In 2024, Snooker will be considered an eighth eligible title for “great survivor” Ollivan, who is not “out of the question.”

Columnist Dave Hendon for Eurosport discusses his predictions for 2024, citing Ronnie O’Sullivan as having “weathered the storms of his own self-destructive instincts as well as the threats posed by rival players of various generations and is still widely seen as the man to beat” as the snooker season continues to heat up.


The elite of snooker will quickly recover from the indulgences of the holiday season as the Masters will elegantly usher in 2024 on January 7th at Alexandra Palace.

This marks the 50th staging of the premier invitation event in snooker and marks the beginning of a new 12-month period on the green baize


Before the focus shifts to Sheffield’s mental marathon, there’s the lucrative three-event Players Series, the end of the European Series (with a £150,000 additional prize), and a trip back to China for the World Open.


The field and draw for snooker’s premier tournament are yet unknown, but one player stands to gain significantly: Mark Allen will enter the Crucible in April with the best chance to win the world championship to date.

Every other noteworthy box has been checked by the Northern Irishman. In fact, he had won every major amateur title, including his national event in every age group, before he even turned professional.

His pro tour triumphs were relatively irregular in the beginning, but he turned things around last season when he won three ranking events in as many months. He has already won the Shootout and the Champion of Champions this season.


Allen has a long history of being renowned for his close cue ball handling and seemingly perfect position. Additionally, he has a strong sense of ferocious determination that keeps him resilient under duress. He always pulls through when it counts, just like his well-known countrymen Alex Higgins and Dennis Taylor. In the UK Championship final from the previous season, he defeated Ding Junhui 10-7 after rallying from a 6-1 deficit.

He has since created a challenging match-play game as well, frequently depending on sound safety to create opportunities and being ready to close off frames rather than take unnecessary chances. It has taken some time for him to find the ideal mix between his natural aggressive style and this more % strategy.

He occasionally appeared to slip too much into grinding mode towards the end of the previous season, and Mark Selby defeated him in their World Championship semifinal.

However, he showed the kind of game that could succeed in Sheffield by winning the Champion of Champions and defeating player of the season thus far Judd Trump 10-3 in the championship game.


Despite having only made it to two Crucible semi-finals, Allen must believe that 2024 offers a fantastic opportunity to achieve snooker immortality alongside Higgins and Taylor.

Of course, the issue is that there are so many other talented athletes out there.

Trump participated in three Crucible finals and took home the championship in 2019. This season, he has already emerged victorious from three competitions, aiming to join the select few players who have won several world titles.

The 2010 winner, Neil Robertson, is in the same situation but might require a life raft this time around. The Australian is now ranked 30th in the seedings list for Sheffield due to a concerning decline in play; hence, he will need to win two qualifying matches in order to advance.

It is inconceivable that a player who has been among the top two or three contenders for the championship every year for the past ten years might not even be present at the Crucible, but should he make it, he might be a dangerous weapon for one of the seeds in the first round draw.



Robertson and the others still have time to find a form before April. Although Luca Brecel, the current world champion, hasn’t been playing as well as he could this season, his January 7th Masters debut would be ideal for a strong finish to the season.

How is Ronnie O’Sullivan doing? For more than thirty years, people have posed that question, and every time, he responds by accomplishing something incredible. It was a record-tying eighth world title in 2022. Thirty years after becoming the youngest, it became the oldest UK champion in 2023. What does 2024 hold for us then?

O’Sullivan is the ultimate survivor in pool. He is still regarded as the man to beat despite having withstood threats from rival players of different generations as well as storms caused by his own self-destructive desires.

It seems very likely that he will win another Masters title to go with the seven that he has already claimed. He begins his campaign against Ding, the opponent he defeated a few weeks ago in the UK final. With the sheer mental and physical endurance needed, an eighth Crucible victory at 48 seems like a taller order, but it’s not impossible


John Higgins, a close opponent of O’Sullivan from their professional debut in 1992 and a record holder in the elite top 16, has been there since 1995, although he will have to contend with competition to keep his spot. But Mark Williams, the third player in this holy trinity, seems to be chugging along carelessly, keeping his spot in the top-16 secure for the time being following his victory at the British Open in October.

Who will emerge as 2024’s new champions?

Long-term contenders Zhou Yuelong, Noppon Saengkham, and Jack Lisowski are among them, but as Zhang Anda has already proven this season, unexpected winners frequently emerge from nowhere.




The players in the center are at a whole new level. In any given week, any one of them could make it through the pack. Frequently, it’s an established player rather than a fresh face.



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