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Page last updated at 11:08 GMT, Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Michael Holt excited by Barry Hearn snooker era

Michael Holt
Holt was beaten in the first round of the 2009 World Championship

Nottingham's Michael Holt says Barry Hearn's appointment as chairman of the WPBSA can only be good for the game and hopes it will revolutionise the sport.

Hearn has already made changes as he looks to raise the sport's profile and increase its appeal to the public.

The Masters tournament was the first to have walk-on music for the players and Holt says there is more to come.

"I'm really hopeful and have a spring in my step for the first time in a while," Holt told BBC Radio Nottingham.

"There are rumours suggesting he wants to put on 20 more tournaments, which is great because we practise to play."

Holt, 31, was not involved in the Masters at Wembley, and will have to play one qualifying match to reach the World Championship in Sheffield in April.

But he has been pleased with Hearn's elevation, and is hopeful that he can make the sport more popular - in the same way as he did with darts.

"There are more intelligent people than me put in place to do a job, and they haven't been doing it," Holt explained.

"But now Barry Hearn's in place and he's got some great ideas. Hopefully he can do what he's done with darts, which is phenomenal."

And Holt is confident that snooker still has a mass appeal: "It [snooker] had gone to sleep a bit really but the interest is still there and the viewing figures are still fantastic," he said.

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see also
Holt embraces new tournaments
02 Jul 09 |  Snooker
O'Sullivan hails Hearn influence
09 Jan 10 |  Snooker
Holt 'in bits' after early exit
24 Apr 09 |  Snooker
Hearn confirmed as snooker chief
17 Dec 09 |  Snooker
Hearn plans quick fix for snooker
02 Dec 09 |  Snooker
Snooker on the BBC
08 Apr 11 |  Snooker

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