British Open (snooker)

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British Open
Tournament information
VenueMorningside Arena
FormatRanking event
Current champion(s)Scotland John Higgins

The British Open is a professional snooker tournament, held as a ranking tournament from 1985. The tournament had not been held since the 2004/2005 season, until the 2021/2022 season when it was confirmed as returning to the calendar after 17 years.

The tournament had various sponsors and venues over the years. It took place around November each year. Prior to the 1999/2000 season, it was held later in the season. As a result, two tournaments were held in 1999, one for the 1998/1999 season and one for the 1999/2000 season.


The tournament began in 1980 as the British Gold Cup in the Assembly Rooms, Derby. It was a sixteen-man invitation event and was played on a round robin basis with the group winners advancing to the semi-finals.[1] The next year Yamaha took over sponsorship and the tournament was renamed the Yamaha Organs Trophy. The next year the tournaments name was changed to International Masters. The top eight of the first round robin stage played in two further groups and the winners advanced to the final. For 1984 the field of the tournament was increased to 27 and nine three-man groups were organised. The winners played in three semi-final groups and the winners played in a three-man round robin final.[1]

After WPBSA decided to increase the number of ranking events in 1984/1985 and Yamaha withdrew its sponsorship the event was renamed the British Open. Dulux was the sponsor of the event between 1985 and 1987.[1] In the next six years the event had four different sponsors: MIM Britannia Unit Trusts in 1988, Anglian Windows in 1989, Pearl Assurance between 1990 and 1992, and Wickes Home Improvements in 1993. In 1990 FA Cup style draws were introduced from the last 32 stage of the event.[1]

In 1994 the tournament was moved to the Plymouth Pavilions. Between 1994 and 2004 the event was sponsored in only three years by Castella in 1995 and 1996, and by Stan James in 2001. The event was moved to the first half of the calendar in 1999/2000. The event than moved to the Telewest Arena in Newcastle for 2001, the Telford International Centre for 2002 and the Brighton Centre for 2003 and 2004. The event was dropped from the calendar in 2005/2006.[1]

There were six maximum breaks during the history of the tournament. James Wattana made the first in 1992 in the last 16 against Tony Drago. The second and third came at the qualifying stage of the event. David McDonnell compiled it in the fourth round of the 1995 event against Nic Barrow and Jason Prince in the fifth round of the first 1999 event against Ian Brumby. Graeme Dott made the fourth at the same event in the last 64 against David Roe. The fifth was Stephen Hendry's second official maximum break, which he compiled in the final of the second 1999 event against Peter Ebdon. The last was made by John Higgins in the last 32 of the 2003 event against Michael Judge.[1][2]



Year Winner Runner-up Final score Season
British Gold Cup (non-ranking)
1980[3] Northern Ireland Alex Higgins Wales Ray Reardon 5–1 1979/80
Yamaha Organs Trophy (non-ranking)
1981 England Steve Davis England David Taylor 9–6 1980/81
International Masters (non-ranking)
1982 England Steve Davis Wales Terry Griffiths 9–7 1981/82
1983[3] Wales Ray Reardon England Jimmy White 9–6 1982/83
1984[3] England Steve Davis England David Martin Round-Robin [n 1] 1983/84
British Open (ranking)[4]
1985[3] South Africa Silvino Francisco Canada Kirk Stevens 12–9 1984/85
1986[3] England Steve Davis England Willie Thorne 12–7 1985/86
1987[3] England Jimmy White England Neal Foulds 13–9 1986/87
1988[3] Scotland Stephen Hendry England Mike Hallett 13–2 1987/88
1989[3] England Tony Meo England Dean Reynolds 13–6 1988/89
1990[3] Canada Bob Chaperon Northern Ireland Alex Higgins 10–8 1989/90
1991[3] Scotland Stephen Hendry England Gary Wilkinson 10–9 1990/91
1992[3] England Jimmy White Thailand James Wattana 10–7 1991/92
1993[3] England Steve Davis Thailand James Wattana 10–2 1992/93
1994 England Ronnie O'Sullivan Thailand James Wattana 9–4 1993/94
1995 Scotland John Higgins England Ronnie O'Sullivan 9–6 1994/95
1996 England Nigel Bond Scotland John Higgins 9–8 1995/96
1997 Wales Mark Williams Scotland Stephen Hendry 9–2 1996/97
1998 Scotland John Higgins Scotland Stephen Hendry 9–8 1997/98
1999 Republic of Ireland Fergal O'Brien England Anthony Hamilton 9–7 1998/99
1999 Scotland Stephen Hendry England Peter Ebdon 9–5 1999/00
2000 England Peter Ebdon England Jimmy White 9–6 2000/01
2001 Scotland John Higgins Scotland Graeme Dott 9–6 2001/02
2002 England Paul Hunter England Ian McCulloch 9–4 2002/03
2003 Scotland Stephen Hendry England Ronnie O'Sullivan 9–6 2003/04
2004 Scotland John Higgins Scotland Stephen Maguire 9–6 2004/05
2021 2021/22


  1. ^ Final was decided on a three-man round robin basis, the third player was England John Dunning.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Turner, Chris. "British Open Including British Gold Cup, Yamaha Organs Trophy and Yamaha International Masters". Chris Turner's Snooker Archive. Archived from the original on 16 February 2012. Retrieved 12 October 2011.
  2. ^ Turner, Chris. "Maximum breaks". Chris Turner's Snooker Archive. Archived from the original on 10 February 2013. Retrieved 12 October 2011.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Turner, Chris. "On this Week: British success for the Whirlwind". Eurosport UK. Archived from the original on 7 August 2011. Retrieved 24 May 2011.
  4. ^ "British Open Finals". Retrieved 22 June 2013.