World Matchplay (snooker)

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World Matchplay
Tournament information
Venue The Dome
Location Doncaster
Country England
Established 1952
Organisation(s) Matchroom Sport
Format Non-ranking event
Final Year 1992
Final champion(s) Thailand James Wattana

The World Matchplay professional non-ranking snooker tournament was established in 1952 as an alternative to the World Snooker Championship and last held in 1992.


The Professional Matchplay Championship was set up in 1952 as an alternative to the Billiards Association and Control Council/World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association professional World Snooker Championship by some of the professional players following a dispute with the governing body. Fred Davis won the first five editions of the tournament, but didn't participate in 1957. The 1957 event was won by John Pulman, and after this the event was discontinued due to a decline in the popularity of snooker.[1]

A one-off event called World Professional Match-Play Championship was staged in 1976. Eddie Charlton promoted the event in Melbourne with WPBSA approval. Charlton beat Ray Reardon 31–24 in the final.[2]

In 1988 Barry Hearn resurrected the event as an invitational tournament, called World Matchplay, for the provisional top 12 players, and it ran for five years. The event was held at the Brentwood Centre, Brentwood between 1988 and 1990, before moving to the The Dome, Doncaster, for the last two years. The 1988 event was the first snooker tournament to offer a top prize of £100,000.[2]

It was sponsored by Everest in 1988 and 1989, and Coalite from 1990–1992. It was televised between 1988 and 1992 by ITV as a replacement for the World Doubles Championship.[2]



Year Winner Runner-up Final score Season
Professional Matchplay Championship
1952 England Fred Davis Scotland Walter Donaldson 38–35 n/a
1953 England Fred Davis Scotland Walter Donaldson 37–34 n/a
1954[3][4] England Fred Davis Scotland Walter Donaldson 45–26 n/a
1955 England Fred Davis England John Pulman 37–34 n/a
1956 England Fred Davis England John Pulman 38–35 n/a
1957 England John Pulman Northern Ireland Jackie Rea 39–34 n/a
World Professional Match-Play Championship
1976 Australia Eddie Charlton Wales Ray Reardon 31–24 1976/77
World Matchplay
1988 England Steve Davis England John Parrott 9–5 1988/89
1989 England Jimmy White England John Parrott 18–9 1989/90
1990 England Jimmy White Scotland Stephen Hendry 18–9 1990/91
1991 England Gary Wilkinson England Steve Davis 18–11 1991/92
1992 Thailand James Wattana England Steve Davis 9–4 1992/93


  1. ^ a b Turner, Chris. "World Professional Championship". Chris Turner's Snooker Archive. Archived from the original on 16 April 2013. Retrieved 24 February 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c d Turner, Chris. "World Matchplay". Chris Turner's Snooker Archive. Archived from the original on 28 February 2012. Retrieved 14 March 2011. 
  3. ^ Hayton, Eric (2004). The CueSport Book of Professional Snooker. Lowestoft: Rose Villa Publications. p. 144. ISBN 0-9548549-0-X. 
  4. ^ "Davis retains snooker title". The Argus. 8 March 1954. Retrieved 8 May 2013.