Back by popular demand, this season there will once again be a bonus prize for notching up a 147 break in professional competition as World Snooker have announced a new rolling prize pot…
As explained by World Snooker at the above link, with immediate effect there will now be a rolling prize fund which will begin at £5,000 for a televised maximum break and increase by that amount following each ranking tournament that it has not been won.
There will also be a lesser £500 prize for the PTC events and non-televised matches (during which there were five maximums made last season), with similar rules in operation.
All in all I think that this is a sensible compromise as given the costs incurred by the governing body to insure against a 147 break previously, I could understand why the decision was taken to remove the prize for such a break during tournaments last season.
That said, a 147 break is of course a special achievement and this was reflected by the strength of feeling from the fans about this, as well as the comments from Ronnie O’Sullivan following his tenth career max which was compiled at the 2010 World Open.
Given the demand for some sort of reward to be offered for a 147, World Snooker evidently felt that they had to act and this is a system which they can control to some extent. They do not know when the prize will be won and how often, but they can at least budget for a fixed amount each season and plan accordingly. It is also notable that they have now limited the prize to televised maximums, though these days of course almost all of the matches at ranking event tournaments do tend to be televised.