Wells Sets Up Maiden Ranking Semi Final Against Allen

Tony Meo

  • Title

    1989 British Open champion
  • Nationality

    English
  • Turned Pro

    1979
  • Highest Tournament Break

    147
  • Location

    London
  • D.O.B

    04 October 1959
  • Money List Earnings

    £0
  • Nickname

    -

During the 1980s, London left hander Meo was a regular member of the top 16 elite and a familiar face to television snooker enthusiasts.

The son of Italian parents, he was National Under 19 champion and turned pro in 1979. Often considered to be in the shadow of Jimmy White, Meo was an excellent player who, in one memorable year, almost became world champion.

Ironically, his best ever pro season came with his career on the decline. He was a 200-1 outsider when he went to the Assembly Rooms at Derby for the 1989 British Open.

However, he defeated Mark Bennett, Colin Roscoe, Stephen Hendry, Peter Francisco, Mike Hallett and then fellow left hander Dean Reynolds to lift the trophy.

The victories kept coming. Having qualified for the Crucible in that year, Meo defeated Joe Johnson, Eddie Charlton and Reynolds again to reach the semi-finals.

Unfortunately his bid to become King of the Crucible faltered against John Parrott; the Liverpudlian winning 16-9.

Meo never got as close again to winning more silverware. Indeed, by the 1996-97 campaign he had slumped so low, he fell off the main tour rankings.

It was a sad end to the career of a talented player. He won back to back English National titles at a time the event was patronised by all the leading professionals.

Neal Foulds and Les Dodd were his victims in 1986 and 1987. Meo was also an expert doubles player and partnered Steve Davis to four World titles; the first coming in 1982.

In his early career he twice reached the semi-finals of the UK Championship, the Masters at Wembley and the Professional Players Tournament.

Meo was also one of the members of Barry Hearn’s star-studded Matchroom outfit.

Another achievement was his success at the 1988 Matchroom League competition, making a 147 against Stephen Hendry. At the time Meo was only the seventh player to achieve the feat.

Indeed, he will always be known as one of the stars of snooker’s golden era.