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World Snooker Championship

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The World Snooker Championship is the climax of snooker's annual calendar and the most important snooker event of the year in terms of prestige, prize money and world ranking points.

Contents

History

The first championship was held in 1927, and the legendary Joe Davis helped to organise the event. Matches were held at various venues, and the final took place at Camkin's Hall, Birmingham. Joe Davis won the event, beating Tom Dennis 20-11. His prize money was 6.10s. The highest break of the tournament was 60 by Albert Cope.

In subsequent years, finals were held at various venues. Joe Davis won every year until 1940, when he just beat his younger brother Fred 37-36. No tournaments were organised during the war years, and it only resumed in 1946 when Joe Davis won again for the 15th time, a record that still stands. Joe Davis never contested the world championship again, though he continued to play professional snooker. Some have speculated that he did not want to risk losing his unbeaten record.

Walter Donaldson won in 1947, but it was Fred Davis who dominated the next few years, winning eight times between 1948 and 1956.

In 1952, as a result of a disagreement between the governing bodies (the Billiards Association and Control Council), and some of the players, two tournaments were held. The World Matchplay, organised by the players and widely viewed as the "real" world championship, continued until 1957. The BA&CC event only lasted one year.

Snooker then went into a period of decline, and no tournament was held between 1958 and 1963. In 1964 it was revived on a challenge basis, a format which lasted until 1968. This meant that matches took place on an irregular basis, sometimes more than once a year. John Pulman, who had won in 1957, completely dominated during this period, overcoming all challengers in a total of seven matches.

The championship reverted back to a knockout tournament in 1969. That year it was won by John Spencer, but it was Ray Reardon who was to dominate over the coming years, winning six times between 1970 and 1978.

1976 was the first year the championships were sponsored by Embassy. The following year, the event moved to the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield, UK, and the BBC started providing major television coverage. The Crucible provides a unique atmosphere to the tournament, both for spectators and live television viewers. The venue seats less than a thousand people with the front row of seats only a few feet from the players. This was about the time snooker started attracting very large television audiences, and for most fans The Crucible is synonymous with snooker. The most successful players at The Crucible are Steve Davis, who won six times in the 1980s, and Stephen Hendry, who won seven times in the 1990s. Recently, the tournament has been more open, with three different winners in the last three years. The most famous final occurred in 1985, when Dennis Taylor beat Steve Davis 18-17 in one of the most closely contested matches of all time (see 1985 World Snooker Championship final for details).

In 2004, the championship offered a total of 1,378,920 in prize money, including 250,000 for the winner and 125,000 for the runner-up. A further 147,000 was on offer for a 147 break, though no player achieved this.

Recent United Kingdom legislation has placed restrictions on tobacco advertising, including sponsorship of sporting events. Embassy have a special dispensation to continue snooker sponsorship until 2005. During the 2005 Championship it was announced that the Championship would remain in Sheffield for at least another five years.

