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The 2016-17 Home Nations - thoughts

Postby PLtheRef

Tomorrow's Welsh Open Final between Stuart Bingham and Judd Trump will mark the conclusion to the inaugural Home Nations series.

The series, announced almost two years ago featured prominently the headline prize of a cool million for any player able to go on and win all four events. In any event, one of the players who lined up in the first final of the series, does indeed line up in the final one, but alas, didn't win that final nor reach either of those in between.

Have the events been a success though?

The positives seem to have been that the events have retained a somewhat regular format, with the Best of 11 frame and 17 frame matches for the final stages rather than the shorter formats that new events seem to bring about (to give Hearn credit, this season's been a decent one for longer new event formats). There seems to be a format for a 128 event that seems to work within a seven day timeframe. For the Welsh in particular I was a little skeptical when it moved back to Cardiff, but it's working well as a venue (cue a change)

Broadcasting the first three events on Quest (including full coverage of the finals) also allowed for greater scope in the number of viewers, particularly those who might not have British Eurosport subscriptions.

Just seeding the top 16 into the draw won't have been popular with some, but I think it works well for these kind of events. It gives some individuality towards them which we do need if we are to see a more rigid system of seeds being fixed into formal positions of the draw i.e. 1,16,8,9 etc. Would players such as King, and Donaldson have had such good runs respectively had the event been seeded totally directly?

The challenges? Attendances for some of the events - the English Open in particular could have been better (is there a better venue for the English? Preston is used to holding events with a number of tables, could it fit the seven or eight required for this). Whilst the £1,000,000 bonus will have given the series some publicity, it was clear that it was unlikely to be under threat. Would it work (in theory) that the Home Nations could take over the Players Championship mantle with 'tour finals' event later in the season?

Thoughts?

Re: The 2016-17 Home Nations - thoughts

Postby SnookerFan

Went to Manchester. Enjoyed the venue. Just a shame there was nobody there. Attendances in Cardiff have been better.

Enjoyed Belfast, for the plane noises.

Wenbo, King and Fu have all won. Make of that what you will.

The million was a gimmick, nothing more.

Just random thoughts.

Re: The 2016-17 Home Nations - thoughts

Postby Cloud Strife

After a while I forgot this whole Home Series stuff was even a thing. It's a branding that's all.

At the end of the day, I just viewed each event on its own merit rather than as a whole series of events. Don't blame Hearn for trying though.

Also a shame no one got the million. Maybe next year, fingers crossed.

Re: The 2016-17 Home Nations - thoughts

Postby Andre147

I also saw them as separate events.

The 1 million prize is a joke as no player will ever get it. Ronnie the other day came up with a good ideia on the studio, similar to FedexCup style in Golf:

Whoever is the most regular in these 4 tournaments (wins the most prize money) will get some sort of added prize bonus, which wouldn't count towards his ranking but would be a nice incentive for players like Selby for instance (who skipped NI and Scot Opens) because he didn't win the first one.

Either that or another some sort of bonus for a player who wins more than one event.

Best of 7s is fine for me in the first 2 rounds, but I think from Last 32 onwards and especially last 16 the Best of 9s should definately be used. I dont know how this would work shedulle wise, but it's just far too many Best of 7 rounds.

Re: The 2016-17 Home Nations - thoughts

Postby PoolBoy

Home Nations Order of Merit

Trump and Bingham's 30,000 runner-up points already included - the winner will have another 40,000 to be added-on - so, the Welsh Open champion will also top the Order of Merit.

1. Liang Wenbo 85,000
2. Judd Trump 80,000
3 = Marco Fu 77,500
3 = Mark King 77,500
5. Barry Hawkins 66,000
6. Stuart Bingham 50,000
7. John Higgins 46,000
8. Anthony Hamilton 39,500
9. Scott Donaldson 31,000
10. Robert Milkins 30,000
11. Kyren Wilson 29,500
12. Mark Allen 23,000
13. Yu Delu 22,500
14 = Ronnie O'Sullivan 22,000
14 = Mark J Williams 22,000
16. Mark Davis 21,000

Re: The 2016-17 Home Nations - thoughts

Postby SnookerFan

Andre147 wrote:The 1 million prize is a joke as no player will ever get it. Ronnie the other day came up with a good ideia on the studio, similar to FedexCup style in Golf:


Dennis Taylor approves.

Re: The 2016-17 Home Nations - thoughts

Postby Iranu

I still think a tiered bonus system would be better, i.e. If you win two events you get something like an extra £100,000, if you win three you get £500,000, if you win all four you get £1,000,000.

