Neil Robertson has put the ‘silliness’ of missing out on the World Open behind him by winning Championship League Group One and booking his spot in next year’s Winners’ Group.
The Australian got some unwanted press last week for traveling to the wrong Barnsley, heading to Gloucestershire rather than South Yorkshire, and missing his qualification match for the World Open.
There is £150,000 on offer for the winner of the event in Yushan, so it was a potentially costly mistake for the world number four, who would have been one of the favourites to lift the trophy.
‘When I realised there was a 2nd Barnsley it was too late to get to the other one,’ Robertson tweeted.
However, thanks to hard fought wins over Mark Selby and Ryan Day on Tuesday, the Thunder from Down Under is the first of seven players to secure a place in the Championship League Winners’ Group, pocketing £6,100 in the process.
Robertson tweeted: ‘Nice to bounce back after the silliness earlier in the week and win group 1 of the championship league today! See you guys in Crawley next week!’
Nice to bounce back after the silliness earlier in the week and win group 1 of the championship league today! See you guys in Crawley next week!
— Neil Robertson (@nr147) October 8, 2019
Robertson lost group stage games to Barry Hawkins and Jimmy Robertson, but four victories was enough to book his place in the semi-finals of Group One.
There he edged Selby 3-2, including a break of 111 from the Aussie, to set up a final with Day.
The Welshman took a two-frame lead but the former world champion fought back to secure the win and give himself some momentum ahead of next week’s English Open.
‘It wasn’t going too well for me yesterday and I lost my first two group matches,’ said Robertson.
‘From that point on you’re trying to scrape through and maybe take fifth but today I played much better. If I’d lost to Mark Selby yesterday I’d probably have been out but that gave me a chance and I played much better today.
‘I am really pleased to get through. Ryan was looking good at 2-0 up and cruising but he missed a tough black and I was able to capitalise.’
Hopefully now the 37-year-old can put the embarrassment of missing the Yushan qualifier behind him, which even led to World Snooker writing to him, reminding Robertson of the venue of the English Open in Crawley.
— World Snooker (@WorldSnooker) October 7, 2019
Group Two of the Championship League is played over 9 and 10 October, with the Winners’ Group being played in March next year.