World Snooker has confirmed that the qualifying rounds for the World Championship will revert to best of 19 frames, but there has been no move on prize money for first-round losers at tournaments.
The first three rounds of qualifying for the World Championship had been trimmed to best of 11 frames for the past couple of seasons, and it did not sit well with a lot of players.
Following a consultation, World Snooker has made the announcement that all rounds will return to the longer format.
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A statement read: “Based on feedback from the WPBSA and players, WST has taken the decision to revert to best of 19 frames from next season’s qualifying event, to take place in April 2023.”
The governing body also confirmed prize money for a host of events - with the Turkish Masters, British Open, European Masters, English Open, Northern Ireland Open, Scottish Open, German Masters and Welsh Open all seeing an increase in total prize money.
What has not shifted is the amount players receive for losing in the first round. That figure, somewhat controversially, remains at zero.
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A number of high-profile figures in the game, Ronnie O’Sullivan included, have called for players to at least be given expenses for losing in the first round to ensure they are not playing at a loss.
But WST has not shifted its position, with a spokesperson saying: “We have made prize money increases to various events and we have made amendments which are aimed at creating a more balanced prize money ranking system. These changes are based on discussions and feedback from players and the WPBSA Players Board.
“Our two biggest ranking events, the World Championship and UK Championship, now have tiered structures and all players inside the top 80 are guaranteed prize money in those events.
“We reward excellence and in most events players must win matches to earn prize money.
“We are constantly aiming to provide as many tournaments and earning opportunities as possible for all players.”
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