17.10.08

SLOW ON THE DRAW

The random draw format at the Royal London Watches Grand Prix has been a great success and the draws themselves full of excitement but MC Rob Walker, who presided over the quarter-final draw last night, made himself and the game look stupid by announcing Steve Davis had drawn John Parrott.

In fact, Parrott was about to play Ali Carter who, perhaps fired up by being completely forgotten, went through him 5-0.

Parrott himself was not impressed. He said: “To be perfectly honest I’m a little bit embarrassed about that. Ali came up to me behind the curtain and said ‘Good luck in the next round.

“I know that was a joke and I’m not blaming Rob for what happened in the match but he will have to do better than that.”

Many people like Walker's relentless enthusiasm. However, he is ultimately there to bring the players into the arena - nothing more, nothing less.

I hear he is planning to get children involved in the intros tomorrow.

World Snooker should not let this happen. The tournament is about the players, not the master of ceremonies and this is supposed to be one our major events so should be treated with the appropriate dignity.

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

I think Walker just made a mistake, I don't think this was said as a joke; it was corrected a few seconds later in the draw.

It is good to see an MC with that enthusiasm; some life in the arena doesn't harm; after his intros it all gets very serious and silent anyway.

Children involved in the intros: a nono.

Anonymous said...

Everyone makes mistakes. We are only human. Mr Hughes was excellent, but i doubt JP would have said the same about him if he had made the same error.

Regards the intros, try it once and evaluate if it seemed to work or not. If not, bin it. Simple!

Dave H said...

John meant Ali was joking, not Walker

Anonymous said...

I was referring to this part said by JP-

“I know it was a joke and I’m not blaming Rob for what happened in the match but he will have to do better than that.”

Dave H said...

Yeah, he meant he knew the comment by Ali was a joke

Anonymous said...

I read it differently

Anonymous said...

It appears to me in that sentence he is saying Rob will have to do better than that (making mistakes). I know he knew Ali was joking, but that sentence to me reads that he isnt impressed with RWs error and IMHO he would not have said that if Hughsy said it. Everyone is human.

Matt@PSB said...

I like him really, he's a million times better than the awful Richard Beare.

Mark Johnstone-Allen probably my favourite MC though, I think he strikes a good balance between having a laugh and being professional.

Anonymous said...

Agree with matt@psb's comment. I think Walker has done a good job overall since becoming involved.

In fact, last night's error aside, I think he's controlled the enthusiasm of his delivery pretty well during this tournament.

We've all said things in the heat of the moment, and Rob apologised immediately afterwards anyway. You can't keep longing for the days of Alan Hughes, as good an MC as he was.

In my opinion, Rob is a marked improvement on Richard Beare, who despite being fairly competent, had a delivery which made some matches sound like a non-event, unlike Walker.

I don't think getting kids involved with the intros is a good idea but I don't think this because Walker is on some kind of ego trip here. Hopefully someone will persuade him to do otherwise.

Perhaps Dave fancies a go at being MC - he wasn't particularly impressed with Walker during the World Championship when he reviewed the tournament on here.

Dave H said...

I most certainly do not!

Actually, I said the 'lets get the boys on the baize' catchphrase made me cringe and I note he's now dropped it

I have nothing against the man but feel he should tone it down a bit and remember he is there to get the players on above anything else

Anonymous said...

Mark Johnston-Allen has the appropriate level of respect for the players in his intros. At least Rob seems to have learnt and dropped his ridiculous "lets get the boys on the baize". Lets drop the gimmicks and the hype and get the players out there. I would of thought it made sense to do the draw in the bbc studio at the end of the afternoon session with a visiting celebrity doing the honours. Sadly Rob made a mistake but I could not imagine Hazel doing so in the studio.
JohnH

Anonymous said...

Fair play to Rob he did a decent job when having to host the empty session at the Crucible this year after the o'sullivan/Hendry semi finished early. Leave the children out of it though- save them as team mascots when the world cup is belatedly revived.

Anonymous said...

I did catch a "boys on the baize" once this week. Was it an isolated incident? think it was Higgins v. Hendry

Oliver said...

Never mind the comments on another strand about Ebdon making the game into a laughing stock, Rob Walker took it to a new level last night. I thought his handling of the draw was dreadful, and I can fully understand why Parrott felt deeply embarrassed. Also, how must Ali Carter, the world no. 7 and Crucible runner-up, have felt? Walker owes him an apology for being such an imbecile.

For goodness sake, how hard is it to get this right? All it involves is reading something out.

Walker had obviously done no preparation and had got it fixed in his head beforehand that the tie everyone really wanted was Davis v Parrott. This shows immense disrespect to Carter, who after all was a huge favourite against Parrott. Also, why would Davis v Parrott have been SO special anyway? They played each other in the World Championships so it's not as if they haven't met recently, in a more important context.

Get Mark Johnston-Allen in on a permanent basis and remove this clown.

Anonymous said...

I like Mark J-A but he always looks slightly in pain when he goes for the player's name at full tilt. He needs to cheer up a bit.

Anonymous said...

Yeah he said let's get the boys on the baize at the Hendry-Higgins match. It's a bit of a laugh I don't see anything wrong with it.

daz said...

right on cue he's only gone and said it tonight

Anonymous said...

maybe he reads this blog?

Anonymous said...

I love this "let's get the boys on the baize"!
But I am a girl. Maybe a different perspective. ^^

MJ said...

I wasn't a fan of Rob Walker at first but he's grown on me.

Like the catchphrase or not, the crowd at the Crucible really seemed to like it.

I noticed at the Grand Prix that he had toned things down quite a lot...

Anonymous said...

...by the way - I travel with Ali to some tournaments and was with him and JP behind the curtain when the draw was being announced - we were all watching on a TV monitor too....It was a strange moment - in fact both me and Ali turned to JP and jokingly congratulated him on being in the next round! - it didn't seem to bother him at the time, but I think it was Steve Davis who later said to me that JP was a bit upset by it when he went into the arena - not our joke comments but Rob's 'presumption' that JP was through...prob embarrassment more than anything. As someone else said, if anyone should be upset it should have been Ali! - however, we all realised it was an honest mistake and there was certainly no issue at all between the players. For the record, Rob apologised in persosn to both JP and Ali....it was a funny moment though I thought!!

Mr D.