This means that some sort of bonus is more achievable, but if the first two events are won by different players the mose Hearn can be out of pocket is £500K (if one of those two players wins the remaining two as well.)

This would give players more incentive to treat the events seriously, while still being unlikely enough that Hearn has a level of insurance that he'll most likely only be giving away an extra £100,000 if anything.

Makes the players feel like a bonus is actually possible, makes Hearn look generous, and gives punditry and commentary teams the chance to keep talking about the bonus system right up until the last event which adds a bit of glamour/importance to an otherwise standard tournament.

It was a good series of tournaments though, had some of the biggest stories of the season so far, some good finals, and for all the palaver about BO7s there was a good mix of first time winners and top 16 winners.

Re: The 2016-17 Home Nations - thoughts

Postby Andre147

Iranu wrote:I still think a tiered bonus system would be better, i.e. If you win two events you get something like an extra £100,000, if you win three you get £500,000, if you win all four you get £1,000,000.

This means that some sort of bonus is more achievable, but if the first two events are won by different players the mose Hearn can be out of pocket is £500K (if one of those two players wins the remaining two as well.)

This would give players more incentive to treat the events seriously, while still being unlikely enough that Hearn has a level of insurance that he'll most likely only be giving away an extra £100,000 if anything.

Makes the players feel like a bonus is actually possible, makes Hearn look generous, and gives punditry and commentary teams the chance to keep talking about the bonus system right up until the last event which adds a bit of glamour/importance to an otherwise standard tournament.

It was a good series of tournaments though, had some of the biggest stories of the season so far, some good finals, and for all the palaver about BO7s there was a good mix of first time winners and top 16 winners.


Fully agree with you on this :hatoff:

After Wenbo got knocked out in the 2nd event, the million prize talk became pointless, to the point comms werent mentioning it anymore.

The system you refered is way better, and Hearn would "only" very likely give the £100,000 if they were won twice. 3 or 4 times would be way more unlikely, mostly because the Best of 7s is almost impossible for even a top player to dominate those tournaments given the shorter format.

Re: The 2016-17 Home Nations - thoughts

Postby mick745

I have thoroughly enjoyed the four events, and it has given opportunities for 'other' players to win ranking tournaments.

Wonder what odds you could have got for Liang Wenbo, Mark King, Marco Fu and Stuart Bingham to win the four?

I agree, especially with the best of 7 format, that it would be extremely difficult, if not virtually impossible to win all four.

Re: The 2016-17 Home Nations - thoughts

Postby PLtheRef

During a radio interview in Sheffield last year, Hearn suggested that a FedEx Cup style playoff format is in line for next season. I think it's supposed to be the successor to the PTC Finals given the qualifying format for that this year

Re: The 2016-17 Home Nations - thoughts

Postby Andre147

PLtheRef wrote:During a radio interview in Sheffield last year, Hearn suggested that a FedEx Cup style playoff format is in line for next season. I think it's supposed to be the successor to the PTC Finals given the qualifying format for that this year


I reckon a tournament with the Top 8 money earners from the Home Nations Series would be perfect.

A 16 players tournament would be too much I think, and also a Top 8 one would make it diferent from all the other tournaments on the calendar and of course create huge interest for a player wanting to be there.

Re: The 2016-17 Home Nations - thoughts

Postby PoolBoy

That sounds good, Andre.
Here's how it would have looked after this season's 4 Home Nations ranking events.

1. Stuart Bingham 90,000
2. Liang Wenbo 85,000
3. Judd Trump 80,000
4 = Marco Fu 77,500
4 = Mark King 77,500
6. Barry Hawkins 66,000
7. John Higgins 46,000
8. Anthony Hamilton 39,500

Re: The 2016-17 Home Nations - thoughts

Postby Iranu

Andre147 wrote:
PLtheRef wrote:During a radio interview in Sheffield last year, Hearn suggested that a FedEx Cup style playoff format is in line for next season. I think it's supposed to be the successor to the PTC Finals given the qualifying format for that this year


I reckon a tournament with the Top 8 money earners from the Home Nations Series would be perfect.

A 16 players tournament would be too much I think, and also a Top 8 one would make it diferent from all the other tournaments on the calendar and of course create huge interest for a player wanting to be there.

That's a brilliant suggestion. And having only 8 players would allow for longer format matches as well, maybe 9>11>17>19 or something like that.