The draw for the 2023 World Snooker Championship Qualifiers has been confirmed, with Stephen Hendry set to face his former nephew James Cahill.
A total of 128 players will compete for 16 coveted places in the £2.4 million main event alongside the world’s top 16 ranked players.
Qualifying will take place from April 3-12 at the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield, a stone’s throw from The Crucible, with players required to win a selected number of matches according to their ranking position in order to secure their qualification.
Seven-time World Champion Hendry has been drawn to face his former nephew Cahill – who famously knocked Ronnie O’Sullivan out of the World Championship in the First Round in 2019.
Hendry, whose last world title came back in 1999, is making only his fourth tournament appearance of the season, having won just one frame in his three previous matches.
Hendry is joined in the draw by a host of star names, including six-time world finalist Jimmy White – who has enjoyed a superb spell of form in recent months.
White will start his quest for a first Crucible appearance since 2006 in the Second Qualifying Round against either Marco Fu or Martin O’Donnell, before potential ties against Noppon Saengkham and Xiao Guodong.
Ken Doherty, the 1997 World Champion, will open up against 12-time Women’s World Champion Reanne Evans MBE in a repeat of their 2015 qualifying clash with the Dubliner won 10-8.
Sixteen-year-old Stan Moody, the WSF Junior Championship winner, will meet Estonia’s Andres Petrov, while women’s world number one Mink Nutcharut faces fellow Thai star Dechawat Poomjaeng.
Three-time Women’s World Champion Ng On Yee meets former Shootout champion Michael Holt, while Alfie Burden faces Rebecca Kenna.
Notable names entering in the Third Qualifying Round are 2013 world finalist Barry Hawkins, former Tour Champion Stephen Maguire, 2006 World Champion Graeme Dott, David Gilbert and Joe Perry.
Also included in the draw is ‘Player 1’ which will be either Ding Junhui, Gary Wilson or Ryan Day, depending on results in this week’s Tour Championship.
With 11 players currently suspended from competition, nine players from last year’s Q School Order of Merit will now complete the field, including Steven Hallworth, Andrew Higginson, Michael Georgiou and Soheil Vahedi.
They will be joined by the 16 WPBSA international invites including Stan Moody, Liam Davies, Iulian Boiko, Ross Muir and Daniel Wells.
The 11 players missing out through suspension are Liang Wenbo, Li Hang, Lu Ning, Yan Bingtao, Zhao Xintong, Zhang Jiankang, Chen Zifan, Chang Bingyu, Zhao Jianbo, Bai Langning and Mark King.
18+ | T&Cs Apply | Geo Restrictions may apply | Be Gamble Aware
World Snooker Championship Qualifiers 2023 Draw
Selected First Round ties
Marco Fu v Martin O’Donnell
Alfie Burden v Rebecca Kenna
David Lilley v Rory McLeod
Andres Petrov v Stan Moody
Dechawat Poomjaeng v Mink Nutcharut
James Cahill v Stephen Hendry
Ng On Yee v Michael Holt
Ken Doherty v Reanne Evans
Fergal O’Brien v Liam Davies