Following on from my earlier post confirming that Stephen Maguire will take the final automatic seeding for this year’s World Championship, with Ding Junhui’s victory against John Higgins we now know exactly how the top 16 seeds will be placed in the draw.
Light has also been shed on the draw for next week’s qualifiers, which will see 128 players battle it out to join the seeds at the Crucible…
The Crucible Seeds
As regular readers will be aware, at the World Championship the seeds are drawn in a very particular way, with the top seed set to face the 16th seed in the second round, 2 v 15 and so on.
With Ding Junhui’s victory against John Higgins today at the China Open, neither he, nor any of the other three remaining places can affect the final order of the top 16 following the seedings revision after this tournament and so the Crucible draw will look as follow:
Mark Selby (1) / Qualifier
Stephen Maguire (16) / Qualifier
Joe Perry (9) / Qualifier
Shaun Murphy (8) / Qualifier
Barry Hawkins (5) / Qualifier
Mark Allen (12) / Qualifier
Ali Carter (13) / Qualifier
Neil Robertson (4) / Qualifier
Ding Junhui (3) / Qualifier
John Higgins (14) / Qualifier
Marco Fu (11) / Qualifier
Judd Trump (6) / Qualifier
Ricky Walden (7) / Qualifier
Stuart Bingham (10) / Qualifier
Mark Williams (15) / Qualifier
Ronnie O’Sullivan (2) / Qualifier
Which is harder? On paper the consensus seems to be that the bottom half of the draw is the half to avoid, although personally I don’t think that there is a lot in it. We will also have to see of course how the qualifiers are placed, with the likes of Graeme Dott, Mark Davis, Robert Milkins and Ryan Day amongst those who would not be an easy opening round opponent for those above.
But still, it is always fun to speculate and make no mistake, both players and fans alike have a keen interest in how the draw is set to unfold…
There has also been a lot of speculation as to when the qualifying draw will be announced (I have no idea, would guess Monday), and as to the format of the draw.
In terms of the latter, I understand that the top 64 seeds, that is those ranked 17-80, will be placed in the draw and those below drawn at random to face them in the opening round.
If then for example seeds 17 and 80 win their opening round matches, they will then face each other in the second round, 18 and 79, 19 and 78 and so on.
That being the case, on the basis that neither Kurt Maflin, nor Gary Wilson are able to win tomorrow, @markopiet has calculated that the second and third round draws for the qualifiers could look like this, although this is as yet unofficial…