Ryan Day insists he’ll only be concentrating on his own matches at this week’s Jojobet.com Gibraltar Open, where his place in next week’s Ladbrokes Players Championship will be at stake.
Only the top 16 players on this season’s one-year ranking list will go through to the Ladbrokes Players Championship in Llandudno, which runs from March 6 to 12. A top prize of £125,000 will be up for grabs in the tournament at Venue Cymru.
Day currently occupies 16th spot but he could be overtaken in the final counting event in Gibraltar, which runs from Friday to Sunday. Joe Perry could leapfrog Day by reaching the final, while Mark Williams also has a chance if he wins the tournament.
“I know what the others have to do, but if I have a good run myself then I can make sure of my place,” said Welshman Day. “I’ll just be focusing on my own matches and not thinking about other results.
“Qualifying for the event in Llandudno would be fantastic because it’s a great event and it would also improve my chances of staying in the top 16 for the World Championship. It’s a superb venue and I’ve really enjoyed playing there in the past.”
Day came close to winning the first ranking title of his career at last month’s Ladbrokes World Grand Prix, but lost 10-7 to Barry Hawkins in the final.
“It was disappointing to just come up short in that match,” he said. “But having a good run there put me into contention for the Players Championship and hopefully I can take advantage of that now and finish the season strongly.”
The 36-year-old from Pontycymmer is playing in the Championship League winners’ group in Coventry this week, then faces a late dash to Gibraltar to be there in time for his opening match on Friday afternoon.
“The event in Coventry finishes on Thursday night, then I’ve got to get to Gatwick by Friday morning for a 7am flight to Gibraltar,” he added. “I knew it was going to be a busy schedule over the last few weeks and I’m happy to be playing in all these tournaments.”
Televised by ITV4, the Ladbrokes Players Championship will feature top stars including Ronnie O’Sullivan, Mark Selby, Judd Trump and John Higgins.
Tickets are still available and start at just £15 but fans must book fast because certain sessions will be sold out soon. For details call 01492 872000 or visit http://www.worldsnooker.com/tickets