Winners

Year Winner Opponent Final score Season
1927 Joe Davis Tom Dennis 20 - 11 n/a
1928 Joe Davis Fred Lawrence 16 - 13 n/a
1929 Joe Davis Tom Dennis 19 - 14 n/a
1930 Joe Davis Tom Dennis 25 - 12 n/a
1931 Joe Davis Tom Dennis 25 - 21 n/a
1932 Joe Davis Clark McConachy 30 - 19 n/a
1933 Joe Davis Willie Smith 25 - 18 n/a
1934 Joe Davis Tom Newman 25 - 23 n/a
1935 Joe Davis Willie Smith 25 - 20 n/a
1936 Joe Davis Horace Lindrum 34 - 27 n/a
1937 Joe Davis Horace Lindrum 32 - 29 n/a
1938 Joe Davis Sidney Smith 37 - 24 n/a
1939 Joe Davis Sidney Smith 43 - 30 n/a
1940 Joe Davis Fred Davis 37 - 36 n/a
1941 - 1945 no tournament held
1946 Joe Davis Horace Lindrum 78 - 67 n/a
1947 Walter Donaldson Fred Davis 82 - 63 n/a
1948 Fred Davis Walter Donaldson 84 - 61 n/a
1949 Fred Davis Walter Donaldson 80 - 65 n/a
1950 Walter Donaldson Fred Davis 51 - 46 n/a
1951 Fred Davis Walter Donaldson 58 - 39 n/a
Billiards Association & Control Council
1952 Horace Lindrum Clark McConachy 94 - 49 n/a
World Matchplay
1952 Fred Davis Walter Donaldson 38 - 35 n/a
1953 Fred Davis Walter Donaldson 37 - 34 n/a
1954 Fred Davis Walter Donaldson 39 - 21 n/a
1955 Fred Davis John Pulman 37 - 34 n/a
1956 Fred Davis John Pulman 38 - 35 n/a
1957 John Pulman Jackie Rea 39 - 34 n/a
1958-1963 no tournament held
Challenge Matches
1964 John Pulman Fred Davis 19 - 16 n/a
1964 John Pulman Rex Williams 40 - 33 n/a
1965 John Pulman Fred Davis 37 - 36 n/a
1965 John Pulman Rex Williams 25 - 22 n/a
1965 John Pulman Fred Van Rensburg 39 - 12 n/a
1966 John Pulman Fred Davis 5 - 2 (matches) n/a
1968 John Pulman Eddie Charlton 39 - 34 n/a
Knockout tournaments
1969 John Spencer Gary Owen 37 - 24 n/a
1970 Ray Reardon John Pulman 37 - 33 n/a
1971 John Spencer Warren Simpson 37 - 29 n/a
1972 Alex Higgins John Spencer 37 - 32 n/a
1973 Ray Reardon Eddie Charlton 38 - 32 n/a
1974 Ray Reardon Graham Miles 22 - 12 1973/74
1975 Ray Reardon Eddie Charlton 31 - 30 1974/75
1976 Ray Reardon Alex Higgins 27 - 16 1975/76
The Crucible
1977 John Spencer Cliff Thorburn 25 - 12 1976/77
1978 Ray Reardon Perrie Mans 25 - 18 1977/78
1979 Terry Griffiths Dennis Taylor 24 - 16 1978/79
1980 Cliff Thorburn Alex Higgins 18 - 16 1979/80
1981 Steve Davis Doug Mountjoy 18 - 12 1980/81
1982 Alex Higgins Ray Reardon 18 - 15 1981/82
1983 Steve Davis Cliff Thorburn 18 - 6 1982/83
1984 Steve Davis Jimmy White 18 - 16 1983/84
1985 Dennis Taylor Steve Davis 18 - 17 1984/85
1986 Joe Johnson Steve Davis 18 - 12 1985/86
1987 Steve Davis Joe Johnson 18 - 14 1986/87
1988 Steve Davis Terry Griffiths 18 - 11 1987/88
1989 Steve Davis John Parrott 18 - 3 1988/89
1990 Stephen Hendry Jimmy White 18 - 12 1989/90
1991 John Parrott Jimmy White 18 - 11 1990/91
1992 Stephen Hendry Jimmy White 18 - 14 1991/92
1993 Stephen Hendry Jimmy White 18 - 5 1992/93
1994 Stephen Hendry Jimmy White 18 - 17 1993/94
1995 Stephen Hendry Nigel Bond 18 - 9 1994/95
1996 Stephen Hendry Peter Ebdon 18 - 12 1995/96
1997 Ken Doherty Stephen Hendry 18 - 12 1996/97
1998 John Higgins Ken Doherty 18 - 12 1997/98
1999 Stephen Hendry Mark Williams 18 - 11 1998/99
2000 Mark Williams Matthew Stevens 18 - 16 1999/00
2001 Ronnie O'Sullivan John Higgins 18 - 14 2000/01
2002 Peter Ebdon Stephen Hendry 18 - 17 2001/02
2003 Mark Williams Ken Doherty 18 - 16 2002/03
2004 Ronnie O'Sullivan Graeme Dott 18 - 8 2003/04
2005 Shaun Murphy Matthew Stevens 18 - 16 2004/05

Trivia

  • The greatest number of wins is fifteen, by Joe Davis. This was in an era when there were few professional players, and is unlikely to be beaten. In the modern game, the best record is that of Stephen Hendry, who has won seven times to date. Steve Davis won six times in the 1980s.
  • The first 147 in the championship was achieved by Cliff Thorburn in 1983.

Betting

nl:World Snooker Championship zh:斯诺克世界锦标赛

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