Day Three of the UK Championship has arrived and some of the top snooker stars from around the world are in action.
Below we've picked out an interesting treble for you to consider, and given the reasoning behind these selections.
Barry Hawkins v Ben Woollaston
Barry Hawkins has been one of standout players this season. He's won 24 out of 31 matches, lifted the European Masters trophy and has found himself in the latter stages of the majority of events, often battling it out against Judd Trump in close matches.
He’s consistently beaten players lower down in the ranking by heavy margins including 6-0 wins against Pagett and Pengfei and last week even had two dominant wins against top 16 players in the Champion of Champions, whitewashing World Champion Luca Brecel 4-0 and beating Robert Milkins 6-2 on the same day. Meanwhile, Woollaston has struggled this season and before UK qualifying had lost his last six matches, including against amateur Wang Xinbo in the International Championship.
Jack Lisowski v Jamie Jones
Jamie Jones is another player who has been struggling this season. The majority of his wins have seemed hard work against lower ranked players and he’s been on the receiving end of some heavy defeats in recent weeks, 6-3 to Walden, 5-1 to Hawkins, 4-1 to Wakelin and 4-0 to Leclercq.
On the other hand, Lisowski is generally fairly consistent in the early stages of events. In the recent Northern Ireland Open he won by three clear frames in all five of his matches on his way to the semi-finals, and last year at this event had wins of 6-1, 6-2 and 6-1 against Xu Si, Vafaei and Murphy to reach the semis. This should be fairly comfortable for Lisowski.
Mark Joyce v Mark Selby
Joyce might not be known for beating top players often, but he’s rarely somebody who gives up without a fight. He’s faced two players near the top of the rankings this season, winning three frames against O’Sullivan in a best of 11 and taking Mark Allen to a decider in a best of nine. Has faced Mark Selby on five previous occasions and although never over this distance, he’s won three frames on twi occasions in a best of seven and a best of nine respectively.
Joyce had good wins over Xiao and Perry to qualify for this event whilst Selby has now lost five of his last eight. Back Joyce with the +3.5 handicap feels like the smart move here.
Check out our other Snooker Tips here.