Ladbrokes today announced that it has renewed its sponsorship of snooker’s World Grand Prix and Players Championship, and also added the new Tour Championship to the series.
Those three events will make up the Ladbrokes Series of world ranking events in 2019.
The Ladbrokes World Grand Prix will run from February 4-10 in Cheltenham, followed by the Ladbrokes Players Championship from March 4-10 in Preston, then the new Ladbrokes Tour Championship in Llandudno from March 19-24. All three events will be televised live by ITV4.
‘Rocket’ Ronnie O’Sullivan claimed both the World Grand Prix and the Players Championship in 2018, beating Ding Junhui and Shaun Murphy respectively.
The top 32 on the one-year ranking list will qualify for the first tournament at The Centaur venue in Cheltenham, then the top 16 will go on to the Guild Hall in Preston, and only the top eight will make it to the final event at Venue Cymru in Llandudno.
There will be a top prize of £100,000 available at the Ladbrokes World Grand Prix, with the winner to receive £125,000 at the Ladbrokes Players Championship, and £150,000 at the Ladbrokes Tour Championship. Any player winning all three tournaments will receive an extra bonus of £125,000, rounding up his total prize money to £500,000.
World Snooker Chairman Barry Hearn said: “The development of the Ladbrokes Series has been one of the most exciting innovations on our global tour in recent years. It means that from the very first ball of the season, players must earn enough money to qualify for these prestigious and lucrative events in the second half of the campaign.
“Adding the Tour Championship to the series makes it so competitive as we will go from 32 to 16 to eight players, with only the very best surviving until the end. And with a possible £500,000 to be won, it is a huge incentive for all of the top stars.”
Hearn continued, “We are delighted to have Ladbrokes on board for the full series, they have been fantastic supporters of snooker for many years and they are a superb team to work with. The viewing figures on ITV and the overall exposure that Ladbrokes receive for their brand from these three events is growing year on year.”
“We have three excellent venues for the Ladbrokes Series including a new location in Cheltenham. It’s going to be fascinating to find out which players can go all the way and lift the coveted trophies.”
Adrian Osman, Head Of Sponsorship and Events for the Ladbrokes Coral Group, said: “Having worked with Barry and the World Snooker team for many years we are delighted to be involved in yet another innovation in the sport, with the launch of the Ladbrokes Series.”
Picture: World Snooker