Clearly if counting all events that award ranking points the answer is 2, a figure that Tom Ford himself confirmed he agreed with during a WST podcast towards the end of last season. Yet many people still regard Tom Ford as having never won a ranking event.
How many Paul Hunter Classics have been ranking events?
Clearly if counting all events that award ranking points the answer is 9, a figure that should be indisputable given that all 9 tournaments were open to amateurs and best of 7s throughout. Yet many people have chosen to credit Mark Selby, Michael White and Kyren Wilson with one ranking title whilst discounting the other 6 tournaments. More strangely those people don't consider the three Paul Hunter Classics that attracted the most professional players as counting for ranking title purposes yet do count the Paul Hunter Classic that featured the least professional players.
Should the ShootOut be a ranking event?
Many people say no. In reality, though, why does anyone care? A ranking event should be any event that awards ranking points. Simple.
That's an excellent point, possibly, but then why not class the ShootOut as invitational?
Frankly, I'm more concerned about righting the injustice that Tom Ford is suffering.
Events have different significance. Whilst the World Championship is evidently the most important I am aware that the majority will disagree with my opinion that the Tour Championship is the second most prestigious event on the calendar.
Let's see what list an alternative system of evaluating titles would produce. I have trawled through each of the events awarding ranking points since the beginning of 2010-11, the debut of the Barry Hearn era. With the exception of the Pro Series, which had no final and for which I have credited Mark Williams with 2 points, I have awarded each winning finalist a number of points equivalent to the number of frames they won in that final.
The result is (subject to being corrected if any errors):
240 Mark Selby
233 Judd Trump
213 Ronnie O’Sullivan
178 Neil Robertson
111 John Higgins
103 Ding Junhui
78 Mark Allen
75 Stuart Bingham
71 Mark Williams
63 Shaun Murphy
33 Allister Carter
31 Stephen Maguire
27 Barry Hawkins
26 Kyren Wilson
24 Ricky Walden
22 Luca Brecel; Marco Fu
21 Joe Perry
19 Zhao Xintong
13 Liang Wenbo; Martin Gould
12 Stephen Lee
10 Fan Zhengyi; Peter Ebdon; Ryan Day
9 Anthony Hamilton; Jimmy Robertson; Jordan Brown; Mark King; Michael Holt; Michael White
8 Tom Ford
6 Anthony McGill
5 Matthew Selt; Yan Bingtao
4 Andrew Higginson; Barry Pinches; Ben Woollaston; Dominic Dale; Ju Reti; Marcus Campbell; Rob Milkins; Rod Lawler; Rory McLeod
3 David Gilbert
1 Hossein Vafaei; Michael Georgiou; Thepchaiya Un-Nooh
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