Gerard Greene is set for the final stages of the 2023 World Seniors Snooker Championship at the Crucible Theatre in May after defeating Philip Williams 4-2 in the final of the latest qualifying competition.
The 49-year-old Northern Irishman, who still plys his trade on the sport’s top tier, came through a field of nearly 70 professional and amateur players at the Crucible Sports and Social Club in Reading.
Greene endured a tough start to the tournament, coming through 3-2 deciding frame victories against James O’Sullivan (120 break in the decider) and Dave Allender before a more routine 3-0 success over Wayne Cooper – a two-time qualifier for this event in Sheffield.
Progressing to the final eight phase held on Sunday, former Players Tour Championship finalist Greene continued his winning streak of frames by defeating Gary Britton and Rodney Goggins both 4-0 in the quarter and semi-finals, respectively.
Advancing from the other side of the draw was 55-year-old Williams, who was looking to make it back to the sport’s grandest stage having qualified for each of the past two years.
In the semi-finals, the Welshman eliminated current UK Seniors champion and professional player Peter Lines, 4-2.
Greene claimed the opening frame of the final, but breaks of 52 and 62 helped Williams move 2-1 ahead. Williams looked like extending his lead when he produced a 55 in a crucial fourth frame, but Greene countered with a 71 clearance to pink to swing the pendulum back before securing the following two frames for victory and qualification.
It is the first time that Greene has qualified for the final stages of the World Seniors Snooker Championship, although he has qualified for the Crucible Theatre on five occasions before in the sport’s professional version. The last of those appearances came in 2010.
Article by Michael Day.