The Masters trophy is one of the most sought-after on the snooker circuit and 2013’s tournament at Alexandra Palace in London is set to be hotly contested. Read on to find out who’s tipped for glory, as well as some of the highlights from recent years…
The Masters: a brief history
1975: The Masters started when just 10 of the world’s top players were invited to play at the West Centre Hotel
1984: Kirk Stevens made history by getting the first ever maximum break in the semi-final against Jimmy White (who went on to take the title)
1988: Mike Hallett suffered the most crushing defeat in the tournament’s history when he lost 0-9 when playing an excruciating match against Steve Davis
1994: Stephen Hendry’s record, who had won five successive titles since his very first appearance, was finally broken after coming up against Alan McManus in a nail biting-final frame decider
1995: Ronnie O’Sullivan emerged as the new hero of snooker when he became The Masters’ youngest winner, after decisively beaten John Higgins 9-3
2000: Ken Doherty was left kicking himself: he only needed to pot the black to win, but missed — letting Mark Williams claim the title that year
2005: Ronnie O’Sullivan bounced back from his defeat the previous year to produce an impressive performance, beating John Higgins 10-3 in the final
2007: Chinese youngster Ding Junhui became only the second person to get a maximum break at The Master’s, but was beaten 10-3 by Ronnie O’Sullivan in the final
2012: Neil Robertson (who was ranked number four at the time) won the Masters after beating Shaun Murphy 10-6
We have put together a time line looking at all past winners of the masters for you to have a look through.
- Judd Trump criticised the sport for its rigidity, complaining about the number of fines players get and being held back from showing his personality. He said that all of this was making the sport ‘boring’. He also claimed that there was a lot of bad-spirited rivalry, with emerging players hoping he does badly.
- Mark Allen stirred the pot when he branded Chinese players ‘cheats’ after losing to Cao Yupeng
- Ali Carter has spoken out against Judd Trump’s freestyle approach to snooker, claiming his success was down to a series of flukes
Who’s’ tipped to win in 2013
Valued opinions a paid surveys company showed the general public are siding with Judd Trump is the clear favourite to win this year’s tournament with 25% of the popular vote and Ronnie O’Sullivan a close second with 23% of those polled. 15% have faith in John Higgins while only 8% think Neil Robertson could retain his title.
Stephen Maguire is a clear underdog in the public’s mind: only 1.5% of those polled thought he would win. We have put together a storify looking at some of the great tweets and images that people have been sharing over the course of the competition.
Who do you think will win it this year? Which face-off are you looking forward to the most.