Ronnie O'Sullivan - 2007 The Masters
|Sunday 10 January||M.Selby v D.Junhui||M.Fu v P. Ebdon||M.King v J.White|
|Monday 11 January||M.Williams v R.McLeod||S.Murphy v S.Hendry||S.Maguire v M.King|
|Tuesday 12 January||R.O'Sullivan v N.Robertson||A.Carter v M.Williams|
|Wednesday 13 January||J.Higgins v M.Allen||R.Day v J.Perry|
|Thursday 14 January||QF1||QF2|
|Friday 15 January||QF3||QF4|
|1430||1930||Saturday 16 January||SF1||SF2|
|1400||2000||Sunday 17 January||FINAL||FINAL|
All matches except for the FInal are the best of 11 frames. The Final is the best of 19 frames (8/11).
Tickets for The Masters are now on sale. The box office number is 0844 815 0815
THE MASTERS TOURNAMENT HISTORY
The first Masters Snooker event was held in 1975 at the Wembley Conference Centre in London. Benson & Hedges innaugurated the event and continued their sponsorship of this prestigious tournament for the next 29 years until they were forced to withdraw due to government regulations, their sponsorship ended in 2003. The next year the event was without a sponsor until Riley's took over the event for one year in 2005. In 2006 the event was sponsored by Saga Insurance who have now agreed to continue sponsorship for the next three years
In 1986 the Canadian player Cliff Thorburn became the first player to win the event three times when he beat Jimmy White 9-5, he also became the first player to successfully defend his Masters title.
In 1987 the event was marred by crowd trouble during the match between Alex Higgins and Terry Griffiths when supporters of Higgins became a little too enthusiastic. In the quarter-final match between Higgins and Johnson both players appealed for calm. The final between Dennis Taylor and Alex Higgins went down in history as Higgins led the match at 8-5 with one frame to win the title. It seemed as though the Irishman had the match in his pocket and the capacity crowd were going wild, but Taylor was not easily discouraged and fought back winning the next four frames to claim victory.
2001 Paul Hunter
For Mike Hallett 1988 was the year to forget as Steve Davis whitewashed him 9-0 in the final. Davis had already won 6 major events that season and this became the 23rd time that he had whitewashed an opponent, the previous one being Dennis Taylor 9-0 in the 1981 Jameson International.
Stephen Hendry appeared as a contender to the reign of Steve Davis at the start of the 1988 season and displayed his talent as he beat John Parrott 9-6 in 1989 to become the youngest player to have won the Masters and the first to do so on his debut appearance for nine years.
Hendry was to keep the title for the next four years before fellow Scot Alan McManus broke his run in 1994 beating him 9-8, making a 76 break in the deciding frame, it was Alan's first major title.
The 1998 final was the second that was decided on a re-spotted black ball as Williams pulled off a surprising and memorable victory against Stephen Hendry to win 10-9. At 9-6 down it looked as though Hendry would lift his 7th Masters title but Williams dug in and drew level, but at 56-0 down in the decider it was looking ominous for the Welsh left-hander. The frame ended with the score level and forced a re-spotted black the first in a major final since Spencer had beaten Reardon 9-8 in the first B&H Masters back in 1975.
It was the UK championship which launched the career of Davis but Hendry, the young pretender proved too strong for him in memorable finals in 1989 (16-12) and 1990 which the Scot won 16-15 in one of the best matches ever seen.
'Plan-B' became a by-word for Paul Hunter's string of Master's wins after he beat Fergal O'Brien 10-8 in 2001. O'Brien held a 6-2 advantage over Hunter after the first session and looked to take the title when the match resumed in the evening, but Hunter after indulging in some mid-session relaxation with girlfriend Lyndsey Fell came back rejuvenated and from 7-3 down won the match after making four centuries. Paul later attributed his success to this, which he described as 'plan-B'. It became the first time that the Masters made many of the front pages of the national newspapers. Paul went on to win another two Masters titles before his tragic and untimely death through cancer in 2006.
Millions of viewers watched the epic 2004 final between O'Sullivan and Hunter, as Hunter claimed his third Masters title. The BBC audience peaked at 5 million with an average figure of 3.4 million in the battle between the dynamic young stars of today's snooker. Hunter completed his compelling 10-9 victory just before midnight.
The next year saw O'Sullivan in the final again but this time in a one-sided match as he demolished John Higgins 10-3.
This situation was not to be repeated in their return match the next year. The final which John won 10-9 has been fittingly described as the best final ever held at Wembley and sadly also the last because as the lights went out in the arena, the builders moved in to demolish the Conference Centre.
In 2007 the event was held just a few yards away in the Wembley Arena, ensuring that the event remained in London. The event was once again sponsored by Saga Insurance who have renewed their support of this event until 2009.
Ronnie O'Sullivan won the event for the third time beating Chinese prodigy Ding Junhui 10-3 in an exhibition of snooker which was described as awesome. Junhui put his name in the history books of the Masters by becoming the second player to compile a 147 maximum - the first was Kirk Stevens in 1984 - during his match against Anthony Hamilton in the first round.
|2010 - Mark Selby bt R.O'Sullivan 10-9||1992 - Stephen Hendry bt J.Parrott 9-4|
|2009 - Ronnie O'Sullivan bt M.Selby 10-8||1991 - Stephen Hendry bt M.Hallett 9-8|
|2008 - Mark Selby bt S.Lee 10-3||1990 - Stephen Hendry bt J.Parrott 9-6|
|2007 - Ronnie O'Sullivan bt D.Junhui 10-3||1989 - Stephen Hendry bt J.Parrott 9-6|
|2006 - John Higgins bt R.O'Sullivan 10-9||1988 - Steve Davis bt M.Hallett 9-0|
|2005 - Ronnie O'Sullivan bt J.Higgins 10-3||1987 - Dennis Taylor bt A.Higgins 9-8|
|2004 - Paul Hunter bt R.O'Sullivan 10-9||1986 - Cliff Thorburn bt J.White 9-5|
|2003 - Mark Williams bt S.Hendry 10-4||1985 - Cliff Thorburn bt D.Mountjoy 9-6|
|2002 - Paul Hunter bt M.Williams 10-9||1984 - Jimmy White bt T.Griffiths 9-5|
|2001 - Paul Hunter bt F.O'Brien 10-9||1983 - Cliff Thorburn bt R.Reardon 9-7|
|2000 - Matthew Stevens bt Ken Doherty 10-8||1982 - Steve Davis bt T.Griffiths 9-5|
|1999 - John Higgins bt K.Doherty 10-8||1981 - Alex Higgins bt T.Griffiths 9-6|
|1998 - Mark Williams bt S.Hendry 10-9||1980 - Terry Griffiths bt A.Higgins 9-5|
|1997 - Steve Davis bt R.O'Sullivan 10-8||1979 - Perrie Mans bt A.Higgins 8-4|
|1996 - Stephen Hendry bt R.O'Sullivan 10-5||1978 - Alex Higgins bt C.Thorburn 7-5|
|1995 - Ronnie O'Sullivan bt J.Higgins 9-3||1977 - Doug Mountjoy bt R.Reardon 7-6|
|1994 - Alan McManus bt S.Hendry 9-8||1976 - Ray Readon bt Graham Miles 7-3|
|1993 - Stephen Hendry bt J.Wattana 9-5||1975 - John Spencer bt R.Reardon 9-8|