The Perfect Player 2009: Technique

Part Four of my attempt to identify the ‘Perfect Player’ from the current field takes us to technique…

This is going to be probably the shortest of my ‘perfect player’ articles because whilst I am a big fan of snooker, I have do not come from a playing background and so my knowledge of the game from a technical view is perhaps not as strong as other areas.

It is however easy for even me to see why the BBC panel assembled back in 2000 gave the nod to Stephen Lee. At that moment in time he was at his peak, inside the top six where he would remain until 2004/5 and regularly in contention for ranking event titles. What was really evident however was his smooth cue action as evidenced by the amount of action he could get on the cue ball with seemingly so little effort.

Nine years on however and there are a number of other technically gifted players, the most obvious one being world number three Shaun Murphy who is often described by the experts as the most technically gifted player of the 2009 crop. When I was at the World Championship final this year I watched Shaun in action and it made me appreciate even more how easy on the eye his technique is and at the Premier League last week he was at his devastating best, making two centuries to see off the threat of Marco Fu.

Another player that I saw at the Premier League was Ronnie O’Sullivan and though he can be a little more inconsistent, when he is at the top of his game he makes it look so easy and like those already mentioned, can get maximum action on the cueball with ease. Being able to play left-handed is also a bonus of course.

Elsewhere there are the likes of Steve Davis who of course adopted the textbook Joe Davis technique early in his career, while the likes of Mark Selby and Neil Robertson are much improved these days in comparison to early in their careers.


This is a tough one for me for the reasons stated above, but having heard the opinions of the experts and seen him in action myself recently, I am going to plump for Shaun Murphy in this category.

I would however be very interested to hear the opinions of those of you with a greater knowledge of the technical side of the game, though anyone can of course vote in my poll: