Tough ask for Hong Kong snooker star Ng On-yee as she takes on Nigel Bond in bid to qualify for men’s world champs

The new women’s world champion must beat three top players to reach the Crucible

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 04 April, 2017, 12:00pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 04 April, 2017, 4:13pm

Hong Kong’s women’s world snooker champion Ng On-yee kicks off her bid to qualify for the men’s world championships with a tough match against former top-five player Nigel Bond.

Ng, who won the women’s title for the second time last month, won an invite for the qualifiers as reward for her achievement.

But it will be a tough ask to get past Bond; though at 51 he’s past his best, he featured regularly in the world’s top 16 during the nineties and reached the final of the World Championships in 1995.

“On-yee will approach this match as she does with all others,” said coach Wayne Griffiths, “with a steely determination to do her best. She will learn and enjoy and take from the match and the opportunity as much as possible.

“She is playing a former world finalist and a hugely experienced player in Nigel Bond. This is arguably an even tougher challenge than last year [when she lost to Peter Lines] but On-yee is a stronger and more balanced player than 12 months ago.

“To get any sort of result is a huge ask for On-yee against such an experienced opponent, but I have no doubt she will give her all in trying. The goal for her this week will be to test herself at the highest level and then measure, from the result and the performance, how far she has come in the last 12 months.”

Ng – and fellow women’s star Reanne Evans who is also competing – will have to win three best-of-19-frames matches to win a coveted spot among the world’s top 16 players at the Crucible Theatre for the main event.

Should she get past Bond, she likely faces an even tougher match against Stephen Maguire in the next round.