Snooker | Pro star angry at having to play amateur after loss

After losing to an amateur in the first round of a major tournament, a former snooker world champion has blasted the decision to let a player without “a care in the world” compete against professionals.
“This is our livelihood. This is how I put food on the table,” said an angry Shaun Murphy, who lost 6-5 to Chinese player Si Jiahui at the UK Championship yesterday [Macau time].
The tournament is widely regarded as among the top three on the snooker circuit and offers more prize money than many events.
Murphy, the No. 6-ranked player who reached the world championship final this year, was unhappy he was drawn to play against an opponent who “is not playing with the same pressures and concerns I am.”
Si fell off the main tour at the end of last season and only entered the UK Championship as an “amateur top-up” to complete the 128-player field.
“This is how I earn money,” said Murphy, the world champion in 2005. “Since turning professional at 15, I have earned the right to call myself a professional snooker player. He hasn’t done that. He shouldn’t be on the table.”
“He played,” Murphy added, “like a man who does not have a care in the world, because he does not have a care in the world. It is not fair, it is not right. I am not picking on him as a young man, he deserved his victory. Amateurs should not be allowed in professional tournaments, the end.” MDT/AP

Categories Sports