Last season’s PTC final in Belgium was one of the best matches of the whole season. In an exhibition of flair, skill and entertainment, Judd Trump beat Ronnie O’Sullivan 4-3.
Snooker returns to Antwerp this week for the latest event of the European Tour, the first two of which have been won by Mark Selby and Neil Robertson respectively. As ever in TV tournaments, the cream rises to the top.
Belgian snooker fans will doubtless have high hopes for their young protégé, Luca Brecel, whose run to the Crucible at the end of last season was evidence of his great potential.
There are some tasty early matches, including Matthew Stevens v Graeme Dott, Michael Holt v Steve Davis and, in particular, Shaun Murphy v Ding Junhui.
Belgium is not a new market for snooker but it is one, like many others, which was allowed to lie dormant for too long. The European Open was staged there several times in the early 1990s.
It would be nice to think that in the near future this tournament could return to the schedule. Snooker is bubbling along very nicely in Europe but outside the UK and not including the PTC finals there is only one ranking event, the German Masters, on the continent.
This is a first class tournament but is yet to attract the levels of sponsorship and thus prize money available in China.
But nobody can doubt the public interest in snooker around Europe. Belgium has a strong cue sports tradition and surely anyone who had a ticket for last year’s final will be back this season.
Eurosport coverage starts at 8.30am UK time on Friday.