Belgium’s Julien Leclercq reached his first world ranking event final at the 2023 Shoot Out, during his first full season as a professional.
Then aged 19, the talented left-hander defeated Peter Lines, Haydon Pinhey, Fergal O’Brien, Yuan Sijun, Michael Holt and Dominic Dale to reach the final, before losing out to England’s Chris Wakelin.
The run, along with other notable victories including against three-time world champion Mark Williams at the German Masters qualifiers, meant that Leclercq earned the Rookie of the Year accolade at the 2023 WST Awards.
Leclercq earned a place on the World Snooker Tour for the first time at the start of the 2022/23 season following his victory at the 2022 WPBSA Q Tour Playoff.
A former finalist at the EBSA European Under-18 and Under-21 Championships in 2021, the high-scoring left-hander defeated Alfie Lee, Michael Georgiou, Harvey Chandler and finally Alex Clenshaw 5-2 at the Q Tour Playoffs to turn professional.
He competed in the 2021 World Championship as an amateur qualifier, recording a 6-5 victory against Soheil Vahedi in the opening round before losing 6-2 to Chang Bingyu.
Leclercq previously compiled the tournament high break of 121 at the 2020 WSF Junior Open.