Snooker Champion of Champions 2017
The Champion of Champions is a pretty illustrious name for a tournament and you would expect a strong field out in attendance for such an event. The 2017 edition of the Champion of Champions snooker tournament is the next big feature of the calendar year and this is only a sixteen man field taking part but a strong one.
The tournament is only for those players who have won from a select 24 tournaments since the last edition of the Champion of Champions in the previous year. So qualification doesn’t just run over one season it is kind of split over two of them. Basically, the most successful players of the select 24 tournaments get a place at the final.
John Higgins and Mark Selby are the top seeds going into this one. Higgins is the top seed courtesy of his win at the Champion of Champions 2016 and having collected two other titles since then plus a runners-up spot at the 2017 World Snooker Championship. Mark Selby is the second seed therefore but won more tournaments than any other players during the qualification period and perhaps notably the recent 2017 International Championship, the last of the qualification tournaments in the one year period.
Champion of Champions Draw
Higgins recently went to the quarter finals of the International Championship and the bookmakers don’t see his as big of a threat as the likes of Selby in the field, with the Scotsman out at 4/1. That leaves Selby and Ronnie O’Sullivan as joint 7/2 favourites at a shorter price than the defending champion, with Judd Trump is in there shorter as well at a price of 9/2 and Ding Junhui at 15/2.
Part of the problem for Higgins is that he is in a tough half of the draw and could meet Ronnie O’Sullivan the second round and you never know what you are getting from O’Sullivan, brilliance or disinterest. Higgins could have a duel with Ding Junhui in the semi-finals if he were to get through that. That’s not the easiest route at all.
You have a price of 8/13 on the winning nationality being English and that’s decent value with seven of the sixteen participants playing under the flag of the St George’s Cross. Down in the bottom half, there could well be a massive quarter final match-up between Mark Selby and Judd Trump and both were in good form at the International Championship and the winner of that could well come from that tie could well go on to lift the title.
Trump and Selby clash to determine title?
Knocking off another big name early would be a huge confidence booster and you can back either one at a 3/1 punt to Reach the Final and with only three matches to win in this small tournament to actually get to the final, there’s value to dig out of them. There’s just really nothing to split them, as both are in good current form, they have similar records at the Champion of Champions and the head to head is pretty even.
Trump and Selby have played three times before in tournament quarter finals and Trump edges it 2-1 and did win the last meeting between them. Selby just had a long tournament at the International Championship, so look for a response from Trump in reaching the final.