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German Qualifiers Crucial In Race To Cheltenham

The D88.com German Masters is the final counting event in the race to reach the Coral World Grand Prix, so this week’s qualifiers in Barnsley will be vital to those players either side of the cut-off line.

The Coral World Grand Prix will run from February 4-10 in Cheltenham, featuring the top 32 players on the one-year ranking list. The final stages of the D88.com German Masters in Berlin finish on February 3, after which the line-up for Cheltenham will be confirmed. The qualifiers in Barnsley run from Tuesday to Friday this week with all players needing to win two matches to make it to Berlin – click here for the match schedule.

Here’s how the one-year list looks for the players around the cut-off line:

28 Xiao Guodong £51,600
29 Yuan Sijun £50,000
30 Ding Junhui £50,000
31 Shaun Murphy £49,500
32 Gary Wilson £45,600

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33 Zhou Yuelong £43,500
34 Luca Brecel £42,500
35 Eden Sharav £41,600
36 Sunny Akani £41,500
37 Robert Milkins £41,100
38 Anthony Hamilton £41,000
39 Daniel Wells £40,500

There’s £3,000 at stake in the first round of the qualifiers so Zhou Yuelong can go ahead of Gary Wilson by beating Zhang Anda on Tuesday morning, though Wilson could then regain his top 32 place by beating Chen Zifan on Wednesday. Players towards the bottom of the list above will need to reach at last the quarter-finals in Berlin – earning £10,000 – to have a chance to being among the field in Cheltenham.

Shaun Murphy gave his hopes of making it to Cheltenham a huge boost by reaching the final of last week’s BetVictor Scottish Open. Murphy lost 9-7 to Mark Allen in the final in Glasgow but the £30,000 prize shot him up from 65th to 31st, with a buffer of £6,000 over 33rd-placed Zhou.

The top 16 on the one-year list (after the Shoot Out) will qualify for the Coral Players Championship in Preston (March 4-10), and only the top eight (after the Gibraltar Open) will make it to the new Coral Tour Championship in Llandudno (March 19-24).

As it stands there are:

Eight players inside the top 32 of the one-year list who are outside the top 32 of the official rankings.

Four players inside the top 16 of the one-year list who are outside the official top 16.

Three players inside the top eight of the one-year list who are outside the official top eight.

Allen’s £70,000 top prize in Glasgow sees him stretch his lead at the top of the one-year list to £133,000, having earned £353,000 from ranking events so far this season. Daniel Wells reached the semi-finals of a ranking event for the first time and his £20,000 cheque moves him up to 39th, giving him a chance of the top 32 with another deep run in Germany.

In the official two year world rankings, Allen stays in sixth place while Murphy remains 11th.

Tickets for all of the above events are on sale now – for details click here.

Note that Cao Yupeng and Yu Delu have now been removed from the ranking lists as they have both been banned from the World Snooker Tour.