Classic (snooker)

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The Classic
Tournament information
VenueMorningside Arena
Organisation(s)World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association
Final year2023
Final championMark Selby

The Classic was a professional snooker tournament, which began in 1980 and ended in 2023. It was originally a non-ranking event, but became ranking in 1984. Steve Davis won the event six times and Mark Selby was the last champion.


The tournament started as the Wilsons Classic in January 1980. It was an eight-man invitation event recorded by Granada Television. John Spencer defeated Alex Higgins 4–3 in the final to become the inaugural champion. The second event was held in December the same year, with Steve Davis defeating Dennis Taylor 4–1 in the final.[1]

In 1982, the Russian automobile manufacturer Lada became the sponsor of the event and it was renamed to Lada Classic. Steve Davis made the first televised maximum break (147) in his quarter-finals match against John Spencer.[1][2] Terry Griffiths won in the final 9–8 against Steve Davis. In 1983 the field was expanded to 16 players and moved to the Spectrum Arena in Warrington.[1] Bill Werbeniuk reached the only final of his career, but lost 9–5 against Steve Davis.

In 1984, the event was granted ranking status. Steve Davis met Tony Meo in the final. Davis was level at 8 frames each with Tony Meo and only the colours were left in the deciding frame. As Meo lined up on the yellow, a spectator yelled out "Come on, Tony!". Although Meo took time to compose himself after the shout, he missed the yellow and Davis cleared the colours to win.[1]

Mercantile Credit took over the sponsorship for the 1985 and the event was renamed Mercantile Credit Classic. Willie Thorne won the only ranking tournament of his career, by beating Cliff Thorburn 13–8 in the final. In 1986 Jimmy White won his first ranking tournament by defeating Thorburn 13–12 in the final. In 1987 the event moved to the Norbreck Castle Hotel in Blackpool, but only just the last 16 played in the final stages, as the opening rounds were played earlier in the season. Steve Davis won in the final 13–12 against Jimmy White. Davis won the event the following year, this time defeating John Parrott 13–11.[1]

In 1989, Doug Mountjoy won his second consecutive ranking tournament, having previously won the UK Championship, by defeating Wayne Jones 13–11. The following year was a tournament of upsets, as only of four of the top sixteen players reached its seeded place. Steve James won his only ranking tournament by defeating Warren King 10–6 in the final.[1] The tournament moved to the Bournemouth International Centre in 1991. Stephen Hendry reached the final of the tournament in 1991 and 1992, but lost 4–10 against Jimmy White and 8–9 against Steve Davis respectively. After the 1992 event, it was discontinued and replaced with the Welsh Open.[1]


Year Winner Runner-up Final score Venue Season
The Classic (non-ranking)
1980 (Jan) England John Spencer Northern Ireland Alex Higgins 4–3 England Manchester, England 1979/80
1980 (Dec) England Steve Davis Northern Ireland Dennis Taylor 4–1 England Bolton, England 1980/81
1982 Wales Terry Griffiths England Steve Davis 9–8 England Oldham, England 1981/82
1983 England Steve Davis Canada Bill Werbeniuk 9–5 England Warrington, England 1982/83
The Classic (ranking)
1984 England Steve Davis England Tony Meo 9–8 England Warrington, England 1983/84
1985 England Willie Thorne Canada Cliff Thorburn 13–8 1984/85
1986 England Jimmy White Canada Cliff Thorburn 13–12 1985/86
1987 England Steve Davis England Jimmy White 13–12 England Blackpool, England 1986/87
1988 England Steve Davis England John Parrott 13–11 1987/88
1989 Wales Doug Mountjoy Wales Wayne Jones 13–11 1988/89
1990 England Steve James Australia Warren King 10–6 1989/90
1991 England Jimmy White Scotland Stephen Hendry 10–4 England Bournemouth, England 1990/91
1992 England Steve Davis Scotland Stephen Hendry 9–8 1991/92
WST Classic (ranking)
2023 England Mark Selby China Pang Junxu 6–2 England Leicester, England 2022/23



  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Turner, Chris. "Classic". Chris Turner's Snooker Archive. Archived from the original on 16 February 2012. Retrieved 18 March 2011.
  2. ^ "Snooker World Records". 28 April 2009. Archived from the original on 28 April 2010. Retrieved 19 May 2009.
  3. ^ "Classic". Snooker Scene. Archived from the original on 24 January 2013. Retrieved 9 June 2014.