Top 64 Race Hots Up In Sheffield

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Round one has now been completed at the 2015 Betfred World Championship qualifiers and results for players both in and outside of the top 64 have left the position finely poised ahead of the last 80 stage on Sunday and Monday.

Defeats in Sheffield for Rory McLeod, Nigel Bond, Jamie Cope and Alfie Burden, the four players provisionally ranked between 61-64 at the end of the season as it stands, have left them unable to add further to their tallies this season.

With all of the 13 players immediately behind them in the list still in the tournament, it now looks likely that at least one of them will climb up into the top 64 this week, with Alfie Burden currently the one on the borderline in 64th.

Amongst those chasers are Joe Swail and Stuart Carrington, both of whom require just one more win as it stands to move ahead of Alfie, although regardless they would currently be safe for next year regardless thanks to their positions on the European Order of Merit.

Requiring a top 64 place if they are to stay on tour however are both Robin Hull and Marcus Campbell, who are also within a win of the top 64 at present and do not have the fall-back of another qualification result other than Q School.

Also keeping a close eye on results will be the likes of James Cahill and Elliot Slessor, with James currently set to take the final spot from the European Order of Merit, while Elliot needs results to go his way if he is to also claim a spot via that route.

Simply put, Slessor requires a player above him on the European Order of Merit such as Swail to overtake Alfie Burden, meaning that Slessor would take Swail’s European place, Joe would take Alfie’s top 64 place and Alfie would take Cao Xinlong’s place on the Asian Order of Merit.

That is just one of many scenarios that could yet play out over the next four anxious days in Sheffield…