World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn is set make a number of “titanic announcements” later today (Wednesday) regarding the future of the sport.
As has been the case in previous years at the Crucible, Hearn will announce some key changes for the new season ahead and possibly further afield.
What those announcements are has not been made clear as yet – but all will be revealed from 2.30pm on Wednesday when the press conference is due to get underway.
So what is likely to come out of this press conference?
Well it is anyone’s guess at the moment. We all know Barry likes to keep the media guessing and in the dark over certain things.
But given the phrase ‘Titanic announcements’ has been posted up, then it appears to be significant.
Firstly more details of a new “summer” tournament could be revealed. World Snooker’s new provisional calendar has listed a ‘potential new event’ in the Far East for July 20-23 but as of yet no new details have been announced.
Given snooker’s growth in terms of global reach, it would not be surprising to hear announcements of more prize money coming into the game. Hearn has said prize money would increase in years to come.
There has been recent talk about the controversial Snooker Shoot Out which this season was upgraded to major ranking status for the first time.
Because of its controversy Hearn asked all tour players to vote on the event’s future – either keeping it as a major ranker or removing it off the calendar altogether. The players voted for it to stay.
More details about the Snooker Shoot Out controversy or its future could be revealed during the press conference.
Last year Hearn announced a major ten-year deal agreement between World Snooker and Eurosport for TV rights on all major events. An update into snooker’s progress since that announcement is likely to be made.
Before the 2017 World Championship started, Hearn announced in front of the TV cameras that the Crucible would remain the host venue for the World Championship for at least another ten years.
He also announced two-year invitational wildcards would be given to snooker legends Jimmy White and Ken Doherty after they were were relegated from the main tour earlier this month.
WORLD SNOOKER PROVISIONAL CALENDAR 2017/18