JIMMY White says he has his ‘fingers crossed’ of a possible return to professional snooker after he was relegated from the main tour circuit after defeat in the World Championship Qualifiers.
Six times World Championship runner-up White lost to Jack Lisowski on Friday meaning he could no longer secure his place on the main tour for next season after playing professionally for 37 years.
The 10-7 loss in the opening qualifier meant White – one of the sport’s well known players – fell significantly short of the prize money needed to secure tour survival for next season.
But the 54-year-old said on Twitter he is hoping World Snooker boss Barry Hearn will invite him to become a professional through the invitational wildcard method. World Snooker can issue tour wildcards to players of legendary status in the game.
JIMMY WHITE’S CAREER
WON TEN WORLD RANKING EVENTS
RUNNER OF THE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP ON SIX OCCASIONS
CAREER PRIZE MONEY OF NEARLY £5 MILLION
MORE THAN 300 CENTURY BREAKS INCLUDING ONE 147 MAX in 1992 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
Given White’s popularity and his success in the game, especially in the late 1980s and early 1990s when his attacking brand of snooker brought him a huge following, snooker bosses could give him an invitational wildcard.
Thailand’s James Wattana currently is in possession of an invitational wildcard but can only compete in tournaments when less than the 128 full professional players have entered.
White tweeted: “Fingers crossed for the wildcard. Hit the ball really well and really fancy giving it another go x”
It is unknown at this stage whether White will try and win his tour place back by competing in the Q School after the World Championship.
The event allows amateurs or players who have dropped off the tour two chances to earn a new two-year tour card. Twelve tour places are up for grabs.
Entry costs £600 for each of the two events and interested participants have until Tuesday, April 18 to register.
For more information visit www.worldsnooker.com/q-school/.
WATCH JIMMY WHITE MAKE A 147 AT THE CRUCIBLE THEATRE