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by Tim Dunkley

The women’s snooker season kicks off this weekend with a double-header at the North East Derbyshire Snooker Centre, Clay Cross. A 20-strong field will be chasing more than £1,100 prize money in the third Wytech Ladies Masters Saturday, September 12.

The following day, the Clay Cross club hosts the UK Championship, the first ranking event of the 2009/10 World Ladies Billiards & Snooker Association season. Both tournaments start at 10am.

Now the traditional season curtain-raiser, the Wytech Masters will be streamed live on CueSport TV. The Midlands IT company is also chipping in £10 for the highest break in each round plus a pound-a-point overall high-break prize.

For the first time on the WLBSA circuit, the six-red format will be trialed. Matches up to the quarterfinals of the Wytech Masters will adopt the shortened game.

Seeded into the last eight are: five-time world champion Reanne Evans, 23; Ronnie O’Sullivan’s cousin Maria Catalano, 27; four-time world billiards champion Emma Bonney, 33; and former World Snooker Association ‘Young Player of Distinction’ Katie Henrick, 29.

Evans is the defending champion. She overcame Catalano 3-1 in last year’s final.

Evans is the defending champion. She overcame Catalano 3-1 in last year’s final.

Evans defeated Henrick 3-2 in last year’s final.

The UK Championship will also use the six-red format, but only in the Plate.

Evans is the defending champion. She overcame Catalano 3-1 in last year’s final.

The WLBSA is hosting six ranking events this season culminating in the World Championships in April.

2009 Wytech Ladies Masters Championship
Saturday, September 12
North East Derbyshire Snooker Centre
Derby Road
Clay Cross
S45 9AG
Tel: 01246 866364

2009 UK Championship
Ranking event
Sunday, September 13
North East Derbyshire Snooker Centre
Derby Road
Clay Cross
S45 9AG
Tel: 01246 866364

WLBSA snooker rankings 2009/10:

Pos Name Town Sponsor
1 Reanne Evans Dudley, West Mids
2 Maria Catalano Dudley, West Mids
3 Emma Bonney Portsmouth
4 Katie Henrick Bickley, Kent 180poker.com
5 Eva Palmius Isleham, Cambs
6 June Banks Orpington, Kent
7 Chris Sharpe Chelmsford
8 Jenny Poulter Maidstone
9 Suzie Opacic Brambridge, Hants Kara Accountants
10 Martina Lumsden Eastbourne
11 Gaye Jones Melksham, Wilts
12 Hannah Jones Derby Wytech + The Q Room
13 Joanne Davies Derby Wytech
14 Tina Owen-Sevilton Taunton
15 Vicky Ashby Hemel Hempstead
16 Marianne Williams Smallfield, Surrey
17 Sarah Smith Sheffield
18 Jan Hughes St Neots, Cambs
19 Stacey Hancock Burgess Hill
20 Maureen Logan Wallsend, Tyne & Wear Fine Arch Cues
21 Natascha Niermann Germany
22 Pam Wood Newcastle
23 Naomi Clare Ripley, Derbys
24 Jodie Symes Swindon
25 Laura Alves Dublin
26 Georgina Holloway Derby
27 Supanni Yam-Oum Canterbury
28 Charlotte Holloway Derby
29 Mary Hawkes Eaton Bray, Beds
30 Rita Holmes Minehead