Neil Robertson and Ryan Day win opening groups at 2024 Championship League Snooker

Credit: Getty Images/Alex PantlingCredit: Getty Images/Alex Pantling
Credit: Getty Images/Alex Pantling | Getty Images/Alex Pantling
Top seed players Neil Robertson and Ryan Day both won their groups and advanced to the second stage of the 2024 Championship League Snooker Ranking Event on the opening day of the 2024/25 professional season.

Triple Crown winner Robertson notched up two wins and a draw as he finished top of Group 21 at the Mattioli Arena in Leicester on Monday.

Having slipped down to number 28 in the world rankings after a barren few seasons, Robertson is looking to get his career back on track. Playing in this event for only the second time, the Australian has made a very decent start to that mission.

After drawing 2-2 with amateur Zack Richardson - Q School top-up Richardson crafting a 90 clearance in frame four as he split the points - 42-year-old Robertson defeated rookie Ka Wai Cheung 3-0 in his second outing to take control of the group.

In the final match of the group, Robertson faced Jamie Clarke - the only player who could usurp him at the top - knowing that a draw was good enough for qualification. A break of 90 helped Clarke deposit the first frame, but efforts of 70 and 93 in the next two frames got Robertson to his target before he also took the last for a 3-1 win.

Ka pipped Clarke to second by virtue of having made the higher break between the two (107) after finishing level on points, net frame difference and a level head-to-head result. Richardson came last.

On the main table, world number 18 Day also collected seven points from nine as he went through with frames to spare.

He began by defeating fellow Welshman Liam Davies - the 17-year-old experiencing his first day as a professional player - 3-0, although he ousted the first on the final black and the second on the final pink.

However, in his second assignment, Day needed to come from behind twice as he claimed a 2-2 draw against Hammad Miah to pick up a point.

Going into the final fixture of the group, 44-year-old Day was in a nice position of knowing he needed only one of the first three frames in his tie against Marco Fu to sew up top spot. He achieved that at the first possible opportunity, and in style, as he won the opening frame with a break of 125, the highest of day one across both tables. Day went on to register further runs of 72 and 85 in a 3-0 victory.

Tour newbie Davies ended the group in second on four points, while Miah came third having drawn all his three fixtures, 2-2. Fu finished bottom of the pool.

2024 Championship League Snooker Ranking Event - Day 1 Results:

Group 11

  • (61) Ryan Day 3-0 Liam Davies
  • (64, 55) Marco Fu 2-2 Hammad Miah
  • Marco Fu 1-3 Liam Davies (95, 90, 94)
  • (62) Ryan Day 2-2 Hammad Miah
  • (52) Hammad Miah 2-2 Liam Davies (78)
  • (125, 72, 85) Ryan Day 3-0 Marco Fu

Group 21

  • (70) Neil Robertson 2-2 Zack Richardson (90)
  • (51) Jamie Clarke 2-2 Ka Wai Cheung (50, 73)
  • (54) Jamie Clarke 3-1 Zack Richardson (60)
  • (63) Neil Robertson 3-0 Ka Wai Cheung
  • (78, 107, 75) Ka Wai Cheung 3-0 Zack Richardson
  • (70, 93) Neil Robertson 3-1 Jamie Clarke (90)

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