World number five, Mark Selby is poised to lock horns with Jamie Clarke at the 2019 World Open Qualifiers in what is expected to be an interesting match-up between both Brits.
Selby, 36, known in many quarters as the Jester from Leicester is heralded for his strong safety play. The Englishman who has compiled over 550 century breaks in his career is a prolific break-builder and would be a tough competitor for Jamie Clarke.
Jamie Clarke is no slouch either and won’t take no for an answer. Although he is ranked at 84 and has only 7 century career breaks, he will be looking to take the game to Selby. The Welsh whirlwind has been to a number of finals and would be willing to make this another. To do this, he has to breeze through Mark, who is currently at the top of his game.
Mark Selby won’t be any easy for the 25-year-old though. The Jester from Leicester who also plays pool will be coming into this game off the back of the China Open which he lifted in 2018.
He boasts three World Championships won in 2014, 2016 and 2017 and will be ready to take the game by the scruff of its neck. The 36-year-old who joined the main professionals’ snooker tour in 1999 at the age of 16 lifted the Welsh Open in 2008, Shanghai Masters in 2011, German Masters in 2015, China Open in 2015, 2017 and 2018m and the International Championship in 2016 and 2017. Consequently, he has topped the headlines on many occasions.
That said, the Leicester-born snooker professional could be led to the slaughterhouse if he plays Clarke like he was an underdog, an event he will be looking to avoid at all costs.
Clarke, known also as the Welsh Jimmy White, has drawn a number of comparisons with English man Jimmy White for the very wrong reasons. The 25-year-old has been in five world tour qualifying finals and lost. The Welsh man, desperate to erase those memories will do everything to give snooker punsters a run for their money; perhaps, get the much-needed victory.
Mark Selby is favoured at 1.05 to win comfortably, while his opponent Jamie Clarke is available at 9.26 to claim the win.
Written by: Roland Arum