World Open Snooker: Odds and Betting Preview
The 2019/20 snooker season is now in full swing and, following the drama of the English Open, we’re heading back to China. The World Open is one of the more established tournaments on the circuit and it always attracts a strong field.
This year, it all gets underway on October 28th with the winner being crowned on Sunday November the 3rd so let’s look at the story behind this event before considering the runners and riders.
Date: October 28 – November 3, 2019
History and Format
The very first edition of the World Open was held back in 1982 although at the time, it was referred to as the Professional Players Tournament. Like most snooker events of the time, it was held in the UK and that situation remained right up until 2010. Further name changes gave us the LG Cup and the Grand Prix before the current switch to the World Open in 2010.
Haikou in China has played host since 2012 although there was no tournament in 2015. Mark Williams is our defending champion and along with John Higgins and Stephen Hendry, he’s the only man to have won this event on four separate occasions.
An earlier Round Robin format has long been ditched and in 2019, the World Open will be played as a straight knockout. The first four rounds, up to and including the quarter finals, will be brief affairs and a best of nine frames will decide the winner. The semi finals feature a race to six frames while the final itself is a longer, best of 19 affair.
That gives us all we need to know about the World Open but how do we pick a winner?
In the Frame
This is the fifth ranking event of the new season but we have two notable absentees to tell you about. Mark Williams has declined to defend his title while Neil Robertson famously missed qualifying after mistaking Barnsley in Gloucestershire for Barnsley in South Yorkshire.
Of the players that remain, Ronnie O’Sullivan is favourite to win and you can pick up the rocket at best industry odds of 11/4 with BetFred. O’Sullivan appeared subdued on the tables at the English Open and eventually went out in the Round of 16 to Mei Xiwen. Afterwards, Ronnie spoke candidly, as he always does, about the struggle to lift himself for opening rounds against low-ranked players and that would be a concern for punters this week.
Behind the favourite is Judd Trump who is on offer at a top price of 4/1 with Coral and Black Type while last week’s winner Mark Selby can be found at a best of 8/1 with Ladbrokes. Trump suffered a surprise defeat to Lee Walker at the English Open while Selby was also shaky early on before surviving and finding his form later in the competition. A 9-1 battering of David Gilbert in the final hints that the Jester from Leicester might just be approaching his best.
Mark Allen looked in good touch before going down by just one frame to Selby in the semi final. The Northern Irishman is listed at 9/1 with 10Bet and BetHard and there will be plenty of interest at that figure.
Shaun Murphy is also enjoying a renaissance this season and he can be claimed at 14/1 with Betway and Black Type while Stuart Bingham is next at best odds of 20/1 with BetFred. Moving through the pack, John Higgins is quoted at 20/1 with Ladbrokes and Coral while the same two bookmakers have odds of 22/1 down for both Kyren Wilson and Barry Hawkins.
There are some genuine contenders among the chasers and we’re not finished yet.
A number of qualifying rounds were still due to be played at the time of writing, so we have a very large field right now. The numbers go all the way down to Zhang Jiankang and Harvey Chandler who are both quoted at 3000/1 with Coral and Ladbrokes but we won’t be heading down that far.
At a much shorter price of 28/1 is David Gilbert who made the final of the English Open and was a narrow runner up to Mark Williams here last year. Gilbert is among a number of players who can upset the odds but the manner of that pasting by Selby could count against him.
Elsewhere, 2017 World Open Champion Ding Junhui looks tempting at best odds of 33/1 with Coral and BetFred while Jack Lisowski is available at a top price of 40/1 with Ladbrokes and Coral. Even without those two notable absentees, we have great depth to this field but who will come through to claim the trophy?
If you don’t want to take a punt in the outright winner market, there are other long term options for the World Open. Punters can stake on the names of the two finalists, who will win each section and who will reach the final.
Each Way betting is also available to an extent although you will need your selection to reach the final if this is going to pay out. And, of course, there will be match betting for all games in this tournament along with the usual set of snooker side markets.
As for the winner, Mark Selby’s win in the English Open makes him a genuine contender. He was far from convincing in the opening rounds but that demolition of David Gilbert in the final might just be the push he needs to rediscover his best form.
Ronnie O’Sullivan can never be ignored but the Rocket looked far happier with the commentary team than he did on the tables at Crawley. Judd Trump carries a reasonable price as second favourite but our tip for the top is Mark Allen.
The left hander likes to keep things simple and was in great form before that narrow 6-5 defeat to Selby last time out. It’s also worth noting that Allen is also a two-time winner of this event and few players can live with the Northern Irishman when he finds top form.
Alongside our potential winner, we’ll take Barry Hawkins as an Each Way punt. The Hawk can never be written off and odds of 20/1 offer some decent value.
- Mark Allen to win at 9/1 with 10Bet
- Barry Hawkins Each Way at 20/1 with Coral