Stephen Hendry announces delay to sensational return

Snooker fans will have to wait a while longer to see Stephen Hendry back on the professional tour, it has emerged.

The seven-times world champion stunned the world of snooker earlier this year when he announced his comeback from retirement after accepting a wildcard invitation to play on the professional tour again from World Snooker Tour chairman Barry Hearn.

But Hendry is yet to play this season and has so far not entered any events.

Last month Hendry’s new coach Stephen Feeney told World Snooker Tour Hendry was working on getting to a playing standard of a current top 16 player.

But Hendry has recently revealed on Twitter that he wants to start his comeback when crowds can return to live events. He also admitted that his game is “not ready” as things stand.

Stephen Hendry. Picture by Monique Limbos

All tournaments played so far this season have been played behind closed doors and this is likely to remain the case for the foreseeable future after it was announced the UK Championship would follow suit and be held without a crowd.

Hendry tweeted: “I’ve not entered UK because it’s still behind closed doors, one of things I missed was playing in front of a crowd so I’m going to wait till things hopefully change, anyway games not ready.”

But it remains to be seen when snooker fans will be allowed to watch live matches again.

That scenario is likely to have been delayed further given there is currently a full lockdown in England due to the alarming rise of coronavirus cases.

Most of the second half of the 2020/21 World Snooker Tour season has yet to be announced as there is uncertainty over when future ranking events can be played in China.

China usually hosts several big-money tournaments across the season including the China Open, the International Championship, the World Open and Shanghai Masters.

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