest break if he is not tied for 147 during the tournament.

Ronnie O’Sullivan He achieved an impressive 139 clearance to take the opening frame against the amateur Michael White.

However, the Welshman forced him to work for his win, which brought him back 3-3 before the seven-time champion knocked out three frames in a row to seal the match.

Meanwhile, China Deng Junhui, Who won the cup on three occasions, broke 129 en route to a routine 6-2 win over his compatriot chang you.

Thailand Thibchaya on Noah He achieved five centuries of rest en route to an overall 6-1 victory over the former seven-time world champion Stephen Hendry.

On Noah became the fourth man in history to accumulate five centuries in a best of 11 match, after Fergal O’Brien, Judd Trump and Matthew Celt.

“I just sat down and liked it,” Hendry said. “He played beautifully, it was a clinic in a break building.”

David Gilbert He broke 131 in a convincing win against him 6-1 Alfie Borden And Barry Hawkins I comfortably advanced 6-1 against the women’s world champion Ryan Evans.

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