Guild Hall to host World Grand Prix

Reigning champion Shaun Murphy
Reigning champion Shaun Murphy
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Snooker’s top stars will be at the Guild Hall in Preston next month as the iconic venue hosts the Ladbrokes World Grand Prix for the first time.

The world ranking tournament will run from February 6 to 12 and will feature 32 players from a one-year ranking list which has been running throughout the season.

Green baize wizards including crowd favourite Ronnie O’Sullivan, World Champion Mark Selby, Judd Trump, Neil Robertson, John Higgins and defending champion Shaun Murphy are currently within the 32 eligible players, with just one counting event to go – the German Masters, which runs from February 1 to 5.

Several of those star names have already committed to the tournament in Preston, including Selby, Murphy, Higgins and Robertson, with others expected to follow before the entry deadline of February 1.

A spokesman for World Snooker said: “It’s shaping up to be an amazingly strong field at the Guild Hall, with so many great champions in line to qualify.

“And there will be a few exciting up and coming players in the mix as well.

“It will be all to play for at the final qualifying event in Germany to see who can nail down a spot in Preston.

“We have so much history at the Guild Hall, going back to 1978 when the UK Championship was staged there for the first time.

“It’s a wonderful venue and we’re looking forward to bringing the World Grand Prix there.

“For the fans in the arena it’s going to be a thrilling experience as the atmosphere at live snooker is totally unique.”

The event will be receive extensive live coverage each day from ITV4.

There is still a chance for fans to book tickets, which start at £13, for every session including the showpiece final on Sunday, February 12.

But seats must be booked fast as certain sessions will sell out soon. For full details call 01772 80 4444 or visit www.worldsnooker.com/tickets.