2017 UK Championship Snooker Preview And Tips
The UK Championship (November 28 – December 10) was first played in 1977 in Blackpool, but since 2011 it has been played at the Barbican Centre in York, where it has been won by Judd Trump (2011), Mark Selby (2012 and 2016), Neil Robertson (2013 and 2015) and Ronnie O’Sullivan (2014).
It is the first of the three events that make up Snooker’s Triple Crown, along with The Masters and the World Championship. Only three players have achieved the Triple Crown by winning all 3 events on the same year: Steve Davies (1987/88), Stephen Hendry (1989/90 and 1995/96) and Mark Williams (2002/2003).
The event starts with matches being played over the best-of-11 frames, and continues in the same format all the way until the final which is played over the best-of-17 frames.
2017 UK Championship Snooker Betting Guide
Ronnie O’Sullivan 4/1, Mark Selby 5/1, Judd Trump 13/2, John Higgins, Ding Junhui 14/1, Neil Robertson 22/1, Shaun Murphy 25/1, Mark Williams 50/1
2017 UK Championship Snooker Form
The UK Championship is widely considered to be snooker’s second-biggest tournament after the World Championship, and it is usually won by own of the best players. Therefore, with all the top-7 players in the betting having won at least once this season, it is hard to see one of the lower-ranked players bridging the gulf in class and making a name for themselves. However, there may be a few takers of the 50/1 being offered about last week’s Northern Ireland Open winner Mark Williams, who was winning his second tournament of the season after his earlier triumph in the 6-Reds.
Meanwhile, Ronnie O’Sullivan may have suffered a shock defeat last week, but the Rocket has looked in devastating form in winning the Shanghai Masters the week before, adding to his previous month’s win in the English Open – and he’s a worthy favourite.
O’Sullivan trounced Trump in the final in Shanghai but, as Trump had won the previous week’s European Open, it would be no surprise if Trump also upped his game here. 2008 Champion Shaun Murphy will also be fancying his chances after beating O’Sullivan in final of the Champion Of Champions, and he may well win the second quarter at the expense of this year’s Indian Open winner John Higgins. Dual winner Neil Robertson may also find his best-form again here, but will need to as he’s not made a final since winning the Hong Kong Masters in July.
The problem for Robertson is he’s in the same quarter as World Number One Mark Selby, and Selby has made a habit of peaking for the biggest ranking tournaments in the last few seasons, winning 3 of the last 4 Triple Crown Events, as well as back-to-back renewals of the International Championship.
2017 UK Championship Snooker Summary
It’s rare that both Selby and O’Sullivan turn up here in as good a form as they do this season, and it could be worth backing both of these two giants of the game. That may be playing it safe but, as they have won 3 of the last 5 renewals between them, coupling them at odds-against looks fantastic value. However, there looks to be an even better value-bet, which is backing an O’Sullivan/Selby Final. Not only did the pair meet in last year’s final, but they have contested 3 of the last 10 Triple Crown Event Finals – and there was some tasty looking 9/1 available at the time of writing.
2017 UK Championship Snooker Tips
O’Sullivan win @ 4/1 BWin
Selby win @ 9/2 Coral, Ladbrokes
O’Sullivan/Selby Final @ 9/1 SkyBet