World Snooker Championship: Mark Williams hits out at World Snooker over ‘beef’ after not being allowed to see his son

Reigning champion has accused World Snooker of unfair treatment since winning the World Championship last year 

Mark Staniforth
Sunday 21 April 2019 11:38
Comments
Snooker World Champions 2019 preview

Defending champion Mark Williams launched another attack on World Snooker after booking his place in the second round of the World Snooker Championship at the Crucible.

Williams' 10-7 win over qualifier Martin Gould was overshadowed by an incident prior to the match in which the 44-year-old claimed his 12-year-old son Kian was prevented from visiting him in his dressing room.

The Welshman's allegations, which the governing body rigorously denied, are the latest in a series of gripes he has with the organisation over perceived unfair treatment during his reign as champion.

Williams said: "They (World Snooker) have obviously got some kind of beef with me, but whatever it is you'll have to ask them.

"I've been having all this nonsense all season really and this morning was the last straw really. My boy tried to get in to say good luck and I couldn't get him in because I'd used my two passes.

"It's pathetic in my eyes. If you're the world champion you expect some kind of [favour]. But I wasn't going to let it play on mind. It's only my opinion and they will say that nothing's wrong."

A spokesman for World Snooker denied that Williams' son had been denied entry to the dressing room, but pointed out that the player had chosen to give his two allotted passes to his coach and his friend.

The spokesman said: "Every player in the event is allocated two backstage passes. And they can make their own decisions who to give those to. At no point were his children refused entry."

Mark Williams hit out at World Snooker after not being allowed to see his fans

Williams, who now goes on to play either David Gilbert or Joe Perry in round two, had already expressed his displeasure with tournament organisers over what he considered to be a lack of sufficient profile in its promotional materials.

And on the eve of the event he had claimed World Snooker officials would prefer anyone but him to win the title this year, an accusation the governing body also vehemently denied.

The lingering bad feeling appeared to have done little to affect Williams' game as he won five frames in a row to establish a 6-3 lead at the end of the opening session.

Mark Williams beat qualifier Martin Gould in the first round

Williams moved within one frame of victory at 9-4 after resuming in the evening but a belated rally from Gould, with consecutive breaks of 70 and 87 and 76, brought him back to within two frames.

A superb long red in the next finally paved the way for Williams to get over the line and his vanquished opponent said he would not be too surprised to see the Welshman go on to win a fourth title.

Referring to Williams' much-publicised build-up to the tournament, Gould quipped: "As long as he stays off the booze, the kebabs and the Minstrels I think he'll be all right."

Neil Robertson will return on Sunday evening one frame away from only the second whitewash in Crucible history after establishing a 9-0 lead over Michael Georgiou.

Williams was denied access to his 12-year-old son before the start of the match

The Australian fired two centuries to overwhelm Georgiou, who faces the prospect of being the first player to exit without winning a frame since Eddie Charlton was beaten 10-0 by John Parrott in the 1992 first round.

Ding Junhui holds a 6-3 overnight lead over Anthony McGill and Luca Brecel is edging Gary Wilson 5-4 with both matches due to play to a finish on Sunday.

PA

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in