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article imageSnooker PTC final, Stephen Lee triumphs

By Tim Sandle     Mar 18, 2012 in Sports
Galway - Stephen Lee has won the snooker PTC tournament in Ireland by beating the former world champion Neil Robertson by 4 frames to 0.
This week the snooker tour moved to Ireland for the PTC (Players Tour Championship) Grand Finals, an event sponsored by the gambling site Betfair. The contest took place at the Bailey Allen Hall in Galway. The total prize money was almost $400,000 (£250,000), with about $110,000 (£70,000) going to the winner.
The snooker PTC Finals are a different type of snooker tournament to the standard ranking events. There are similarities with the standard events in that the PTC carries ranking points and prize money. The differences include the fact that to qualify for the PTC the players have to complete in a series of international qualifying events played over a nine month period.
A second major difference is that all of the matches are of a shorter duration than those played in most ranking events. The PTC matches are the best of seven frames (the first player to win four frames) and are played in one go with no interval. Where matches have intervals the match can often turn if the player in front loses concentration or where the player who is behind manages to regroup and stage a come-back.
For the 2012 PTC, the top 24 players from the qualifying tournaments assembled at the Bailey Allen Hall.
The 2012 PTC finals were contested between Australia's Neil Robertson and England's Stephen Lee. As Pro Snooker Blog reports, England's Stephen Lee won the final with an assured display of potting and some crafty safety-play, albeit without making very large breaks saving a break of 73 with Lee made in opening the fourth frame. In the final Lee beat the Australian professional Neil Robertson 4-0.
The match scores were (as reported on WWW Snooker):
65-48, 62-23 (52), 63-25, 73-66 (73, 35)
To reach the final, Stephen Lee beat Martin Gould 4-1, Michael Holt 4-1, Mark Selby (the world number one) 4-0, and, in the semi-finals, Andrew Higginson 4-2. Neil Robertson's path to the final consisted of wins over Jack Lisowski 4-1, Joe Perry 4-1 and Stephen Maguire 4-0.
Both players displayed good form in the semi-finals according to World Snooker's match reports. Robertson made a break of 110 and also compiled one of 84. Lee compiled a break of 102 in his last-four match.
In his quarter-final win over Joe Perry, Robertson equalled the highest break of the tournament with a run of 131 (to jointly hold the top break with Ricky Walden).
This was a good and timely victory for Lee. Only two weeks ago he had been comprehensively beaten 10-1 by Mark Allen in the China Open final, and his opponent in the PTC final, Neil Robertson had recently won The Masters, the third most prestigious tournament of the snooker calendar.
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