A popular victory for Ali Carter at the Hanteng Autos World Open yesterday was also enough to secure him a place at this season’s Champion of Champions event in Coventry.
An ever-present at the event since its return to the calendar in 2013, Carter will be looking to progress to the semi-final stages for the first time this November, having twice lost out to Neil Robertson and last year John Higgins at the Ricoh Arena.
Qualification for the event will be determined by the winners of professional tournaments dating back to Robertson’s victory at the event in 2015, events having been ordered in a specific line of priority.
Players currently qualified are set out below, numbered by qualification priority, not seeding:
1. 2015 Champion of Champions – Neil Robertson (1)
2. 2015 UK Championship – Neil Robertson
3. 2016 Masters – Ronnie O’Sullivan (2)
4. 2016 German Masters – Martin Gould (3)
5. 2016 Welsh Open – Ronnie O’Sullivan
6. 2016 Championship League Snooker – Judd Trump (4)
7. 2016 World Grand Prix – Shaun Murphy (5)
8. 2016 Players Championship – Mark Allen (6)
9. 2016 China Open – Judd Trump
10. 2016 World Championship – Mark Selby (7)
11. 2016 Indian Open (July) – Anthony McGill (8)
12. 2016 World Open (July) – Ali Carter (9)
13. 2016 Shanghai Masters (Sept) – tbc
14. 2016 European Championship (Oct) – tbc
15. 2016 English Open (Oct) – tbc
16. 2016 International Championship (Oct) – tbc
17. 2015 Gibraltar Open – Marco Fu (10)
18. 2016 Gdynia Open – Mark Selby
19. 2016 Riga Masters – Neil Robertson
20. 2016 Paul Hunter Classic (Aug) – tbc
21. 2016 Shoot Out – Robin Hull (11)
22. 2016 6 Reds World Championship (Sep) – tbc
23. 2016 World Seniors Championship – Mark Davis (12)
A second consecutive event won by a previously unqualified player, Carter’s World Open victory means that with 17 of the 23 qualifying events now completed, there are now 12 individual players currently set to qualify.
For Mark Davis, who currently holds the final place as his victory at the World Seniors Championship has been designated as the lowest order of priority, Carter’s victory edges him closer to missing out on a trip to Coventry. However, for him to do so five of the remaining six events would have to be won by players not already qualified.
At present, no more than a possible four additional players would have to be selected to top-up the field, should the remaining qualifying events be won by already-qualified players. With the likes of world number two and former runner-up Stuart Bingham, four-time world champion John Higgins, Ricky Walden, Ding Junhui and India runner-up Kyren Wilson not yet qualified though, there is still plenty of scope for new winners.
The next place will be up for grabs later this month at the 2016 Paul Hunter Classic, with the winner in Fuerth also assured of qualification for the Champion of Champions.