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World Snooker secures a new sponsor for the Masters

Ronnie O'Sullivan
O'Sullivan is the reigning Masters champion

World Snooker has secured a deal with online poker site Pokerstars.com to sponsor this year's Masters at Wembley starting on Sunday, 10 January.

The one-year deal is promoter Barry Hearn's first significant move as new chairman of the World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association.

Hearn, who was co-opted onto the board in December, has promised to revitalise the sport.

"This is a fantastic boost, it feels as if things are really turning," he said.

Hearn, who also chairs the Professional Darts Corporation (PDC), is eager to bring back snooker's glory days of the mid 1980s when 18.5m viewers watched the final frame of the World Championship final between Dennis Taylor and Steve Davis.

606: DEBATE
sickpotter

"The Masters is the world's greatest invitation event so it's fitting to have the world's biggest poker site as a sponsor," said Hearn, who has promised to bring a "fresh approach" to the sport.

"We've now got sponsors on board for three of our biggest UK tournaments and I'm sure that there are more to come. "

A number of top snooker players have spoken out in favour of Hearn's appointment including Ronnie O'Sullivan, who won the Masters last year, beating Mark Selby 10-8 in a dramatic final.


Masters first round:

Mark Williams (Wal) v Rory McLeod (Eng)
Mark King (Eng) v Jimmy White (Eng)

Masters second round:

Ronnie O'Sullivan (Eng) v Neil Robertson (Aus)
Marco Fu (HK) v Peter Ebdon (Eng)
Allister Carter (Eng) v Williams/McLeod
Shaun Murphy (Eng) v Stephen Hendry (Sco)
Stephen Maguire (Sco) v King/White
Ryan Day (Wal) v Joe Perry (Eng)
Mark Selby (Eng) v Ding Junhui (Chi)
John Higgins (Sco) v Mark Allen (NI)



Print Sponsor


see also
Masters 2010 - Full results
16 Jan 10 |  Snooker
White given wildcard into Masters
17 Dec 09 |  Snooker
Ding defeats Higgins in UK final
14 Dec 09 |  Snooker
Hearn confirmed as snooker chief
17 Dec 09 |  Snooker
O'Sullivan reclaims Masters crown
19 Jan 09 |  Snooker
Snooker on the BBC
08 Apr 11 |  Snooker


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FROM OTHER SPORT SITES
Bet Nose UK Snooker Masters Odds - 10 hrs ago
Bettingpro Snooker Masters First Round Bets - 11 hrs ago
Times Online Players backing Hearn to revitalise game - 18 hrs ago
Mail Online UK Ronnie O'Sullivan on cue for a purple patch at Wembley - 18 hrs ago
Mad.co.ukPokerstars.com to sponsor snooker Masters - 23 hrs ago
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