Allen launches foul-mouthed rant at Hearn after sealing progress at UK Championship
Mark Allen has launched an attack on Barry Hearn, saying the World Snooker chairman is ‘just there to make money’ and should leave his post.
World No 12 Allen was rarely troubledas he brushed past Adrian Gunnell 6-3 in the first round of the UK Championship in York and afterwards hit out at Hearn, who was voted in as head of the sport by the players 18 months ago.
Baize-ing hell: Mark Allen has hit out at World Snooker chairman Barry Hearn
Northern Irishman Allen claimed Hearnvowed not to make changes to snooker’s major tournaments and is unhappythat the first and second-round matches of the tournament, considered to be the second biggest on the calendar, have been reduced from best-of-17 frames to best-of-11.
And the 25-year-old believes aspects of snooker are becoming too close to one of Hearn’s other sports, darts.
Allen said: ‘The players don’t reallymatter, so **** the players. When Barry came in, one of the first things he said was that the World Championship, UK and Masters wouldn’t be touched. Only 18 months later, the UK format has changed.
‘I don’t think he’s pleasing too manyplayers, but anyone who voted for him has only got themselves to blame.I wasn’t one of them.
Tinkerman: Allen claims Hearn is making snooker too much like darts
‘I’ve got no doubt he’ll tweak the World Championship. Barry’s just there to make money for himself, it doesn’t really matter about the players.
‘The whole tradition of the game is going to pot. It’s not all about bringing people in to watch and have agood time, shouting and having a drink.
‘He needs to get away from the darts factor. It’s getting close to that. I think in the long run he’ll probably do good for snooker, but not for my generation. It’s time to let someone else have a go.’
Allen’s outburst came minutes after Judd Trump admitted he will be the underdog against Ronnie O’Sullivan intheir last-16 clash.
Flair game: Ronnie O”Sullivan faces Judd Trump in the second round
The 22-year-old Trump has emerged as the heir apparent to O’Sullivan — who turned 36 on Monday — as the people’s champion, and the two players widely regarded as the game’s entertainers will clash as a result of Trump’s patchy 6-4 win over Dominic Dale.
Trump, who reached the World Championship final in May, has moved from his Bristol home to Essex to practise in the same club as O’Sullivan, and believes the three-time world champion is the favourite for their match.
‘Ronnie is playing the best he has played for a long time and he is feeling the best he has for four or five years,’ said Trump.
‘Hopefully I can give him a good gameand if I can get on top of him maybe he’ll get impatient, but the same goes for me. Two or three years ago I would have felt under pressure, but I think the pressure is on him. He is expected to beat me, he is expected to beat everyone.’