Martin Gould made the perfect start to the defence of his Championship League Snooker title as he secured his place in the 2014 Winners’ Group at Crondon Park Golf Club in Essex.
The Londoner entered the competition in Group Six and defeated John Higgins 3-1 in the group final, collecting £6,400 in the process of the group, which has a pounds for frames prize structure, plus bonuses for reaching the play-offs.
Gould, who had topped the round robin group stage with five wins from his six matches said; “I definitely enjoy playing here. I haven’t been having the best of seasons, it has been a mixed back, but I felt something in Poland.
“I had been working on things with my coach and thought something was about to click and I felt that over the weekend.
“I felt really good and I was just targeting a frame at a time this week, and then see what happens, so I am really pleased to win the first group I entered.”
Earlier, Higgins, who collected £4,800 from the group, had defeated Mark Williams at the semi-final stage while Gould saw off Ryan Day. Higgins, Williams, Day, and fifth placed Michael Holt return on March 3rd & 4th for Group Seven, where they will be joined by the incoming Peter Ebdon, Andrew Higginson and Mark King.
Gould now moves into the final group in March where he will join Ricky Walden, Joe Perry, Judd Trump, Stephen Maguire and Shaun Murphy, as well as the winner of Group 7.
The Championship League Snooker event is a venture between Matchroom Sport and Perform where 25 of the game’s finest players compete with all matches broadcast on a host of betting websites.
Each group features seven players with each man playing the other six once in a round-robin basis. Every match is the best of five and the winner gains one point with the loser getting zero.
At the end of the league phase the top four advances to that group’s semi-finals where the two winners meet in the final and the winner advances to the Winners’ Group at the end of March.
The losing finalist, two losing semi-finalists and player finishing fifth move into the next group where they are joined by three new players and the process is repeated.
The winner then goes through to the final group on March 5th & 6th where big money is up for grabs. The two bottom players are eliminated from the competition, while the remaining four move forward to Group Seven in March.