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Page last updated at 17:00 GMT, Thursday, 16 September 2010 18:00 UK

Jimmy White believes new snooker format will wow fans

World Open
Venue: SECC, Glasgow Dates: 18-26 September
Coverage: Watch live on BBC TV, Red Button and BBC Sport website (UK only); Listen on BBC Radio 5 live for regular updates; Comprehensive reports on the BBC Sport website & mobiles

Jimmy White
White says the new format will thrill snooker fans

Jimmy "The Whirlwind" White believes snooker's new shorter format will benefit faster players like himself.

The World Open tournament gets under way at the SECC in Glasgow on Saturday and White insists the shake-up will test players and captivate fans.

Matches up to and including the semi-finals will be best of five frames, with the final the best of nine.

"It's like a two furlong horse race and players will have to attack the game more and take more chances," he said.

Snooker is undergoing a revolution as Barry Hearn, the man who shot to fame in the 1980s as a boxing and snooker manager, aims to transform snooker in the same way Twenty20 rejuvenated cricket.

His plans include everything from rule changes to boxing-style introductions for the players.

White said the new format "was a bit of a lottery".

I've been playing really well; hundreds of hours practise and I'm looking after myself

Jimmy White

"Everybody is in the same boat, but at the same time it allows the crowd to come along and watch five matches," he added.

"(With) fast players like myself, Ronnie O'Sullivan and Tony Drago, it can be over in 20 minutes.

"It should be exciting and I'm looking forward to it.

"The format is the best of five, so I don't think anyone can know how they're going to do.

"If you're playing the best of 19, and it's 7-7 and there's only five frames left, you tend to take a few more chances.

"My game's styled on that anyway. I think it might be in my favour, but you never know."

White said the new format was designed to appeal to a younger audience and attract more people to the sport.

"I'm a supporter of Barry Hearn, I voted for him and will support him in whatever he wants to do," he said. "So far, he's found a sponsor for every tournament.

"This is a new format he's trying and hopefully it will go really well."

White said he always enjoyed competing in Glasgow as it was the city where he won his first tournament in 1981.

"It might be a good stepping stone for me," he added. "I've been playing really well; hundreds of hours practise and I'm looking after myself.

"So, who knows? I've qualified for this one and I'm playing on Sunday night. I hope to get back in the top 32."

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see also
World Open results
25 Sep 10 |  Snooker
Robertson eyes World Open revival
16 Sep 10 |  Snooker
Carter triumphs in Shanghai final
12 Sep 10 |  Snooker
Hearn handed control of snooker
02 Jun 10 |  Snooker
Robertson beats Dott to win title
04 May 10 |  Snooker
Hearn reveals plan for new series
21 May 10 |  Snooker
Hearn introduces shoot-out event
17 May 10 |  Snooker
Snooker on the BBC
08 Apr 11 |  Snooker

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The Scotsman Snooker: World championship re-match gets Glasgow event underway - 11 hrs ago
Sporting Life SOME WILL ALWAYS DOUBT ME - HIGGINS - 16 hrs ago
Manchester Wired Jimmy White believes new snooker format will wow fans - 35 hrs ago
Sky Sports Whirlwind back up to speed - 47 hrs ago Hendry criticises snooker's ranking system - 55 hrs ago


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