Causeway Chronicle

Alalshikh Announces Agreement with World Snooker to Host First-Ever Invitational Event

Riyadh Season has added another exciting event to its roster of activity this year after HE Advisor Turki Alalshikh, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the General Entertainment Authority (GEA), confirmed the staging of the inaugural Riyadh Season World Masters of Snooker.

In a first for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the invitational event is due to take  place between 4-6 March at Boulevard Arena in Boulevard City, Riyadh, and will feature some of the world’s top snooker players including the record seven-time World Snooker Championship winner Ronnie O’Sullivan, 2019 World Champion Judd Trump and current holder Luca Brecel.

Each game will be played under World Snooker rules and regulations but with the introduction of an innovative new concept, a 23rd ball known as the Riyadh Season ball. This gold ball will be worth 20 points and can only be potted once all other balls have been successfully cleared from the table if a player is on a maximum break to make it 167.

The agreement for this tournament was signed between Eng. Faisal Bafarat, CEO of GEA, and Steve Dawson, Chairman of World Snooker Tour, in the presence of HE Advisor Turki Alalshikh, as well as sports promoters Eddie Hearn and Barry Hearn.

HE Advisor Turki Alalshikh said: “We are thrilled to be hosting our first-ever professional snooker tournament in the Kingdom. Snooker is watched and played by millions around the world and we look forward to welcoming some of the greatest players and snooker fans to our country and showing them what Saudi Arabia and Riyadh Season has to offer.”

Steve Dawson said: “It is a great privilege for the World Snooker Tour to work in partnership with HE Advisor Turki Alalshikh to stage an event in Saudi Arabia for the first time.

“This is a huge breakthrough for snooker into a new territory, and we see this as the beginning of a new adventure for our sport in the region.

“We are looking forward to being a part of Riyadh Season on this fantastic new  event featuring the world’s best players. We will be honored to bring our sport to the amazing city of Riyadh, and for the local fans this will be their first chance to see some of snooker’s all-time greats.”

Confirmation on all ten participants and schedule will be announced in the coming weeks.

Michael Anderson

Michael Anderson