Pro snooker player throws a fit when an amateur player beats him

Apparently, if you drop out of the seedings (where you automatically qualify for a place in the tournament) you find yourself back in a gruelling nightmare. The money men will hire some hotel in the back of beyond, and the players have to play dozens of games, qualifiers for several different tournaments, back to back over days. It sounds grim; like having to do the Working Men’s Club circuit to become a stand-up comedian. It must be especially bad for some bloke whose white male privilege is fully intact.


Yet it is surprising how many UK comedians and entertainers proudly referred to having learnt and honed their craft doing just that. If you could survive some of those audiences you could survive anything.

But this snooker version of it does sound grim - concentrated into a week or two, with no audiences, just grinding out pot after pot in the snooker mill. At least they can no longer refer to ‘smoke-filled’ snooker halls, these days. Just the dank smell of so many dreams slowly being strangled at birth, with a chosen few given a very slim chance of success by being allowed into some ‘proper’ tournaments, where most of them will likely never get beyond the first round.


Not quite the same, but here’s a snooker fit:


I mean what you’re describing is the “pro sports qualification” circuit. It’s basically what every single person who goes into any pro sports has to do to be allowed to be on the “major circuit.” Whether that’s right or wrong is up for debate, but that’s the main complaint these guys have. Suddenly this thing they had to work very hard to get is being just given away because snooker tournaments can’t fill out their spots.


You lost the game. Soak it up. Honestly there should be some basic respect of your opponent.
A multi-millionaire from playing snooker?
Life of Reilly…



yes this is a complete sentence


“Chinese boys” sounds racist to me, because it’s lumping a whole group of people together, and dumping on them.


I’d argue “BRIAN BLESSED!” is more than a mere sentence, it’s a full holy text for a religion I’m eager to join.


I know nothing of the qualification process for professional snooker, but in other sports such as hockey it is a 15 year grind with very little likelihood of success.

However, if an amateur were to find themselves ‘called up’ to a professional game they would be roadkill. If that isn’t the case here it suggests that the professional qualification process isn’t working.


Or, you know, they could get a job.


I don’t know about hockey, but the FA Cup does that in English football every year. Some teams are roadkill, others perform well. Then there are the legendary Giant Killers, non-league teams who do the unbelievable and knock Premier League level teams out of the tournament.


"I am going to sound like a grumpy old man but that young man shouldn’t be in the tournament, "It is not fair, it is not right. “

If the “pro” can’t compete against amateurs, then they can’t compete, period. The so-called amateur was channeling Sun Tsu: If your opponent is of choleric temper, seek to irritate him. Pretend to be weak, that he may grow arrogant.

"This is our livelihood. This is our living. We are self-employed individuals. It is wrong, in my opinion, to walk into somebody who is not playing with the same pressures and concerns I am.

Sun Tsu would shake his head: There are five dangerous faults which may affect a general:
(1) Recklessness, which leads to destruction;
(2) cowardice, which leads to capture;
(3) a hasty temper, which can be provoked by insults;
(4) a delicacy of honor which is sensitive to shame;
(5) over-solicitude for his men, which exposes him to worry and trouble.


Since when did the snacks guy have his own comic strip!? /s

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Worse, it was your hypothetical.


Teams, sure. Individuals? Every once in awhile a fluke combination of injuries means that a local beer league goalie gets put into an NHL game for a period or two. They occasionally hold their own, they do not astound.

Then I guess it is a case of different sports being different


So I can probably shed a bit of light on this for those interested, although it’s worth being clear that he’s embarrassing himself a bit either way.

Snooker is a game of skill, but more than that it is a game of psychology. Similar to chess and other potentially drawn-out exchanges the pressure of the match and how you can apply that to each other is fairly critical in how the professional game is played. You can see good examples of this if you search around, Ronnie O’Sullivan, possibly the best player in the world, almost threw in the towel one year because someone was so effectively driving him insane with how they were playing.

So what he’s saying here makes sense in that a player without any pressure will essentially have an advantage - in fact this fact alone likely messed with his head enough that it impacted his performance.

Whether you care about that is up to you of course, I think there’s merit in his argument that it’s potentially problematic in professional competitions to have amateurs without that pressure - as he says it’s his livelihood and it genuinely provides an advantage in the competition.

The racist angle is almost definitely a stretch here. Chinese professionals have been a part of the sport for years and their skill highly regarded, I don’t see anything in the quote to suggest what you’re asserting so I’d reconsider that position as it’s a bit unfair on the person that made the comment.


I heard an interview with a player who had dropped out of the seeds and back in to the qualifying scrum. He’s just got knocked out of a tournament by a younger player, and was in the queue for the hotel’s single telephone. He found himself standing behind the guy who’d just taken him out of the running for prise money and had to listen to, “Hey, mum, you’ll never guess who I’ve just beaten!”

The whole situation sounds like a crossover between Sartre and Ken Loach.


When you’re a pro it’s your job to perform to the best of your abilities, no matter what.