English Open Snooker 2023 – Tournament Outright Tips and Betting Preview

The new season of Home Nations events begins this week with the English Open having started on Monday when the remainder of the qualifying matches were played along with the opening main draw matches. Everyone who has made it to Brentwood will be looking to win the Steve Davis Trophy.

Mark Selby lifted the trophy last season and the Jester will look to make a successful defence of the crown just a few days after narrowly missing out on winning the British Open. Plenty of form horses will be looking to stop him keeping hold of the trophy.

Recent Winners

2022 – Mark Selby

2021 – Neil Robertson

2020 – Judd Trump

2019 – Mark Selby

2018 – Stuart Bingham

2017 – Ronnie O’Sullivan

2016 – Liang Wenbo

The Format

These Home Nations events have been around for a while now and while the format of them hasn’t changed, the way the arenas have been put together have. There are four tables in action throughout the event, which allows us to follow the action a lot easier, and there has been a qualifying round to avoid taking the whole 128 players in the field to the main venue. Some of those qualifiers have been held over and will be played on Monday through with the main draw also beginning on Monday. The tournament is the best of seven frames up to the quarter finals which are played over the best of nine frames on Friday with the two semi-finals the best of 11 frames on the Saturday and the title will be won on the Sunday of the event over the best of 17 frames.

Top Quarter

Mark Selby is the number one seed this week as the defending champion and he is housed right at the top of the draw. He was scheduled to meet Kyren Wilson as one of the top 16 players in the quarter final but that plan got ruined in qualifying when the ranking event winner bowed out. That leaves just two players from the top 16 to oppose Selby. Ryan Day is one of those and the other is John Higgins, who came through a cracking contest with Marco Fu to make it into the main draw.

There is plenty of talent in this quarter below the elite bracket in the game. Hossein Vafaei reached the semi-final of the British Open last week and he is in this quarter while Stephen Maguire and Dave Gilbert are more than capable of going the distance in an event like this. Cao Yupeng and Martin Gould are players that nobody wants to run into while Oliver Lines will be buoyed by his qualifying win over Wilson.

Second Quarter

Mark Allen is no stranger to winning tournaments these days and he will begin a quest for a first English Open title as the main man in the second quarter this week. Judd Trump breezed through qualifying and could end up meeting the man from Northern Ireland in the quarter final. Robert Milkins won the last Home Nations event at the Welsh Open and he is in this section while European Masters winner Barry Hawkins is the other top 16 player in the quarter.

This is another of those sections where there is plenty of talent outside the top 16 in this quarter. Matthew Selt is a former tournament winner who will feel like he has a decent run in him while Wu Yize has a win over Neil Robertson on his CV this season. Ricky Walden is always a threat in these sorts of events while Graeme Dott and Jimmy Robertson are two more players who will feel that they can go deep in Essex.

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Third Quarter

This is one of the few tournaments in the game that Ronnie O’Sullivan has only won once but with the event on his own doorstep he will be looking to change that this week. He is the top dog in the third quarter and he has already seen his title chances boosted with potential quarter final opponent Neil Robertson having bitten the dust in qualifying. That leaves Jack Lisowski and the German Masters winner from last season in Ali Carter as the other two top 16 players in his section.

It isn’t all about that trio though. Anthony McGill is more than capable of going deep in any tournament he enters while Si Jiahui was close to winning the big one at the Crucible last season. Zhou Yuelong is another player who is more than good enough to threaten a title of this kind. Jackson Page and Zhang Anda are another pair who will be looking for a much needed boost to their ranking this week.

Bottom Quarter

Luca Brecel will be the number two seed for every tournament that he enters apart from the World Championship this season and the man who was beaten by Mark Selby in the final last year will be the main seed in the bottom quarter of the draw. He is another big name who has already seen his title chances boosted with Shaun Murphy having been knocked out in qualifying. That will also be a boost to the new British Open champion Mark Williams and Ding Junhui who are the other seeds in this quarter.

Gary Wilson picked up the Scottish Open title last season and he will be looking to add the English Open crown to his mantelpiece from the bottom quarter this week. Fan Zhengyi has shown signs of playing well this term and the British Open quarter finalist is also in this section. Chris Wakelin won the Shootout last season and players often kick on in their career from there. Xiao Guodong made the semi-final of the British Open last week and Joe O’Connor and Jamie Jones can both be big dangers.


This is a home tournament for Ali Carter so he shouldn’t be short of motivation to do well. He was unlucky at the British Open last week when he ran into a decent performance from Xiao Guodong but with Neil Robertson already out of the picture in his mini-section of the draw I think he can go well here. His route to the quarter final now reads Liam Pullen, one of Lukas Kleckers or Jenson Kendrick and then one of Andrew Higginson, Zhou Yuelong, Stuart Carrington or Sanderson Lam so the door is very much open for a place in the last eight. We saw last year when Carter won the German Masters, made the final of the Players Championship and the semi-final of the WST Classic that he can go deep in these events and I think the 25/1 on him going well here is a more than fair price.

In the top half I’ll take a stab at Dave Gilbert, who might be heading to Essex as the British Open champion had he not gone in off on the black in the deciding frame against Mark Selby in their last 16 clash. Those two might meet again but I think Gilbert will feel confident that he could turn the tables so to speak. Kyren Wilson has already gone from his mini-section of the draw to open up the path to the quarter final and from there the tournament will be open to anyone. Gilbert is under the radar enough to be a threat but he looked to be cueing very nicely in Cheltenham last week and he could be a big price here.


Back A.Carter to win English Open (e/w) for a 1/10 stake at 26.00 with Coral (1/2 1-2)

Back D.Gilbert to win English Open (e/w) for a 1/10 stake at 41.00 with William Hill (1/2 1-2)

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