Snooker legends Jimmy White and Ken Doherty will be allowed to compete in some of the sport’s biggest events after they were given two-year invitational wildcards by snooker supremo Barry Hearn.
The pair’s playing future in the game appeared to be over when their relegation from the main tour was confirmed after their defeats in the World Championship qualifiers.
However on the eve of this year’s World Snooker Championship, the sport’s governing chairman Barry Hearn announced at the Crucible Theatre live that the pair would be given invitational wildcards for at least the next two years.
It means White and Doherty will be able to compete in ranking tournaments in which all professional tour players have not entered.
Thailand’s James Wattana has a similar tour wildcard.
Hearn said: “I couldn’t think of a stage that was more appropriate bearing in mind the history in this room today to announce World Snooker’s decision today to grant two invitational tour cards for the next two years to two players – multiple ranking winners in their own right but great ambassadors for the sport of snooker.
“So we welcome back for the next two years minimum, Jimmy White and Ken Doherty.”
Both Doherty – 1997 world champion – and White – six times World Championship finalist – have accepted the invitations.
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